MyBankTracker rated Bank of the Sierra based on the following criteria that includes real customer reviews and bank fees, among others. Our bank report card is a proprietary rating system that highlights the financial health and stability of the bank.
I opened this account a couple years ago when they accepted out-of-state applications and were paying over 4%. Even with the rate cut in half, it's still much better than most. As my primary account, I use it mostly online as intended so never had any issues with bank staff or customer service. Thier website does seem pretty dated, but not unlike several other community banks (M&T Bank and Provident NJ come to mind).
At first I thought the choice of ATM locations would be a problem but their Allpoint ATM network is in most (if not all) the Hess stations, Target stores, and 7-Elevens. Makes it much easier for me to find a FREE ATM than with any other bank. I can get reimbursed if I go outside the network, but why make Bank Sierra contribute to another bank's profit. If I need to transfer to an outside account, I use my other bank's website; Bank of Sierra doesn't charge me (the others would if the transfer was going the other way).
A couple times I thought of switching to a bank closer to home (the 3hr time zone difference is a bit annoying) with similar rules and/or better rates, but one thing makes me forget all that - this account works for me!
Good Job Bank of Sierra.
I have been with this bank for close to 2 years it has been one disappointment after another. I specifically asked for no over draft protection and when my account was over drafted I was informed that when I asked for this coverage to be removed it was only for 30 days and I was supposed to have filled out another paper. As if I knew that!!!!!! I was trusting when I opened this account I would be notified of stuff like this specially when I made it very clear I wanted that feature taken off, not just for 30 days. I was also told by a teller that "sometimes" they will honor pre authorized transactions even if I requested that if the funds were not available I did not want anything to go thru, I was very worried that my money would only "SOMETIMES" be protected. She could not be specific on when "sometimes" would apply. The manager was rude and would not answer any of my questions, she would give me the run around. I was trying to support my community bank but I am ready to close this account. I would not recommend this bank to any one.
I own a veterinary hospital in bakersfield. I opened 4 accounts at this bank, 2 are interest bearing. Last month i noticed that i earned zero interest. When i called, i was told i did not have any interest bearing accounts. Wtf. Upon further research, and only after i disputed what they said, they "discovered" that they had made a technical error on a recent conversion internally in their bank and somehow converted all my accounts to non-interest bearing accounts. Unbelievable. I am now fighting to get my interest for the last 1 1/2 months. Will be closing all my accounts at this bank and filing a complaint with regulators. Idiots.