Reasons Why Kontist Is The Best Bank For The Self-Employed

A quick summary of important information about the Kontist account

  • It’s a German account.
  • The account is free of charge (no registration fee, no account management fees! For optional additional services, see price table)
  • It is managed via an easy to use mobile app which is available for iOS and Android. A desktop version is also available
  • It is very easy and quick to open a Kontist account using the online identification process
  • When opening an account, there is no credit check inquiry (SCHUFA)
  • Intended for other legal entities as well (GmbH, UG etc.)

Kontist is designed for the self-employed

First of all: Behind the name Kontist is a German start-up based in Berlin. The team consists of people with different areas of expertise who work together towards one goal: the self-employed should be able to manage their finances without financial and administrative hurdles. And that is exactly what the account should enable. It’s actually very simple, but that’s what I find so awesome. Basically, Kontist categorizes every income into “yours, income tax, and sales tax” – or you choose to have it as a private income. Then 100% of the sum is booked in the category “yours”.

The Kontist account functions seamlessly with sub-accounts

You manage the Kontist account via an app (iOS & Andriod) or on a desktop. I think it’s great that you can log into the app using your fingerprint

Virtual Kontist sub-accounts

Then you set up the basic settings. This means: You state what the percentage of your income tax and sales tax that you collect. Of course, you can change this information at any time. Kontist notifies you of a transaction and you can categorize the income as either private or business income. 100% of private income ends up in the “yours” category. In the case of business income, you briefly confirm the amount of the sales tax rate and the Kontist app automatically calculates how much money from the income ends up at the tax office for taxes as a percentage.

This virtual split is just super practical! Because this way you always have an eye on how much money of your earnings really belongs to you. And there are no nasty surprises when it comes to your tax return. 😉 You are constantly aware of your tax obligations.


To open a Kontist account costs nothing

You pay neither a one-time nor an ongoing account management fee for a German business account. That’s why you can open the account and try it out without hesitation. Whether you actively use it afterwards or not is up to you. If you require additional optional services, simply select them and pay for what you need.

Incidentally, the account is with solarisBank, “which is regulated by the Federal Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin)”. All financial and user data is transmitted in encrypted form and also secured by two-factor authentication.

It’s very easy to open a Kontist account

If you want to open a Kontist account, you can do so within a few minutes using an online identification process. Open an account here

Easy steps to opening a Kontist account:

  1. If you are currently at a desktop, all you need to do is enter your email address and the download link for the app will be sent to you. If you are currently on your mobile phone, click on the App Store button.
  2. Download the app and register.
  3. You then carry out the online identification process via smartphone. Have your ID card ready and make sure you have a good internet connection. Incidentally, the identification takes max. 10 mins.
  4. Finished! After successfully completing the identification process, you can make the basic settings for your account.

The Kontist pros outweigh the cons

We can easily recommend the Kontist account because it is the ideal banking solution for the self-employed.


  • it is a German business account – and free of charge,
  • you can categorize your income and expenses virtually and have a great overview of your finances,
  • the account can be opened in a flash,
  • Kontist is a young start-up and future-oriented,
  • can be used together with debitor


  • the decimal place is rounded in the overview
  • there is (yet) no EC card

Free Business Account for Freelancers: Kontist

Kontist – If you work as a self-employed person or as a freelancer, you have a lot in mind. Accounting, of course, but actually you’d better concentrate on the actual business. In addition, most banks require much higher account maintenance fees for business accounts than for private checking accounts.

Some time ago I found a practical solution for this: Kontist.

Kontist is a free business account operated by Solarisbank. And this account has all sorts of smart features.

Thus the account is led completely in the Smartphone and also the account opening takes place completely without any paper. This is super easy and fast. I’ve never opened an account on Sunday morning from bed. Sounds weird, but that works!

The Kontist app notifies you about every cash receipt and also about each exit. And if you also use Debitoor for your bookkeeping, paid bills will automatically be syndicated to Debitoor and marked as paid.


