What Should a Nonprofit Look for in a Commercial Bank?

January 05, 2023

Nonprofit organizations are a critical part of improving the quality of life in our communities – from humanitarian, environmental, educational and economic standpoints. However, dedication to the public interest can lead to unique banking needs, which makes choosing the right bank for your nonprofit an important and worthwhile endeavor.

If you’re ready to start exploring a new, or different, bank for your nonprofit, it’s a good idea to research banks in your area first. As you’re evaluating your options, here are some important factors to take into consideration.

Personalized Service

In a strong partnership, your banker will understand both your passion and dedication to the cause, as well as the complex operational needs of your organization. Do you have a direct connection to your banker? Are they reaching out to hear about your specific needs, attending your events and engaging with your board? Many banks have solutions available exclusively for nonprofit organizations and the right banker will proactively share them based on their deep understanding of your organization.

Community Support

Nonprofits can benefit from partnering with a bank with strong ties to their community for a variety of reasons. Banks with strong regional roots often support businesses that support the community and are driven by a mutual purpose, deep understanding and commitment to the communities they serve. It’s important to ensure your nonprofit’s values and goals align with those of your bank. Part of this is evaluating how the bank is engaging at a community level, including the nonprofit engagement of their bankers.


Relationships go a long way in the nonprofit industry. Is your relationship with your banker providing positive ROI for your organization? Strong collaboration with your banker can facilitate great connections to other organizations and the community and raise awareness of your cause. Your banking relationship should support you, help drive your mission forward, and connect you with other people who can provide sponsorships, volunteers and financial support.

Industry Expertise

Not all banks have experience working with nonprofits, but it helps to have one that does. A bank that has experience working with nonprofits can help guide you through any issues that arise and reach your fullest potential. When it comes to operations, is your bank equipped with the experience to help you navigate the unique challenges of your industry such as donation cycles, turnover of authorized signatories, financing to bridge between grants and underwriters that understand the complexity of your loan needs?

Responsiveness and Adaptability

Often, serving the community means acting fast. Are you able to get ahold of your banker when you need it? Are they able to make quick decisions that help you keep moving forward? When crises arise, it’s important that your bank can pivot quickly in order to provide you with the support you need.

Simply put, Torrey Pines Bank has extensive experience and experience working with the intricacies of nonprofits, combined with deep community roots and personalized attention that can facilitate incredible connections to take your mission farther. To learn more about how our expert team can tailor banking products to the unique business needs of nonprofits, contact a Torrey Pines Bank relationship manager.