Finder makes money from featured partners, but editorial opinions are our own. Advertiser disclosure

BMO Bank: Checking, Savings and CDs

Offers a variety of saving and checking options and an extensive ATM network.

Not enough reviews Write a review

Our verdict

BMO offers an extensive suite of banking products, including checking, savings, certificates of deposit (CDs) and money market accounts. The checking accounts are pretty standard, with its Relationship Checking offering great perks for select balances. It has a widespread network of free BMO and Allpoint ATMs — but that’s about where the positives end. While its CDs fare better when it comes to APY, its funding minimum of $1,000 is steeper than what competitors with stronger rates offer. But you might be better off with another bank when you combine its abysmal interest rates with the potential monthly fees and opening deposits on many of its accounts.

Best for: Those in need of multiple banking products from a bank with nearby branches and ATMs.

Pros

  • Multiple banking products
  • Over 50,000 ATMs
  • BMO Relationship Checking offers extra perks

Cons

  • Low rates on savings accounts
  • $25 opening deposit on most accounts
  • Fees for check images and paper statements
  • $15 overdraft fee

BMO Bank in the news

In February 2023, BMO acquired Bank of the West. This acquisition means that Bank of the West customers’ accounts will migrate over to BMO accounts with similar features and benefits. The official transfer will take place on September 5, 2023.

Is BMO Bank right for you?

BMO Bank is a Canadian multinational bank offering a wide range of banking products. It’s best for someone in need of a full-service bank with a large ATM network. But if you’re after strong savings, BMO’s APYs are unimpressive.

How BMO Bank stacks up

BMO has a large ATM network of over 50,000, letting you access your cash for free at BMO and Allpoint ATMs. Aside from the breadth of products and large ATM network, that’s really all BMO has going for it.

Its checking accounts come with opening deposit requirements, and many have monthly maintenance and overdraft fees. You’ll also have to watch out for extra charges, including check image and paper statement fees — unless you opt in for estatements. BMO Relationship Checking account is the only one of its checking accounts that’s interest bearing, but it offers a low 0.01% APY.

Its savings accounts are drab as well, and its standard savings account falls short in the worst way possible: It has an extremely low APY of 0.01%. Not only is that rate much lower than the best high-yield savings accounts available, but it’s also lower than the national average of 0.45%, according to the FDIC. And while the actual rate you can get depends on your area, the 0.01% is offered for multiple zip codes.

BMO Bank checking accounts

BMO has three checking accounts to choose from: Smart Advantage Checking, Smart Money Checking and Relationship Checking. Only its Relationship Checking account is interest bearing.

BMO Smart Advantage Checking

Smart Advantage Checking is BMO’s most basic and straightforward checking account. There’s a $25 opening deposit requirement, and while there are no monthly maintenance fees, if you don’t choose estatements, there’s a monthly $3 paper statement fee.

This account also has overdraft fees — up to $15 for each overdraft. But linking a BMO savings account to this account allows you to set up overdraft protection.

BMO Smart Money Checking

BMO’s Smart Money Checking account has a $5 monthly fee unless you’re under 25 years old, a $25 minimum opening deposit requirement and no overdraft fees or protection.

There’s also a $2 paper statement fee, but it can be waived if you’re aged over 65 or you opt in to estatements.

BMO Relationship Checking

The BMO Relationship Checking account requires a $25 opening deposit. There is also a high $25 monthly fee, which you can avoid when you meet one of these requirements:

  • Minimum daily balance of at least $10,000 each month
  • Monthly combined balance of $25,000
  • Client or employee of BMO

Relationship Checking is BMO’s only interest-bearing checking account, but it offers a low 0.01% APY. Rates vary by your zip code and balance, but based on our research, the 0.01% is consistent with all balances.

This account also has tiers, separated by balance, and offers extra BMO perks. The Relationship Checking balance and other investment accounts you have with BMO can also combine to meet balance requirements to qualify for select lending perks.

