In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Your reviews
  • Ask an expert
Finder makes money from featured partners, but editorial opinions are our own. Advertiser disclosure
E-Trade Checking
4.5
★★★★★
Finder score
Fee
$0 per month
Minimum deposit to open
$0

Our verdict

It’s free to maintain and you can use it to fund your investments instantly.

E-Trade’s Checking account is best for day traders that already use the E-Trade platform for investing. That’s because it shines in its convenience of moving funds between your checking and brokerage accounts — the funds are available instantly. Plus, as a brokerage customer, you’ll be keeping all your bank and investment accounts in one place.

The checking account itself doesn’t require you to keep a minimum balance or charge a monthly fee, and incoming wire transfers are free. However, you’ll pay to send money via wire outside of your account. Despite E-Trade offering ATM fee refunds, you may pay ATM owner fees because E-Trade doesn’t offer its own free ATM network.

You’ll get the most out of this account if you open a brokerage, checking and savings account. But if you aren’t a trader, you’ll want to look at other checking accounts to find more perks.

Pros

  • Free checking account
  • Instant transfers for market trading
  • All-in-one mobile app
  • No ATM fees

Cons

  • High outgoing wire fees
  • Overdraft fees
  • Limited brick-and-mortar presence
  • Lack of transparency
  • Five-day check deposits

In this guide

  • Our verdict
  • Your reviews
  • Ask an expert

How to open an E-Trade Checking account

You can open an E-Trade Checking account by visiting a local branch or online in seven steps:

  1. Go to the provider’s site and follow the steps to apply.
  2. From the E-Trade home page, hover over Account types and select Bank.
  3. In the box featuring E-Trade Checking, select Open an Account.
  4. Select whether you’re opening a joint or individual account, then click Continue.
  5. Indicate whether or not you’re an existing customer. If not, fill out your personal information like contact info and address, then click Continue.
  6. Provide your Social Security number, birthdate and occupation. After filling out the brief form, click Continue.
  7. Set up your account, review your info for accuracy, create an ID and fund the account. You won’t need a minimum amount to open the account, but you must fund it within 30 days of opening.

Eligibility

All US citizens ages 18 and older with a valid Social Security number are eligible to apply for an E-Trade Checking account.

Required information

Keep the following info handy when applying for an E-Trade Checking account:

  • Social Security number
  • Valid US ID, such as a driver’s license or state-issued ID
  • Valid US address

4 benefits of a checking account with E-Trade

E-Trade’s checking accounts are designed so users can more seamlessly fund market trades. Expect a suite of online banking features like automatic bill pay, mobile check deposit, a free debit card and:
  • Free checking account. This account has no monthly maintenance fees and doesn’t have an minimum opening requirements
  • Instant transfers for market trading. Add money to an investment account instantly from your E-Trade Checking account for free. Sending money to your E-Trade investment account from an external account can take up to three days.
  • All-in-one mobile app. Manage your investments and checking account all in one place through this popular investing app.
  • No ATM fees. Since E-Trade doesn’t have an ATM network of its own, you’re not charged fees for using domestic ATMs up to five times per month. However, you’re still responsible for covering any fees charged by ATM owner.

4 potential drawbacks

  • High outgoing wire fees. There’s a $25 fee to wire money out of an E-Trade Checking account, though incoming wire transfers are free to receive.
  • Overdraft fees. Enrolling in overdraft protection is free, but E-Trade will charge you $5 every time it makes an automatic transfer to cover insufficient funds.
  • Limited brick-and-mortar presence. Though it has 30 locations nationwide, they’re spread throughout only 17 states.
  • Lack of transparency. E-Trade keeps details about its checking account fees spread out across its site and in fine print, making it inconvenient to understand its terms and conditions. If you have questions, be sure to contact customer service.
  • Five-day check deposits. If you’re looking to add money to your account by check, you’ll wait up to five days for the entire balance to show up in your account.

E-Trade’s ATM network and fees

You’ll receive a free debit card with this account, but E-Trade doesn’t have its own ATMs. There’s no fee to withdraw cash from US ATMs, but independent fees still apply. International ATM withdrawals using your E-Trade Checking account will incur a 1% fee.

E-Trade reviews and complaints

E-Trade has been in business for 40 years, and gets high ratings from customers using the app. Customers like the userfriendly app that lets them research stocks, buy them and track their portfolio. Some customers report issues with the app not loading changes in the market or other glitches like not working when logged on multiple devices.

However, E-Trade receives a low F rating from the Better Business Bureau for not resolving complaints filed against the business. On Trustpilot, most reviews lean negative as well. Multiple users report having problems looking at their charts to see trading data. A few also report that it’s hard to get in touch with customer service. Positive reviews say that the platform works smoothly for them and that they’ve had no trouble with getting customer service.

