How much do you have in your savings account?
If you’re like most Americans, your answer might be “not much.” A poll conducted by the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that two-thirds of adults would struggle to cover a $1,000 emergency.
If you’re looking to kickstart a savings habit, consider a high-yield savings account from Synchrony Bank. According to Synchrony Bank reviews, this online bank offers competitive savings and money market accounts with some of the highest APYs available.
Read on for the pros and cons of saving with Synchrony Bank, along with how to create your online account.
Synchrony Bank review
Synchrony Bank is an (almost) entirely online bank, so it can offer high annual percentage yields (APYs) and minimal fees. It just has one branch in Bridgewater, New Jersey, but you don’t have to be local to bank there. Most of its customers manage their accounts online or through the bank’s mobile app.
Perhaps the best benefit of banking with Synchrony Bank is its high APYs. Between its high-yield savings accounts, money market accounts, and certificates of deposit (CDs), Synchrony Bank offers competitive interest rates, allowing you to earn more from the money you stash away.
Plus, fees are low. In fact, you can open a savings account with as a little as 1 cent, and there’s no minimum balance requirement to keep it up and running each month.
Although Synchrony Bank doesn’t offer checking accounts, you can access your money through any ATM. The bank won’t charge you a fee for withdrawals. If the ATM merchant charges a fee, Synchrony Bank will reimburse it for up to $5 per month.
If you have a high balance or are a long-term customer, you could also qualify for special perks, such as special rate offers and free wire transfers. Customers at any level receive FDIC insurance on their accounts for up to $250,000.
Thanks to the bank’s user-friendly website and app, it’s easy to manage your accounts through your computer or phone. If you’re looking to save your money in a low-risk account with excellent rates, Synchrony Bank could be a smart choice.
Synchrony Bank has limited offerings
Although Synchrony Bank leads the pack with its high-yield savings accounts, it falls behind some competitors in terms of its offerings. While some online banks such as Ally offer loans and mortgages, Synchrony Bank doesn’t have these products. Nor does it offer a checking account, although you can request checks for your money market account.
Another potential downside could be the bank’s customer service. According to customer reviews, some clients have been dissatisfied with the company’s support team. A few Synchrony Bank reviews also report fees that ate up part of their savings.
Synchrony Bank doesn’t clearly advertise its fee structure on its website, so make sure to get the full picture from a customer service representative before opening an account.
Synchrony Bank products
Synchrony Bank helps you save with high-yield savings accounts, money market accounts, and CDs, none of which have a monthly service fee.
These are the financial products Synchrony Bank offers at this time:
- APY: Up to 1.30% as of Oct. 19, 2017
- Minimum opening deposit: 1 cent
- Make withdrawals online, by phone, or by ATM
Money market accounts, including Roth or traditional IRA money markets
- APY: Up to 0.85% as of Oct. 19, 2017
- Minimum opening deposit: 1 cent
- Make withdrawals from a (non-IRA) money market account online, by phone, by check, or by ATM
CDs, including Roth or traditional IRA CDs
- APY: Up to 2.35% as of Oct. 19, 2017
- Minimum opening deposit: $2,000
- CDs have choice of terms, from three to 60 months
Not sure which type of account is right for you? Check out this guide for the pros and cons of each.
Use the Synchrony Bank online platform to create or manage your account
Since Synchrony Bank is primarily an online bank, you should be comfortable using its online platform. Log into your account on your computer or use the Synchrony Financial mobile app to check your balance, transfer money, or deposit a check.
Opening an account online is easy. First, indicate what type of account you’d like to create and if it will be an individual or joint account.
Your next step will be to indicate how much money you’d like to deposit. Each account type has its own requirements.
To open a savings account, you only need to deposit a penny. You can also get a new ATM card or link your new Synchrony Bank account with an existing ATM card.
Next, you’ll provide some basic information about yourself, including your name, address, date of birth, and Social Security number (or permanent resident identification number). To transfer money from another bank, you’ll also need to provide an external account and routing number.
Once you’ve provided your personal information — and named a beneficiary or two for your account — you’ll agree to the terms and agreements. These include your consent for Synchrony Bank to obtain a consumer report or check references with other banks.
After creating your account, you should be up and running. You’ll get your ATM card in the mail, and you can log in online or via the mobile app at any time. From there, you can review your account activity, transfer funds, or deposit checks.
Synchrony Bank interest rates, fees, and eligibility requirements
As you read above, Synchrony Bank offers competitive interest rates on its various savings accounts. As of October 2017, its high-yield savings accounts have APYs of 1.30%. Compare that to the 0.01% APY you’d get on a savings account with Bank of America.
You can withdraw or transfer money up to six times per statement cycle. Although there’s no fee for exceeding this limit, Synchrony Bank could choose to close your account for misuse.
Its fees include the following:
- Outgoing wire transfer: $25
- Stop payment on a check: $25
- Sending a check overnight: $25
To open an account with Synchrony Bank, you must also meet a few basic eligibility requirements. To qualify, you must:
- Be a U.S. citizen or U.S. lawful permanent resident (green card holder)
- Have a permanent resident address in the U.S.
- Be 18 years or older
Synchrony Bank contact for customer service
For additional information, call Synchrony Bank customer service at 1-866-226-5638.
Although the company doesn’t provide an email address, you can ask questions via the website’s live chat feature. Plus, you can write or send checks to: Synchrony Bank, P.O. Box 105972, Atlanta, GA 30348-5972.
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