Overdraft Fees: Compare What Banks Charge

Overdraft fees can be expensive, often ranging from $30-$35, but some banks charge low or no overdraft fees.
Reviewed by Kathleen Burns Kingsbury

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An overdraft fee is often one of the most expensive fees from a financial institution, but not all charge the same amount. And some don’t even have an overdraft fee.

» Want to read the latest? Check out the most recent news about bank overdraft fees

Institutions with low or no overdraft fees

  • No overdraft fees.

  • Free overdraft protection transfers from linked Alliant accounts.

  • Courtesy Pay overdraft coverage for eligible customers.

Alliant Credit Union doesn’t charge overdraft fees. Customers can opt into a free overdraft protection transfer service to cover unexpected overdrafts. Alliant’s Courtesy Pay service — where Alliant pays to cover transactions that extend beyond a customer’s overdraft protection — is available to customers who have been credit union members for at least six months and have transferred at least $600 into their accounts each month.

  • No overdraft fees.

  • Free transfers from linked Ally accounts.

  • Free overdraft coverage up to $100 with CoverDraft program.

Ally doesn’t charge overdraft fees, but customers can opt into two overdraft protection services: free overdraft protection transfers from a linked Ally savings or money market account or up to $100 of coverage with the bank’s CoverDraft program. If a customer uses their CoverDraft, they have 14 days to replenish their account funds.

  • No overdraft fees.

  • Free transfers from linked savings accounts.

Capital One 360 offers free overdraft protection transfers from a linked Capital One 360 savings account, and the bank might decide to not charge an overdraft fee for a check payment, electronic payment or recurring debit card transaction that results in an overdraft. If you don’t opt into these services, your transactions will be declined by the bank.

  • Free automatic transfers from savings and brokerage accounts.

This investment brokerage’s checking account doesn’t have fees for overdraft protection services. When you overdraft with your debit card, Charles Schwab Bank automatically pulls money from your linked Schwab One brokerage account or your Schwab savings account for free. If you make a check payment when enough funds are not available in your account, each check will trigger a $25 nonsufficient funds fee, up to $100 a day.

  • No overdraft program or fees.

  • Overdraft coverage up to $200 with SpotMe®.

  • Highly rated mobile apps.

Chime, a financial technology company, offers a program called SpotMe®. Eligible customers who meet the requirements can overdraft up to $200 with no fee. Transactions that would overdraw the account by more than $200, or overdraft transactions by ineligible members, are generally declined. There are no overdraft or nonsufficient funds fees. Chime also has an early direct deposit program, so you can get your paycheck up to two days early. Early access to direct deposit funds depends on payer.

  • No overdraft fee.

  • No overdraft protection transfer fee.

  • Highly rated mobile apps.

Citibank has stopped charging overdraft fees. You can still opt to have overdraft protection transfers from a linked account, and there's no fee for those, either. Otherwise, if you don’t have enough funds in your account, your ATM and other debit card transactions will be declined.

  • No overdraft fee.

  • Offers free overdraft protection via linked account.

With Discover, you can link a qualifying Discover savings or money market account for free transfers if you don’t have enough cash in your checking account. Otherwise, the bank will return the transaction that would cause a negative balance, at no charge to you.

  • No overdraft or nonsufficient funds fees.

  • Free transfers from linked accounts.

The online financial institution TIAA has a free overdraft protection transfer service from a linked account. TIAA also doesn’t charge any overdraft or nonsufficient funds fee and typically will decline a transaction that would overdraft an account.

  • No overdraft fees.

  • Free overdraft protection transfers.

USAA doesn’t charge fees for overdrafts, although the bank may charge nonsufficient funds fees for transactions that the USAA declines or returns unpaid. There are two overdraft protection options: linking a USAA checking or savings account or linking a USAA credit card. Using a credit card may incur fees.

What is an overdraft fee?

