How To Open Your First Bank Account

Moving to Canada is an exciting adventure but it’s also going to be a hectic time for you and your family. You want to make sure you have everything organized so that once you arrive you won’t have any issues hindering you with moving on to your new life.

Once you move to Canada one of the first things you want to do is get a handle on your finances. Opening up a Canadian bank account is essential in order to pay for your every-day needs or to conduct business within the city. You will also need a bank account for your job as most employers nowadays require you to have a bank account so they can put your paychecks in through direct deposit.

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There are many important factors to consider when you decide to open up a bank account:

  • Choose a bank or credit union that is closer to your home. This way it is never a struggle to get to the bank if you need to. Most banks will offer basic bank accounts that have a chequing and savings options.
  • When you make an appointment make sure that you bring in your immigration papers, and identification that proves where you are living.
  • The next step is to obtain a secured credit card. This is important as you will need to start building a credit history in Canada. Building a credit history is done through showing that you can pay your bills on time. This is important because building a credit history will allow you to one day get a mortgage to buy a home.
  • You may be able to open a bank account before you move into the country. This will allow you to have your funds accessible when you arrive in Canada. This can be completed online as most institutions allow new customers to enrol online. Some of the banks are even in the countries of your origin and can be easily accessed before moving to Canada. Scotiabank is a great example of a bank that offers immigrants the opportunity to open up a bank before they arrive in Canada.
  • It’s as easy as contacting the institution you want to bank with and letting them know you want to open an account. They will discuss your options and then mail all the required forms to make sure your banking process runs smoothly.
  • Once your account is open you can even make some wire transfers to your new account before you leave for Canada.
  • The only thing you need to make note of is the fact that money can not be withdrawn out of your new account until you have gone to the Canadian branch in person once you arrive in Canada.


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