Compare E-Trade with other checking accounts

Compare checking accounts by their features, APYs and initial opening deposits, then choose Go to site when you’re ready to apply for an account.

Name Product Fee Minimum deposit to open Annual Percentage Yield (APY) Offer
Cash Card by Cash App
Finder Rating: 4.4 / 5: ★★★★★
Cash Card by Cash App
$0 per month
$0
N/A
The Cash App Cash Card lets you pay for goods and services both online and in stores using your Cash App balance. Enjoy features like ATM access, direct deposit, instant discounts at select stores and a customizable card.
Revolut
Finder Rating: 4.8 / 5: ★★★★★
Revolut
From $0 per month
$0
4.25% on balances of $0+
3.25% on balances of $0+
Get a $10 cash reward when you first use you card on a qualifying $1+ transaction.
Revolut is a global fintech that offers up to 40% off international transfers.
SoFi Checking and Savings
Finder Rating: 4.5 / 5: ★★★★★
Bonus
SoFi Checking and Savings
$0 per month
$0
4.60% on balances of $0+
0.50% on balances of $0+
1.20% on balances of $0+
Get up to $300 cash bonus with qualifying direct deposit. Terms apply. This offer is available until June 30, 2024.
Earn up to 4.60% APY on savings by meeting deposit requirements, and 0.50% APY on checking balances. Members without deposit requirements will earn 0.50% APY on both savings and checking balances. Turn on automatic savings or use the Roundups feature to help you reach your savings goals faster. Get up to $2M of additional FDIC insurance through a network of participating banks.
Dave
Finder Rating: 4.3 / 5: ★★★★★
Dave
$1 per month
$0
4.00%
This digital-only deposit account features overdraft protection, interest-free cash advances and no minimum balance.
ONE
Finder Rating: 4.7 / 5: ★★★★★
ONE
$0 per month
$0
5.00% on balances of $0 to $250,000
1.00% on balances of $250,000.01+
A no monthly fee checking account that earns up to 5.00% APY and offers cashback, direct deposit and overdraft protection. See details below.
Step Visa Card
Finder Rating: 4.4 / 5: ★★★★★
Step Visa Card
$0 per month
$0
5.00% on balances of $0 to $250,000
Build credit while earning 5.00% on savings and cashback rewards – all with $0 monthly fees and no APR.
loading

States with E-Trade branch locations

E-trade has a brick-and-mortar presence in the following states:

  • Washington
  • Oregon
  • California
  • Arizona
  • Colorado
  • Minnesota
  • Texas
  • Illinois
  • Michigan
  • Georgia
  • North Carolina
  • Florida
  • Virginia
  • New York
  • Massachusetts
  • Pennsylvania

How to deposit or withdraw my money

Deposit funds into your E-Trade Checking account in one of several ways. For reference, 256072691 is the routing number for E-Trade’s checking accounts.

Deposits

  • Direct deposit. Automatically send incoming funds to your E-Trade Checking account.
  • Electronic transfer. Move money from bank to bank using your computer or smartphone. Note that this could take up to three days to process. If you’re transferring between your E-Trade investment accounts, your funds are available immediately.
  • Mobile deposits. Snap a photo of your signed check via the app for a convenient check deposit. These transactions can take up to five days to clear.
  • Wire transfer. For same-day delivery, send a wire from an external account to your E-Trade account at no charge.
  • Deposit a check by mail. If you mail a check, be sure to include your account number, write “for deposit only” and sign the back. Then, send the check to:
    • Morgan Stanley Private Bank
      Attention: Deposit Operations
      PO Box 484
      Jersey City, NJ 07303-0484.

    Note that this deposit method can take five business days.

    Withdrawals

    Access funds from your account through:

    • ATM withdrawal. Use your debit card to withdraw funds from any ATM around the world. International ATM withdrawals will incur a 1% fee.
    • Electronic transfer. Move funds out of your E-Trade Checking account and into an external bank account.
    • Wire transfer. Keep in mind that there’s a $25 fee per transaction.

    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.

    Your reviews

    No reviews yet. Write a review

    Ask an expert

    Ask a question
    Avatar

    Amy Finder

    Writer

    Hi there, looking for more information? Ask us a question.

    Error label

    You are about to post a question on finder.com:

    • Do not enter personal information (eg. surname, phone number, bank details) as your question will be made public
    • finder.com is a financial comparison and information service, not a bank or product provider
    • We cannot provide you with personal advice or recommendations
    • Your answer might already be waiting – check previous questions below to see if yours has already been asked
    Accept and continue

    Finder only provides general advice and factual information, so consider your own circumstances, or seek advice before you decide to act on our content. By submitting a question, you're accepting our finder.com Terms of Use and Privacy and Cookies Policy.

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

    Go to site