Saving a portion of your income can help ensure your financial success. If you want to start saving money, you might consider CIT Bank to store your reserves and earn a high interest rate without monthly service fees.
This online bank offers a variety of free checking and savings products with low minimum opening deposits, no ongoing balance requirements, and competitive rates.
Our CIT Bank review compares the bank’s best savings options to consider.
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What is CIT Bank?
CIT Bank is an online-only bank that is a popular option for savers seeking some of the highest interest rates. There are no monthly fees, and it’s easy to open an account with small amounts of money.
The bank’s history dates back over 100 years, when they originally offered financing to businesses in St. Louis. The institution is now a subsidiary of First Citizens Bank, the largest family-controlled bank in the U.S.
As an FDIC member, your checking and savings deposits are federally insured up to $250,000. You may consider this bank since they offer several complimentary features that make it easier to access your money.
What’s Needed to Open a CIT Bank Account?
Opening an account is free, and the minimum deposit amount is usually $100. Some of the additional requirements include:
- Driver’s license or a valid state ID
- Email address
- Home address
- Phone number
- Social Security number
Initial enrollment typically takes five minutes. You can link an existing banking account to schedule an opening deposit and future transfers. It’s possible to make deposits by wire transfer or mailing a check.
You can also enroll in direct deposit for recurring account contributions.
To make family banking easy, parents and legal guardians can open a custodial account for any of CIT’s personal banking products except for the eChecking2 account.
What Product Does CIT Bank Offer?
Multiple banking products are available to help you save money and pay bills without a maintenance fee. Depending on your personal finance goals, you may decide to open one or several accounts.
Here are the account types available at CIT Bank.
The eChecking service is the only personal CIT Bank checking product. It has no monthly service fee, overdraft fee, or ongoing balance requirements. However, a minimum $100 deposit is required at account opening.
Some of the best free checking account features include:
- Debit card
- Unlimited withdrawals
- Up to $30 in reimbursement of ATM fees each month
- Mobile check deposit
- Bill pay
- Zelle® money transfers
You can schedule transfers and remote deposit checks using the mobile app. It’s also possible to access most account features through the online platform.
This online checking account even earns interest. Balances under $10,000 earn 0.10 percent APY1 (annual percentage yield).
Having a minimum balance above $25,000 yields 0.20 percent APY. A CIT Bank savings account will likely offer better interest rates on big balances.
Unfortunately, this account doesn’t provide paper checks. Checks you order from a third-party provider will be rejected and mailed back to the payee.
While you cannot write a check, you can have the bank mail a check to a recipient for free using the online bill pay feature.
A Savings Connect3 account makes it easy to earn a competitive rate on small account balances. It can be an excellent place to keep your emergency fund since there are no fees, and it earns one of the bank’s best rates.
*Related: Read our guide on how to start an emergency fund to learn how much you should save.
You can open an account after making an initial deposit of $100 or more. There are no ongoing minimum balance requirements to qualify for the highest interest rate.
Your entire balance earns the same interest rate of 4.65 percent APY. This is a competitive high-yield savings account rate and is the bank’s only savings account with one balance tier.
Federal Regulation D limits withdrawals and transfers from savings accounts to six times per month. This law applies to similar products from competing banks and credit unions.
Starting to save early is of utmost importance. Read our guide on a penny doubled for 30 days to learn the importance of starting early and the power of compound interest.
Consider the Platinum Savings account for balances of $5,000 or more to earn a higher rate. Account holders with at least $5,000 earn 5.05 percent APY, but the yield is only 0.25 percent on balances below this threshold.
There are no additional deposit requirements to earn this interest rate. You can open an online savings account with little as $100 but won’t earn the better rate yield until your account balance exceeds $5,000.
While there are no monthly service fees, you are limited to six withdrawals per month.
Money Market Account
The CIT Bank Money Market Account is similar to a high-yield savings account because you earn more interest than a traditional savings account.
Further, the best money market feature is the ability to request a debit card for purchases and ATM withdrawals so that you won’t have to transfer funds to a checking account first.
However, there is a monthly limit of six withdrawals, similar to a high-yield bank account.
Account balances earn 1.55 percent APY, and the minimum opening deposit is $100.
You may consider this account for withdrawal flexibility. Additionally, it can earn a better rate than a high-yield account at times, even though the rate is variable for either account and can change at any time.
Savings Builder Account
A Savings Builder Account4 can motivate you to save more money since you earn the account’s highest rates by receiving a minimum $100 monthly deposit or maintaining a minimum $25,000 account balance.
Completing either requirement lets you earn 1.00 percent APY on your balances versus the lower interest rate tier of 0.40 percent APY.
