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California First National Bank VS Citizens Access

Which bank is better for you?

  • Financial Rates: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 3.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 3.0 Star Icon
0.25%APY
Savings/MMA
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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
  • Financial Rates: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 4.0 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 5.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 5.0 Star Icon
1.85%APY
Savings/MMA
Star Icon Star Icon Star Icon Star Icon Star Icon

Pros:

  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • Competitive interest rates
  • Any account balance earns interest
  • Good variety of CD terms

Cons:

  • High opening required amounts
  • Must link accounts to external bank
  • No ATM or debit cards or checks
  • Limited accounts offered
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.

Citizens Access Review

Looking for Citizens Bank? Click here for our review on the local bank.

Citizens Access bank accounts do not have any fees. There are no monthly maintenance fees or fees to open the account. The Citizens Access savings account is completely free. The only fee with the CDs comes if you withdraw money before the maturity date.

The online savings account and each of the CD terms earn competitive interest rates. Citizens Access rates are much higher than your typical brick and mortar bank rates. They are competitive with other online accounts. To earn the most competitive rate requires a balance of $5,000 in each account.

Any account balance in the Citizens Access savings account earns interest. If the account balance falls below $5,000 the interest you earn is less, but you still earn interest. To earn the most competitive rate requires a $5,000 balance in the account.

Citizens Access offers a good variety of CD terms. Those terms range from six-month terms to five-years. Each of these CDs requires $5,000 to open. The interest rates are competitive on each term. The longer the CD term, the higher the interest rate.

To open an online savings account or CD with Citizen Access requires a large sum. Each of these accounts requires $5,000 to open the accounts. To earn the most competitive interest rate requires a balance of $5,000.

To transfer money in and out of your Citizens Access account you must link to an external bank account. That account can be a different banking institution. Once you link the accounts, you can transfer money electronically between the two accounts. To withdraw money, you could request a check.

Currently, Citizens Access does not offer ATM cards, debit cards, or checks for their online savings account. Access your money easiest through electronic transfers. You can call customer service to request a check.

Citizens Access has a limited variety of account. Only personal deposit savings account and CDs are available. No personal checking accounts or money market accounts are available. There are no business accounts offered.

Read the full Citizens Access review.

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