Bank and Credit Union Reviews from NerdWallet’s Experts

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

NerdWallet’s experts have reviewed and rated dozens of banks and credit unions to help you find those with the best accounts, branch and ATM availability, customer service and more.

Below is an overview of the financial institutions that we’ve analyzed. If you'd like more help picking the right one for you, check out NerdWallet's best banks and credit unions.

Know when to save (and spend)

NerdWallet tracks your spending and makes it easy to see when to cut back and when you can spend.

Online banks

What online banks lack in branches, they make up for with low fees, high annual percentage yields (APYs) and helpful budgeting tools. These banks are typically FDIC insured and invest heavily in online security. Your money is just as safe at an online bank as it is at a traditional financial institution.

For more information, check out the following bank reviews.

Bank or Credit Union (click for review)

Details

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Ally is a popular destination for people seeking strong rates, top-notch customer service and helpful tools.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

American Express National Bank offers competitive interest rates on its savings account and certificates of deposit, but doesn’t offer a checking option.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Aspiration offers an interest-bearing cash management account with a good annual percentage yield and a large ATM network.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Unlike many of its competitors, Axos Bank offers a range of checking accounts that come with a variety of perks.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Bank5 Connect offers access to thousands of free ATMs and generous fee reimbursements.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

What Barclays lacks in checking account products it makes up for with its impressive selection of savings accounts and CDs.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Capital One’s tools are some of the best in the business. The bank also offers a full-service online experience and a great mobile app.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Chime is a mobile-only app that offers a checking, or “spending,” account and automatic savings.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

CIT Bank has an account that rewards you with higher rates for saving regularly, as well as checking and CDs. It’s a good place to park your money and earn interest.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Citizens Access, the online offshoot of parent bank Citizens Bank, offers a savings account and CDs with solid rates.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Comenity Direct doesn't offer a checking account or ATM access, but its online savings account and CDs pay competitive yields.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Discover Bank’s free ATMs, free checks and fee-free services mean you keep more money in your pocket.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

FNBO has excellent checking and savings accounts, with no monthly fees, and a large ATM network.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

GoBank is ideal for those who are comfortable doing their banking online.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Marcus by Goldman Sachs won’t fulfill all of your banking needs, but it offers top-of-the-line savings rates.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

N26 offers a checking-like account without a monthly service fee and with cash-back options from certain retailers.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Popular Direct’s savings and CD rates are hard to top, but you’ll have to look elsewhere for a checking account.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Quontic provides socially conscious savings options, Bitcoin checking and other unique perks, along with a large ATM network.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Redneck Bank has ATM fee reimbursements and competitive rates (some of which come with requirements), but watch out for odd fees, including those for excess transactions.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Revolut provides currency exchange and generous APYs on savings bonuses, but you'll have to meet spending requirements to qualify.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Sallie Mae has excellent savings options and CDs, but doesn’t offer checking accounts.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Simple’s standard checking account, goal-oriented high-yield account, tools and fee structure are as user-friendly as the company’s name suggests.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

State Farm Bank, part of the insurance giant, is an online institution with an array of banking products.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Synchrony offers relatively high rates on its savings account, certificates of deposit and money market account.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

TAB's online accounts pay high rates and cash back, in some cases, as well as ATM fee reimbursements -- which helps, because TAB lacks its own free ATM network.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

UFB Direct offers several savings options, including a money market account.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Varo Bank is a mobile-only banking app with a hard-to-beat combo: no monthly fees and high-yield savings.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Vio pays a high rate on its savings account, but customer service channels are limited and it charges some fees other banks don't.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Zynlo pays competitive rates and has a round-up savings feature, but its apps earn low ratings.

» Want your cash to grow faster? Check out NerdWallet’s best high-yield online savings accounts

Financial institutions with branches

These banks and credit unions are ideal for people seeking in-person help. But keep in mind that banks with thousands of branches typically charge steep monthly fees, and APYs are often low. Credit unions tend to offer better interest rates but might not have as many branches as regional and national banks.

But there are always exceptions. Take a look at the following reviews for more information on rates, ATM and branch availability, and other services.

Bank or Credit Union (click for review)

Details

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Shared branching and low fees make Alaska USA a convenient banking experience.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Alliant is unusually easy to join for a credit union. It also offers great tech tools and exceptional APYs.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

America First’s checking and savings accounts are fee-free, but the share certificates are what really shine.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Associated’s checking accounts are solid, but it’s otherwise a fairly unremarkable regional bank.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

You'll earn a high savings APY at Bank7, but you'll need five figures to open a CD.

