Bank of America Savings Account Review

Feb 14, 2018 | Be First to Comment!

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Whether you’re an 18-year-old who is brand new to personal finance or a 30-something getting a late start on building your next egg, you know that you should open a savings account. Having solid savings is vital to your financial health. But which bank do you use? And what’s the difference between one savings option and another?

The Bank of America® Rewards Savings account provides a nice entry point for those who want to save but don’t have much money set aside. It has a low barrier to entry with a $25 minimum deposit, and it links to any existing Bank of America® checking accounts for easy transfers and overdraft protection.

In this article, we’ll look at the pros and cons of Bank of America®’s Rewards Savings account.

Bank of America® is one of the largest financial institutions in the country, and that brand recognition often inspires confidence and a sense of reliability. Here’s a quick overview of the account highlights, which we’ll delve into more below:

  • $8 monthly fee, unless you meet certain criteria for a fee waiver
  • Special features include overdraft protection on your Bank of America® checking account and enrollment in Bank of America®’s Keep the Change savings program

Bank of America Savings Account Pros & Cons

Pros Cons
  • Automatic savings program available
  • Access to shopping deals program
  • Access to physical branches
  • Mobile apps available
  • Monthly fee
  • Interest rate is much lower compared to online savings accounts

Savings Accounts Rates

The interest rate on this Bank of America® savings account is 0.03% APY. The low return makes it undesirable for people interested in earning high interests on their savings.

If you’re more concerned with finding an easily accessible savings account than with earning money on it, the Bank of America® Rewards Savings account works well. You can reevaluate it after you’ve built up significant savings or reach a higher income bracket.

You might also consider enrolling with an online savings accounts instead:

Savings Account Fees

Bank of America Savings Account Fees

Type Fee
Monthly Maintenance Fee $8
Excessive withdrawal fee $10
Overdraft Item Fee $35
NSF: Returned Item Fee $35
Overdraft Protection Transfer Fee $12
Non-Bank of America ATMs $2.50
Statement copies $5
Deposited item returned $12

This savings account does have a $8 monthly maintenance fee, which can be waived if you meet any of the following requirements:

  • Maintain a minimum daily balance of at least $500
  • Link it to your Bank of America Interest Checking account
  • Be a Bank of America Preferred Rewards client

This fee is higher than what Wells Fargo and TD Bank charge on their comparable accounts. However, they both waive the monthly fee for account holders under the age of 18. TD Bank also waives it for those who are 62 or older.

Bank of America® allows you to make six total withdrawals and transfers for free each month. Once you use those six, the bank charges $10 per withdrawal or transaction for the rest of the cycle. But it caps the Withdrawal Limit Fees at six, so you won’t pay more than $60 on those transactions in a single month. Bank of America® waives the withdrawal limit fee if you keep a daily balance of $2,500 or more in the Rewards Savings account.

Special Feature: Keep the Change Savings Program

Keep the Change is a handy way to save money in small increments. When you use your Bank of America® debit card to buy coffee, clothes, magazines, groceries, and other products, the bank automatically rounds up the dollar amount and transfers the difference to your savings account. If you spend $23.50 on a shirt, you’ll see a .50 transfer from your checking to your savings. The amounts are small, but they add up if you use your debit card regularly. However, if you prefer to pay with cash or credit cards, the program is less effective.

Online and Mobile Banking

You can manage your savings account on Bank of America®’s desktop site and through its mobile app. Both platforms allow you to transfer money between Bank of America® accounts and to external accounts. You can also see your recent transaction list, set customized alerts, and deposit checks through the app.

Final Verdict

The Bank of America® Rewards Savings account is not a great savings account because of the high monthly fee and tough fee-waiver requirements.

It may serve as an easy cash reserve for emergencies when linked to a Bank of America checking account. Otherwise, it doesn't really help you grow your savings.

Ultimately, an online savings account such as Capital One 360 or Synchrony’s High Yield account are more effective options.

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