What Are Online Banks?
Online banking is something of the norm now for most banks. You can deposit checks, pay bills, transfer money, and see account balances from a website or app. One thing that isn't as ordinary yet is opening an account with an online bank. There is a difference.
Online banks are entirely online. They usually do not have branch locations and have fewer employees. Because of this, they can offer higher interest rates on their accounts. Higher rates mean you make more money off your deposit. Online banks are FDIC insured. They provide ways to contact customer service but no branch locations.
Because these online banks aren't the norm yet, there can be apprehension about opening one. Let's look at the pros and cons of online banking to clear up those fears.
Higher Interest Rates
The national average for traditional savings accounts is around 0.09%, with many banks offering less interest. Online banks can offer interest rates up to 2.00% on their accounts. That can be a difference of hundreds or thousands of dollars over the years.
Because of the lower operation costs, online banks do not need to charge their customers as high fees. Many banks, like Capital One and Marcus, offer accounts without any monthly fees.
With traditional banks, your choices are limited to the banks you live close to. Online banks give you the option of banks across the nation. You can open the bank with the best interest rates, no matter where you live. Your options increase significantly.
You can access your accounts from anywhere. To protect your money, be sure always to use a trusted Wi-Fi to log in to your account. Online accounts are FDIC insured and as safe as traditional banks. Be smart with where you log in to your account.
Access to Cash
Depositing or withdrawing cash can be hard with online banks. Most online banks do not accept cash deposits. Some ATMs can take cash deposits. It depends on the bank.
Link Traditional Accounts
You can have a traditional bank account without having an online account. That is not always the case with online accounts. Some banks require you to link an external account to your online account. Linking accounts makes transferring money easier. But this means you must have another account before you open the online account.
ATM Access Limited
Online banks usually do not have their own ATMs. The best banks join networks like Allpoint to allow ATM access without a charge.
No Branch Locations
There is no face-to-face contact with employees. Online banks offer customer service by phone, mail, email, and online chat. Some banks provide 24/7 customer service through the options listed.
Fewer Types of Accounts
The most common online accounts are savings accounts, money market accounts, and CDs. There are some online checking accounts. Other investment options traditional banks offer may not be available through online banks.
Great Online Banks
These are a few of the great online accounts across the nation. See what sets these online accounts apart from traditional accounts.
- Some of the most competitive rates in the nation
- No required opening amount for savings accounts
- No monthly fees
- Make transfers electronically through a linked account
- No monthly account fees
- No minimum required amount to open an account
- Some of the most competitive rates in the nation, even for children's accounts
- Transfer money electronically to linked account
- Has over 39,000 ATMs across the United States
- Capital One Cafes across the nation
- Can deposit cash at Capital One ATMs or branch locations
- No opening required amount
- Some of the most competitive interest rates in the nation
- Transfer money electronically through a linked account
- No monthly fees
- Only requires $1 to open savings accounts
- Online savings accounts earn competitive rates
- No monthly fees for savings account
- Electronic transfers to a linked external account
Live Oak Bank
- No minimum balance to open savings accounts
- No monthly fees
- Competitive interest rates on any amount
- Make transfers electronically to linked account
Let Bankowl help you become part of the trendsetting crowd and open an account with an online bank.