BBVA Compass Review of Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market, and IRA Accounts

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BBVA Compass checking account options

ClearChoice Interest Checking account

Get additional benefits such as free checks and the ability to earn interest.

APY for New Customers

APY for Existing Customers

Minimum Balance Amount

0.00%

0.05%

$0.01

0.00%

0.05%

$25,000

  • Minimum opening deposit: $25
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $25
  • ATM fee: None.
  • ATM fee refund: Up to two refunds per month

This checking account is meant for those who want to earn interest and intend on using their account fairly often. Though the monthly maintenance fee seems a bit steep, you can get it waived in one of four ways:

  • Have an average daily balance of $5,000 or more in your account.
  • Have an average daily balance of at least $25,000 across your checking and money market accounts.
  • The primary account holder has Premier Personal Banking status with the BBVA Premier Personal Banking program.
  • You’re a BBVA Compass Global Wealth client.

In addition to the features you get with the free checking accounts, you earn a tiered interest rate. Also, you won’t get charged when you use an out-of-network ATM and get two ATM fee refunds per month. Other perks include free checks and no monthly maintenance fees if you choose to also open one of BBVA Compass’ money market accounts.

The rates you see above are promotional rates. To qualify for the better rate, you can’t have opened a checking account within the last 90 days.

How to get BBVA Compass’ ClearChoice Interest Checking account

Opening an account can take as little as a few minutes by filling out an application form on the BBVA Compass website. Enter personal details such as your address, income information and ID to verify your identity. Once approved you can then fund your account.

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Free Checking account

Take advantage of full-service features without the price tag.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $25
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: Up to four transactions per statement cycle for a $5 monthly fee
  • Overdraft fee: $12 per transaction with overdraft protection service

This account is a great option for those who want to save money on banking fees while still being able to get access to a whole host of features. The downside is that this isn’t an interest-bearing account.

There are no monthly service charges nor fees for in-network ATMs. There is a fee for out-of-network ATMS, but you can pay $5 each month as an add-on and BBVA Compass will reimburse you up to four times a month. It could be worth it if you make a lot of ATM transactions and there aren’t any in-network ATMs around.

The account is set to default to decline any transactions that will cause your account to go into overdraft, but you can link it to a savings account or a line of credit. If you choose this option, then you’ll be charged each time a transfer occurs.

As for other features, you get free online and mobile banking, including bill pay and mobile deposit. Account holders also get a free Visa debit card and the ability to earn cashback rewards every time you make a qualifying purchase. Let’s not forget free online or paper statements, which other banks tend to charge for a few bucks a month.

Unfortunately, the free checking account is only available to those in Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, California, Florida, New Mexico and Texas. If you don’t live in any of these states, the ClearConnect checking account is a great alternative.

How to get BVAA Compass’ Free Checking account

Residents in any of the above mentioned locations can fill out an application form online. Before entering your personal details, you’ll be asked to enter your ZIP code. You’ll need to provide name, address, a government-issued ID, and employment information. After agreeing to BVAA Compass’ terms, you’ll then fund your account, confirm your information and the checking account is considered open.

Otherwise, you can open a Free Checking account at your local branch.

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ClearConnect Checking account

A great option for those wanting a free checking account option with numerous features.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $25
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None for in-network ATMs, $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund:  none
  • Overdraft fee:$12 per transaction with overdraft protection service

There aren’t many differences between the Free Checking account mentioned above and this one. The fees for this non-interest bearing account — including the monthly maintenance and ATM fees — are pretty much the same, except you’ll need to pay $3 a month for paper statements. Account holders also get free access to online and mobile banking as well as bill pay.

With your free Visa debit card, you can earn cashback rewards with the Simple Cash Back program. You can select rewards once you log into your account online or via the mobile app. Account holders earn rewards by doing simple tasks such as making a qualifying purchase.

How to get BBVA Compass’ ClearConnect Checking account

U.S. residents can open an account online. Head to BBVA Compass’ application form and fill in your personal details. This includes your name, employment information and a piece of government ID. Once approved, you can then fund your account.

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Easy Checking account

A great opportunity for those who don’t qualify for the free checking account options.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $25
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $13.95
  • ATM fee: $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $12 if opted into overdraft protection

The Easy Checking account is for those that don’t qualify for the Free Checking account, perhaps because of bad bank or credit history. You’ll get limited account features until you’re able to get another BBVA Compass checking account.

While there are no opportunities to waive the monthly maintenance fee, you do get free ATM access for in-network ATMs and at all Allpoint© ATMs. You also get free online and mobile banking so you can keep an eye on your account anytime you want. Included in this account is a Visa debit card with cashback rewards on qualifying purchases.

Once you have this account open for a minimum of 12 months, you may be able to upgrade to another checking account if your account is still active and has a positive balance. To do so, you’ll need to call customer service or go to any BBVA Compass location.

How to get BBVA Compass’ Easy Checking account

BBVA Compass encourages new customers to apply for the Free Checking or ClearConnect checking account first through its website. If your application is rejected, then you can open a Easy Checking account by visiting your local branch or by calling customer service.

