Unlike traditional banks offering separate accounts for savings and checking and a confusing welter of fees often buried in fine print, a California digital bank has created a single simple checking account and money market account offering — no hassle, no fees, and combining competitive savings rates.
“We did a lot of research,” says Taryn Garcia, senior vice president for MyCBB, became evident early on that most banks are only competitive on an individual product level, yet most consumers have at least two deposit products or more.” A conflict arises as consumers seek to keep fees down and simplify transactions.
“It just didn’t make sense for a consumer to bank where he or she gets a good rate on money market accounts, but then is nickeled and dimed with fees” and received no interest on the checking account, she says. “We focused on the features that consumers really want — no monthly [checking account] fees, while paying good rates.” Consider it a kind of “holistic relationship value,” a fundamental rethinking of how banks make money.
“Consumers hate unnecessary fees on their money market and checking accounts,” Garcia notes, “and claim that too many traditional banks are trying to make a dollar by hoping consumers don’t read the fine print.”
Thanks to its low overhead and smart use of technology, the bank fashioned an account that allows free checking with good interest. “Head to head,’ the checking arrangement is “almost unmatched in the industry,” Garcia says. “And we further built on the idea with our free money market account, which also pays good interest. The free money market account appeals to those who prefer to keep their savings separate. A great option on its own, but even better value if combined with our free checking account. Both are free and both pay good rates, somewhat unusual in banking. Allowing you to have money in either, without fear of losing out on an interest earning opportunity, or having to play games to avoid fees.”
Moreover, MyCBB does not steer customers to self-help channels, unlike traditional banks “who make it almost impossible to speak with a real person,” says Garcia.
The bank in fact provides the technology you need to access your account 24/7 and customer service support when you want to speak to a real person.
In addition to competitive rates, the hybrid checking and money market accounts offer:
- No monthly maintenance fees
- No overdraft or non-sufficient funds fee
- No minimum balance requirement
- No Direct Deposit requirement
- No minimum transaction requirement
- Free ATMs nationwide through the MoneyPass ATM network
As a digital bank, says CEO Bill Wilson, “we have the advantage of being able to share our savings from not building” brick-and-mortar branches.
The bank launched the program in California and is now expanding. “We have been testing our products since April,” says Garcia, “with tremendous positive response. We are now ready to expand and reach more customers across all 50 states.
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