Citizens Access Review: Savings and CDs

With high rates and no fees, Citizens Access is a good contender for a place to park your savings, but it doesn’t offer a checking account.

Alice HolbrookMay 28, 2020
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Overall bank rating

Citizens Access
  • Savings

    Savings

  • CD rates

    CD rates

  • Banking experience

    Banking experience

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line: Citizens Access, the online-only division of Citizens Bank, offers an FDIC-insured savings account and certificates of deposit with no fees and solid interest rates across the board. But there are some inconveniences: The bank doesn’t offer a checking account, has no mobile apps (though the site is mobile-first), and deposit accounts have a relatively high minimum opening deposit of $5,000.

Pros

  • Highly competitive savings account rate and CD rates.

  • No fees.

Cons

  • Relatively high minimum opening deposits of $5,000.

  • No checking account.

  • No mobile app, but offers a mobile-optimized website with a check deposit feature.

Full review

Citizens Access Online Savings Account

Citizens Access Online Savings Account

3.5

NerdWallet rating 
APY

0.50%

With $5,000 minimum balance

With an annual percentage yield of 0.50%, Citizens Access offers a strong online savings account in the current rate environment, and there are no monthly fees. However, the $5,000 minimum opening deposit is relatively high compared to other savings accounts, and you must maintain a $5,000 balance to get the higher APY. Balances below that earn 0.25%.

Citizens Access Online CD

Citizens Access Online CD

4.0

NerdWallet rating 
1-year APY

0.20%

3-year APY

0.25%

5-year APY

0.35%

Minimum Deposit

$5,000

Citizens Access offers certificates of deposit with competitive rates. Its one-year CD, for example, has an APY of 0.20%, and its five-year CD has an APY of 0.35%. But, as with the savings account, there's a fairly high $5,000 minimum to open.

Banking experience

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Citizens Access offers multiple channels of customer support, including live phone help even on weekends, email support and some help through social channels, including Twitter. Although Citizens Access currently doesn’t have any apps, its mobile-optimized website offers a check deposit feature as well as an excellent user interface.

Bear in mind that it does not offer checking accounts, so if you like to keep all your accounts under one roof, Citizens Access won’t be for you. Nor are wire transfers available; you can move money out of Citizens Access via account-to-account transfers or having a check mailed to you, but you won't be able to receive a wire transfer or fund the account with one.

Citizens Access Online Savings Account

Citizens Access Online Savings Account

3.5

NerdWallet rating 
APY

0.50%

With $5,000 minimum balance

With an annual percentage yield of 0.50%, Citizens Access offers a strong online savings account in the current rate environment, and there are no monthly fees. However, the $5,000 minimum opening deposit is relatively high compared to other savings accounts, and you must maintain a $5,000 balance to get the higher APY. Balances below that earn 0.25%.

How does Citizens Access compare?

Member FDIC

NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
APY

0.60%

With $0 minimum balance

APY

0.01%

With $0 minimum balance

APY

0.50%

With $0 minimum balance

Bonus

N/A

Bonus

$150

Requirements to qualify

Bonus

N/A

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, banking 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.