Bank of the West VS California First National Bank

Which bank is better for you?

  • Financial Rates: 3.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 4.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 3.0 Star Icon
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Pros:

  • Business accounts are available
  • Direct deposit is not required
  • A variety of different lengths of CDs
  • Transfer money to others with PopMoney

Cons:

  • Low-interest rates on accounts
  • High initial required amounts for CDs
  • High required amounts for accounts
  • Products change based on states
  • Financial Rates: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 3.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 3.0 Star Icon
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Pros:

  • Reimbursement of ATM fees
  • Competitive interest rates on accounts
  • Interest rates are not tiered
  • Free first order of checks with checking

Cons:

  • Not a wide variety of accounts
  • High opening required amounts
  • Accounts have monthly fees
  • Not all CDs offer competitive rates
Bank of the West Review

Bank of the West offers checking, savings, CDs, and money market accounts for your business. Credit cards, loans, and lines of credit are also available. Bank of the West offers payroll services and payment processing options. Foreign exchange services for business accounts are also available. Interest rates for their different business accounts are not listed on the website.

Bank of the West does not require you to have direct deposit into their checking account. There is a monthly maintenance fee, but you can waive that fee by depositing money into your account each month. You can deposit any amount by an ATM, in-branch, direct, or mobile deposit to waive the fee.

Bank of the West offers Flexible-Term CDs, Premium Money Market CD, and a Relationship CD. Within these different CD types are a variety of term lengths, except the Relationship CD. That only has a 12-month term option. To apply for a CD and get the specific term lengths and rates you have to visit a branch. You cannot apply online.

With Popmoney you can send or receive money with only an email, text, or account number. You decide where the money is deposited. You will receive an alert when the transaction is complete. There is a fee to send money overnight, and not all customers qualify to use Popmoney.

Personal banking accounts of Bank of the West do not have competitive interest rates. The rates are much less than online-only banks but similar to typical bank interest rates.

To open a CD, you must have an opening balance of $1,000 for the Flexible-Term CDs and Premier Money Market CDs. To open a Relationship CD, you must have $2,500 and a checking account with Bank of the West.

To waive the Premier Checking account fee, you must have $25,000 in qualifying accounts. The Choice Money Market account requires $5,000. CD accounts require $1,000 to $2,500 to open. The Classic Savings account requires $300. There are other options for ways to have monthly fees waived. Know the options if you cannot keep the required amounts of money in the accounts.

Bank of the West accounts are not available in all states. To apply for an account, you must have an address in one of the states listed. Interest rates and products differ between states. The name of the bank may be slightly different as well depending on the area.

Read the full Bank of the West review.

California First National Bank Review

You can withdraw money from any ATMs with the specific “Plus” logo. If you withdraw money from another ATM, you are reimbursed for the fees charged. CalFirst will reimburse up to $6.00 each statement cycle in ATM fees.

Most CalFirst accounts offer competitive interest rates. The interest rates are not tiered, so you earn the highest rates offered on any balance in the account. Interest is paid monthly on the actual daily balance.

The interest rates for CalFirst accounts are not tiered. Any amount you have in their accounts earns the competitive interest rates. You do not have to have a certain amount in the account to earn the most competitive rates.

The first order of checks is free when you open an interest checking account. You get an ATM card when you open an interest checking account. Free online bill pay comes with each CalFirst checking account opened.

CalFirst does not have a wide variety of accounts. No business accounts are available, only personal deposit accounts. One money market account and savings account are available. There is an interest checking and one regular checking account. CalFirst only offers five different CD terms.

CalFirst accounts have high opening amounts. The money market account and CDs require $5,000 to open. The interest checking account requires $2,500 to open. The savings account and regular checking account both require $1,000 to open.

The accounts at CalFirst all have a monthly fee. The fees range from $10 to $20 a month, depending on the account you open. Waive the fee by keeping a set amount in CalFirst accounts. You can also have a combined balance between a variety of CalFirst accounts.

Not all the CD terms offer competitive rates. The most competitive rates are the three-month, six-month, and the one-year terms. The two-year and three-year terms have interest rates much lower than the other terms. Regular CDs require $5,000 to open. The IRA CDs require $2,000 to open. The only fees are if you withdraw the money before the maturity date.

Read the full California First National Bank review.

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