Named after a city on the north coast of Spain, Santander is a Spanish-owned bank that entered the U.S. market with its acquisition of Sovereign in 2010. Its headquarters are located in Boston, with over 500 branch locations throughout the Northeast, as well as Florida.
Santander offers financial services that include personal and business banking, credit cards, loans and investment services. The bank has solid incentives for customers who open multiple types of accounts as part of its Santander Select services, but its other account types can be limited.
The Santander Savings Account is the bank’s most simple savings account. It’s got a low interest rate (just 0.03%) and a low monthly fee that can be easily waived — if the customer also has a Santander Bank checking account or maintains an average daily balance in their savings account of at least $100. There’s no minimum balance requirement to keep the savings account open.
Customers have access to mobile and online banking platforms with a variety of features, including virtual check deposits. There are more than 2,000 Santander ATMs, and a $3 charge for withdrawals from domestic non-Santander ATMs. Paper and paperless statements with this account are both free.
Santander offers a money market account that bears 0.03% APY for balances less than $10,000 and 0.05% APY on all other balances. In order to waive the $10 monthly fee, you must either have a Santander checking account or maintain an average balance of $10,000 in this account. Santander’s Money Market Savings account earns less interest than its Select Money Market account, but doesn’t require a checking account with Santander.
For Santander customers who already have a Select Checking account, the Select Money Market Savings account is an option that provides a slightly better interest rate than its standard savings account. Balances over $400,000 earn a higher APY. There are no fees or minimum balance requirements, but customers must have a Santander Bank checking account through Santander to open an account.
This basic savings account is designed for kids, with no monthly fees and a minimum opening deposit of just $10. You must be under 18 in order to open this account. The Santander Youth Savings account is an interest bearing account, but you’ll need to call a customer service representative to get the current rate information.
Discover the best savings accounts currently on the market.
The Santander Basic Checking account has ordinary features for a checking account. There’s a low minimum opening deposit of just $25, but the $3 monthly service fee can’t be waived. There’s also a $3 for paper statements, though customers can choose free paperless statements. As with all of its accounts, Santander’s Basic Checking can be accessed online and through its mobile app. In addition, owning a Santander Basic Checking account allows customers to waive monthly fees on Savings and Money Market Savings accounts.
Much like the Santander Select Money Market Savings account, the Santander Select Checking account rewards customers who have multiple accounts through Santander. Customers who have at least $25,000 in combined balances between Santander deposit and investment products (including specific business ones) will have the $25 monthly fee — otherwise significant for a checking account — waived. Notably, Santander doesn’t promote its APY for this account online, and there are no fees for paper statements.
Santander’s Simply Right Checking account is similar to its Basic Checking, but it’s designed so that one transaction per month will waive its $10 monthly maintenance fee. Like most of Santander’s other checking accounts, there’s a $25 minimum opening deposit. The Simply Right Checking account was designed for those who plan on making more frequent transactions than Santander Basic Checking customers.
Available to students ages 14 to 25, the Santander Student Value Checking account is designed for students who are newer to the banking world. It doesn’t have any monthly service fees or minimum balance requirements, though it also isn’t an interest bearing account. Once the account holder turns 26, the checking account is converted into one of Santander’s other accounts.
Browse our roundup of the best checking accounts for more choices.
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Santander’s Certificate of Deposit choices are limited — to start, you’ll have to open a Santander checking account in order to open a CD. In addition, only 15- and 18-month rates are promoted on Santander’s website, though the site indicates that there may be other terms beyond the two durations listed online. Santander allows customers the option of rolling their interest into their CD account or transferring it to another account held with Santander, though, as with many CDs, there is a penalty for early withdrawal. Further, customers should note that Santander CDs must be opened over the phone.
For more options, read our roundup of the best CD rates available.
Santander’s U.S. branches are located throughout the Northeast — Connecticut, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island — as well as in Florida. There are 500-plus branches and over 2,000 ATMs in the Santander network, with many located in CVS stores. Santander can currently only open accounts online for customers who primarily reside in states where there are Santander branches.
In 2020, U.S. attorneys general announced a $550 million settlement with Santander, resolving a class action lawsuit containing allegations that Santander violated consumer protection laws. As part of the settlement, Santander agreed to restrictions on its lending practices, and much of the settlement included debt cancellation for consumer relief.