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How BBVA Compass’ checking accounts compare

Compared with other online banks, the rates for the interest-bearing checking account fall a bit short. Many of its competitors have checking accounts with no fees and much higher APYs. However, BBVA does stand out in that it does offer ATM fee reimbursements, a rewards program and free checks. If you earn enough cash back through its program, it may be worth it to open an account.

BBVA Compass savings account options

Compass ClearConnect savings account

Account holders earn a minuscule amount of interest with no maintenance fees.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.05%

$0.01

  • Minimum opening deposit:  $25
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Quarterly Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: Free for BBVA ATMs, $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None.
  • Overdraft fee: $12 when linked to a checking account

This is a basic savings account that offers free online and mobile banking. Like most big banks, the interest you earn is pretty minuscule. However, this account can be useful if you want to store some extra cash if you plan to link it to a checking account for overdraft protection.

As with all savings accounts, Federal Regulation D limits up to six transfers and electronic payments a month. However, BBVA Compass will charge you $3 per transaction if you make more than four withdrawals every statement cycle.

How to get a Compass ClearConnect savings account

Opening an account is easy as you can do it online via BBVA Compass’ application form. You’ll need to provide personal information like your name, address, employment information and a government-issued ID. You’ll then need to fund your account. Otherwise, you can open an account at your local branch or by calling the bank.

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Compass ClearChoice savings account

A basic savings account with a low rate.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.05%

$0.01

  • Minimum opening deposit:  $25
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Quarterly account maintenance fee: $15
  • ATM fee: Free for BBVA ATMs, $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None.
  • Overdraft fee: $12 when linked to a checking account

This savings account doesn’t seem all that much different from the ClearConnect account, except that it comes with a quarterly account maintenance fee. You’re still getting the same rates and features, including the excess transaction fee of $3 if you make more than four withdrawals a month.

What does make this account different is that it seems to encourage you to save money instead of it just being an account you can link to for overdraft protection — the minimum daily balance requirement of $500 in order to waive the monthly maintenance fee is a built-in incentive. You may also waive the monthly maintenance fee by transferring a minimum of $25 every month from a BBVA Compass checking account.

How to get a Compass ClearChoice savings account

You can open an account within a few minutes by heading to BBVA Compass’ website and filling out its online application form. Information you’ll be asked to provide will include your name, address, a government-issued ID and employment information. Afterward, you’ll be asked to fund the account. Otherwise, you can open an account at your local branch or by calling the bank’s customer service department.

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Build My Savings account

Earn bonuses just for saving money.

APY

Minimum Balance Amount

0.05%

$0.01

  • Minimum opening deposit:  $25
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Quarterly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: Free for BBVA ATMs, $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None.
  • Overdraft fee: $12 when linked to a checking account

This is a unique account in that it is a hybrid between a regular savings account and a CD. You choose the length of your savings goal — six or 12 months — and then choose an amount you want to have automatically transferred from your checking account. Account holders have the ability to earn a match transfer bonus. BBVA Compass will match up to 1% of the total amount you saved, up to $25 for the six-month plan and up to $50 for a 12-month plan. You must set up an automatic transfer of a minimum of $25 every month to qualify for the bonus.

If you cancel your account or withdraw money before your designated term is up, you won’t be eligible to receive the bonus. You’ll also be charged $10 per withdrawal and a $15 quarterly service charge if you don’t make automatic transfers of a minimum of $25.

How to get a Build My Savings account

You can only open this account in person. Click here to check for a location closest to you or by calling the bank.

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How BBVA Compass’ savings accounts compare

Unfortunately, like many other big banks, BBVA Compass’ saving accounts fall short when it comes to their rates. Many online competitors offer much higher APYs on their savings accounts with no monthly maintenance fees, though some may require higher minimum balances. However, BBVA’s Build My Savings account does offer a unique opportunity to earn some extra cash, but it may not be enough to make up for the low rates.

BBVA Compass CD rates

Fixed Term CDs

Offers competitive rates, but with limited terms.

Term

APY (Online)

APY (In-Person)

12 months

1.50%

1.30%

15 months

1.00%

0.10%

18 months

1.00%

2.00%

36 months

1.00%

2.00%

  • Minimum opening deposit:  $500
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY:  $500
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on CD term:
    • Terms of 365 days or less: $25 + 1% of amount withdrawn
    • Terms of more than 365 days: $35 + 3% of amount withdrawn

With BBVA Compass’ CDs, you tend to get better rates when you open an account online, though you don’t get access to shorter terms. Terms range from seven days to 15 years for CDs opened at a branch.

Interest earned will only be paid when your account matures if you open it online. However, if you open a CD in person, you have the option to have interest earned paid out either monthly, quarterly, twice a year, annually or at maturity. The interest can be paid out to another account, via check or kept in the CD.

Account holders will receive a written notice before the account matures. Once it does, you’ll have a 10 day grace period in which to withdraw funds, renew for a different term or add additional funds. Otherwise, your CD will automatically be renewed at the current rate, which will be different from the promotional APY.

