Ben Todd | Jun 2, 2017 | 1
Citizens Bank Review Checking, Savings and CDs
During our Citizens Bank review, we found that they were unfairly reviewed by both users and professional reviewers. The main reason for this is that the Citizens Bank is not afraid of charging hefty fees and offering less of a return on investments.
The reason for this is because they concentrate more on safe investments, and they have branches to maintain in Michigan, New Hampshire, and the towns in between. The Citizens Bank also puts a lot of effort into security, online usability and mobile usability, which is often something that larger banks tend to do.
Why Is Citizen’s Bank So Poorly Reviewed?
I stand by my comment the Citizen’s bank is unfairly reviewed because the bank is. In my opinion, the negative reviews of the Citizen Bank–Are Not Negative Enough!!! They are unfair because they do not rip into the Citizen Bank as hard as they should. In this review, I present to you every good thing that the Citizen Bank has to offer. I also lay out the steaming pile of horrible things they have to offer too.
Citizens Bank review – Benefits And Features
- Their main presence is in the Northeast in 11 states
- In the Northeast, the Citizens Bank has 1200 branches
- There is no minimum deposit for opening a One Deposit Checking account
- Set up automatic transfers into your savings accounts
- Citizen Bank’s 14-month CD earns more interest than the national average
- They have a mobile app that you may download and use for free
- There is an ATM locator tool
- They do not charge you if you overdraw by less than $5
Perks And Downsides
[+] It is an ATM network in Michigan, New Hampshire, and the towns in between
[+] Monthly fees are easy to avoid if you make a deposit
[+] The bank has a reasonably good online user interface
[+] You may use their banking app on your mobile device
[+] They have branches in Michigan, New Hampshire, and the towns in between
[-] Their savings accounts do not offer very good interest rates
[-] The fee you pay for not using one of their ATMs is a little higher than usual
[-] Your savings account needs to maintain a minimum-daily balance
[-] The rates for their savings account are not very attractive
[-] Their checking account comes with a monthly fee
[-] Some of their savings accounts have monthly maintenance fees
[-] Some of their savings accounts charge a fee if you don’t hit the minimum balance requirement
[-] Their CDs require a large opening deposit
[-] Citizen Bank has a limited number of CDs available
[-] Overdraft fees may mount up to $245 every day
[-] Their pop-up feedback advert is a pain in the arse because it is hard to get off the screen
They have a basic checking account for people who just want a simple checking account. You will have to pay a monthly fee for your account. If you agree to make a single deposit per month, then the monthly fee disappears. The aim of the maintenance fee is to encourage you to be paid by your employer into your checking account.
They have two checking accounts for people who maintain a high account balance. They have a small ATM network that is dotted around eleven states. The states exist mostly in the northeast of the USA. Their unplanned overdraft fees are a little steep, so be sure to take good care of your money.
Citizen Bank has two savings accounts with two premium savings accounts. They offer two money market accounts with two premium versions of that too. Their savings and money market accounts offer low savings rates. They are the sorts of rates that High Street banks offer when national interest rates are low. If you have a basic money market account, they will allow you to write three checks per month. You can set up automatic transfers into your savings accounts if you have a saving goal in mind.
Certificates Of Deposit
You may have a 14-month CD and a 48-month CD. They have a 12-month CD that you may break without paying a penalty. The breakable CD has a lower rate than the other two. All three require a minimum deposit in order to set them up. You can expect a minimum opening deposit of $1000 to open a 14-month or 48-month CD. You will need to deposit a $10,000 opening requirement to set up a 12-month breakable CD. The breakable certificate of deposit often earns half the amount of the others.
In 2015, the bank was ordered to pay $11 million in customer refunds and they had to pay $20.5 million in federal penalties. The bank had been taking deposits, skimming a little, and then giving receipts for less than what was deposited.
It sounds like a scam that maybe a teller would pull. For example, a bank teller may count out $3556.93 and only write $3546.93 on the receipt ($10 less) and then keep the difference. However, the bank was doing it on such a big scale that they stole over $11 million from customers.
Their fines and customer refunds is probably why their banking terms are so tough. Such as how they pay little interest on their savings accounts, how they charge maintenance fees, and how they have minimum opening and minimum balance requirements.
Citizens Bank review – Biggest Selling Point
Their lending services are not terrible. If you are looking for student loan money, a personal loan or a credit card, then you could do worse than to try this the Citizen’s bank. Their ClearValue MasterCard has rates that range from 12.99%, to 16.99% to 20.99%, which are not bad rates for a modern credit card.
They offer 0% introductory APR rates on balance transfers. They offer a 21-day grace period on purchases, and there are no annual fees. Their credit cards have security and shopping protection, and they allow you to see your FICO score for free online.
Citizens Bank review – Fees And Charges
If you use an ATM that is outside of their network, then they are going to charge you $3, which is high compared to what other banks charge. You will also have to pay a monthly fee for your checking account if you do not make at least one deposit every month.
Some of their savings accounts have fees. For example, while writing our Citizens Bank review, we found out that you need to maintain a $200 balance in one of the savings accounts or they charge you $4.99 per month to keep the account open. A money market savings account demands that you maintain a minimum balance of $2500, otherwise you have to pay a $10 fee.
If you overdraw on any of your accounts, they will charge you up to seven times per day. They charge per occurrence at a rate of $30 each, which means you may end up paying up to their daily maximum of $245 per day. That is far higher than most other banks.
One Deposit Checking Account Fees
It costs $9.99 per month. You can avoid the fee by making one deposit each statement cycle (every month).
