Just 45 percent of noninterest checking accounts are free of maintenance charges, down from 65 percent in 2010. That number peaked at 76 percent two years ago.
Don't forget that the vast majority of reward checking accounts
are free checking accounts with no monthly service charges even if you don't meet the monthly requirements to qualify for the high interest rate. If you don't mind using debit cards for purchases, you can also earn a decent interest rate with these accounts. Hundreds of community banks and credit unions offer these around the country.