Bank of the West VS USAA

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

  • Low opening required amounts
  • No monthly fees or required balances
  • Youth and college accounts available
  • ATM reimbursement for USAA accounts

Cons:

  • Low-interest rates
  • Business accounts are not offered
  • Not a wide variety of accounts
  • Must be a member to open accounts
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.

USAA Review

Most USAA accounts only require $25 to open the accounts. To earn interest on the Classic checking account, you must have $1,000 in the account.

There are no monthly fees for any USAA accounts. They do not have a set amount required to keep in any of their accounts. Some accounts only earn interest if the balance is a set amount. However, you will not be charged a fee for not having a certain amount in the account.

Youth and college accounts offered through USAA do not have a monthly fee. There is not a required balance to keep in the account. The youth savings account earns interest. The youth checking account offers parental controls. Parents can set debit or ATM limits and receive text alerts. The college account only requires $50 to open. Friends and family can contribute to these accounts.

There are over 60,000 free USAA ATMs. The first ten withdrawals from a USAA owned ATM are free. USAA refunds up to $15 in ATM fees charged from using other banks ATMs. The ATM reimbursement does not apply to the USAA Cashback Rewards checking account.

USAA accounts do not offer competitive interest rates. The rates are slightly higher than those of your typical brick and mortar banks. Some CDs receive more competitive interest rates. All other accounts are much lower than other online-only accounts.

USAA does not offer business accounts. The only accounts offered are personal checking and savings accounts and CDs. Insurance, investments, and retirement options are available. Loans, credit cards, and real estate options are offered.

USAA only offers two different checking accounts and two savings accounts. The basic savings account only requires $25 to open the account. The other savings account requires $10,000 to open. Only one checking account earns interest. The other checking account earns cashback rewards. They do not both have the same benefits.

To open an account with USAA, you must become a member. Those eligible to become a member are active and former military and their families. Cadets and midshipmen at academies are eligible to become a member. Once accepted, USAA will help you find the right accounts for your needs.

Read the full USAA review.

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