When a transaction drops your checking account balance below zero, a financial institution will choose to either reject the transaction or approve it and provide the funds to cover the transaction. You may be charged fees in either case. The charge for a rejected transaction or check is known as a nonsufficient funds fee, while the charge for an approved transaction is called an overdraft fee. Some providers charge multiple nonsufficient funds or overdraft fees per day if you make many transactions with a negative balance, meaning you could owe hundreds of dollars in penalties.

You can read our explainer on how to avoid overdraft fees. As a rule, it’s best to opt out of overdraft coverage for ATM or one-time debit card transactions if you think you will have issues with overdrafts. When you opt out, the negative debit or ATM transaction will be declined and you won’t be charged a fee.

If not paying your overdraft fees has gotten you placed into Chexsystems, you may want to look into opening a second chance checking account. These accounts are designed to help consumers qualify for a new checking account even with marks on their banking record.

» Need a fresh start? Take a look at second-chance checking accounts across the U.S.

Overdraft protection

Outside of the financial institutions without any overdraft coverage fees, you can generally find a cheaper option with overdraft protection transfers.

These are opt-in programs that link a second account to your checking account. An overdraft would trigger a transfer from the second account to cover the transaction. The linked account can be a savings account, credit card, line of credit or even another checking account, depending on the provider’s policy. The cost of this transfer is around $10 or $12, although it can be cheaper. Sometimes the service is free.

Overdraft fees by institution

Financial institution

Overdraft coverage fee (per item)

Max fees per day

Total possible cost in a day (excludes extended overdraft fees)

$0.

N/A.

$0 (transfers from linked account).

$0; you have 14 business days to bring your balance back to positive to avoid your account being limited.

N/A.

$0.

No overdraft fees.

N/A.

N/A.

$36.

4.

$144.

$35 (will be reduced to $10 starting May 2022).

4.

$140 (will be $40 after fee change later in May 2022).

$36 (or $10 transfer fee per day from linked account).

3.

$10 (transfers from linked account) to $108.

$25 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

5.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $125.

$0.

N/A.

$0.

$25 (or $0 transfer fee from an overdraft source).

4.

$0 (transfers from an overdraft source) to $100.

$34 ($0 if account is overdrawn by $50 or less at end of day; $0 transfer fee from linked account).

3.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $102.

No overdraft fees.

N/A.

N/A.

$37 (or $12 transfer fee per day from linked account).

5.

$12 (transfers from linked account) to $185.

Comerica

Up to $38 (or $0 transfer fee per day from linked account).

5.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $190.

$4 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

2.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $8.

$30 (or $10 transfer fee from linked account).

4.

$10 (transfers from linked account) to $120.

No overdraft fees.

N/A.

N/A.

$37 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

3.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $111.

First Republic Bank

$30 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

4.

$0 to $120.

$0.

N/A.

N/A.

$36 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account, plus options for personal lines of credit and ability to overdraft up to $50 without a fee).

3.

$108.

$38.50 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account). Also, if your account is overdrawn for five consecutive business days, an additional $28.50 fee will be assessed.

5.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $192.50.

$36 (or $0 for a transfer from a linked savings account or $12.50 per day from linked credit card).

5.

$0 to $12.50 (transfers from linked account or credit card) to $180.

$20 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

1.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $20.

$36 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

4.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $144.

$36 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

5.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $180.

$35 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

3.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $105.

$35 (or $3 transfer fee per day from linked account).

3.

$3 (transfers from linked account) to $105.

No overdraft fees (optional $0 transfer fee from linked account).

N/A.

N/A.

$36 (or $12.50 transfer fee from linked account).

6.

$12.50 (transfers from linked account) to $216.

$33 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

5.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $165.

No overdraft fees.

N/A.

N/A.

$36 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

4.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $144.

$35 (or $0 transfer fee from linked account).

3.

$0 (transfers from linked account) to $105.

