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Ally Bank VS SmartyPig

Which bank is better for you?

  • Financial Rates: 3.5 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 5.0 Star Icon
0.60%APY
Savings/MMA
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Pros:

  • Competitive interest rates on accounts
  • No required opening amounts or fees
  • Good variety of accounts available
  • Ten-day Best Rate Guarantee

Cons:

  • Accounts have tiered interest rates
  • Limited ways to fund your accounts
  • Link external accounts to Ally accounts
  • Transfers can take days to fund
  • Financial Rates: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 3.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 5.0 Star Icon
No Rate Information
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Pros:

  • Free savings account
  • Tiered Interest Rates
  • Set up multiple goals
  • Direct withdrawals

Cons:

  • Only offer one type of account
  • Six withdrawals allowed per month
  • Maximum account balance
  • One external funding source allowed
Ally Bank Review

Ally accounts offer competitive interest rates. The interest rates for the Ally savings account is 2.20% for all balances. The checking account earns 0.60% on balances over $15,000. The money market account and CDs also earn competitive rates.

Ally accounts do not have required opening amounts. You can open their accounts with any amount. There are no monthly fees for Ally accounts. They do not have set amounts required to keep in the account to avoid a monthly fee. The CDs have a fee if you withdraw money before the maturity date.

There are a good variety of personal accounts offered through Ally. These accounts include:

  • Savings and money market account
  • Interest checking account
  • High yield CD
  • Raise Your Rate CD
  • No Penalty CD
  • IRA CDs

When you open a CD with Ally, they offer a ten-day Best Rate Guarantee. For the first ten-days after opening your CD, Ally will watch the interest rates. If the rates increase during that time, the interest rate for your CD will increase. This guarantee is for new CDs as well as CD renewals.

Some Ally accounts have tiered interest rates. To earn the highest rates requires high account balances. The money market account requires $25,000 to earn the most competitive rates. The checking account requires $15,000.

There are limited ways to fund your Ally accounts. The easiest way to fund your account is through electronic transfers. Once your account is open, you can set up direct deposit with your employer. You can mail in a check or deposit a check through Ally eCheck Deposits. You cannot deposit cash into Ally accounts.

To make electronic transfers, Ally suggests linking an external account. You can then transfer money electronically between the linked account and Ally accounts. You can transfer money electronically between Ally accounts.

The standard time to transfer money from Ally to an external account is three business days. This time does not include weekends or holidays. If you need the money the next day, you must request the transfer before 7:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. Transfers between Ally accounts are immediate.

Read the full Ally Bank review.

SmartyPig Review

SmartyPig accounts do not have monthly maintenance fees. There is not a required amount to keep in the account. The first initial deposit to open the account is $25.

This savings account offers tiered interest rates. This means the more money you have in the account, the more interest you will earn. The interest rates do not vary much between tiers. The difference from a low amount to the higher amount is around 0.05%.

With this SmartyPig account, you can set up different savings goals. The savings accounts can be long-term, like saving for a college education. They can also be short term, like saving for a mountain bike or birthday party. You can transfer money from your SmartyPig primary account to different savings goals.

The best way to save money is to set up direct withdrawals. You set up when you want the money to come out of your account and how much to withdraw. Then, SmartyPig does the rest. Once the money is deposited into your account, you can transfer it into different savings goal. The withdrawals can be set up to occur monthly or biweekly.

SmartyPig has only one account offered: a high yield savings account. They do not offer checking accounts, CDs, money market accounts, or business accounts. The interest rate on this savings account is considerably higher than other banks savings accounts.

The website says you can withdraw money anytime, but federal regulation only allows six withdrawals per billing cycle. This includes transfers between your SmartyPig primary account and your different savings goals. The transfer or withdrawal will not take place if you have made more than six in a billing cycle. If you repeatedly try to make more than six, your account will be closed. Once you reach your goal, you cannot withdraw part of your money back to your external funding source. You must withdraw it all, or transfer the money between other savings goals.

This account is not meant for high account balances. There is a maximum account balance of $250,000. If your account has $250,000, you will earn interest on the money in the account, but you cannot add to the account.

Each SmartyPig account is only allowed to have one external funding source set up for it. That means you can only have one bank account connected to each SmartyPig account. You can change your external funding source if you want, but never have more than one.

Read the full SmartyPig review.

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