Goldwater Bank Review: Checking, Savings, CD and Money Market Accounts

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Updated on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Goldwater Bank’s checking account options

Goldwater Checking

You can choose between their standard account or online-only account, but the rates are the same.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.05%
$100
0.10%
$5,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $500
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (paper statements) or $8 (e-statements) – These can be waived
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: Unlimited
  • Overdraft fee: $30

Goldwater Bank’s only checking account option isn’t that great considering the low rates it offers. This account is restrictive in that you have to be an Arizona resident to open an account. Features include paper or electronic statements, a Visa check card, online and mobile banking, as confirmed by a bank representative. You can choose between what the bank calls their standard account or the e-checking account. The main difference is that with the e-checking account, you agree to do all your banking online — as in you can’t make transactions in person. You’ll also get e-statements and can waive the monthly maintenance fee if you keep a $100 minimum average daily balance. For the standard account, you need to maintain a $500 average daily balance if you want to waive the monthly maintenance fee.

How to get Goldwater Bank’s checking account

You can go in person to open a checking account or fill out an application form online. Enter details such as your name, address and Social Security number. Once you submit, the bank will contact you with instructions to go to a branch to sign a signature card and provide additional details. This includes a photocopy of your Social Security card and driver’s license.

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on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Goldwater Bank’s checking accounts compare

Unfortunately, this account is restrictive in that you have to be an Arizona resident to open an account. On top of that, the rates are much lower than what you’d find elsewhere, especially these top national online checking accounts. We also don’t like that the online application process isn’t as convenient as other places — but we do like that unlimited ATM fee refund.

Goldwater Bank’s savings account options

Goldwater Savings

There are no monthly maintenance fees, but the interest rate is pretty low.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.20%
$0.01
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $5 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This savings account is pretty bare bones. There is no ATM access, so the only way to transfer money is by doing so online or via Goldwater Bank’s mobile app. The app allows you to check your account balance, pay bills and deposit checks. To waive the monthly maintenance fee, make sure to maintain a $100 average daily balance.

Remember, Regulation D limits you up to six certain withdrawals/transfers a month without a penalty from the bank. Goldwater Bank only allows two free withdrawals a month and then you’ll need to pay $4 for each one afterward. If you try to go over six withdrawals a month, your transaction will be denied.

How to get the Goldwater savings account

You have two options: go to a branch or fill out an online application form. If you go the online route, you’ll need to provide personal details such as your name, address and Social Security number. Afterward, you’re required to go in person to sign a signature card and provide additional documentation, such as a photocopy of your driver’s license.

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on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Youth Savings

Your child can learn to manage money with this free account.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.20%
$0.01
  • Minimum opening deposit: $0
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

The youth savings account is for anyone under the age of 18 — and a parent or legal guardian needs to be a co-owner, according to a bank representative. Like the Goldwater savings account, there is no ATM access, though your child can access their money in person or online. You also get quarterly statements and two free withdrawals a month. Otherwise, you’ll need to pay a $4 excess withdrawal fee.

Once your child turns 18, the account will be converted to a Goldwater savings account.

How to get Goldwater Bank’s Youth Savings account

You and your child will need to head to the headquarters in person to open an account. Remember to both bring documentation, such as your Social Security numbers, and a way to fund the account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

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Savings Plus

Earn a competitive APY, but at a cost — a high opening deposit.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.50%
$0.01
  • Minimum opening deposit: $25,000
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $5 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

The Savings Plus account helps you earn a great rate, but you need a really high minimum opening deposit to get the account — making it inaccessible for many people. After account opening, the minimum balance amount requirement does go down, but you’ll need to keep at least $25,000 in the account to waive the monthly maintenance fee.

Aside from online and mobile banking, you get two free withdrawals a month. Once you go over that amount, you’ll need to pay a $4 excessive withdrawal fee. Remember that since it’s a savings account, you are allowed up to six certain withdrawals/transfers a month, per regulation D otherwise the bank may deny the transaction.

How to get the Savings Plus account

Go to Goldwater Bank’s headquarters to open an account in person. Don’t forget to bring along your state-issued ID and a way to fund your account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

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How Goldwater Bank’s savings accounts compare

The Savings Plus account offers a rate that’s only slightly lower than the top rates being offered out there. However, you need to have a lot of money to open the account — $25,000 to be exact. Otherwise, Goldwater Bank’s other savings accounts are lackluster in that you get low rates and you need to pay a monthly maintenance fee if you can’t meet their requirements.

You’re better off skipping these accounts and choosing an alternative like a high-yield savings accounts.