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

Bank of America boasts award-winning online and mobile products, as well as the branches and ATMs you’d expect from a national bank.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Bank of the West has a solid branch network, and its online and mobile services make banking convenient wherever you are.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

BB&T pays low interest rates and charges high overdraft fees, but it does offer a wide selection of CD terms and highly rated mobile apps.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

BBVA’s branches are concentrated in a handful of states, but its accounts are solid.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

BMO Harris pays solid rates on its money market in some areas, but rates overall are low and overdraft fees are steep.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Boeing Employees Credit Union is a nice alternative to banks if you meet its eligibility requirements.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

With no monthly fees or minimum balances, checking and savings accounts offer stress-free banking. ATM coverage is superior.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Chase delivers a stellar online experience and works well for people who want all their financial needs met by one provider.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

CIBC U.S. has an online savings account with a high rate, but CDs perform less well.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Citibank’s budgeting tools are helpful, but customers will find lower fees and higher interest rates elsewhere.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

It’s easy to avoid monthly fees on Citizens’ basic checking and savings accounts, but its savings rates aren’t competitive.

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

Commerce Bank is a reasonable pick if you live in its service area.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Community First Credit Union offers accounts without monthly fees.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

The interest-bearing checking accounts at Connexus are hard to top.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Consumers Credit Union isn’t a big institution, but its free rewards checking account lets members earn big yields.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Delta offers good deposit accounts, even though some of its fees are high.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Fidelity’s Cash Management account is an excellent place to keep your spending money, but you’ll have to look elsewhere for a savings account.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Fifth Third has a strong branch network, but its deposit accounts leave a lot to be desired.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

First Foundation offers high rates (with high opening deposit requirements) on its accounts.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Little distinguishes First National Bank from other banks, and that’s both good and bad.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

First Tech has inclusive membership criteria and pays a high APY on checking, provided you can meet a few requirements.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Flagstar Bank offers low- or no-fee checking and savings in the upper midwest and mortgages nationwide.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Golden 1 Credit Union is easy to join if you’re a Californian and offers great access to branches and ATMs, especially around the Bay Area.

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

HSBC offers convenient online account options, along with checking bonuses.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Fees on Huntington’s basic products are easy to avoid, and the overdraft policy is more lenient than most.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

KeyBank’s approach to banking includes no-frills checking accounts and good access to branches.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Live Oak offers personal accounts with competitive rates, as well as business banking.

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

Much like the biggest national banks, M&T provides a full array of products and services along with steep fees.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Nationwide's checking accounts come with perks, and its savings APY is high, but its CD rates are less competitive.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Navy Federal is the largest credit union in the U.S. and offers solid checking and savings options.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

NBKC offers a checking account hybrid with a decent interest rate, as well as solid savings options. It has a few branches, but it mostly operates online.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

PenFed offers a user-friendly mobile app and an engaging website, unlike many other credit unions.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

With PNC Bank, you can choose traditional banking, or you can go modern and virtual.

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

PurePoint Financial offers good savings and CD options and doesn’t offer checking accounts.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Radius offers cash back on checking and has a consumer-friendly ATM fee policy.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Regions has an impressive number of branches and ATMs, but its deposit accounts aren’t particularly noteworthy.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Santander has good savings options and cheap checking accounts, along with plenty of branches.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

SchoolsFirst welcomes California's school employees and their families, and offers checking and savings without monthly fees (but with low rates).

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Security Service Federal Credit Unions has good checking and savings options, but its interest rates on savings are mostly low.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Service Credit Union has multiple checking options and strong rates on certificates.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

State Employees’ Credit Union of North Carolina has low fees and a solid ATM network.

4.5

NerdWallet rating 

Good rates, low fees and a dedication to community accessibility make Suncoast exceptional in western Florida.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

SunTrust has low rates and high fees, but you can avoid a monthly fee on savings with e-statements.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

TCF Bank has a lot of options, but plenty of steep fees, too.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

At TD Bank, you’ll find straightforward checking and savings accounts, along with plenty of branches.

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

TIAA, formerly known as EverBank, offers solid CD rates, and its ATM fee policy is generous if you keep your checking account full.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

Union Bank offers a full lineup of services, but its deposit accounts come with steep fees.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

U.S. Bank offers several types of checking and savings accounts, and a wide range of CDs.

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

USAA serves military members and their families, offering solid checking and savings accounts.

3.0

NerdWallet rating 

Wells Fargo has a full range of solid financial products, but APYs are generally low.


RATING METHODOLOGY

NerdWallet’s overall ratings for banks and credit unions are weighted averages of several categories: checking, savings, certificates of deposit or credit union share certificates, bank experience and overdraft fees.

Factors we consider, depending on the category, include rates and fees, ATM and branch access, account features and limits, user-facing technology, customer service and innovation.

The stars represent ratings from poor (one star) to excellent (five stars). Ratings are rounded to the nearest half-star.