For the second straight year, Ally is the online bank of choice for customers who want top perks and a great customer experience, according to recent Money magazine rankings.
Money lauds Ally for helping customers “earn high interest rates without paying fees or jumping through lots of hoops.”
In compiling its list of the best online banks, Money looked to its partner MagnifyMoney for account terms at more than 50 online banks. It focused on banks that offer:
- Free ATM access
- No monthly service fee
- Top customer satisfaction scores for online and mobile banking features
Money notes that not only does Ally’s checking account pay interest — 0.1% or 0.5%, depending on the balance — but it also eschews monthly service fees. The account also does not charge for incoming wire transfers, cashier’s checks, copies of online statements or ACH transfers.
However, Money does add a note of caution that should make you pause before jumping into an Ally account:
“Other online banks pay slightly higher interest on their checking or savings accounts products and Ally has been steadily lowering the rate for its savings account. In June , it paid 2.2% on all balances.”
As of early January, though, Ally’s saving account pays 1.6% on all balances.
The perks of an online bank
If you have been reluctant to leave your brick-and-mortar bank, it might be time to reconsider.
As Money Talks News founder Stacy Johnson has noted, most online banks are as safe as their brick-and-mortar cousins. And they offer some distinct advantages — such as paying higher interest rates:
“Maybe you’re wondering how internet-only banks pay so much more interest than the bank on the corner. Well, it’s because they don’t have to pay for that building on the corner. They also don’t have to pay all those tellers working in that building. They save money on overhead, then pass those savings along to you in the form of higher interest rates.”
If you’re ready to consider moving to an online bank, read “How to Switch Banks in 5 Steps.”
Do you use an online bank? Share your experience in comments below or on our Facebook page.