Editorial Review - Virginia

U.S. Bank Review: Checking, Savings and CDs

U.S. Bank offers plenty of branches in more than 25 states, plus 24/7 live phone support. But savings and standard CD rates are relatively low.
By Margarette Burnette 

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

Overall bank rating

U.S. Bank
  • Checking

  • Savings

  • CD rates

  • Banking experience

  • Overdraft fees

3.5

NerdWallet rating 

The bottom line:

It’s no secret that big banks sometimes charge high fees and offer low interest rates. U.S. Bank, the country’s fifth-largest by assets, is no exception. But what this institution does well is provide convenient access to thousands of physical branches and ATMs. Note that geographical restrictions may apply and some accounts might not be available in your area.

Best for: Customers who want free use of thousands of ATMs and accessible customer service, don’t require the highest rates, and are unlikely to overdraft.

Pros

  • 2,700 branches in more than 25 states.
  • Live phone support available 24/7.

Cons

  • Better savings rates available elsewhere.

Full review

U.S. Bank's Bank Smartly™ Checking
U.S. Bank's Bank Smartly™ Checking

Checking

Member FDIC

3.5

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
Monthly fee
$6.95
Waived with direct deposit or $1,500 minimum balance

U.S. Bank offers checking account options including a standard account and an account for people who exclusively use debit cards instead of checks. Note that availability of accounts varies by state.

The standard account is Bank Smartly Checking. It has a monthly fee of $6.95 but you can get the charge waived in several ways, including by making monthly direct deposits over $1,000 or maintaining an average account balance of at least $1,500. This fee is lower than some banks’ monthly fees, but many banks don’t charge monthly fees at all.

As part of the MoneyPass network, U.S. Bank offers free access to more than 37,000 U.S. Bank ATMs nationwide. But if you go outside of the network, the bank charges a $2.50 transaction fee, in addition to whatever the ATM’s owner may charge.

U.S. Bank Standard Savings Account
U.S. Bank Standard Savings Account

Savings

Member FDIC

3.0

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
APY
0.01%
With $0.01 min. balance for APY

There are five savings and money market accounts at U.S. Bank. Many, including the basic account, have a minimum opening deposit of $25. But rates are low across the board. The basic account’s annual percentage yield, or APY, is only 0.01%. And if you don’t keep a minimum daily balance of $300 or average monthly collected balance of $1,000, there’s a $4 monthly fee. You can find more attractive savings accounts (many without monthly fees) at other institutions.

U.S. Bank CD
U.S. Bank CD

CD

Member FDIC

2.0

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
1-year APY
0.05%
3-year APY
0.10%
5-year APY
0.25%
Minimum deposit
$500

Many types of CDs. U.S. Bank offers four types of CDs: standard CDs, CD specials, step up CDs and trade up CDs. The last two provide ways to benefit from rate increases. Our ratings focus on standard CDs, which have common terms that we consider across all banks we analyze.

Low rates on standard CDs. There’s a wide range of standard CD terms from one month to five years, and a low minimum deposit of $500. But rates are relatively low, ranging from 0.05% APY for a one-month term to 0.25% APY for a five-year CD, depending on your location.

Higher rates on CD specials. U.S. Bank offers CD specials that have less-common term lengths, such as a promotional 25-month CD that earns 4.30% APY, depending on your location. It’s a solid rate, but you can find higher APYs on our list of best CD rates. The minimum deposit requirement for CD specials is $1,000.

Banking experience

5.0

NerdWallet rating 

U.S. Bank really shines when it comes to access and reach. In addition to its thousands of branches and ATMs, customer service is available 24 hours a day by phone and during extended hours each day on social media. Customers can also get help by online chat on weekdays from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. CT.

The bank’s iOS and Android mobile apps allow check deposits, transferring money between accounts and person-to-person payments via Zelle. The apps receive good reviews.

Overdraft fees

4.0

NerdWallet rating 

If your account is overdrawn by $50 or less at the end of the day, you won't get charged an overdraft fee. But if your account is overdrawn by more than $50 at the end of the day, you’ll pay a pricey $36 per transaction for overdraft transactions of more than $5. You can be charged this fee up to four times a day (for any combination of paid overdrafts and returned transactions). If you overspend, you could quickly dig yourself into a $144-a-day hole.

You can avoid U.S. Bank’s overdraft fees in a few ways: avoid overdrawing by more than $50, link an account for free overdraft protection transfers or use the bank’s overdraft fee forgiveness program. The program gives you a grace period to add money to your account: If you deposit enough money to cover the overdraft by 11 p.m. ET the day that you were charged the overdraft fee, the fee gets waived.

According to the bank’s representatives, U.S. Bank no longer charges an extended overdraft fee.

U.S. Bank's Bank Smartly™ Checking
U.S. Bank's Bank Smartly™ Checking

Checking

Member FDIC

3.5

/5
 NerdWallet rating 
Monthly fee
$6.95
Waived with direct deposit or $1,500 minimum balance

U.S. Bank offers checking account options including a standard account and an account for people who exclusively use debit cards instead of checks. Note that availability of accounts varies by state.

The standard account is Bank Smartly Checking. It has a monthly fee of $6.95 but you can get the charge waived in several ways, including by making monthly direct deposits over $1,000 or maintaining an average account balance of at least $1,500. This fee is lower than some banks’ monthly fees, but many banks don’t charge monthly fees at all.

As part of the MoneyPass network, U.S. Bank offers free access to more than 37,000 U.S. Bank ATMs nationwide. But if you go outside of the network, the bank charges a $2.50 transaction fee, in addition to whatever the ATM’s owner may charge.

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.