Fifth Third Bank review: Free checking account and a variety of CD terms

Fifth Third Bank has over 1,200 branches in the Southeast and Midwest.

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The bottom line: You may want to consider Fifth Third Bank if you live in the Southeast or Midwest. It has a strong Fifth Third Bank Momentum Checking Account with several overdraft protection options and a good Fifth Third Bank Standard Certificate of Deposit.

Overall bank rating

FeatureInsider rating (out of 5)Checking3.25Savings4CD3.75Money market3.5Trustworthiness4Total3.75

Pros and cons

ProsCons

Free checking account with Fifth Third Extra Time

Free overdraft protection

Possible to waive monthly service fees

Variety of CD terms

Early direct deposit

Only available in select states in the Midwest and SoutheastLow savings ratesMonthly service fees on savings accountsNo debit card included in money market account

Savings

The  Fifth Third Bank Momentum Savings Account may be worthwhile if you’re able to waive the monthly service fee. You’ll need to have a Fifth Third checking account (excluding Fifth Third Express Banking), an account balance of at least $500, or be enrolled in Fifth Third Military Banking.

Otherwise, our best savings account guide has suitable fee-free options.

Checking

The Fifth Third Bank Momentum Checking Account is a great choice if you don’t want to deal with monthly service fees.

The bank also offers several ways to avoid overdraft fees. You can get free overdraft protection if you link your checking account to a savings account or get a line credit.

If you don’t have overdraft protection, Fifth Third Extra Time is still available. Fifth Third Extra Time is a special feature in the Fifth Third Bank Momentum Checking Account, where the bank waives overdraft fees if you restore your account balance before midnight ET the next business day.

CD

You’ll find Fifth Third Bank’s Fifth Third Bank Standard Certificate of Deposit appealing if you’re looking for a variety of terms. The minimum opening deposit is also low for terms between three months and seven years.

The one downside is rates are pretty low regardless of the term.

Money market account

The Fifth Third Bank Relationship Money Market Account is a decent money market account if you don’t want a high minimum opening deposit and qualify to waive the $5 monthly service fee. It doesn’t come with a debit card and pays a low interest rate, though.

How Fifth Third Bank works

Fifth Third Bank has over 1,200 branches in 11 states in the Southeast and Midwest. You’ll find a nearby branch if you live in the following states:

FloridaGeorgiaIllinoisIndianaKentuckyMichiganNorth CarolinaOhioSouth CarolinaTennesseeWest Virginia

The bank is also a part of the Allpoint, Presto!, and 7-Eleven ATM networks, which means you’ll have access to over 50,000 fee-free ATMs across the US. 

Customer service is available over the phone or through live chat Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. ET and Saturdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET.

The bank’s mobile app has 4.4 out of 5 stars in the Apple Store and 4.1 out of 5 stars in the Google Play Store. 

Fifth Third Bank is FDIC insured. Individual bank accounts are secure up to $250,000. 

Is Fifth Third Bank trustworthy?

Fifth Third Bank has been involved in one recent public controversy. In 2020, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau filed a lawsuit that said the bank opened products for customers without their authorization. 

We also look at ratings from the Better Business Bureau. The BBB determines ratings by looking at how a business responds to customer issues, advertises, and handles transparency.

Fifth Third Bank received an A+ rating from the BBB.

A good BBB rating won’t necessarily guarantee your relationship with the business will be perfect. To get a better understanding of whether Fifth Third Bank is right for you, read online customer reviews or talk to current customers too.

How Fifth Third Bank compares 

We compared Fifth Third Bank to two other national banks in similar regions: Regions Bank and PNC Bank

 

Branches

Over 1,200 branches in 10 states

 

Branches

Over 1,300 branches in 15 states

Branches

Over 2,310 branches in 21 states

Standout feature

Free checking account with no minimum opening deposit

Standout feature

Free savings account with 1% annual savings bonus

Standout feature

Free checking account with budgeting tools

Fifth Third Bank Momentum Savings AccountRegions LifeGreen® Savings AccountPNC Bank Standard Savings Account

Your decision between these three institutions will likely depend on which accounts you open or whether you’re able to waive monthly fees.

Regions Bank has a free savings account with an annual savings bonus. However, the bank’s checking account may require an $8 monthly service fee depending on your account balance or monthly direct deposits.

PNC has a free checking account with budgeting tools and features. If you are concerned about overdraft fees and out-of-network bank fees, PNC might be a good option.

If you live in the Midwest or Northeast, you likely won’t be eligible for the PNC Bank High-Yield Savings Account, the most appealing account. PNC’s other savings accounts have monthly maintenance fees if you don’t have a certain amount in your account.

Fifth Third Bank has a free checking account with free overdraft protection and refunds on some overdraft fees. It’ll be the strongest contender of the three banks if you want to open a bank account without an initial deposit.

Its savings account isn’t as strong, though. It pays a low rate and has a $5 monthly service fee. However, if you already have a Fifth Third Bank checking account, it may be worth exploring.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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