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Ally Bank Interest Checking review

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Though it offers interest and no monthly maintenance fees, there aren’t any branch locations.

finder.com’s rating: 4.3 / 5.0

★★★★★

Ally Bank’s Interest Checking account offers a variable interest rate, zero monthly maintenance fees and a $0 minimum deposit. But a lack of physical branch locations make it impossible to deposit cash.

$0 per month

Fee

Up to 0.15%

APY

$0

Minimum deposit to open

Details

APY0.15% on balances of $15,000+
0.10% on balances of $0 to $14,999
Fee$0 per month
Minimum deposit to open$0
ATMsFree at any Allpoint ATM in the US
ATM transaction fee$0
ATM fee rebatesAlly will reimburse up to $10 per statement cycle for fees charged at other ATMs nationwide
Out-of-network ATM fee$0
Foreign transaction fee1%
Overdraft fee$25

Expert review

Cassidy Horton

Review by


Cassidy Horton is a writer for Finder, specializing in banking and investments. She has a Bachelor of Science in Public Relations and a Master of Business Administration from Georgia Southern University. Cassidy enjoys educating people about financial services, exploring the Pacific Northwest and watching endless reruns of The Office.

Expert review

If you’re looking for an interest-bearing checking account with no monthly fees and no minimum deposit, this account may be for you.

Ally is known for its 24/7 customer service, high interest rates and transparency. It’s a part of a large ATM network with over 55,000 ATMs and it reimburses $10 in non-network operator fees per month.

But it doesn’t have physical branches and you can’t deposit cash, which may be a deal breaker for some.

How do I open an Ally Bank Interest Checking account?

Open an Ally Bank Interest Checking account in seven steps:

  1. Go to the provider’s site and follow the steps to apply.
  2. From the Ally Bank website, click Interest Checking under the Bank menu.
  3. Click Open Account.
  4. Select whether you’re a new or existing customer. Click Continue.
  5. Select your account type, enter your opening deposit amount and choose your account options. Click Add This Account.
  6. Enter your personal information, including your name, address, Social Security number and occupation.
  7. Submit your application, deposit funds and enroll in account features such as direct deposit and Zelle payments.

Eligibility

  • At least 18 years old
  • US resident
  • Social Security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification number
  • Government-issued ID

Required information

  • Legal name
  • US address
  • Social Security or Tax Identification number
  • Date of birth
  • Government-issued ID number
  • Occupation

What are the benefits of a checking account with Ally Bank?

Ally Bank’s Interest Checking account includes mobile banking along with these additional perks:

  • No monthly maintenance fee. There’s no monthly fee for Interest Checking account holders.
  • No minimum balance. Never worry about maintaining a minimum monthly balance.
  • Variable interest rates. Earns interest with your checking account, and your rate increases with a daily balance of $15,000 or more.
  • Free checks. Get free standard checks with your Ally checking account.
  • 24/7 customer service. Ally customer representatives are always available.

Ally Bank forgives negative balances

Ally is forgiving negative bank account balances so that their customers can receive their full stimulus check amount. They’re not expecting repayment of any kind.

What should I look out for?

Below are some potential pitfalls to look out for with Ally Bank:

  • No branch locations. Although Ally is available by phone 24/7, you don’t have the option of face-to-face banking.
  • No cash deposits. There’s no direct way to deposit cash into your account without purchasing a money order and mailing it to Ally.

Case study: Cassidy’s experience – October 2019

profile pic

Cassidy Horton
Writer

I’ve had an Ally Bank Interest Checking account since 2014 and have enjoyed my experience so far. There are no monthly fees, interest rates are competitive, checks are free and customer service is available 24/7. Not being able to deposit cash is the only major downside, but I’ve gotten around this by asking a trusted friend or family member to write me a check in exchange for cash.

If you prefer a bank with physical locations and a higher yield checking account, shop around for other options before you decide.

Ally Bank’s ATM network and fees

Ally Bank is part of the Allpoint ATM network system, which lets you use 55,000 ATMs in the US, Canada, UK, Puerto Rico, Australia and Mexico for free. If you use a non-Allpoint ATM, Ally reimburses you for up to $10 in fees per statement cycle.

Compare with other checking accounts

Name Product APY Minimum deposit to open ATMs Out-of-network ATM fee
Chime Spending account
N/A
$0
38,000 fee-free ATMs nationwide
$2.50
Get rid of fees with this mobile-first bank offering consumer-friendly accounts. Chime can also help you save easily and access your paycheck faster.
HSBC Premier Checking
0.01%
$1
Free to use at all ATMs in the US
$0
Get a 3% cash bonus, up to $600 (max. $100 per month) during first six months after account opening. Must open HSBC Premier checking account through offer page by September 30, 2020, and set up qualifying direct deposits into the new account. Conditions apply. Deposit products are offered in the US by HSBC Bank USA, N.A. Member FDIC.
BBVA Online Checking
N/A
$25
No ATM fees nationwide at more than 64,000 AllPoint, participating 7-Eleven and BBVA USA ATMs
$3
A full-service account with convenient, surcharge-free access to two massive ATM networks.
Axos Bank Essential Checking
N/A
$0
ATM fees reimbursed at any ATM nationwide
No fees. Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements.
Axos Bank Rewards Checking
1.25%
$50
ATM fees reimbursed at any ATM nationwide
$0
Earn up to 1.25% APY while enjoying a suite of digital tools for smarter money management.
Aspiration Spend & Save Account
Up to 1.00%
$10
55,000 free in-network ATMs
$0
Deposits are fossil fuel-free. A spend and save combo account with unlimited cash back rewards and deposits insured by the FDIC.
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How do I deposit or withdraw my money?

Ally Bank doesn’t have any branch locations, but its digital banking tools make it easy to deposit and withdraw funds from your account.

Deposits

  • Ally Bank mobile app
  • Check deposit with Ally eCheck Deposit
  • Direct deposit
  • Zelle payment
  • Wire transfer
  • Transfer from another bank
  • Money order sent by US mail

Withdrawals

  • ATM using your debit card
  • Zelle payment
  • Wire transfer
  • Transfer to another bank

What other banking options does Ally offer?

Ally Bank also offers savings account options which include:

Frequently asked questions

Checking account ratings

★★★★★ — Excellent

★★★★★ — Good

★★★★★ — Average

★★★★★ — Subpar

★★★★★ — Poor

We analyze top checking accounts and rate them one to five stars based on factors that are most important to you. These factors include: monthly fees, the ease at which monthly fees can be waived, the breadth of ATM access, ATM and overdraft fees, and customer service.

Read the full methodology of how we rate checking accounts.

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