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TCF Bank Review: Savings, Checking, and CDs

TCF Bank offers a variety of personal and business banking solutions — but only services nine states.

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TCF Bank
TCF Bank has 17 checking and savings options for individuals and businesses, including special accounts for teens, students, international travelers and the elderly. But its lack of service areas and low interest rates may outweigh the perks.

What banking products does TCF Bank offer?

How does TCF Bank compare to other banks or services?

TCF Bank is a midwest bank headquartered in Detriot, Michigan. It manages $49 billion in total assets and has nearly 500 branches — most of which are located in Illinois, Michigan and Minnesota. As a full-service institution, TCF Bank offers bank accounts, loans, credit cards, money services and more to individuals, small businesses and commercial institutions.

Checking accounts

Pros

  • Specialized accounts. Choose from nine personal and business checking accounts, including options for international travelers, teens, students and seniors.
  • Multi-use debit card. Use your TCF Bank debit card to manage your checking and savings accounts.
  • Low opening deposit. You can open most checking accounts with as little as $25.

Cons

  • Monthly fees. Most accounts have monthly fees, but you can avoid them when you meet certain direct deposit or minimum balance conditions.
  • Low APYs. Some checking accounts earn interest, but the rate is almost nonexistent at 0.01% APY.
  • Expensive overdrafts. Expect to pay $37 each time you overdraw on your account, up to five times a day.

Savings accounts

Pros

  • Low opening deposits. Most savings accounts have a $25 minimum opening deposit and money market accounts have a $50 opening deposit — which is affordable compared to other institutions.
  • ATM access. Most savings accounts come with an ATM card so you can access your money on the go.

Cons

  • Low yields. With the exception of the Elevate Savings account, all APYs range from 0.01% to 0.45%.
  • Monthly fees. The TCF Free Savings account doesn’t have a monthly fee. But all other savings accounts have monthly fees you’ll need to avoid by meeting certain minimum balance requirements.

CDs

Pros

  • Low opening deposit. While most banks require you to have at least $1,000 to open a CD, you only need $500 to get started with TCF Bank.
  • Flexible terms. Terms start out at three months and go all the way to 10 years. Generally, the longer your CD term, the more interest you’ll earn.

Cons

  • Low rates. CDs earn anywhere from 0.05% to 0.75%, which is lower than rates offered by other banks.
  • Can’t open online. You’ll have to visit a local TCF Branch if you want to open a CD — unlike other banks that let you get started online.

Overall banking

Pros

  • Digital banking. Lock and unlock your debit card, pay bills, deposit checks, create a budget and more through the TCF Bank mobile app.
  • Gives back to community. TCF Bank provides free financial education to its local communities.

Cons

  • Limited service area. You must reside in one of TCF Bank‘s nine service areas to open an account.
  • In-person applications. While you can open most accounts online, CDs, and teen accounts must be opened in-person at a local branch.

    TCF Bank customer service

    Chat with a TCF Bank customer service representative by:

    • Phone: 612-823-2265 or 800-823-2265 – weekdays from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. CT, Saturdays from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. CT and Sundays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. CT.
    • In-person: Branch location near you
    • Twitter: @TCFCares

    Compare TCF Bank to the competition

    TCF Bank has many benefits, but if it’s not you’re looking for, consider these top-rated bank accounts:

    Name Product Minimum deposit to open ATMs Out-of-network ATM fee
    BBVA Online Checking
    $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, plus a $200 signup bonus when you meet deposit requirements
    Citibank® Account Package
    Citibank® Account Package
    $0
    No access to ATMs
    $2.50
    Earn a $400 bonus after opening new eligible checking and savings accounts and completing required activities.
    NorthOne Business Banking
    $50
    More than 300,000 ATMs across America.

    $0
    A digital bank account featuring free cash deposits, on-demand customer support and streamlined bookkeeping integrations.
    BBVA Free Checking
    $25
    1,000 fee-free ATMs across the country
    $3
    Pay a $0 monthly service charge and get free access to BBVA ATMs.
    Chase Total Checking
    $0
    Access to 16,000 ATMs and nearly 4,900 branches nationwide
    $2.50
    Get a $200 bonus when you open a new Chase Total Checking account and set up direct deposit within 60 days of opening your account. Chase's simplest checking account is easy to use and gives you access to 16,000 ATMs and nearly 4,900 branches. Available online nationwide except in Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico.
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    Bottom line

    TCF Bank offers nearly 20 banking products for personal and business use. But it’s interest rates are low and it only serves nine states. If you’re in the market for higher yields and a broader service area, shop around for other accounts before you decide.

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