How to get a BBVA Compass CD

You can take advantage of the promotional rates by filling out an application form online. You’ll be asked to select the CD term you want then personal details such as your name, employment information and government-issued ID. You’ll then provide details on how you want to fund the account and confirm your information. Upon approval your account will be considered opened. If you’re looking for short term rates, you’ll need to head to your local branch.

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How BBVA Compass’ CD rates compare

The bank’s CD rates are pretty much on par with what is offered out there. Although its rates are slightly lower compared with other banks with the same terms, BBVA Compass’ offers a lower minimum opening deposit. Unfortunately, there aren’t many longer term options. In addition, those rates mentioned above are only for the initial term, so if that’s a concern then you may be better off looking at other CD options out there.

BBVA Compass money market account

ClearChoice Money Market account

Offers one of the best APYs out there for those who qualify.

APY for New Customers Online

APY for Existing Customers

Minimum Balance Amount

0.05%

0.05%

$0.01 - $99,999.99

0.05%

1.50%

$100k - $999,999.99

0.05%

1.50%

$1m+

  • Minimum opening deposit:  $25
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $15
  • ATM fee: Free for BBVA ATMs, $3 for out-of-network ATMs
  • ATM fee refund: None.
  • Overdraft fee: $12 when linked to another BBVA Compass account

BBVA Compass’ money market account is best for those who want a higher interest rate than what the bank’s savings accounts offer and an account to provide overdraft protection for a linked checking account.

You can waive the monthly maintenance fee if you have at least $10,000 in your account each quarter or if you set up an automatic transfer of least $25 from your BBVA Compass checking account each month.

The promotional rate you see above is only good for those who open an account online and only for the first 12 months. You also cannot have opened another money market account within the last 30 days of account opening. After the 12 month promotional period is over, you’ll earn the regular rate. Depending on your deposit amount, the APY could still be higher than a savings account.

Because this is a type of savings account, Federal Regulation D states that you can only make a maximum of six withdrawals a month. BBVA Compass charges a $10 for each excess withdrawal.

How to get BVAA Compass’ ClearChoice money market account

You can open an account within a few minutes by filling out BBVA Compass’ online application form. Information you’ll be asked to provide will include your name, address, a government-issued ID and employment information. Afterward, you’ll be asked to fund the account. Otherwise, you can open an account at your local branch or by calling the bank’s customer service number.

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How BBVA Compass’ money market account compares

BBVA Compass offers one of the highest rates from our list of the best money market accounts out there. It doesn’t require a minimum balance to earn this rate, though it does have a high minimum balance to waive the maintenance fee. Many other competitors have mobile banking just like BBVA does. However, the rate for this money market account is only good for the first 12 months, so if you’re not happy with the regular rate (or don’t qualify for the promo one), you may want to go with another institution.

BBVA Compass IRA account options

IRA CD

Term

APY (Online)

APY (In-Person)

12 months

1.50%

1.30%

15 months

1.00%

0.10%

18 months

1.00%

2.00%

36 months

1.00%

2.00%

  • Minimum opening deposit:  $500
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $500
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on CD term:
    • Terms of 365 days or less: $25 + 1% of amount withdrawn
    • Terms of more than 365 days: $35 + 3% of amount withdrawn

BBVA Compass also offers CDs as an IRA. With that option, the rates and terms are pretty much the same except you’re able to make another two deposits a year, up to the IRS limit. Currently, this is $5,000 per year or $6,000 for those who are 50 years and older.

If you do make an early withdrawal, you’ll be subject to BBVA Compass’ penalties plus any additional taxes and other fees as mandated by the IRS. Considering the competitive rate for the IRA CD, it’s a great way to possibly save money in a tax deferred account (if you opted for a Traditional IRA).

How to get BBVA Compass’ IRA savings account

Even though you can open a regular CD account online, with an IRA account you’ll need to do so in person. You can click here to find a location closest to you or call the bank to find out more.

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Overall review of BBVA Compass’ banking products

BBVA Compass does offer some unique features such as different options to get cashback rewards with its Visa debit card. It also offers rate matching for its Build My Savings account. Its CD, money market and IRA rates are on par with the best rates out there, even if it’s just for the first 12 months.

Sadly, its checking and savings accounts fall short. There are better rates, many at triple the APY that’s currently being offered at BBVA Compass. Even with perks like no-fee accounts and free checks, other online banks offer many of the same options at higher rates.

If you’re only after the highest rates for checking and savings accounts, you’ll probably want to look elsewhere. However, if you want some of the best money market and CD rates out there, then BBVA Compass is a great choice.

Advertiser Disclosure: The products that appear on this site may be from companies from which MagnifyMoney receives compensation. This compensation may impact how and where products appear on this site (including, for example, the order in which they appear). MagnifyMoney does not include all financial institutions or all products offered available in the marketplace.

Sarah Li Cain
Sarah Li Cain |

Sarah Li Cain is a writer at MagnifyMoney. You can email Sarah Li here

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