Online Only Banks Review

Why Choose an Online Only Bank?

Online only banks give you 24-hour banking at any location you choose. All you need is a computer, tablet or smartphone connected to the internet. You get higher interest rates for deposits when you bank online. In today's low-interest world, that can make a difference.

With the right online bank, you get all the services offered by traditional brick-and-mortar banks. You can scan and deposit checks and transfer funds at any time on any day of the year. There are savings and checking accounts available, as well as CDs, retirement accounts, educational savings plans, loans and mortgages.

When you open an online bank account, it’s important to look for hidden fees, minimum balance requirements and other catches that can cost you more. Our review of online banking services will help you find the best online bank for your needs. Check out our top three online only banks, Flagstar, USAA and CapitalOne 360. You can find more information in our articles on online banking.

Online Banking: What to Look For

There's a lot to consider if you're going to bank online, including savings accounts, checking accounts, money market accounts, loans, mortgages, retirement accounts and educational savings plans. Here are some of the most important criteria to consider when selecting your online bank account.

Loans
The best online banks offer financing for several uses. That financing includes mortgages to buy a home you've always wanted or a home equity loan for renovations to your house, or if you need to pull some cash from your home's equity. You should be able to get an auto loan, personal loan and even business financing. Check out the financing rates for products that interest you and secure the lowest when it's time to borrow.

Savings
The first thing to look for in an online savings account is a high interest rate and CD deposit options. The best online banks offer IRAs, money market accounts and educational savings plans. Online savings accounts often have balance and deposit requirements. Lower requirements generally are better but higher minimum deposits may equate to higher interest rates on your money.

Checking
Online checking accounts should be interest bearing and not charge unreasonable fees. You should get an ATM debit card with your account to use free in a large network of ATMs. Some online banks reimburse ATM fees, if you use one outside the bank's network.

The best online banks offer physical checks and overdraft protection. Some have minimum deposits to open your account and you must maintain a minimum balance. Those that require higher deposits generally offer higher interest. They all charge overdraft fees, so if you tend to write checks beyond the amount in your account, look for a bank with a low fee. Be sure to read the fine print on fees and disclosures.

Features
The first feature to look for in an online bank is FDIC backing. That means the government guarantees your money for as much as $250,000, if your bank fails. The best online only banks offer free transfers, online bill pay, mobile banking and telephone banking.

Help & Support
Face it, even the best websites and online services can require added explanation and personal assistance. That's why effective and convenient customer service options are necessary. The best online banking services offer online FAQs to answer all your questions before you open an account and live chat, telephone and email support.

Online banking saves time and lets you handle your money from the convenience of your home, office or anywhere you have a computer, tablet or smartphone connected to the internet. You can get higher-deposit interest rates than those offered by brick-and-mortar banks. Check out our review of online only banks and find the best online banking services for your needs.

 
 
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Rank #1#2#3#4#5#6#7#8#9#10
10-9  Excellent
8-6    Good
5-4    Average
3-2    Poor
1-0    Bad
Flagstar USAA CapitalOne 360 Ally EverBank Bank of Internet USA iGObanking AmericaNet Bank FNBO Direct GoBank
Flagstar USAA CapitalOne 360 Ally EverBank Bank of Internet USA iGObanking AmericaNet Bank FNBO Direct GoBank
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Ratings
9.75
8.48
7.03
6.90
5.75
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5.45
3.10
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2.38
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8.75
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9.38
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6.88
10.00
10.00
7.50
2.00
8.13
9.25
10.00
10.00
5.00
5.00
5.00
10.00
7.50
2.00
6.88
5.63
10.00
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0.00
8.13
6.25
10.00
7.50
0.00
1.88
6.88
4.00
7.50
0.00
5.00
0.00
6.00
7.50
0.00
0.63
1.88
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10.00
 
Loans
Mortgage
 
    
Home Equity
 
     
Auto
 
      
Personal
        
Business
   
     
Savings
Minimum Deposit $1 $25    $1,500 $100   N/A $1 N/A
Minimum Balance         N/A   N/A
Maximum Balance No Limit No Limit $1 million No Limit No Limit No Limit No Limit N/A $1 million $50,000
CDs
 
 
IRAs
 
   
Educational Savings
 
   
 
Money Market
 
  
Checking
Minimum Deposit $1 $25    $1,500 $100 $1 $1 N/A $50
Minimum Balance $1       $1   N/A  
Overdraft Fee $35 $25 $0 $9 $30 $25 $35 $25 N/A N/A
ATM / Debit Card
N/A
Interest Bearing
  N/A  
Free Withdrawal at ATMs
 
N/A
Checks
 
N/A  
Overdraft Protection
 
N/A N/A
Features
FDIC Insured
Free Transfers
 
Online Bill Pay
Mobile Banking
  
Telephone Banking
   
Help & Support
Telephone
Email / Email Form
Live Chat
 
    
FAQs