Citizens Review: Savings and CDs

With high rates and no fees, Citizens is a good contender for a place to park your savings, but it doesn’t offer a checking account.
Sep 6, 2022

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Overall bank rating

Citizens

at Citizens, Member FDIC

  • Savings

  • CD rates

  • Banking experience

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

Citizens, formerly Citizens Access, is the online-only division of Citizens Bank. It 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 and deposit accounts have a relatively high minimum opening deposit of $5,000.

Best for: Those who want a competitive savings rate, can meet a high minimum opening deposit requirement and don’t need a checking account or in-person assistance.

Pros

  • Highly competitive savings account rate.
  • No monthly fees for savings or CDs.

Cons

  • Relatively high minimum opening deposits of $5,000.
  • No checking account.
  • No cash deposits.

Full review

Citizens Online Savings Account

Savings

Member FDIC

4.0

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
APY
2.35%
With $5,000 min. balance for APY
Learn more

at Citizens

With an annual percentage yield of 2.35%, Citizens offers a strong online savings account and there are no monthly fees. The $5,000 minimum opening deposit is relatively high compared with other savings accounts, but if your balance dips below that amount — say, you make a withdrawal — you still earn the same competitive rate.

Citizens Online CD
Citizens Online CD

CD

Member FDIC

4.5

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
1-year APY
3.00%
3-year APY
3.15%
5-year APY
3.30%
Minimum deposit
$5,000

Citizens offers certificates of deposit with various term lengths. As with the savings account, there's a fairly high $5,000 minimum to open. However, it has some of the best CDs rates currently available, with yields higher than what you’ll find at traditional banks.

Banking experience

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

Citizens offers multiple channels of customer support, including live phone help seven days a week, chat support and some help through Twitter. The bank also offers mobile apps, though they get average ratings in the app stores. Its website is mobile optimized, though, and offers mobile check deposit.

Bear in mind that it does not offer checking accounts, so if you like to keep all your accounts under one roof, Citizens won’t be for you. Nor are wire transfers available; you can move money out of Citizens via account-to-account transfers or have a check mailed to you. You also can’t fund the account with cash – you can only deposit money into your accounts through an online transfer from a different bank account or by depositing a check.

Looking for the traditional, brick-and-mortar division of Citizen Bank? Read NerdWallet’s Citizens Bank Review.

Citizens Online Savings Account

Savings

Member FDIC

4.0

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
APY
2.35%
With $5,000 min. balance for APY
Learn more

at Citizens

With an annual percentage yield of 2.35%, Citizens offers a strong online savings account and there are no monthly fees. The $5,000 minimum opening deposit is relatively high compared with other savings accounts, but if your balance dips below that amount — say, you make a withdrawal — you still earn the same competitive rate.

How does Citizens compare?

Current Product

NerdWallet rating 

4.0

/5
NerdWallet rating 

4.5

/5

APY

2.35%

With $5,000 min. balance for APY

APY

2.15%

With $0 min. balance for APY

Bonus

N/A

Bonus

N/A

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.