When was the last time you walked into a bank to make a financial transaction? In-person banking is so 1999. More consumers than ever, especially Millennials, are opting to save, invest and manage their money through branchless, online banking.
There are hundreds of online banking options. Many traditional brick-and-mortar banking institutions offer online banking options, such as account monitoring, money transfers and check mailing. But there are virtual banks that don’t have any physical branch locations - meaning they don’t have to spend money on buildings and pass along those savings to their customers.
There are significant advantages to banking with a an internet bank, or online bank. If you’re looking for no-fee (or low-fee) and high-yield savings options online, check out these top four online banks:
Capital One 360
Capital One 360 (formerly ING Direct) offers several low-fee or non-fee account options. Capital One 360 checking accounts come with no monthly fees and offer other fee-free transaction options, like person to person transfers and the ability to mail checks from your account directly to the recipient. Capital One 360 also comes with a debit card that you can use abroad without any foreign transaction fees.
Everbank also provides a fee-free checking account similar to Capital One 360. While Everbank does require a significant initial deposit, it’s well worth the large upfront deposit for higher-than-average interest rates - one of the highest on the market. If you meet their minimum balance requirements, Everbank also offers automatic reimbursements for any ATM fees.
Ally offers similar features to Capital One 360 and Everbank, and only requires $1 to open a checking account. The Ally checking account also includes no monthly fees. You can also deposit checks into your account electronically by taking a picture of the check with your smartphone using the Ally Bank app. Ally interest rates are slightly above normal, and the Ally user interface allows you to set helpful alerts regarding your account balance and pending deposits.
Bank of Internet USA
Don’t let it’s odd name fool you. Bank of Internet USA offers a Rewards Checking Account no monthly fee and no minimum monthly balance requirements (you will, however, need $100 to open the checking account). If you meet certain requirements, like paying your bills online and setting up direct deposit, you can earn a larger interest rate on your account balance.