UFB Direct Reviews: Savings, Money Market and Checking Accounts

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Updated on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

UFB Direct savings account

UFB High-Yield Savings

UFB Direct’s High-Yield Savings account offers a high interest rate for those who have a lot of money.

APY

Balance amount

0%

$0-$9,999

0.40%

$10,000+

  • Minimum deposit amount to open the account: $0
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None. However, you may still face an ATM surcharge fee from the ATM’s owner.
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $25 per each item over $25, up to $75 per day

UFB Direct’s High-Yield Savings account is a good choice for folks with large deposits looking for a place to park it indefinitely. You need to keep at least $0.01 in this account at all times. If you don’t, and the month ends without any money in the account, UFB Direct may close the account. In addition, if you close your account mid-cycle, you give up any interest that may have been accruing. With this account, it’s better to wait to close your account until right after a new cycle begins.

In addition, like most savings accounts, you’re limited to six transactions per month (not including deposits into the account). If you make more than this amount, you’ll face a $10 excessive withdrawal fee per item. If you do it enough times, UFB Direct may even change or close your account.

How to get UFB Direct’s High-Yield Savings account

You can only open an account with UFB Direct online, and only if you’re depositing “new money” into the account. This means that the initial deposit must come from a non-UFB Direct or non-BofI bank brand.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on UFB Direct’s secure website

Member FDIC

UFB Savings

This account is a carbon copy of UFB Direct’s Premium Savings account, but with a slightly smaller minimum balance requirement to earn a slightly smaller interest rate.

APY

Balance amount

0.20%

$0-$19,999

1.00%

$20,000+

  • Minimum deposit amount to open the account: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None. However, you may still face an ATM surcharge fee from the ATM’s owner.
  • ATM fee refund: None.
  • Overdraft fee: $25 per each item over $25, up to $75 per day

If you’ve got a slightly smaller balance than the hefty $25,000 needed to earn the highest rate from UFB Direct’s Premium Savings account, then this regular UFB Direct Savings account might be the best option for you at this bank. You’ll only need $100 to open it, and unlike the UFB Direct Premium Savings account, that money doesn’t need to come from outside the BofI banking brand.

Other than that, this account is very similar to the bank’s Premium Savings account. If you don’t have a balance in the account at the end of the month, UFB Direct may close it. If you go over six transactions (not including deposits) per month, you’ll face a $10 excessive withdrawal charge. If you do this too many times, UFB Direct might change it to a different account type or even close it.

How to get a UFB Direct Savings account

The only way to get a UFB Direct Savings account is by applying online. You can do that here:

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How UFB Direct’s savings accounts compare

UFB Direct does offer good interest rates on its savings accounts. However, they’re not the highest rates out there, and you need deep pockets in order to earn them. Unless you’ve got at least $20,000 rattling around in your metaphorical coin purse, you won’t earn very much with these accounts.

Instead, if you want to earn the highest rates out there and with less of a minimum deposit requirement, check out these top online savings accounts.

UFB Direct’s checking account

Airline Rewards Checking

Earn up to 120,000 American Airlines miles per year with this low-fee checking account — but be careful never to end the month with a $0 balance.
  • Minimum deposit amount: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $0
  • ATM fee: None.
  • ATM fee refund: UFB Direct will reimburse an unlimited amount of domestic ATM surcharge fees from the ATM’s owner.
  • Overdraft fee: $25 per each item over $25, up to $75 per day

If you’ve ever wanted to earn travel rewards points but aren’t into using credit cards to do it, this checking account could be a great option for you. You can currently earn up to 120,000 miles per year, but only with American Airlines.

You’ll earn one American Airlines mile for every $3 you spend through this account. Unfortunately, there are a lot of limitations on this program.

For starters, many purchases don’t count. Purchases made using “virtual wallets,” or at stores such as supermarkets, grocery stores, discount stores, wholesale outlets, “money transfer institutions” and any purchases made at the U.S. post office won’t earn any miles. In addition, in order to count, the purchase must be a POS (point-of-sale) purchase. This means that you used your debit card to make a purchase, and didn’t pay via check, ATM withdrawal or bank transfer.

Your airline miles will be deposited into your American Airlines rewards account within 60 days after the end of each month. If you happen to close your account in the middle of the month, you’ll lose any points you’ve been accumulating since the beginning of the month, so it’s a better idea to wait to close your account until just after a new month has begun.

Finally, make sure you never end the month with a $0 balance in your account. If you do, UFB Direct won’t give you any miles you’ve earned for that month, and it may even close your account.

How to get UFB Direct’s Airline Rewards Checking account

In order to get UFB Direct’s Airline Rewards Checking account, you must apply online. You’ll also already need to have an American Airlines account already opened, because you’ll need to enter in your AA frequent flier number as a part of the application process.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on UFB Direct’s secure website

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How UFB Direct’s checking account compares

We really like the fact that you can earn travel rewards with this checking account. This is truly a unique feature among banks. However, there are a lot of limitations with this account: You need to be careful about never zeroing out your account at the end of the month, you can only earn travel rewards with one airline and many purchases you’ll make won’t count toward earning rewards.

If you’re comfortable with these limitations, this can be a great account for you, especially if you’re a frequent traveler. If you’re looking for a checking account with less limitations, or a checking account that earns interest, however, check out these top online checking accounts instead.

UFB Direct’s money market account

UFB High Yield Money Market account

If you can keep a high balance in this money market account, you can earn a great interest rate and skirt the monthly fee.

APY

Minimum Deposit Amount

1.60%

$5,000

  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10
  • ATM fee: None. However, you may still face an ATM surcharge fee from the ATM’s owner.
  • ATM fee refund: None.
  • Overdraft fee: $25 per each item over $25, up to $75 per day

This money market account does come with a $10 monthly fee, however if you keep at least $5,000 in the account, you won’t be charged this fee. In addition, when you make your opening deposit, the money needs to come from a non-BofI branded bank, or you won’t be able to open the account.

You can write checks with this account, however keep in mind that you’ll still be limited to just six transactions per month due to the Federal Regulation D limits. If you go over that amount, you’ll face a $10 fee for each occurence, and UFB Direct may change or close your account if you do this repeatedly.

How to get UFB Direct’s High Yield Money Market account

You can open a High Yield Money Market account with UFB Direct online. Remember, you need to deposit at least $5,000 of “new” money into your account from a non-BofI brand.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on UFB Direct’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How UFB Direct’s Money Market account compares

UFB Direct does offer a high interest rate on its money market account. But, that high interest rate has some downsides: You need to maintain a very high balance to avoid the monthly maintenance fee, and if you have your money in another BofI brand, you can’t use the money to open the account. The money has to come from a non-BofI branded bank.

Even though this bank does have one of the highest interest rates currently available, it’s not technically the highest out there. Plus, there are many more options for a high-yielding money market account with a lower minimum deposit amount. It’s important to check out all your options for high yielding money market accounts before deciding.

Overall review of UFB Direct’s banking products

We like many of UFB Direct’s accounts. Its money market account is one of the highest-earning money market accounts currently available. The fact that you can earn airline rewards points with its checking account is truly unique and valuable for frequent fliers.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that even though these accounts may offer good rewards and returns, there are still a lot of limitations with them. You may need to come to the table with a large deposit amount, or there may be so many stipulations and rules with its checking account that you may not earn as much as you thought you would.

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