A lot of us have already heard that E*Trade has a lot to offer to investors, but today I’m going to take a look at E*Trade’s banking products. You can choose among checking and savings accounts, certificates of deposit, and various types of mortgages.
ETrade Bank: Complete Savings Account
If you need a high yield savings account (or what passes for one these days), then the benefits offered by E*Trade’s Complete Savings Account might appeal to you. Right now, the APY is 0.40% and there are no account fees or a required minimum balance for this account. If you need to transfer money to and from accounts at other banks, you can use Quick Transfers when it’s convenient for you — it’s available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
You can also use the Complete Savings Account to set up an automatic savings plan — handy if you’re trying to set aside money for your emergency fund, a vacation, future car repairs, or other needs. It’s also reassuring to know that your deposits are backed by the FDIC.
To open an account, you can apply online. You’ll need your address, date of birth, Social Security Number, and either your driver’s license, state-issued identification, or a military ID card. It takes at least $1 to open an account.
Aside from ETrade, there are also other well regarded banks where you can do your internet banking. If you’re interested in alternative online savings accounts, you can check out this table of savings products from online banks we like:
ETrade Max-Rate Checking
Now let’s move on to other ETrade offerings. If you want your next checking account to earn interest, there’s the ETrade Max-Rate Checking account. Maintain a balance from $5,000 on up and you can earn 0.15% APY. This doesn’t seem like much, but in today’s current rate environment, any checking account with this kind of return sounds attractive (although I would suggest shopping around for better yields).
While some institutions charge you for using someone else’s ATMs, you’ll benefit from ATM refunds nationwide with your Max-Rate Checking account. Other benefits include free online bill pay, free Quick Transfers, and FDIC backing.
You’ll need at least $100 to open an account. There’s a $15 monthly fee which can be avoided by setting up a direct deposit of $200 or more each month, by maintaining $50,000 in various E*Trade assets, or by executing 30 stock or options trades during a quarter (you can check out this ETrade review of their brokerage arm).
ETrade Certificates of Deposit
ETrade has certificates of deposit with terms that range from 3 months to 5 years. Your deposits are backed by the FDIC. When it’s time to renew, you can choose to reinvest, transfer, or receive interest payments either quarterly or monthly.
To save time, there’s automatic renewal. The CDs will renew on the maturity date on the same terms you set before. You’ll need to make a minimum deposit of $1,000 to open a CD account.
ETrade banking customers can also check out mortgage options with various terms such as a 30 year fixed, 7 year ARM or 7 year interest only loan.
If you need an answer fast, there’s a pre-approval guarantee — ETrade will make a same-day loan decision or they’ll give you $250. But you have to provide the information they request in order to be eligible for the guarantee.
There’s even a closing date guarantee. If you qualify for a mortgage, ETrade promises that they will meet your requested closing date; if they miss the date, they’ll make it up to you by reducing your interest rate by 1/8 of one percent for the life of your loan.
In addition, there are a few other benefits available through ETrade: they offer a home purchase checklist to help you through the process of securing your home. They can also help you refinance your current home. With their Best Price Guarantee, they’ll beat any other lender’s price or give you $500 (if you’re eligible).
ETrade offers a Complete Protection Guarantee. For banking customers, this guarantee means you won’t be held liable in the event of unauthorized use via bill pay, ATM transactions, funds transfers, etc. Also, you are guaranteed accurate and on-time online bill pay and Quick Transfers.
As a convenience, you’ll be able to manage all your ETrade accounts from one page. That way, you can integrate your personal finance accounts instead of going to several different sites to manage everything.
And finally, ETrade is more than just an online presence. They’ve also got many local branches across the country, giving you the option of dropping by in person if you feel there’s a need.