Like the bank’s other savings accounts, you can make up to six monthly withdrawals. The minimum opening deposit is $100.
Certificates of Deposit
A certificate of deposit (CD) can be an excellent short-term investment since you can earn a higher yield than a savings account as you set aside your funds for a preset period.
These products are FDIC-insured, and the yield varies by maturity date. Typically, longer-term CDs have better rates because you must wait longer to withdraw your funds without interest penalties.
You can easily build a CD ladder with various rates and terms to earn more interest if bank account rates go lower.
The minimum deposit is $1,000 for a term CD or a penalty-free CD. These two products currently offer the highest rates. Additionally, there are zero account opening fees or ongoing maintenance fees.
Banking customers can open these CD products6:
- Term CD: Earn up to 5.00 percent interest with a term of six months to five years. Early withdrawals incur principal or interest penalties, and you must hold until maturity to avoid withdrawal penalties.
- No-Penalty CD8: Earn 4.90 percent interest for 11 months. You can hold until maturity or make a penalty-free withdrawal starting six days after the receipt of funds.
- Jumbo CD: This product has a minimum opening deposit of $100,000 and a term of two to five years. You can earn up to 0.50 percent APY.
- RampUp CDs9: Adjust your interest rate once during the term without penalty. This product requires a minimum $25,000 deposit and a three-year or four-year term. Unfortunately, it’s not open for new accounts.
- RampUp Plus CDs: You can increase your CD rate once during the term if the bank’s interest rates go up. The minimum deposit is $25,000, and the term length is one year or two years. However, this product isn’t available to new accounts.
Make sure to assess your cash flow needs before committing to a CD. Read our guide on are CDs FDIC insured to learn more about how they might fit into your overall portfolio.
CIT Bank Customer Service
Phone-based support for personal bank accounts is available Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST and on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST. No service is available on Sundays.
You can access your account by web or mobile app 24/7 and submit support tickets through your membership dashboard.
Branch office access is only available for former Mutual of Omaha retail banking customers.
For home loan customers, phone support is available on weekdays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. EST.
Customer reviews regarding the bank’s customer service quality include positive and negative feedback. Multiple customers are pleased with the phone-based agents when hands-on help is needed.
However, there are several complaints about long wait times for phone support. Others find the website and app layout frustrating. The online platform’s ease of use may depend on personal preference.
What Fees Does CIT Bank Charge?
CIT Bank doesn’t charge typical checking, savings, or CD account fees. You may find the following fees at other banks:
- Account opening
- Monthly maintenance fee
- Overdraft fee
- Inactivity fee
Fortunately, you won’t incur any of these fees with CIT Bank.
While it’s not a fee, you will need to satisfy the minimum initial deposit requirements to open your desired bank account.
You can also anticipate low fees for incidental expenses:
- Outgoing wire transfers: $10 for account balances lower than $25,000 and free for account balances above $25,000
- Bill Pay stop payment: $30 per check
- Return deposit item: $10 per item
- Debit card replacement: One free replacement per year and then $10 each
- International purchases or ATM withdrawals: One percent
For early redemptions on CDs, you will forfeit up to six months of interest income. Additional legal processing fees can also apply in special situations.
Is CIT Bank a Safe Bank?
Yes, your deposits of up to $250,000 are FDIC-insured at CIT Bank. The institution’s FDIC member certification number is 11063 as a division of First Citizens Bank & Trust Company.
As a reminder, no bank is risk-free, and it’s possible that CIT Bank can close or temporarily halt withdrawals. There may also be website or app outages that prevent you from logging into your account.
For these reasons, you may have a secondary bank account elsewhere to be more likely to have access to some of your funds.
Does CIT Bank Have ATMs?
There are no in-network ATMs, but the bank doesn’t charge ATM fees and reimburses up to $30 per month in out-of-network service fees.
The app doesn’t have a free ATM finder like some competitors offer. You may want to consider online banks like Chime if having access to in-network ATMs is essential.
Does CIT Bank Offer Loans?
CIT Bank offers purchase and refinance home loans, but it doesn’t have any additional loan products. You must call a loan specialist to start the application process and review your mortgage options.
Consult our guide on the best places to get a personal loan if that’s a need.
Pros and Cons
Choosing an online bank is important step to managing your finances. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of being a CIT Bank customer.
- No monthly fees
- Many banking account options
- Low minimum opening deposits
- Can earn competitive interest rates
- Free online bill pay
- Phone-based customer support
- No local branches
- Some accounts have tiered interest rates
- No in-network ATMs
- High minimum initial deposit for CDs
Overall, CIT Bank offers super competitive rates and doesn’t nickel and dime you with fees.
