Best Banks

10 Best Banks in San Diego

Best Banks in San Diego

Selecting a banking institution is a decision that requires a great deal of thought, especially since each bank has different requirements, special offers fees, details and features. Each bank also offers their own type of checking and savings accounts with different features, perks and bonuses. You will want to determine what is most important to you when banking and choose the banking institution that best fits. San Diego has a wide range of banks that might be right for you. The following is a list of some of our favorite banks along with information about their checking account details and particulars.

Ally Bank

Features:

  • Free debit card.
  • Check deposit with mobile phone.
  • Online statements with check images.
  • Mobile banking / Text banking.
  • ATM Fee Reimbursements.
  • Free preliminary checks.
  • Free Online Bill pay.
  • Free Online Banking with E-mail Alerts.

Fees: Ally Bank offers a wide range of services free of charge that other banks charge a fee for. Ally Bank has no minimum opening deposit to start a new account. There is no debit card charge or maintenance fee required. The bank does not charge a non-bank ATM fee and they reimburse all other ATM fees incurred. Online banking including online bill pay and email alerts is free. Ally Bank offers free check and unlimited check writing with all accounts. Paper and online monthly statements are free of charge and online check images are provided at no charge. Returned items are charged a small fee of $9.00 per item.

Requirements: Ally Bank does not have a minimum deposit to open an account or a minimum amount to maintain an account.

Related: Named “Best Online Bank,” by Money Magazine

AmericanWest Bank

Features:

  • Overdraft protection.
  • Mobile check deposits.
  • E-mail alerts.
  • Free mobile banking.
  • Free online bill pay.
  • Free debit card.
  • Free initial checks.
  • Free non-affiliated bank ATM charges.
  • Several checking account options to choose from.

Fees: Each of AmericanWest Bank’s checking account has a monthly maintenance fee, but these fees can be waived when the member meets specific requirements with their account from month to month. The Classic Checking account, for example, has a $12.00 monthly maintenance fee which the bank will waive if a $500 average minimum daily balance is maintained throughout the month. Some AmericanWest Bank’s checking accounts do not have monthly maintenance fees, including the Senior Checking account and the Student Checking account. There is a Pinnacle Checking account with a $20.00 monthly maintenance fee. Waiving this fee requires a minimum daily balance of $5,000 or a combined daily balance of $25,000 across all accounts with the bank. The insufficient funds fee for overdrafts at AmericanWest Bank is $30, though these fees can be avoided with optional overdraft protection.

Requirements: For most of the basic checking accounts available through AmericanWest Bank, the minimum opening deposit is $100.00. For some AmericanWest bank accounts, a greater deposit will be necessary in order to prevent monthly maintenance fees. AmericanWest offers a Senior Checking account which is only available to members who are 65 years old or older.

 

BBVA Compass Bank

 

Features:

  • Free or discounted checks are available
  • Online bill pay.
  • Debit reward program
  • Mobile banking
  • Overdraft protection available
  • Free linked savings accounts are available
  • Deposit checks from your mobile phone
  • Email alerts are available
  • Non-bank ATM fee rebates

 

Fees: The service fee for monthly maintenance on the accounts with BBVA Compass Bank may be free or up to $20.00 based on the bank account type chosen. When funds are transferred from the overdraft protection account to cover an overdraft a fee of $12.00 is charged. A fee of $38.00 is assessed when an account is overdrawn. When a non-bank ATM is used there may be a surcharge assessed of up to $2.00 depending on the ATM.

 

Requirements: A minimum opening deposit of $25.00 is necessary for participation in the Easy Checking account along with a $13.95 monthly maintenance fee. A minimum opening deposit of $25.00 is assessed for the ClearChoice Checking account along with a $4.00 monthly maintenance fee. A minimum opening deposit of $25.00 is required for the ClearConnect Checking account with no monthly maintenance fee. A minimum opening deposit of $25.00 is required for the ClearChoice Premium Checking account along with a monthly maintenance fee of $15.00. The ClearChoice Premium Checking account can earn as much as 0.10% APY on the balance.

 

Bank of America

 

Features:

  • Free debit card.
  • Free online banking.
  • Free online bill pay with online banking.
  • Members can deposit checks from their mobile phones.
  • Automated telephone banking and e-mail alerts for members.
  • Electronic statements and online check images available.
  • Overdraft protection.

 

Fees: Bank of America charges a $12.00 monthly maintenance fee on its checking accounts, but members can have this fee waived by making a Direct Deposit of $250.00 or more in a statement period, or by maintaining a minimum average daily balance of $1,500 or more in the checking account. Bank of America also charges $2.50 per use for ATMs that are not in the network. Bank of America provides overdraft protection, otherwise insufficient funds fees are $35.00 per overdraft.

 

Requirements: For basic checking accounts through Bank of America, the minimum opening deposit is $25.00. There are numerous banking accounts offered by Bank of America which may have specific requirements for opening them.

 

Bank of the West

 

Features:

  • Rewards Program
  • Free debit card.
  • Free online banking.
  • E-mail alerts.
  • Free online bill pay.
  • Free text and mobile banking.
  • Mobile check deposit.
  • Automated phone banking.
  • Online statements with check images.
  • Overdraft protection available.

 

Fees: There are several different bank account options through Bank of the West. The basic checking account requires an $8.00 monthly maintenance fee, though members can have this fee waived by maintaining a $1,000 minimum average monthly balance or Direct Depositing $250 into the account during every statement period. For non-affiliated and international ATMs, Bank of the West charges a $2.50 surcharge. Insufficient funds fees are $26.00 for each overdraft charge unless the member has overdraft protection. There is no monthly maintenance fee attached to savings accounts with Bank of the West.