Citizen Bank Platinum Checking Account Fees
Costs $25 per month (statement cycle) unless have a total of $25,000 deposited with Citizen bank. The $25,000 may be made up of combined monthly balances from across all your Citizen Bank investment and deposit accounts.
Citizen Bank Platinum Plus Checking Account Fees
Costs $25 per month (statement cycle) unless you have a total of $25,000 deposited with the Citizen Bank like with the standard platinum account. Or, the fee may also be waived if you make $5000 worth of deposits every month. Or, it may be waived if you maintain an average checking account balance of $10,000.
Their Other Fees Are As Transparent As A Monkey’s Ass!!!
While writing our Citizens Bank review, I had to locate their fees. Other than the monthly maintenance fees, there are no fees listed on their main website. You have to read through the tiny print on their terms and conditions page, and some of their charges are distinctly absent from their website.
After reading through their online terms and conditions, I repeatedly saw the words, “Copies of charges and fees can be found in the charges and fees section of your personal or business account.” In other words, they want you to sign up with them, apply, and get all the way to them sending you their paperwork before they tell you what their fees are. To help you avoid having to sign up and apply before seeing their fees, I have listed all the fees that were on my documents. I had to sign up for an account in order to write this Citizens Bank review.
Transferring And Payment Fees
- There is no fee for transferring money from one Citizen Bank customer to another
- Transferring money to another person’s accounts costs $3
- Transferring to other financial companies/banks costs $10
- Copies of checks, statements, and such will cost $5 per copy
- Stop payment charges are $35
- Paper statements cost $6 each
- Withdrawing from your savings account more than six times costs $10.00 each
- That charge also includes if you pay people with a check from your savings account
Overdraft/None Sufficient Funds (NFS)
- Unplanned overdrafts of less than $5 will not be charged if left for one day
- Overdraft items marked as paid cost $30.00 per item
- Overdraft items marked as returned cost $35.00 per item
- Overdraft protection transfers to a new account will cost $30.00 per year
- Sweep fees for overdrafts cost $5.00 per item
- Sweep fees for balance maintenance cost $30.00 per year
Official Bank Checks
- Sign up for the “Good Life” to receive cashiers checks for free
- Sign up for the “Good Life” to receive personal money orders for free
- Cashiers checks for amounts of $200+ cost $3.00 per item
- Personal money orders cost $2.00 per item
- $6.00 is charged quarterly for accounts that have been dormant a year
- Maintain a balance of $100 to avoid this fee
- Make a deposit at least once per year to avoid this fee
- The $6.00 fee doesn’t apply to accounts for minors
Health Saving Accounts
- You require a $100 minimum balance at all times
- The setup fee is $25.00
- Your transfer fees are $40.00
- Fail to meet the minimum balance and it costs $3.00 per month
Safe Deposit Boxes
- 3 x 5 x 22 costs $25.00 per year
- 5 x 5 x 22 costs $35.00 per year
- 3 x 10 x 22 costs $45.00 per year
- 5 x 10 x 22 costs $55.00 per year
- 10 x 10 x 22 costs $80.00 per year
Automated billing qualifies you for a $5.00 discount
Good life club members qualify for a $5.00 discount
Replacing a lost key will cost $25.00 per key
Drilling the box costs $175.00
Late fee that are 27 days overdue cost $10.00 per box
No checks drawn from foreign banks for less than $100
Canadian checks that are deposited in USA dollars cost $5.00 per check
Redemption or collection of foreign checks costs $20.00+
Redemption or collection of traveler’s checks costs $20.00+
Redemption or collection of foreign currency costs $20.00+
Whom Should Take Note Of This Citizens Bank review?
People who do not live in the Northeast and do not live in a state where Citizen Bank has branches should seriously reconsider applying for an account. The ATM charges alone are enough reason not to bank with the Citizen Bank. Additionally, there are plenty of other banks to choose from, the Citizen Bank shouldn’t be in your short list. The only people who should consider the Citizen Bank are the people who live in one of the eleven states in which it has branches, and who have a good credit rating and are looking to borrow money. They are a pretty poor excuse for a bank, but the interest rates they offer for credit to people with a good FICO score are attractive.
User Comments And Reviews
[+] Their credit card rate is pretty good.
[+] Their mobile app is easy to use.
[+] Typically, I give five positive reviews and five negative, but I cannot find anymore positive reviews that were not written by Citizen Bank’s marketing department.
[-] They tag on charges you do not need or request, such as paper notifications of your repayments. They opt you in to services that you wouldn’t have agreed to if you had known about them.
[-] The administrators, the staff, and the customer support workers are encouraged to bully clients and customers.
[-] People have had to beg other banks to come in and fix the problems that Citizen Bank has caused because the Citizen bank wouldn’t release people’s accounts.
[-] Their corporate culture is one that they feel nobody can touch them, which is probably why they thought they could get away with blatantly stealing from customers.
[-] Loan officers often give misleading information with what the staff call their, “Mistakes by omission.” They “Forget” to tell you important details that cost you money and time.
Conclusion – Citizens Bank review
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I cannot find much of anything that is good about their banking services at all. They are a pretty rotten bank if you compare them to the other rotten banks we all have to put up with these days. The fact they were willing to steal directly from customers without even bothering to cover it up is frankly the most arrogant thing a bank has done since the global economic downturn when banks took public money and paid their executives millions of dollars worth of bonuses. Check out even more online user reviews about this bank and you will see that our negative Citizens Bank review is just one of many thousands.