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BBVA Bank Review: Checking, Savings and CDs

Feb. 24, 2020
Banking, Banks & Credit Unions
BBVA Bank Review: Checking, Savings and CDs-story
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4.0 NerdWallet rating

 

BBVA USA

at BBVA USA,

Member, FDIC

BBVA Compass has a series of online accounts that are worth a look, including a checking account with access to over 64,000 ATMs in the U.S. and beyond. It also offers solid terms on CDs. But online savings account rates are low.

The bank 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.
  • The basic online checking account offers access to 64,000 ATMs, including locations in Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom and Australia.
  • The online savings account earns a low 0.05% APY.
  • Mobile banking apps receive high ratings.

» To see how other banks compare, check out NerdWallet’s best banks and credit unions

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

Checking accounts

5.0 / 5.0

ProsCon

  • No monthly service charges on the online checking account.

  • Minimum opening deposit is a manageable $25.

  • Access to over 64,000 ATMs, including some international locations.


  • Does not earn interest.

Many basic checking accounts don’t earn interest, so this account’s policy isn’t unusual. No monthly fees is a plus. BBVA also shines in its ATM availability, which is strong.


» Compare
NerdWallet’s best free checking accounts

Savings and money market accounts

3.5 / 5.0

ProsCon

  • Can avoid a $3 quarterly fee by opting for electronic statements.

  • Open with only $25.


  • Pays an annual percentage yield of only 0.05%.

The interest rate is low compared with what you can find with high-yield online savings accounts. For higher returns (if you have $10,000 to spare), opt for the online money market. It pays 1.25% APY, which isn’t the highest rate you’ll find for savings, but it’s up there.


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

Certificates of deposit

3.0 / 5.0

ProCons

  • Reasonable $500 minimum deposit for CDs.


  • Offers term lengths up to only four years (three years for online CDs).

  • CD rates are lower than what you can find at other online providers.

If you’re willing to open an account online, yields are a little better than rates offered at some of the larger banks. But they aren’t top of the line, and there is a limited number of term lengths.


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

Bank experience

4.5 / 5.0

With 600-some 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 multiple customer service avenues, including Twitter and chat. BBVA’s mobile apps have great 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 average fee is $35 at banks and $26 at credit unions, according to a recent NerdWallet overdraft study.

The bank will also charge a $23 extended overdraft fee every seven consecutive calendar days if your account remains negative, up to a maximum of four times.

Higher rates, fewer fees exist elsewhere

BBVA USA

at BBVA USA,

Member, FDIC

If you’re looking for a convenient checking account and great ATM access, BBVA 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. To get started, read more about NerdWallet’s best banks and credit unions.


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, 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.

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