Checking accounts have been making a bad name for themselves in the news lately, so we thought it was a good idea to share some options that have zero or super low fees, sweet cash bonuses and the chance to earn interest. Here, you’ll find a mix of the best checking accounts from online and high street banks and credit unions.
13 of the Best Checking Accounts
1. Ally Interest Checking
Best Features: 0.10% – 0.60% interest, no maintenance fees
Ally’s Interest Checking account is free to use, including free cash withdrawals from any Allpoint ATM is the U.S. On top of that, Ally will reimburse up to $10 of fees from other U.S ATMs every month.
Let’s talk interest, as it’s the namesake of this account. With a balance of $15,000 or more, you can get 0.6% interest, but below that figure, you’ll yield just 0.1%. That’s better than most bank accounts, but you’d expect more from an account with ‘interest’ written in the title.
Ally is an online-only bank that is easily accessible online or using the Ally app.
2. Aspiration Summit Checking Account
Best Features: Up to 1% interest, no maintenance fees
Aspiration’s Summit Checking Account is an online-only bank account that charges zero fees, no minimums and an interest rate of up to 1%. You’ll get 1% APY on a full balance of $2,500 or more, or 0.25% on a balance below that number. This account is super easy to set up and only requires a $10 deposit to be made.
It’s also a great account for frequent travelers, as ATMs are free anywhere in the world. Instead of charging a monthly fee, Aspiration offers its users a ‘pay what is fair’ model. You can ‘tip’ the bank $0 – $6 per month.
3. Bank of Internet USA Essential Checking Account
Best Features: no annual or overdraft fees, cash back rewards for debit card purchases
Bank of Internet’s Essential Checking account charges no monthly or annual fees and no overdraft fees. You’ll also be able to earn cash back rewards on your debit card purchases. Upon opening, you’ll need to deposit $100, but after that, the minimum balance is $1.
You’ll get reimbursed for ATM fees within the U.S the following business day, but this bank will charge a 2% fee if you withdraw money abroad.
4. Capital One 360 Checking Account
Best Features: no maintenance fees, earn interest between 0.25% – 1%
With a Capital One 360 Checking account, you’ll have access to some cool features like depositing checks by taking a picture from your smartphone. As well as no-fee ATM withdrawals, and fairly good interest rates:
- Balances under $50,000 yields 0.20% APY
- $50,000 – $99,999 yields 0.75%
- $100,000+ yields 1%
5. Chime Spending Account
Best Features: no overdrafts fees, maintenance fees, foreign transaction fees or minimum balance fees, get your paycheck 2 days early
Chime is another online bank that offers some interesting features that other banks don’t. This includes zero fees – even for overdrafts. As well as fee-free access to MoneyPass ATMs across the nation, arguably, the best feature of a Chime Spending Account is that your paycheck will post 2 days before payday.
Some extra features Chime offer include the round-up tool, that rounds up your purchases to the nearest dollar and adds the change to your savings account, as well as the ‘Pay Friends’ feature that makes bill splitting and paying back friends super easy.
6. Chase Total Checking Account
Best Features: $200 bonus, additional $150 if you open a Chase savings account
Chase is already known for offering awesome bonuses to new customers, and their Total Checking Account is no different. To get the $200 bonus you need to open your account with a minimum of $25 and set up a direct deposit within 60 days of opening the account. Just keep your account open for 6 months to make good of this offer.
This account has a $12 monthly fee, but it’ll be waived if you have monthly deposits of $500 or more. Without a direct deposit, you’ll need to maintain a daily balance of $1,500 or more to get the fee waived. Chase ATMs are free to use, but you’ll incur a $2.50 charge at non-Chase ATMs. Chase also charge $5 for international withdrawals, so it’s not the best for travelers.
Want an extra bonus of $150? Open a Chase savings account, too.