Meanwhile, I also use Debitoor for my bookkeeping and the interaction is fantastic. Incoming and outgoing payments are largely automatically assigned to the respective invoices within Debitoor. Just perfect.

The best feature for me is the distribution of the account balance. Because the app does not just show the account balance. No, it also indicates which part of the amount is mine and which share belongs to the tax office. Once you’ve set which tax rates to apply, Kontist automatically puts that part aside, so you can see directly what you really have in your pocket and what amount may need to be paid at the end of the year.

The best part is that this account is completely free. It costs nothing. If you want, you can also optionally apply for a MasterCard for your Kontist account. This costs 29 € per year or is free if the card turnover per year is more than 3000 €.
The MasterCard can be used up to 25 € contactless and is also suitable for withdrawing cash at the machine. As far as I can remember, that was until recently still free. Meanwhile, a withdrawal costs, however, 2 €

It is also practical that every card transaction is confirmed directly by a push message on the smartphone. Thus, the output can also be categorized equal so that the calculation of tax payments is correct.
In addition to the physical mastercard, you can also apply for a virtual credit card within the app. This is free and can e.g. used for online shopping.

I’ve been using Kontist for a few months now and I’m very happy with it. It would be great if there were connections to other accounting systems besides Debitoor. As far as I know, this is planned.

business banking

Business Bank Account Fees

It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the terms and conditions of the financial institution and when fees will be debited to your account. Make sure to always have sufficient funds available for fees and charges.

The fees are typically charged when a particular service is used and at the end of the month, such as:

  • Deposit and withdrawals made over the counter: a fee is charged per transaction.
  • Each deposit and withdrawal that is not over the counter is charged a fee.
  • Debit transactions are usually charged a fee.
  • An account service fee is typically charged every month.
  • A fee is usually charged for every electronic debit transaction.
  • A monthly account keeping fee can be charged.

Transaction fees are charged if you exceed the number of fee free transactions with withdrawals and staff assisted deposits.

A fee is charged on all cheque deposits.

You can be charged a dishonor fee if there is insufficient funds in your account to cover a cheque or direct debit.

Business Bank Accounts Typically Provide Effective Ways To Manage Finances

Mobile banking such as Kontist can save you time and can also simplify your accounting process. You can view the account balance, make payments and transfer money from anywhere at any time. The Australian banking system is excellent and allows you to pay wages, debts and bills in an efficient manner. You will find that banks offer different accounts and the fees and charges may differ from bank to bank.

Many banks offer unlimited electronic transactions and cash withdrawals free of transaction fees. You can compare the benefits of different accounts and choose an option that will suit your business best. It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the terms and conditions and when fees will be debited to your account. It is also important to have sufficient funds available in your business bank account for fees and charges.

Business Bank Accounts

Business bank accounts in Australia offer unlimited electronic transactions, such as access to your account at ATM’s, Telephone banking, Internet banking, Mobile phone banking or at any branch.

Accounts typically provide effective ways to manage finances. Internet banking can save you time and can also simplify your accounting process. You can view the account balance, make payments and transfer money from anywhere at any time. Your account can also be linked to an overdraft facility.

A business bank account can have multiple card holders. The debit cards can be held by non-authorized signatories or by primary cardholders who are signatories to the account. Withdrawal limits are per card per calendar day, but you can increase the limit at your bank. Most ATM machines offer a maximum cash amount per withdrawal.
Internet banking and mobile phone banking enables you to manage your money. Know more about Kontist

If you travel or have to be out of the office, you can still obtain easy access to your account. Business bank accounts typically provide effective ways to manage finances. Internet banking can save you time and can also simplify your accounting process. You can view the account balance, make payments and transfer money from anywhere at any time.

kontist mobile banking

Mobile Phone Banking Poses Threat to Traditional Services – The Future of Exchange Houses in the GGC

For the large immigrant populations living in the Gulf region, exchange houses have been their primary means to channel hard earned wages to poor relatives across the sub-continent – but that may soon be about to change. With the growing popularity of mobile phone banking in other regions of the world, telecommunications providers in the Gulf are on the brink of introducing applications that will encourage users to conduct money transfers directly from their mobile phones.

