BBVA Compass ClearChoice savings account review June 2018 |
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BBVA Compass ClearChoice savings account review

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A solid hassle-free account, but look elsewhere for higher APY and lower fees.

Want to tuck some money away for safekeeping? A savings account is a practical way to efficiently meet your savings goals.

The interest you’ll earn with BBVA Compass’ ClearChoice is far from what you’ll find with most online high-yield accounts. But it’s a decent choice among more traditional savings options.

What makes BBVA Compass unique?

BBVA Compass is among the top 25 largest banks in the United States, with some 700 locations across the Sunbelt including Alabama, Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, New Mexico and Texas.

On top of a full suite of financial products for consumers and businesses, BBVA Compass offers Compass for Your Cause, an affinity program that gives nonprofits an easy way to raise cash to support ongoing causes. When members of an organization open a BBVA Compass account, they receive a debit card that earns that organization 0.25% of their debit purchases. In essence, it allows passionate supporters to back their chosen nonprofit with a simple swipe of a card.

What are the benefits of a savings account with BBVA Compass?

The BBVA Compass ClearChoice savings account comes with many of the same benefits you’ll find with other traditional accounts.

  • Mobile banking. Access is at your fingertips through BBVA’s site or app.
  • Same-day access to funds. Set up direct deposits to tap into your money the day it’s deposited.
  • Low opening deposit. With just a $25 opening deposit, you’re on your way to your savings goals.
  • No service charges. Pay no maintenance fees when you maintain a balance of at least $500 daily, or set up autopay of $25 or more from your account.

What should I look out for?

If you’re looking to earn a lot of interest on your savings, you’ll be disappointed by ClearChoice’s abysmal APY, among other potential drawbacks.

  • Low APY. The 0.05% APY with this account is astonishingly low — especially compared with high-interest savings accounts that offer 1.20% APY or more.
  • $15 service charge. If you’re unable to maintain a $500 daily balance or choose not to set up monthly autopay of at least $25 from your account, you’ll pay $15 in maintenance fees quarterly.
  • Limited transactions. You can make up to four free withdrawals a month from this account before paying a $3 fee for subsequent transactions. If you make more than six transactions in one month, your savings could stop accruing interest altogether.

What other savings options does BBVA Compass offer?

BBVA Compass offers a full suite of savings products lauded for their easy online signup:

  • ClearChoice Money Market account. With a mere $25 required to open this account, you can maximize your savings potential with decent APYs and tiered rates to increase your nest egg.
  • Certificates of Deposits. Open a CD with $500 or more for terms of up to 48 months and interest rates that depend on your state of residence.
  • IRAs. Sign up for traditional and Roth IRA CDs, as well as Coverdell Education Savings Accounts offering penalty-free withdrawals for higher education expenses.

BBVA Compass in the news

In 2012, BBVA Compass was one of more than 30 banks accused of manipulating customers’ debit transactions to generate higher overdraft fees, effectively putting more money into the bank’s coffers.

Even though it did not admit to liability, in July 2012 BBVA Compass was ordered to pay $11.5 million to settle the lawsuit. Several other banks involved in the case — including Bank of America — also settled, with little fallout.

Bottom line

The ClearChoice savings account offered by BBVA Compass won’t win any awards, but it includes several convenient online banking options and a low $25 opening deposit.

But you’ll find more competitive APYs elsewhere.
BBVA Compass ClearChoice free checking review

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