Glossary of overdraft terms

  • ChexSystems. ChexSystems tracks and provides reports on consumer deposit accounts. Someone might be reported to ChexSystems if they’ve failed to repay an overdraft fee, which means that other banks might not let that person open an account until that negative mark falls off their record after five years.

  • Continuous negative balance fee. If a customer doesn’t bring their bank account back to a positive balance after overdrafting, their bank might charge a continuous negative balance fee until the customer funds their account.

  • Nonsufficient funds, or NSF, fee. A bank will charge a nonsufficient funds fee if a transaction is attempted that can’t be covered by the funds in an account. NSF fees are also known as bounced check fees.

  • Overdraft. An overdraft occurs when a bank customer makes a transaction for a higher amount of money than the available balance in their account.

  • Overdraft coverage. Overdraft coverage can take different forms, including overdraft protection transfers and overdraft lines of credit. Customers are allowed by law to opt out of overdraft coverage by contacting their bank and making the request, and in the future their bank will simply decline any transaction that would result in an overdraft.

  • Overdraft fee. When bank customers overdraft, their bank might charge a fee — often in the range of $30-$35 — to discourage future overdraft activity. Sometimes a bank might charge this fee multiple times per day if a customer keeps making transactions that overdraft their account.

  • Overdraft line of credit. An overdraft line of credit is similar to a credit card in that it’s a set amount of money that a customer can borrow from if they overdraft their account. Like a credit card, there's typically a high-interest charge for using an overdraft line of credit, and that interest rate is usually dependent on your credit score.

  • Overdraft protection transfer. Some banks allow customers to link another account to their checking. This way, if they make a transaction that would result in an overdraft, the difference will be taken from their linked account instead.

  • Overdraft protection transfer fee. Some banks charge a fee for allowing customers to transfer funds from a linked account to cover a transaction that would overdraft their primary account.

  • Prepaid debit card. Prepaid debit cards allow people to load a debit card with a set amount of money, which can help prevent overdrafts since any transaction beyond the available card funds will be declined.

  • Second-chance checking account. Second-chance checking accounts are designed to help people who have been blocked from opening a traditional bank account because of flawed banking history, such as having unpaid overdraft fees and being put in ChexSystems. These accounts allow people to rebuild their banking history until the negative marks fall off their records.

How to get overdraft fees waived

If you’re charged an overdraft fee, here are some ways you may be able to get it waived.

  1. If you don’t have a history of negative transactions, contact your financial institution's customer service department and ask if they will waive it.

  2. Ask about forgiveness policies. Some institutions have once-a-year fee forgiveness programs for customers in good standing.

  3. Ask about "rewind" programs. If you have an electronic deposit scheduled for your account that would have covered the overdrawn transaction, some providers will consider waiving the fee if the deposit arrives soon enough, usually by the next morning.

Overdraft fees, especially from overdraft coverage, are some of the steepest fees that financial institutions charge. Knowing these fees might help you decide whether to opt out of the programs or find cheaper overdraft alternatives from your provider.

» Want to learn more? Read NerdWallet’s explainer on overdraft fees

SoFi logo
Learn More

Member FDIC

SoFi Checking and Savings

SoFi logo
APY

2.50%

Monthly fee

$0

Upgrade - Rewards Checking

Upgrade logo
APY

N/A

Monthly fee

$0

Current logo
Learn More

Deposits are FDIC Insured

Current Account

Current logo
APY

N/A

Monthly fee

$0

Chime logo
Learn More

Deposits are FDIC Insured

Chime Checking Account

Chime logo
APY

N/A

Monthly fee

$0

Axos Bank® logo
Learn More

Member FDIC

Axos Bank® Rewards Checking

Axos Bank® logo
APY

1.25%

Monthly fee

$0

Chime says: “Chime is a financial technology company, not a bank. Banking services provided by, and debit card issued by, The Bancorp Bank or Stride Bank, N.A.; Members FDIC.”

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