Updated May 19, 2022

Novo Review

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Novo Bank provides digital banking services for entrepreneurs and small businesses. Explore Novo's features, business perks, and fees in this review.

Novo Promotions
Powerfully Simple Business Banking

Overall Score






Customer Service


Mobile App

5-point scale (the higher, the better)

Pros and Cons

  • No monthly fees
  • Unlimited ATM refunds
  • Lots of software integrations
  • No cash deposits
  • Can't send wires

Bottom Line

Fee-free online business checking with lots of good features

Novo Bank is a digital bank catering to entrepreneurs and small business owners.

They offer significant discounts for business services like Intuit QuickBooks and Stripe and almost no fees.

But can Novo meet the unique demands of today's small business owners? Read this review to learn more about Novo's features, fees, and integrations.

What Is Novo Bank?

Novo Bank is a digital-only banking service with no physical branches.

It's ideal for small business owners, entrepreneurs and freelancers for its minimal fees and easy self-service. Business owners can use Novo to pay employees, send invoices, send and receive business-related payments, and set aside funds for expenses like quarterly taxes.

They're partnered with Middlesex Savings Bank, which manages their accounts and debit cards. However, Novo is an independently operated technology company.

Who is best suited for Novo Bank?
Novo is ideal for freelancers and businesses that primarily exchange funds digitally. Brick-and-mortar businesses or those that handle a lot of cash would not be a good fit for Novo.

Pros and Cons of Novo Bank


  • Integration with business services
  • Free business debit cards for single or multiple account administrators
  • No (or minimal) fees
  • User-friendly app
  • Reimbursement for ATM fees
  • Free incoming and outgoing ACH transfers
  • Free incoming wires
  • 40% off your first six months with QuickBooks
  • $100 Google Ads credit
  • $20,000 in fee-free card processing with Stripe

For the full list of discounts available to Novo customers, click here.


  • No physical branch locations
  • No cash deposits
  • $27 overdraft fee; no overdraft protection
  • No paper checks (Novo can send check for you)
  • Cannot set up recurring payments in bill pay
  • Slow customer service
  • No savings, money market accounts, or CDs

Who is Novo Best For

Novo could be right for you if:

  • You're a freelancer or a small solo business owner.
  • You mostly use ACH transfers and invoicing to send and receive payments.
  • You want to integrate your business checking account with financial software you already use.
  • You want a business checking with no monthly fees.

Who is Novo Not For

Novo is not for you if:

  • You regularly pay employees or vendors with checks.
  • You get paid in cash, as Novo doesn't have physical locations where you can deposit cash.
  • Your business is a Series LLC, non-US registered, related to cannabis, adult, money services (and among others).

How Does Novo Bank Work?

Novo functions like a typical digital-only business checking account. You can transfer funds to and from an existing checking account, send and request payments, and monitor account activity online or through the app.

To apply (which takes only minutes), applicants must be at least 18 years old with a U.S.-based business. Applicants must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident with a valid Social Security number, U.S. mailing address, and mobile phone number.

Customers receive a debit card, which can be used to make purchases and withdraw cash from ATMs. You can also add business partners to your account and request business debit cards for each partner on the account.

Is Novo Bank legit?
Yes. Deposits into your Novo account are FDIC insured up to $250,000. Novo's partner, Middlesex Savings Bank, has been in business since 1835.[1]


Novo's only account offering is their small business checking account, which easily accommodates most basic business transactions.

Sending and receiving payments
Novo members can send invoices, deposit physical checks using mobile deposit, and send and receive ACH payments for business expenses. However, you can't send wire transfers, order checks, or deposit cash. Customers can also pay for expenses using Apple Pay and Google Pay.

ATM fee refunds
Novo doesn't have its own ATM network. But it will refund all ATM fees at the end of the month, so you can use any ATM you want. It even refunds international ATM fees.

Novo lets you add up to 5 reserves. These are funds set aside for things you may be saving up towards (like for taxes or equipment purchase). The money in your Reserves will not count in your "spendable balance," but they are still available to you at any time.

Send checks from app
If you need to send a paper check, you can request it in the Novo app. Novo will make and mail the check on your behalf, at no extra cost. Just note that it takes 7-10 business days for a check to be delivered.

Software integrations
Novo's most stand-out feature is their business integrations, which directly connect to your account on the Novo App (Apple, Google Play). Here's a few of the platforms they integrate with:

  • Wise for international payments
  • Slack to communicate with partners and team members
  • Xero for automated accounting services
  • Stripe to receive credit and debit payments
  • Shopify to track your eCommerce business finances
  • QuickBooks for simple accounting automatically imported to your QuickBooks account

Novo Boost (new)
If you use Stripe for credit card processing, you get funds from sales deposited into your Novo account in just hours.

Usually, you'd have to wait 1-2 business days for funds to appear. Having almost instant deposits really helps small businesses with cash flow. This lets you keep payments going and reinvest back into your business.

Does Novo use Zelle?
Not currently. However, Novo is planning to integrate with Zelle in the future, according to their website. It does work with PayPal and Venmo. Or you can send and receive payments with unlimited ACH transfers.

Fees to Watch Out For

Novo has (almost) no fees. There are no monthly fees, transaction fees, or ACH fees, and users pay nothing to replace a lost or stolen debit card.

They also offer free business checking with no minimum balance requirements after the $50 initial deposit.

The only fees Novo charges are:

  • $27 overdraft fee
  • $27 uncollected funds returned fee

In short, if you don't overdraw your account or receive bad checks, you will never incur any fees from Novo.

Many banks offer free checking accounts for small business. Review your options in our free business checking guide.