7. Consumer Credit Union Free Rewards Checking
Best Features: Earn up to 4.59% interest, no maintenance fees
The interest you can earn with a Consumer’s Credit Union Free Rewards Checking account is pretty awesome. But the requirements are fairly large. You’ll earn 3.09% interest on a balance of up to $10,000, and have all ATM fees reimbursed as long you:
- Make 12 debit card purchases per month without using the PIN (as a credit transaction)
- Have at least one direct deposit, ACH debit or online bill-pay each month
- Log in to your online account at least once a month
- Enroll in e-documents
On top of that, you can earn 3.59% interest on balances of up to $15,000, and 4.59% on $20,000 if you meet CCU Visa credit card spending requirements: $500 and $1,000 respectively.
8. EverBank Checking Account
Best Features: 1-year of interest at 1.21%, reimbursed ATM fees
With a EverBank checking account you can earn 1.21% APY for the first year, then between 0.25% – 0.71% after. Their APY structure is:
- Balances under $10,000: 0.25% APY
- $10,000 – $24,999: 0.46% APY
- $50,000 – $99,999: 0.51% APY
- $100,000 or more: 0.71% APY
EverBank also has a Yield Pledge Promise – pledging that its checking account will yield within the top 5% of competitive accounts.
If you maintain a balance of $5,000, all ATM fees are reimbursed as well as maintenance fees waived. If you won’t have $5,000 in your account at all times, an EverBank checking account is not for you.
9. FNBO Direct Online Checking Account
Best Features: 0.65% interest, no maintenance fees
With FNBO’s Direct Online Checking account, you can earn 0.65% APY. This account charges no maintenance fees, offers free ATM withdrawals, free Popmoney transfers, free wire transfers and free online bill pay.
You only need $1 to open this account and are able to transfer money by cell phone or email account. This would make a great first checking account as it’s cheap to maintain and easy to use.
10. KeyBank Hassle Free Account
Best Features: no maintenance fees, $1 deposit required to open an account
KeyBank’s Hassle Free Account is always free of monthly maintenance fees and bill paying fees. However, there is no opportunity to earn interest – even KeyBank’s premier checking account only yields 0.10% APY. If you’re looking for a no-fees, no-frills online checking account, KeyBank is for you.
11. Northpointe Bank Ultimate Checking Account
Best Features: 5% interest, easy sign-up
Northpointe’s Ultimate Checking Account pays a huge 5% interest. The only catch is that you can only get this rate on upwards of $5,000. Plus, you’ll need to meet the following requirements:
- Enroll in e-statements.
- Have a direct deposit or automatic withdrawal of at least $100 per month.
- Spend at least $500 in at least 15 debit card purchases per month.
If you meet the requirements you can earn a generous $250 per year in interest. However, the last requirement on the list might be a little tricky – keep on top of your debit card purchases, otherwise, your interest rate will drop to 0.05%.
12. TD Bank Convenience Checking Account
Best Features: $150 bonus, free online and mobile banking
Get $150 just for opening a TD Bank Convenience Checking Account. To make good of this offer, all you need to do is set up a direct deposit and receive a total of $500 or more within 60 days of opening your account. This is easy if you set up your main paycheck to be deposited into this account.
There’s no opportunity to earn interest with this account, though the $150 bonus is worth a few years of interest. There is a maintenance fee of $15 per month, but this will be waived if you maintain a daily balance of $100.
To score a $300 bonus, consider opening TD Bank’s higher-tier Premier Checking account. It’s an interest-yielding account.
13. Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking Accounts
Best Features: no fees or minimum deposits, ATM rebates for withdrawals anywhere in the world
Schwab Bank’s High Yield Investor Checking Account is perfect for international travelers. You’ll get unlimited ATM fee rebates for cash withdrawals all over the world. Using the Schwab app for iPhone or online, you can make deposits on-the-go which is great for jet-setters.
The only downside to this account is that the High Yield Investor Checking account must be linked to a Schwab One brokerage account. There are no fees or minimums to open either account, as long as you open both at the same time.
Both accounts are free from monthly and minimum fees, but “other account fees, fund expenses, and brokerage commissions may apply” once you begin investing. The checking account has a variable interest rate, so if you’re looking to grow your savings, open a brokerage account with Schwab.
Want to score that $200 bonus?
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