September 8, 2011 (Toronto, ON) – The cheque book and passbook have taken a back seat in the financial lives of many Canadians, as people continue to embrace online banking to streamline and simplify their everyday banking habits. According to the 2011 TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Poll, Canadians selected online banking as the most preferred method of paying bills (65%), followed by preauthorized debits (16%), branch banking (8%), telephone banking (5%), at an ATM (3%) and by cheque in the mail (2%).
In fact, Canadians say the most significant change in banking habits over the past five years has been adopting online banking (46%), followed by paperless recordkeeping (12%) and viewing statements electronically (10%). Three-quarters of Canadians (76%) now use online banking to pay their bills.
“Anytime and anywhere, Canadians are increasingly turning to online banking for its convenience, security and ability to simplify how they manage their everyday finances”,” says Raymond Chun, Senior Vice President, TD Canada Trust. “Online banking gives Canadians access to banking information whenever they need it – and they can also use a tablet or smartphone to check account balances, pay bills and make transfers.”
But Chun says there is still an opportunity for Canadians to take advantage of other banking services that will help make saving and managing finances even easier. According to the poll, less than half of Canadians (43%) take advantage of pre-authorized payments, only 8% use mobile banking and only 28% use automated savings programs.
“Setting up pre-authorized debits to pay credit card and other bill balances each month is a simple and effective way to ensure payments are never missed. This saves money on late fees and interest and helps maintain a credit rating,” says Chun. “With mobile banking, you can access your accounts, transfer funds or make payments with your mobile device anytime, from almost anywhere in the world.”
“Plus automated savings programs are an easy way to help take the pain out of saving: your bank can set up a pre-authorized, regular transfer from your chequing account to a high-interest savings account.”
The TD Canada Trust Everyday Banking Poll also found that 18-to-34 year old Canadians are the most likely to use a mobile app for banking (19% versus 8% nationally), for activities such as: checking account balances (18% versus 7% nationally), making transfers (10% versus 4% nationally) and paying bills (8% versus 4% overall). The majority of Canadians who don’t use mobile banking, say it’s because they don’t have a smartphone (66%) or they perceive it to be unsafe (14%) or too expensive (12%).
“Mobile banking is still in its infancy, but its popularity has grown exponentially as more and more Canadians switch to smartphones,” says Chun. “As an example, within a year of its launch, more than 1 million Canadians downloaded the TD mobile app, making it the most downloaded banking app in the country.”
Raymond Chun, Senior Vice President, TD Canada Trust offers his tips on simple but effective ways Canadians can better manage their everyday banking and save money:
1. Make sure you’re in the right bank account – Accounts are tailored for different needs, so make sure you’re in one that gives you the right features and services for your type and frequency of use.
2. Consider maintaining the minimum monthly balance in your bank account – This may make sense for you and may allow you to avoid a monthly fee.
3. Bank and pay your bills online….and automatically