Most of the perks are the same across tiers, but higher tiers offer slightly stronger perks, like higher ATM reimbursements. Here are the rewards of the Relationship Checking account based on tier:

TiersBalance required to join tierPerksLending perks
SilverLess than $25,000
  • Up to $25 in ATM reimbursements
  • Earn 0.01% APY on checking balance
  • $10 quarterly credit card spend bonus with eligible BMO credit card
  • $500 mortgage closing credit
  • Home equity 0.50% interest rate discount with autopay
  • Discounts on select BMO installment loans with autopay
Gold$25,000 to $99,999.99
  • $30 in wire transfer rebates
  • May qualify for higher rates with BMO money market account
  • $25 quarterly credit card spend bonus with eligible BMO credit card
Same as Silver tier
Platinum$100,000 to $249,999.99
  • $60 in wire transfer rebates
  • May qualify for higher rates with BMO money market account
  • $50 quarterly credit card spend bonus with eligible BMO credit card
Same as Silver tier, plus:

  • May qualify for a 0.125% to 0.25% rate discount on BMO jumbo mortgage
Premier$250,000+
  • $90 in wire transfer rebates
  • One free overdraft rebate per month
  • May qualify for higher rates with BMO money market account
  • $75 quarterly credit card spend bonus with eligible BMO credit card
Same as Silver and Platinum tier, plus:

  • BMO home equity loan and HELOC rate discounts up to 0.25%

BMO Bank savings accounts

BMO has one standard savings account called Savings Builder. There are no monthly maintenance fees, but there is a $25 opening deposit requirement. As a bonus, you can earn a $5 monthly reward if you save $200 or more in your first year of having the account.

There are also no transaction limits, whereas most savings accounts still follow Regulation D, which stipulates that savings accounts can’t have more than six transactions per month. That regulation is currently suspended, but many banks still abide by it.

BMO Bank money market savings account

The BMO Relationship Plus Money Market account earns up to 1.00% APY on your entire account balance. This rate is higher than the national average for money market accounts, which currently sits at 0.68% APY, according to the FDIC.

The account comes with a $10 monthly fee, which is avoidable if you keep a $5,000 minimum daily balance. There’s also a $25 opening deposit requirement.

If you also have a Relationship Checking account, you can unlock exclusive rates with the money market account, possibly getting a rate as high as 3.56% APY.

BMO Bank CDs

BMO Bank offers many CD products, each requiring an opening deposit of at least $1,000.

Its CD Special rate tops out at 5.10% APY for 13 months. That top rate is high — a 12-month CD has an average rate of 1.8%, according to the FDIC. However, BMO’s rates can vary by zip code.

BMO’s CD Special rates

CD Special TermAPY
13 months5.10%
25 months4.75%
35 months4.50%
45 months4.50%
59 months4.50%

BMO standard CD rates

Standard CD termAPY
3 months0.05%
6 months0.05%
9 months0.05%
12 months0.05%
18 months0.05%
24 months0.05%
30 months0.05%
36 months0.10%
48 months0.15%
60 months0.25%

Other BMO Bank products

BMO also offers retirement accounts. You can choose a short- or long-term individual retirement account with opening deposits that start at $100.

Compare BMO bank accounts

Narrow down BMO accounts by fees, APYs and more. Select the Compare box on up to four providers to see features side by side.

1 - 3 of 3
Name Product Fee Minimum deposit to open Annual Percentage Yield (APY) Offer
BMO Smart Advantage Checking
Finder Score: 4.7 / 5: ★★★★★
BMO Smart Advantage Checking
$0 per month
$25
N/A
Earn a $350 cash bonus when you have a total of at least $4,000 in qualifying direct deposits within the first 90 days
BMO Relationship Checking
Finder Score: 3.4 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
BMO Relationship Checking
$25 per month
(can be waived)
$25
0.01% on balances of $0.01+
Earn a $500 cash bonus when you have a total of at least $7,500 in qualifying direct deposits within the first 90 days
BMO Smart Money Checking
Finder Score: 4.5 / 5: ★★★★★
BMO Smart Money Checking
$5 per month
(can be waived)
$25
N/A
Earn a $350 cash bonus when you have a total of at least $4,000 in qualifying direct deposits within the first 90 days
loading

Customer experience

BMO is an accredited business with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and holds an A+ rating, which is based on how fast and well BMO responds to customer complaints.

Like many banks, BMO has a lot of complaints and negative reviews. It has over 1,000 complaints in the last year and a poor customer rating of 1.06 stars. It doesn’t do any better on Trustpilot either, holding a 1.2-star rating, and most reviews are negative.

Customers generally have a good experience when they visit BMO branches in person. But many complain about poor customer service on the phone, limited online functionality and a slow overall banking experience. For example, customers report that it takes over a week to process an address change, and phone hold times average over 30 minutes.

More guides on Finder

Ask a Question

Finder.com provides guides and information on a range of products and services. Because our content is not financial advice, we suggest talking with a professional before you make any decision.

By submitting your comment or question, you agree to our Privacy and Cookies Policy and finder.com Terms of Use.

Questions and responses on finder.com are not provided, paid for or otherwise endorsed by any bank or brand. These banks and brands are not responsible for ensuring that comments are answered or accurate.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Go to site