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BBVA Compass Bank Review: Checking, Savings and CDs

July 11, 2018
Banking, Banks & Credit Unions
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NerdWallet’s rating: 3.5 / 5.0

 

BBVA Compass

at BBVA Compass,

Member, FDIC

BBVA Compass’ ClearConnect checking account doesn’t charge monthly fees but is otherwise fairly unimpressive. Rates on its standard savings account are low. But the bank offers good terms on CDs, provided they’re opened online.

BBVA Compass has over 600 locations in seven states. About half of the branches are in Texas, but customers elsewhere can get their questions answered on its easy-to-use and informative website.

The bottom line

  • BBVA branches can be found in Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas
  • Though interest rates are low, BBVA offers accessible, no-frills deposit accounts
  • With a quality website, highly rated apps and strong customer service, BBVA shines in its customer experience

» To see how other banks compare, take a look at NerdWallet’s best banks and credit unions

Our ratings
Checking accounts
Savings and money market accounts
Certificates of deposit
Bank experience
Overdraft fees
Overall

Read on for more details about BBVA Compass’ checking and savings accounts, CDs, customer experience and fees.

Checking accounts

4.5 / 5.0

Though you won’t earn any interest on BBVA’s ClearConnect Checking, the account is easy to open online and has no monthly service charges.

ProsCons
  • No monthly service charges on ClearConnect Checking
  • Minimum opening deposit is a manageable $25
  • Access to over 55,000 fee-free ATMs
  • No interest earned
Account reviewed for rating: ClearConnect Checking

Savings and money market accounts

3.0 / 5.0

Although the quarterly fee is fairly easy to avoid, the ClearChoice Savings account gets dinged for its low interest rate.

ProCons
  • Avoid the $15 quarterly fee with a daily balance of at least $500 or with an automatic monthly transfer of $25 from a BBVA checking account
  • Pays an annual percentage yield of only 0.05%
  • The $15 quarterly fee can add up if you don't meet the criteria to avoid it
Account reviewed for rating: ClearChoice Savings

» For higher rates, check out NerdWallet’s best high-yield online savings accounts

Certificates of deposit

3.0 / 5.0

Standard rates vary by state, but BBVA’s CD rates are low across the board. You can find other local options with better ones using our tool.

ProCons
  • Offers 10 term lengths, from one month to four years
  • Promotional rates for CDs opened online are competitive
  • Requires a $500 minimum deposit for all CDs
  • Non-promotional rates are low; you can find higher ones at online-only banks

» Looking for the highest CD rates? Find out what banks are offering this month

Bank experience

4.5 / 5.0

With a little over 600 branches, you won’t come across a BBVA branch as often as you will for banking behemoths such as Wells Fargo and Bank of America. However, you can always get help on BBVA’s website, which does a good job of highlighting its various accounts and fees — and how to avoid them.

The bank also offers a wide range of customer service avenues, including Twitter and the ability to schedule a call in advance. BBVA’s mobile apps have received solid reviews. Its website is clean and easy to navigate, and fees are listed clearly.

Overdraft fees

1.5 / 5.0

If you choose BBVA, avoid enrolling in the overdraft service. The bank charges an exceptionally steep $38 overdraft fee — $32 for California residents — up to six times per day. The bank will charge an additional $25 fee if your account has a negative balance for 10 consecutive calendar days and an extra $25 if the account remains in the red for another 10 days. If you choose BBVA, avoid enrolling in the overdraft service.

Higher rates, fewer fees exist elsewhere

BBVA Compass

at BBVA Compass,

Member, FDIC

If you’re looking for a convenient checking account, BBVA Compass offers a good option. But if you want high savings rates or a more lenient overdraft policy, you’ll be happier banking elsewhere.

Consider online-only banks, which typically have the best checking accounts and high-yield savings accounts.

Tony Armstrong is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: tony@nerdwallet.com. Twitter: @tonystrongarm.


Ratings 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, customer 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.