Banks have long been the go-to financial service provider, but with advancements in technology, our needs have evolved. We no longer need a physical branch to complete transactions, and we now have a growing preference for digital banking.
In response to this trend, neobanks have emerged as a new alternative, offering banking services solely through mobile apps or websites. Because of their lower overhead costs, neobanks are able to offer higher interest rates and lower fees, which has led to their growing popularity.
With the rise of neobanks, consumers now have more options to choose from. The question then becomes, how do you choose the right neobank for you? In this blog post, we will explore some of the best neobanks and what defines them.
Acorns: The Spare-Change-Investing Neobank
Acorns has become well-known for its robo-advisor app that offers automated investing. But it is also a neobank that offers low-cost deposit accounts, which are perfect for micro-investors because of its auto-investing feature.
Plus, there are no monthly maintenance fees. When you sign up for a checking account with Acorns, you get a Visa debit card that can be used to make purchases or conduct ATM transactions at any of the 55,000 fee-free ATMs in Acorns’ network. Referring friends to Acorns earns you a $5 investment bonus when a friend joins.
Acorns is perfect for individuals who struggle with saving and prefer an app to do the heavy lifting. It is also suitable for those looking to get rid of monthly maintenance fees.
Betterment: The All-In-One Neobank
Betterment is a neobank that stands out for its high-yield cash account, currently offering a 4.00% APY. The bank also offers a savings account with above-average yield, no fees and no minimum balance requirements. Its checking account has no minimums or fees, plus unlimited global ATM fee reimbursements and reimbursements of foreign transaction fees. Betterment’s strength lies in its investment portfolio tool. Clients can easily invest their money through the neobank, making it an ideal choice for someone looking to do some investing in addition to their banking.
Betterment is perfect for consumers who want a breezy neobank experience with no fees and high APYs, especially on a cash account. It is also an excellent option for those who want to invest their money and manage their portfolio with ease.
Chime: The Retail-Friendly Neobank
Chime has partnered with popular retailers such as Walmart, Walgreens, Target, CVS, and Rite Aid, meaning no fee for getting cash back with a Chime card. With over 60,000 free ATMs, Chime also boasts no service fees, a higher-than-average savings rate, 24/7 customer service, a credit-builder secured credit card, and doesn’t rely on Chex Systems or credit checks.
Chime is ideal for those who prefer retail-friendly neobanks and don’t want to be charged additional fees for using their card at specific retailers. It is also perfect for those who want to build their credit and take advantage of higher savings rates.
LendingClub is mainly an online bank but has one physical branch in Boston. It stands out for its interest-paying rewards account, free checking and savings accounts, and competitive CD rates up to 4.10% for five years.
This online bank does not charge any monthly fees and is ideal for customers who will take advantage of the rewards account’s interest. Checking account holders earn 0.10% or 0.15% APY, depending on their balance.
SoFi is a popular neobank with over 4 million members and $4.4 billion in assets. It offers a wide range of products, including combined checking and savings accounts, loans, credit cards, insurance, and investing, including retirement accounts.
SoFi provides a 2.50% APY on checking account balances, allows users to receive their paycheck two days early through direct deposit, and provides overdraft coverage up to $50 at no charge. SoFi is a good choice for customers who want a full suite of options, Vaults to organize finances, and Roundups to save money with ease.
The Bottom Line
As the world becomes increasingly digital, neobanks have become a convenient and cost-effective option for those who want to manage their finances solely online.
Acorns, Betterment, and Chime are just a few examples of the best neobanks on the market, each offering unique features that cater to different financial needs.
Consider these options and determine which one is the perfect fit for you.