Goldwater Bank’s CD rates

Certificate of Deposit

These rates are OK for most term lengths.
TermAPY
90 days0.35%
180 days0.50%
12 months0.65%
15 months0.67%
18 months0.70%
24 months0.80%
3 years0.85%
5 years0.95%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $5,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $5,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term
    • 24 months or less — 3 months’ interest
    • Over 24 months — 12 months’ interest

These fixed-rate CDs offer OK rates. Some terms offer competitive rates, while others fall short compared with other ones we’ve seen. Interest is compounded daily and credited to your account monthly. You have the choice of keeping interest earned in the CD or transferring to another account.

Once your account matures, you have a 10-day grace period to make changes. Otherwise, it’ll automatically renew.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Goldwater Access CD

Earn a decent rate and the opportunity to withdraw money each quarter without penalties.
TermAPY
12 months2.55%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $50,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $0.01 (Arizona residents only)
  • Early withdrawal penalty: You can make 1 withdrawal per quarter with no penalties. Otherwise, you’ll be penalized three months’ interest.

Also known as the liquid CD, the Goldwater Access CD lets you withdraw any amount you wish once each quarter without paying an early withdrawal penalty. To qualify for the account, you’ll need to open a Goldwater checking account and link it to the CD. Like their regular CD, interest is compounded daily and credited monthly to the account.

Upon maturity, your account will automatically be renewed unless you make changes during the 10-day grace period. These changes include making additional deposits, withdrawals or closing the account.

How to get Goldwater Bank’s CDs

Head to a branch or fill out an online application form to open a CD account. If you’re applying online, the application form will ask for details, such as your name, address and Social Security number. You’ll be asked to go in person to sign a signature card and provide documentation including a photocopy of your Social Security number and a way to fund the account.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Goldwater Bank’s CD rates compare

We like that the Goldwater Access CD allows you to make penalty-free withdrawals once a quarter, and the rate is on par with what’s being offered out there. Their regular CDs also offer some decent rates — though the longer the term, the less competitive they are.

If you’re after short-term CDs, these accounts are a great choice if you live in Arizona. Otherwise, you’ll want to check out other CD options to maximize your savings.

Goldwater Bank’s money market account options

Money Market

This account offers really low rates and a high minimum balance to waive the monthly fee.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.26%
$0.01
0.38%
$100,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This account offers limited check-writing capabilities and no ATM access. Other features include monthly statements, and online and mobile banking with check deposit, according to a bank representative. Aside from that, there isn’t anything truly special about this account. While it offers higher rates than the savings account, the APY is still extremely low. Since this is technically a savings account, Regulation D limits you up to six certain withdrawals/transfers a month without a penalty imposed by the bank. If you try to make any more, you’ll be charged a $10 excess withdrawal fee.

How to get Goldwater Banks’s Money Market account

Either fill out an application form online and complete the process in person or apply for an account all in one go at a Goldwater Bank branch. If filling out an online application form, provide information, such as your name, address and Social Security number. Then you’ll need to go on in person to fill out a signature card and provide additional information like a photocopy of your driver’s license.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Money Market Plus

This account offers a competitive rate, but you need a large opening deposit.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.40%
$0.01
0.50%
$100,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $25.000
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $0.01
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

The Money Market Plus account is meant to reward those who have more on deposit with Goldwater Bank. The $25,000 minimum opening deposit amount seems out of reach for many people, but for those who can spare the cash, the rate is worth it.

Features of the account include limited check-writing capabilities and online and mobile banking, according to a bank representative. You’re limited up to six certain withdrawals a month without a penalty imposed by the bank (per Regulation D) and if you go over that amount, you’ll need to pay a $10 fee.

How to get the Money Market Plus account

You can either fill out an application form online or apply for an account in person. To complete the online application process, provide details such as your name and Social Security number. Then, go in person to sign a signature card and provide a photocopy of your Social Security card.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on Goldwater Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Goldwater Bank’s money market accounts compare

The Money Market Plus account offers a fairly competitive rate — it’s on par with our list of the best money market accounts. However, you need a high opening deposit amount whereas other competitors offer lower minimums and some with higher rates. They’re also not as restrictive as Goldwater Bank, which only allows Arizona residents to open an account. Our advice is to shop around for money market accounts for more favorable terms.

Overall review of Goldwater Bank’s banking products

Not a whole lot stands out about Goldwater Bank. Most of their products have lackluster rates and there aren’t any fancy features like rewards programs or free checks like many competitors offer. Their premium savings and money market accounts that do offer higher rates have decent ones, but you need a high minimum opening deposit amount — which can be limiting for many people.

Even if Goldwater Bank had decent rates, most of the U.S. can’t access their banking products since it’s only available for Arizona residents. The application process also seems inconvenient considering you have to show up at a branch even if you open an account online. We recommend choosing another bank for one that offers higher rates.

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