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What is a bank statement?

June 3, 2022
3 minute read
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Typically, a bank statement will show a month's worth of transactions. This will include both incoming and outgoing transactions. However, it's not always from the 1st to the 30th/31st; there might be some statements that go from the 13th to the 12th of the next month.

What does a bank statement include🤷?

Besides what we’ve mentioned above, a bank statement will also show you what your balance is at the end of each transaction, plus the date the transaction went through. Usually, the statement will show what your balance was at both the start and end of the period.

You can also find here your account number, as well as your full name, home address, and the bank branch provider. There will often be instructions as to how you can report fraud or mistakes (such as double charges).

For each transaction, there might be the name of the person or organization the transaction came from or went to, and/or other details that can help you identify what the money was used for. Of course, the amount is listed as well. Some banks will group all deposits and withdrawals together, while others will list them in chronological order.

Any service charges or interest earned will show up on bank statements as well.

What can a bank statement be used for?

A bank account statement is a powerful document, as it'll show exactly how much money you have. It can also prove how responsible (or irresponsible) you were with your money, as every transaction is listed.

You can use a bank statement to check your bank account, as you might not be tracking your spending and income in detail. After you've requested a bank statement, you can then record your transactions to see if you're on track with budgeting. It's a good way to double-check there are no extra charges too, whether they're fraudulent or on accident. As a bunq user, all these are within the app and you’ll always know what you spend with instant notifications, or if you’re sticking to your proposed budget.

We recommend that you check your bank statements every month to stay on top of things. If you've spotted suspicious activity, make sure you contact your bank right away to rectify the situation. For bunq users, simply tap on "I don't recognize this payment".

Of course, your bank statements are private; your bank will never show these documents to unauthorized people or companies.

Why might you need a bank statement❓

Again, bank statements can show exactly what your financial situation is like. This can be useful when you need to prove you're a responsible individual.

For example, you can use your bank statements when applying to rent an apartment. When the landlord sees that you have a nice and steady income, and you pay your bills on time, they'll be more inclined to rent to you.

You can also submit bank statements to lenders if you need to take out a personal loan. Again, they'll have proof that you're financially responsible, which increases the chance of you being approved and getting a fantastic interest rate.

Plus, you can use bank statements for tax season. These documents will back up what you've reported.

How long to keep bank statements⌛

In the past, you'd get a paper bank statement each month. Understandably, this can add up and take up a lot of storage space. In general, it's recommended that you keep bank statements for at least a year; the longer, the better.

Nowadays, you can download a bank statement if needed. According to Article 34 of the WWFT, banks must keep at least 5 years of your financial records (in the Netherlands). So if you need any evidence of your transactions from up to 5 years ago, you can download it off your bank's app or with their help. 

Because computers have a large capacity for storage, we'd recommend keeping the files for as long as you can. Just make sure to encrypt them so if a cybercriminal accesses your network, they can't get sensitive data.

Once you no longer need your bank statements, you should shred the paper copies and delete the digital files securely.

How to get a bank statement at bunq🌈

We make it easy to get a bank statement at bunq

Simply go to the Home screen and select the desired sub-account. Click on "More" and then "Export Statement". Step by step easy instructions here.

Now, you can set certain parameters based on your needs. For example, you can select the exact time period you want. In addition, you can choose between 3 different file types: PDF, CSV, or MT940.

Once you've picked your parameters, you can click on "Export Statement". You'll then receive the bank statement in your email. Do note that you can only request 100 export statements per month.

If your account has been blocked, you won't be able to request a bank statement. If you need one, contact our support team and they'll assist you.

Get a bank account with bunq🚀

Now you know what a bank statement is, what you can use it for, and how to get one. If you’re looking for an automated, easy banking experience, consider signing up with bunq today. 

Ready to get started? Then download the app and try bunq for free.

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