As if it's not enough that more banks are charging maintenance fees for checking accounts, those maintenance fees also are rapidly rising. In Bankrate's annual survey, the average account maintenance fee rose from $2.49 last year to $4.37 this year, an increase of 85 percent.
That adds up to about $52.44 a year, an amount that isn't going to break the bank but might surprise people accustomed to free checking, McBride says.
Tip: With so much change going on with checking, watch your statement for new fees such as "account maintenance fees," "monthly service charges" or "monthly service fees," McBride says.
"Monthly fees and balance requirements are very much in flux, and those are the type of changes that you really need to have an eye on," he says. "Any time you get a new fee schedule from the bank, it indicates there have been some changes, and it's something you need to look at closely."