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Online Bank Reviews
In this section of the site you will find full reviews of Savings Accounts in Online Banks of just about every reputable bank. I opened an account of a dollar on all no balance minimum sites. Yeah, it might hurt my credit, but it's in the name of science.
I found some banks to have impressive setups while others just scare me and I probably would be better off just giving the money to some one in an alley to hold on to.
If you have accounts at any of these banks, please share your experiences. I'd love to open up the discussion.
Here are the Banks I have reviewed so far, If I'm missing your bank, please let me know.
If you know of a bank that I am missing, please let me know. I will review any FDIC-verifiable bank that has a low minimum balance.
You will find a detailed view of the following aspects:
1. Customer Service- How helpful and knowledgeable are their staff? By what methods do they have access to support.
2. Rate History- Is the rate they are currently offering just a fluke? Is the rate just temporary to entice you to join?
3. Security- How serious are they about securing your account
funds? What guarantees are provided to you?
When choosing an online bank the top 10 things to look for:
1. Interest Rates- Obviously, the higher the better! Check our rate chart for the latest rates.
2. ATM Rebates- This can usually out rank rates, if you you have under $10,000 in your savings account. If you are like most people, you use your ATM card 5 times a month at $2.00 a pop, that starts to eat away at your interest real quick.
3. Security- Security is a huge issue for most people. Security of most online banks is outstanding. There are still a number of banks that are behind times. I find the most secure banks are those that are also difficult for the account holder to enter. When looking for online banking you should look for a system which consists of more than just the username and password. The industry standard now is image based technology. Beyond the simple user name and password, you should also have to input a PIN number of some kind using your mouse. Many banks now offer security customization. In this system you do not only have a username, password, and image based input. You would also have to answer a series of personal questions. In some cases, banks will display an image or message of your choice to recertify that you are at the correct location.
4. Guarantees- Many banks need customers to feel safe. In order to do so banks will offer guarantees, such as 100% fraud protection. In this case any unauthorized use of your account is fully protected. This is the ultimate form protection even beyond security of this site. I personally choose to do my business only with banks that offer this form will guarantee.
5. Identity Theft Assistance- Many customers will say great you have security in a guarantee that my money will not be stolen from me. But if a hacker gets a hold of my personal information, there to be ramifications be on just my account. To ease the worry of this some banks are now starting to offer identity theft assistance. If you are a victim of identity theft, they will assist you in recovery. This is a beautiful feature and I hope the trend of this continues on from bank to bank.
6. Bill Pay- This allows you to pay common billers payments electronically. Bill Pay, while a nonessential feature, is a great feature to have. In many cases you can deflect late payments or repeated payments to common utilities and services. In effect it saves you on stamps, envelopes, and late fees. It also gives you peace of mind that your payments will be on time.
7. Easy of Use- One of the biggest reasons that people don't online bank, secondary to security, is easy use. In some cases, people are afraid to make mistakes which would cost them money. Most banks have gotten their act together. It's difficult to know who offers a user unfriendly site until it's too late and you already have an account with them. The best way to judge ease-of-use simply look at reviews of the bank by well known trusted sources and in some cases just googling a name and see what the chatter is on the message boards.
8. Do they allow you to create sub-accounts?- Many of us like to layer our bank accounts and thereby opening several accounts. Many online banks allow you to layer accounts without opening separate accounts. For instance, I have one account and have broken the funds down to a section for my house, for each of my children, and a section for emergencies. This is a wonderful feature which basically takes the people working out of separate accounts.
9. Automatic Deposits- Remember the old Christmas club savings accounts? Really nothing was spectacular about them, in fact the rates for less than average in most cases. Well you can set up a Christmas club savings without any extra work while still getting your same interest rate. Many online banks will provide a checking account to your savings account. While doing so they will I you take fixed amounts of money out of the checking account on periodic schedule that you set. This thereby forces you to save. If you're undisciplined is a pretty good feature to have.
10. Multiple account linking- just about every online bank ever come across allows you to high a checking account to your online money market or savings account. All banks to have a limit on the number of accounts you can link to. If you are a business owner having the ability to link to your personal and business accounts is a big deal. Make sure that the bank you are deciding on allows you to link to the minimum number of banks you need.
Because we all can be smarter with our money.