In many respects, the exchange houses are the unsung heroes of the GCC – often run by indigenous entrepreneurs, they offer a widening array of products to low income communities and ensure enough competition in the money transfer market to ensure that the cost of transfers remain low. But this traditional business model could soon become a thing of the past, as banks and mobile phone operators are pioneering ways to allow users to carry out all their daily banking activities from their phones. If successful, the new technology could catch on quickly in the Gulf region, where although many are poor, the majority of workers own mobile phones.

To date, few of these new services have gone live. Among those that have, they did not prove particularly attractive to workers – who still had to find ways of “funding” an e-wallet before money could be transferred. This process normally requires a visit to an agent, and thus demands about as much effort as visiting an exchange house – but without the opportunity to enjoy a cup of chai with their countrymen who gather around the exchange houses in the evening.

Yet there are many indications that the present barriers to mobile phone banking could soon be overcome. As an increasing number of Gulf workers acquire basic bank accounts and/or card products through which they receive their wages, more banks are providing mobile solutions to allow new customers to push payments from these accounts through from their phones. In addition, mobile phone providers may soon produce phones that come with a pre-loaded application – similar to the calculator or stop watch loaded on most phones – that would allow users to easily register their card and initiate a transfer.

Earlier this year, a deal between a mobile payments company called Obopay and Nokia laid the foundation for the possible launch of the built-in application. According to a press release issued by one of the signatories, Nokia may soon pre-load a mobile payment application on all Nokia phones (which have by far the largest market share in the handset market). This would remove one of the biggest challenges to adoption – getting customers to download applications onto their phones. And as Microsoft’s many rivals have discovered, competing with something that comes pre-loaded (even when it is far from free) is extremely difficult. Research by mobile operators has shown that consumers spend a large amount of time experimenting with whatever comes pre-loaded on their phone – even if they were not initially looking for the service.

So whilst there will always be customers who prefer cash, the scale of market adoption that is possible when the product becomes accessible, can be dramatic. In Kenya, for example, over 8 million of the leading mobile operator’s customers signed up for a money transfer service in less than three years (1 in 3 adults by some estimates). These customers now make regular payments to relatives up-country via their mobile phones.

According to the author, GCC exchange houses need to urgently reassess how they do business.

Exchange houses must find ways to compete with platforms of this nature, and be alert to changing consumer dynamics that signal the shift to new ways of doing business. There is a lot to be done: they should investigate ways to become part of the payroll business, and should start creating linkages and providing services that compliment rapidly evolving business models.

Copyright 2009 Genesis Analytics, PTY Ltd.

No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder

Michel Hanouch is an expert on mobile payments and money transfers and leads the work for Genesis Analytics in this area. Genesis Analytics is a specialist banking and payment strategy firm with operations in UAE and South Africa. Genesis was a participant at the Mobile Money Transfer Conference held in Dubai from the 26-28 October 2009, and the GCC card summit held in Bahrain.


How does opening a Kontist account work?

Opening a Kontist Business Account is as easy as 123:

  1. Download the Kontist app from the App or PlayStore
  2. Register for an account
  3. Verify your identity within the app via VideoIdent – your account is unlocked within minutes

At first you will only see a screen with your new IBAN number. This changes as soon as a first payment has been received in your account.

From this point on you have full access to all online features and can conveniently regulate your banking transactions over the Internet.

Online banking in particular is an integral part of direct banks. It makes it easier for you to create business and tax records for your own company.

You always have full control of your account, and you can contact a competent person at any time for questions, criticism or suggestions. You always have your account balance online at a glance.