5 Star Bank VS Citibank

Which bank is better for you?

  • Financial Rates: 4.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 4.0 Star Icon
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Pros:

  • Variety of different accounts offered
  • Low opening required amounts
  • Reimbursement for ATM fees
  • No monthly fees or minimum balances

Cons:

  • Money market account has tiered rates
  • Must meet requirements to earn interest
  • Daily debit card limits
  • Higher balances earn lower rates
  • Financial Rates: 3.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 3.0 Star Icon
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Pros:

  • Citi Private Pass
  • Fee-free ATMs
  • Earn Thank You Points
  • Business Banking

Cons:

  • Most accounts have fees
  • High daily balances
  • High opening balances for savings accounts
  • Low interest rates
5 Star Bank Review

5Star Bank offers a variety of personal deposit and business accounts. There are three different personal checking accounts. One that earns interest, one earns cash back, and one rewards you for shopping online. 5Star Bank offers a savings account, money market account, and different CD terms. Business accounts include checking, money market accounts, CDs, and loans.

5Star Bank has low amounts required to open their accounts. Each of the different checking accounts only require $50 to open. The Kasasa savings account does not have a set amount required when opening. Both the money market account and the different CD terms each require $1,000 to open.

There are no fees to use 5Star ATMs. 5Star Bank will refund up to $20 each month in ATM fees for each of their checking accounts. ATM transactions do not count toward the required debit card transactions to earn interest or rewards.

Most all 5Star Bank accounts do not have monthly maintenance fee. Each of the different checking accounts is free, as well as the savings account. The money market account has a $5 fee, which is waived by keeping at least $1,000 in the account. The different term CDs do not have monthly fees.

To earn the most competitive rates for the money market account requires a large sum. To earn the best rate, you must have a balance of $250,000 in the account. Any balance over $1,000 does earn interest, but a lower rate. The rates gradually increase the more money you have in the account.

5Star Bank checking accounts have requirements you must meet to earn competitive rates. Those requirements include enrolling in online banking and receiving eStatements. You must also make at least 12 debit card purchases each month. ATM withdrawals or account transfers do not count toward those purchases. If you do not meet the requirements for the month, you will not earn the competitive interest rate. The 5Star Bank savings account has the same requirements to earn interest.

5Star limits the amount of money that you can use with your debit card. The limit for point of sale purchases is $1,000 per day. The limit for ATM withdrawals for each day is $300.

Once you reach $25,000 in the savings or checking account the interest rates drop. Any amount under that balance will earn the competitive rates. Any amount over that earn a much lower rate.

Read the full 5 Star Bank review.

Citibank Review

Citi Private Pass is an entertainment program for credit and debit card holders. You can buy tickets to concerts, sporting events, restaurants, and movie screenings before others. The best deals are found on Twitter or with a weekly email. There is no fee from Citi to make purchases through Citi Private Pass.

Citi has thousands of ATMs across the United States and in 20 other countries. You can get cash without paying a fee at these ATMs. Free ATMs have the Citibank brand. MoneyPass ATMs are free too. Talking ATMs are at every Citibank branch with ATMs. If you aren’t a CitiGold or Priority member and use a non Citi ATM you will be charged the fee. You can find ATMs and branches on Citi’s website.

Three checking accounts and many credit cards offer thank you points. You earn points from qualifying purchases, direct deposits and bill pay. These points can be used to make a variety of different purchases. The only checking accounts that earn points are Citibank account, Citi Priority Package and CitiGold. These accounts require high account balances.

Citi offers small or commercial business banking. Checking accounts differ depending on the number of transactions made. Citi offers different cash flow options for deposits and customer payments. Business payroll services and credit cards are available.

Every account offered has fees except CitiGold. To be a member of CitiGold requires $200,000 in accounts. The fees range from $10 to $30. Waive fees by maintaining a monthly average balance. Those balances are high. They range from $500 to $50,000. Checking accounts must have a balance of $1,500 always to waive the fee. Basic savings accounts can have the fee waived if you are older than 62 or have a direct deposit into the account.

The opening balances for savings accounts are $100. There isn’t a required amount to open a checking account. But, you will be charged the account fee if you don’t have $1,500 to $50,000 in the account. The amount is different for each account.

Interest rates for checking and savings accounts aren’t found on the website. Not all checking accounts earn interest. Citibank interest rates aren’t competitive to other online banks. You don’t know what you earn until you sign up.

Read the full Citibank review.

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