How to Apply to Novo

Here is what you need to provide in your application:[2]

  • Social Security number
  • Driver's license or passport
  • US address
  • Proof of address (lease agreement, utility bill, phone bill, credit card statement, or bank statement)
  • US phone number (virtual number not allowed)

EINs are required if your business hires employers. If you're a sole proprietor or single-member LLC, it's optional.

In addition, you will need to provide these documents depending on your state requirements for your type of business:

  • DBA if you have filed for one
  • Articles of Organization and Operating Agreement (for LLCs)
  • Articles of Incorporation (for corporations)
  • Certificate of Partnership (for partnerships)

Novo does not check your credit history when reviewing your application.

Customer Reviews

Novo is currently rated 4 stars (out of 5) by Trustpilot.
The majority of reviews are either 5 stars or 1 star, with few in between. This suggests that most customers really like Novo, while a handful had very specific problems.

A common theme with negative reviews is poor customer service. Many customers complain of long wait times and the lack of communication channels outside of email.

However, many reviewers spoke positively about Novo and contradicted the complaints of other reviewers, stating their issues were quickly resolved.

Representative 5-Star Review:
"5+++ great business banking, very secure. Great features in the app, like pay employees, attach receipts or invoices to your payments or withdrawals.

You can even organize each purchase in categories like: utilities, business supplies, and many, many, many more options."
— Meg C. via Google Play Store

Representative 1-Star Review:
"This bank is garbage. Please do not waste your time here. It takes forever to get anything done. There is no phone number in case you need help, everything is done by email correspondence.

Their fraud dept is a waste of time - our card # was stolen and used online and they determined that the charges were valid and refused to refund us. Your money is not safe here."
— Larissa F. via Trustpilot

How to Contact Customer Support

Novo's support office is open from Monday to Friday between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. EST. To contact Novo, customers can email support@novo.co. There is also a contact number listed on the back of your debit card, which is not publicly available.

Alternatives to Novo Bank

Novo vs Chase Business
Chase Bank and Novo Bank both offer a business-focused banking experience.

If your business often gets paid in cash and requires easy branch access, Chase may be the better choice.

Novo Bank is better for independent contractors and freelancers with irregular income. There are no monthly maintenance fees or minimum balance requirements. Plus, DIY entrepreneurs can benefit from Novo's many tech integrations.

Other Online Banks

After the closure of popular business bank Azlo, there are three top competitors to Novo: Bluevine, LendingClub Bank, and NorthOne.

Each competitor has a different fee and benefit breakdown, which we'll cover here.

Bluevine vs. Novo
This may be Novo's fiercest competition. With Bluevine, you can earn up to 1.50% APY.

There is no minimum initial deposit requirement, monthly fees, or fees for insufficient funds.

Lili vs Novo
Lili is a mixed-use personal and business checking account especially designed for freelancers. You can apply with just your SSN. There are no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements.

Lili makes it easy to sort your transactions as a work expense or personal expense. And you can also automatically set a portion of your income to a tax savings account.

Another cool feature is that you can get your direct deposit payments up to 2 days earlier.

LendingClub Bank vs. Novo
Larger businesses may find the features and benefits of LendingClub Bank Tailored Checking appealing — with 0.1% APY and 1% cash back on all purchases if you have more than $5,000 in your account.

LendingClub Bank customers can also order paper checks and receive their first 25 checks for free.

Smaller businesses with tighter cash flow may prefer Novo, which has no monthly fees compared to LendingClub Bank's $10 monthly fee for balances under $5,000. Novo also has a smaller minimum opening deposit requirement: $50 versus $100 for LendingClub.

NorthOne vs. Novo
Novo stacks up favorably to NorthOne due to the latter's $10 monthly fee. However, with NorthOne, customers are able to deposit cash at in-network ATMs. And although NorthOne charges a $15 domestic wire transfer fee,[3] Novo does not currently allow sending wire transfers at all.

Looking for other business-friendly banks? Check out our top picks for small business bank accounts, plus the pros and cons to consider before signing up.

Bottom Line: Should You Use Novo?

As one 4-star reviewer wrote on Trustpilot, "Well, it's a bank." Your money will be insured and largely safe from fees of any kind. You can perform the basic functions required of business owners and even get pretty steep discounts on popular business services.

If you are a modest, online, service-based business already looking to use tools like QuickBooks, HubSpot, Stripe, and Google Ads — Novo could save you some serious coin.

For other situations, consider shopping around for a banking solution that earns interest and includes features like paper checks, wire transfers, and Zelle compatibility.


  1. ^ Novo. Are my deposits insured by the FDIC?, Retrieved 3/20/2022
  2. ^ Novo. What business documents do I need to open an account?, Retrieved 3/20/2022
  3. ^ NorthOne Pricing, Retrieved 3/20/2022

Powerfully Simple Business Banking

  • $0 monthly service fee
  • $50 deposit to unlock all features
  • Unlimited ATM fee rebates
Banking services provided by Middlesex Federal Savings F.A.; Member FDIC

Business Checking - Up to 1.5% APY

  • 1.5% APY on your balance up to $100,000 for customers that meet monthly eligibility requirements
  • $0 minimum opening deposit
  • $0 monthly service fee

Mobile Banking for Freelancers

  • $0 monthly service fees
  • $0 minimum opening deposit
  • No foreign exchange fee
  • Get direct deposits up to 2 days earlier
Axos Bank
Member FDIC

Rewards Checking - Up to 1.25% APY

  • Use Promo Code "MAY150" for a $150 bonus
  • Up to 1.25% APY
  • Zero monthly maintenance fees
  • Zero overdraft or NSF fees
  • Zero minimum monthly balance reqs
  • Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements
  • Zero Minimum Balance Requirement
  • Only $50 to open an account

Write to Justin Barnard at feedback@creditdonkey.com. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook for our latest posts.

Note: This website is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content. You do not have to use our links, but you help support CreditDonkey if you do.

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