Advertiser Disclosure

Pros

No monthly maintenance fees or minimum balances.
Access to over 43,000 free ATMs.
1% APY on savings, about the best you'll find.

Cons

No way to deposit cash.
Ally's $10 charge for every outbound transfer (excluding checks) after six is a bit more than that at many online banks.

Overall

4.5

Ally Bank has become popular among people seeking strong rates, innovative tools and top-notch customer service. An online-only operation, it doesn’t have to put money into branches and so can offer better rates and fees and invest more in its products.

Ratings methodology | Reviewed Oct. 12, 2016

Checking

4.5

Ally offers an interest-bearing checking account with good rates, low fees and easy ATM access. Although there is only one account, deposits under $15,000 earn an APY of 0.10%, while larger balances earn 0.60%.

Interest Checking Account
0.10%
APY
$0
Monthly fee
None
Balance to waive monthly fee
Learn moreat Ally Bank
Online Savings Account
1.00%
APY
$1
Min. balance for APY
Learn moreat Ally Bank
NerdWallet reviews are the result of independent research by our editorial team while accountholder reviews are contributions from independent users not affiliated with NerdWallet. Banks, issuers and credit card companies are not responsible for any content posted on the NerdWallet site, nor do they endorse or guarantee any posted comments or reviews.
Overall
Customer service
Poor
Website / app
Poor
Rates
Poor
Fees
High
completed truck loan
Paid off our Ram with $5,000+ final payment (paid early). That was on Feb 26, 2017. Here I am, waiting, March 22, 2017, for my title and lien release - yes Ally holds your title until you're done. I call customer service (2nd time since payoff) asking for title. CSA claims it was mailed after telling me about the 10-business day wait. I explained the bank's website said the note was paid 2/26. This is a little more than 10 business days; they had also said we had to request the lien release separately (?). So today, I told the CSA I want my title and my lien release. I'll be calling back 3/24 if I don't have it. And I won't be using Ally anymore since I don't like 3rd-World call centers.
Overall
Customer service
Excellent
Website / app
Excellent
Rates
Excellent
Fees
Low
No Reason to Leave
I've been with Ally since 2011. I have never had a single issue with Ally and their banking or savings products. I have interest checking and several savings accounts, and the rates are unbeatable. I've even considered going to other local banks or CUs looking for a better deal, but I've never found a reason to leave Ally. If I need checks, I order them online, if i've ever lost or broken my check card (which has happened) it was promptly replaced and overnighted. I've even had my identity stolen and Ally called me to alert me before I even found out. Ally seems to have a built-in fraud detection on transactions, and some of the transactions were even caught and declined before I ever knew about them. I apparently shopped on the wrong site, but Ally worked with various vendors to get my money back, even when the vendors themselves refused to acknowledge the crime (paypal *ehem*). I had to supply bank records in an ensuing lawsuit and Ally helped out again in sending me more detailed captures of data from their end. They have been there for me in every way a bank can (probably more), all without having to step foot in a stupid bank or deal with high pressure sales. I like that Ally still focuses on customer service, too. Every year they ask customers about their happiness, remember your birthday, etc. Even their app is good and works on any mobile platform (I've used all three). My only small complaints is some of the "excessive transaction fees" and their amounts for savings products. Nobody likes fees, but other banks will simply convert a savings account to a checking account for free if you have excessive transactions. At Ally you get charged $10 per transaction over the alotted 6 per month the gov says you can have. I mean I know savings accounts are not transaction accounts and that's my error, but it seemed a bit steep. Also, being online only, you cannot deposit cash with Ally. You CAN do an online deposit of a money order I think, if you absolutely hate carrying cash like I do. But honestly I don't think that's a HUGE deal unless you're a stripper or work in the food industry and get tips - then I wouldn't recommend Ally because of the amount of cash that needs to be handled. Oh did I mention free ATMs? I like that a lot. Clarification, you still have to pay the fee at the time of the withdrawal, but Ally reimburses you once a month for any fees. I wouldn't do a loan through them though, as I think it's much wiser to go to a brick and mortar bank for something that's installment-based and requires a lot of monitoring. Happy bank hunting!
Some of the reviews on the NerdWallet site were purchased through a third party provider. Users who post a review directly on the NerdWallet site will not be compensated in any way. Please see our Terms of Use and Posting Guidelines for more information.