Basics

The best place to keep your money safe is in a bank.  Realize, I did not say make a lot of money, just safe.  Banks earn money by taking money from you and other depositors, and then lending the money to other people and businesses for a fee which is called interest.  Banks do differ slightly based on how they are organized and which regulatory agency monitors them, although most people are not aware of the differences.  Everyone should have, and most people need, a good relationship with a bank.  Which one is right for you will depend on your needs and location.  Banks offer a number of different kinds of services such as checking accounts (see Types Of Checking Accounts), savings accounts (see Types Of Savings Accounts), ATM cards (see ATM & Debit Cards ), and other ways to help you manage your money.  Most bank accounts are insured by the FDIC (Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation) (http://www.fdic.gov/index.html), so you don’t have to worry about losing your money unless you have over a $100,000 in any one account, but we will discuss that later.