Alternatives to CIT Bank
These online banks can be a better fit for your goals and financial needs. Their account types and complimentary benefits might be worth considering.
A Discover Bank Online Savings Account doesn’t require a minimum opening deposit or ongoing balance to earn a high interest rate. It also doesn’t charge monthly account fees.
You may appreciate the bank’s free checking account, which earns up to one percent cash back on debit card purchases and has over 60,000 fee-free ATMs. It’s possible to send no-fee bank checks or enroll in online bill pay.
This online bank also offers a money market account and term CDs, but the minimum deposit is $2,500 for either product.
An Ally Bank Savings Account earns the same interest rate on all balances. There are no monthly fees or minimum balance requirements. Plus, you can use savings buckets to plan for various upcoming goals.
The Ally Bank Spending Account offers free online checking with up to $250 in overdraft protection. Account holders can also access over 43,000 fee-free ATMs and up to $10 in ATM fee reimbursements per statement cycle.
You can even open a term CD, no-penalty CD, and Raise Your Rate CD (similar to a CIT Bank RampUp CD) with great rates and no balance minimums.
The bank offers a loyalty reward with a slight rate increase on select CDs when you renew your term at maturity.
Capital One provides fee-free online savings, checking, and custodial banking accounts with no minimum deposits.
Any balance in a 360 Performance Savings account earns a single interest rate. You can create an automatic savings plan for recurring deposits.
The 360 Checking Account provides access to over 70,000 fee-free ATMs. You can also visit local branches and Capital One Cafes for basic banking services.
Your balance earns a small amount of interest, but transferring your savings to a high-yield account can help you earn more.
Savers can also earn great rates with a 360 CD that doesn’t have a balance requirement. It’s possible to receive your interest payments monthly, annually, or at the end of the term.
CIT Bank Review
Tools and Resources
CIT Bank Review
CIT Bank is a full-service online banking institution with a wide array of accounts and services. They offer super competitive rates and no hidden fees.
✔️ Top tier interest rates
✔️ No monthly fees
✔️ Wide variety of account options
✔️ Monthly ATM reimbursement
✔️ Easy to use online resources
❌ Online only institution
❌ No ATM network
❌ Interest rates are tiered on some accounts
CIT Bank offers free checking and interest-bearing savings products to help you pay bills, transfer funds, and save for the future. Not paying any account fees also makes this platform a competitive option.
There are several account types to consider, so it’s worth taking a few minutes to compare rates, benefits, and balance requirements to ensure you get the most value from your membership.
Does a bank being strictly online a deal breaker for you?
1Interest rates and APYs (Annual Percentage Yields) shown are accurate as of January 24, 2023. Fees could reduce earnings on these accounts. See the CIT Bank Fee Schedule.
2CIT Bank eChecking account is a tiered interest rate account. Interest is paid on the entire account balance based on the interest rate and APY in effect that day for the balance tier associated with the end-of-day account balance. Interest rates and APYs are variable and subject to change without notice.
3CIT Bank Savings Connect and Money Market accounts are variable-rate accounts. Interest rates and APYs are subject to change without notice.
4Savings Builder is a variable, tiered interest rate account. Tier levels are subject to change. Interest is paid on the entire end-of-day account balance based on the interest rate and APY in effect for the applicable tier on that day. Interest rates and APYs are subject to change without notice. Visit our Savings Builder page for complete terms and conditions.
5Premier High Yield Savings and High Yield Savings are variable, tiered interest rate accounts. Interest is paid on the entire account balance based on the interest rate and APY in effect that day for the balance tier associated with the end-of-day account balance. Interest rates and APYs are subject to change without notice. Premier High Yield Savings and High Yield Savings are not available for new personal accounts.
6CDs may be subject to an early withdrawal penalty, which will reduce earnings. Upon maturity, CDs are renewed for the same term automatically, except as noted below for the 13-Month and 18-Month CDs.
7Upon maturity, the 13-Month CD will be automatically renewed as a 1-Year Term CD at the then-published APY, and the 18-Month CD will be automatically renewed as a 2-Year Term CD at the then-published APY.
8You may withdraw the total balance and interest earned, without penalty, beginning 7 days after funds have been received for your CD. No withdrawals are permitted during the first 6 days following the receipt of funds.
9New RampUp CDs are not available.
Josh uses his personal experience of paying off over $130,000 in personal debt and changing careers to write about saving money, investing, and paying off debt. He has regularly written for notable outlets including Wallet Hacks, Well Kept Wallet, and Debt Roundup.
Josh was previously an operations supervisor for a Fortune 500 company for seven years. He is married with three small children.