 

Requirements: In order to open a checking account with Bank of the West, the minimum opening balance is $100.00.

 

Chase Bank

 

Features:

  • Free debit card.
  • Free online banking with online bill pay.
  • Free mobile banking.
  • Check deposit via mobile.
  • E-mail alerts with online banking.
  • Free automated telephone banking.
  • Free check images with printed statements.
  • Overdraft protection available.

 

Fees: Chase Bank’s Total Checking account has a monthly service fee of $12.00. Members of the bank can have this service fee waived by making a Direct Deposit of $500 or more into the account during a single statement period, or by maintaining a $1,500 minimum daily balance or $5,000 combined average daily balance across all accounts with the bank. Chase Bank charges a $34.00 insufficient funds charge for each overdraft.

 

Requirements: Chase Bank’s Total Checking account has a minimum opening deposit requirement of $25.00. Chase Bank has other checking, savings and money market accounts which have distinct requirements for opening depending on the individual branch.

 

Citibank

 

Features:

  • Free debit card.
  • Free debit rewards program. (Thank You Rewards)
  • Free online banking.
  • Online bill pay included with online banking.
  • Mobile banking and the ability to deposit checks via mobile phone.
  • E-mail alerts included when you use online banking.
  • Automated telephone banking.
  • Monthly paper statements or electronic statements with online check images.

 

Fees: Citibank’s checking accounts come with a $10.00 monthly maintenance fee, though members can have this fee waived by meeting certain requirements for each statement period. Members need to make at least one Bill Payment and one Direct Deposit during each statement period, or they need to maintain a $1,500 minimum monthly balance during the prior calendar month in their checking and savings accounts. When members of Citibank use ATMs that are out of the network, Citibank levies a $2.50 surcharge, though this fee is $2.00 for international ATMs.

 

Requirements: There is no minimum opening deposit for basic checking accounts with Citibank, meaning that members can make a deposit of any amount when opening a new account.

 

City National Bank

 

Features:

  • Standard checking and interest-bearing checking.
  • Lifeline Checking has a low opening deposit.
  • Free debit card.
  • Free online banking.
  • Free online bill pay.
  • Free text and mobile banking.
  • Free online statements.
  • Free online check images.
  • Overdraft protection available.

 

Fees: Each City National Bank checking account has a distinct monthly maintenance fee, and most of them are capable of being waived depending on the account type and some specific requirements. The most basic account, Lifeline Checking, has a $5.00 monthly maintenance fee that cannot be waived. The Personal Checking account, on the other hand, has a $15.00 monthly maintenance fee that the bank will waive if the account has $3,000 in the account on average throughout the month.

 

Requirements: There are a few different options to choose from when opening a checking account through City National Bank. The easiest of these accounts to open is the Lifeline Checking account, which only has a minimum opening deposit of $100. The other checking accounts that City National Bank offers require a $1,000 minimum opening balance.

 

Comerica Bank

 

Features:

  • Free debit card.
  • ATM fee rebates from select ATMs.
  • Free ATM usage.
  • Free online banking.
  • Free online bill pay.
  • Mobile banking with check deposit.
  • E-mail alerts.
  • Automated telephone banking.
  • Free initial checks.
  • Electronic statements with check images.
  • Overdraft protection.

 

Fees: Each Comerica Bank account has a unique monthly maintenance fee as well as distinct requirements for having the fee waived. The Platinum Circle Account, for example, is the highest available checking account available which has a $25 maintenance fee unless you manage to maintain a minimum monthly balance of $50,000 across all of your accounts. The Access Checking account, on the other hand, has a monthly maintenance fee of $10.00 which can be waived if the minimum daily balance is $750.00 in the checking account, or if the owner of the account is a student who is younger than 26 years of age. There is also a quarterly activity fee with Comerica Bank, which is $10 unless the user initiates a Direct Deposit once every three months.

 

Requirements: For the most basic Comerica Bank account, Access Checking, members need to make a minimum opening deposit of $50.00 in order to open the account. For other bank accounts available through Comerica Bank; Platinum Circle checking, Rich Rewards Checking and Premier Checking, the minimum opening deposit is the same but the requirements for maintaining the account are distinct. For example, Premier Checking accounts have a monthly maintenance fee of $20 unless a minimum daily balance of $7,500 is maintained throughout the statement period.

 

First Bank

 

Features:

  • Several checking account options to choose from.
  • Overdraft protection available.
  • Free mobile banking.
  • Free online bill pay.
  • Free online banking.
  • Free checks with some account types.
  • Non-Affiliated ATM surcharge rebates with some account types.

 

Fees: First Bank offers several different bank accounts, each with a distinct monthly maintenance fee. These range from $8.00 to $25.00 depending on which account members have. When certain requirements are met and maintained, the bank will waive these maintenance fees. For First Premier Checking, the monthly maintenance fee is $25.00 and this fee can be waived when members maintain a combined daily balance of $100,000 throughout their accounts. First Choice Checking has a monthly maintenance fee that is only $8.00, and this fee can be waived by maintaining a monthly balance average of only $1,500 or a combined balance of $5,000 across all accounts. This fee can also be waived if members Direct Deposit at least $500 into the checking account during a statement period, or if they conduct at least 5 debit card purchases during a statement period.

 

Requirements: Each of First Bank’s checking accounts has a $100 minimum opening deposit required in order to create a new account. Some of the accounts that First Bank offers have specific additional requirements, though these tend to vary depending on the individual bank branch. For example, some First bank checking accounts offer specific perks or are interest bearing accounts, and these typically have minimum balance requirements and other specifics to consider.

 

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