Washington Federal Reviews: Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market, and IRA Accounts

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Updated on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Washington Federal’s checking account options

Stellar Plus checking

The perks are stellar but the rate isn’t great on this account.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.05%
$10,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: Based on daily average balance, up to $8
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $25, $5 with overdraft protection

This account is for those who intend to do a lot of banking, as you get to earn interest and receive a whole host of other free perks. Aside from bill pay, mobile and online banking, account holders also get free checks, a 3-inch by 5-inch safe deposit box and an overdraft line of credit.

You do have to pay a monthly maintenance fee but the amount goes down the more you keep with the bank. You pay the full fee if you can’t meet the average daily balance requirement of $10,000, $3 a month if you have at least $10,000 in your Stellar Plus account or at least $50,000 in other Washington Federal deposit accounts. The fee is waived if you have at least $20,000 in the Stellar Plus or at least $100,000 in other qualifying accounts.

This account also qualifies for value-added benefits which includes ID monitoring services, accidental death insurance and shopping discounts. There’s also the Debit Advantage™ featuring buyers protection and extended warranty on purchases you make with your debit card.

How to get Washington Federal’s Stellar Plus checking account

You need to open an account at a local branch or by talking to customer service to open an account. To help speed up the process, you can schedule an appointment via email.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Basic checking

Just that, a basic checking account.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: None
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $25

This checking account is best for those who are looking for an inexpensive option. There’s a low minimum opening deposit, no monthly maintenance fees and it provides e-statements. Account holders also get bill pay, online and mobile banking. You get access to more than 32,000 MoneyPass network, surcharge-free ATMs with your debit card. However, you don’t earn any interest with this account.

To qualify for this account, you need to agree to receive e-statements and enroll in at least one recurring direct deposit activity per month. Also, you’re limited to writing 25 checks per month and then you’ll be charged $0.15 for each additional one you use.

How to get Washington Federal’s basic checking account

You’ll need to open an account in person or by calling customer service. You can schedule an appointment via email to help the process go faster.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Green checking

This account gives you added perks but you’ll need to pay a monthly maintenance fee.
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $6
  • ATM fee: None
  • ATM fee refund: None
  • Overdraft fee: $25, $5 with overdraft protection

This account doesn’t earn you any interest but it does offer added perks that the basic account doesn’t. Aside from free bill pay, online and mobile banking, you get unlimited check writing capabilities. You can also get an overdraft line of credit if you can qualify for approval.

There are also what the bank calls value-added benefits. First you get what’s called the Debit Advantage™, which offers benefits like extended warranty and buyer’s protection. You also get other benefits such as theft monitoring services, accidental death insurance and other discounts.

How to get Washington Federal’s Green checking account

You can either head to your local branch or call customer service to open an account. You can schedule an appointment via email to help the process go faster.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

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How Washington Federal’s checking accounts compare

Rates aside, the Green and Stellar Plus accounts offer some decent perks, including free checks, buyer protection and accidental death insurance. However, where these accounts fall short is the low APY. Other online banks also offer other features like ATM reimbursements and no fees. The Basic checking account isn’t anything special either.

It’s probably a better idea to go elsewhere for a checking account that offers a higher APY unless those value-added benefits are really speaking to you.

To see other options, check out our list of the 10 best online checking accounts.

Washington Federal’s savings account option

Statement or Passbook Savings

An account with a low monthly maintenance fee, with extra advantages for minors.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.10%
$100
  • Minimum opening deposit: $25
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $100
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $4 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This is a simple savings account that those under 18 can also open. To do so, an adult must be there to help them open the account in their name. For minors, the minimum opening deposit and balance to earn the advertised APY is $10 instead of what you see above and there is no monthly maintenance fee.

For anyone over 18, you can get the monthly maintenance fee waived if you keep at least $200 in your account. And since this is a savings account, Federal Reserve Regulation D limits you to only six certain withdrawals or deposits a month. Otherwise, the bank will charge you a $15 excess transaction fee per transaction.

How to get Washington Federal’s Statement or Passbook Savings account

You can only open an account by calling customer service or going to your local branch. It may help to speed up the process if you email the bank and schedule an appointment.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Washington Federal’s savings account compares

Sadly, Federal Washington’s savings account falls way short in comparison to the best offerings out there. Many of these other choices offer much higher APYs, ATM access and no fees. In short, you’re better off with one of the accounts on our list of the best online savings accounts.

Washington Federal’s CD rates

Certificates of Deposit

Earn a decent rate of return with current specials.
Special rates
TermAPY
(with Green or Stellar Plus checking account)
APY
(without Green or Stellar Plus checking account)
7 months0.40%
0.30%
13 months0.90%
0.85%
19 months1.90%
1.85%
Regular rates
TermAPY
($1,000 minimum balance)
APY
($90,000 minimum balance)
14 days to 2 months N/A0.10%
3 months0.05%
0.10%
4 to 5 months0.10%
0.15%
6 to 11 months0.15%
0.20%
12 to 17 months0.25%
0.30%
18 to 23 months0.30%
0.35%
24 to 35 months0.30%
0.35%
36 to 47 months0.40%
0.45%
48 to 59 months0.45%
0.50%
60 months0.50%
0.55%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term:
    • 1 year or less – 90 days’ interest
    • Up to 4 years – 180 days’ interest
    • 4 years and up – 365 days’ interest

This account offers some decent yields for the 60 month and Special rates CDs, especially for those who have either a Green or Stellar Plus checking account. Interest is compounded daily and credited differently depending on the amount you have and your CD term. For CDs with terms of a year and less, interest will be credited when the account matures. Certificates of more than a year will be credited yearly or at maturity. If your account has at least $10,000, you can have your interest credited monthly. Account holders can choose to roll over the interest or have it withdrawn.

Upon maturity, you will get a 10-day grace period in which you can make withdrawals, additional deposits or renew for another term. Otherwise, your account will automatically be renewed.

The renewal term varies, depending on the original one:

Original termRenewal term
14 days to 2 months1-2 months
3 monthssame
4 to 5 monthssame
6 to 11 months6 months
12 to 17 months12 months
18 to 23 months18 months
24 to 35 months24 months
36 to 47 months36 months
48 to 59 months48 months
60 monthssame

This account is also available for minors. The minimum opening deposit and amount to earn advertised APY is $500.

How to get Washington Federal’s CDs

You can only open a CD account in person or by calling customer service. You can try to speed up the application process in person if you email the bank to schedule an appointment.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Washington Federal’s CD rates compare

Washington Federal’s special CD rates are on par with what’s being offered out there. Along with the similar rates, these also require a low minimum opening deposit that’s around the same, so if you’re looking for a short-term investment option, these CDs could be a good choice.

However, if you’re interested in longer terms, you’re not going to find great rates here. In that case, you’re better off finding something from our list of the current best CD rates.

Washington Federal’s money market account option

Money Market

Simply put, you won’t earn much with this account.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.05% Variable
$1,000
0.10% Variable
$90,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $1,000
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This is a regular savings account that offers a mediocre rate, even if you put more into the account. You can waive the monthly maintenance fee if you keep at least $1,000 in the account. Federal Reserve Regulation D states that savings accounts can only make a maximum of six certain transactions a month. Here, that means if you make more than that, you’ll be charged at $15 excess transaction fee for each one over six a month.

How to get Washington Federal’s Money Market account

To get a money market account, you can either head to a local branch or call customer service. It may speed up the process if you email the bank to arrange an appointment beforehand.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

Gold money market

This money market account gives you a much higher rate.
APYMinimum Balance to Earn APY
0.30%
$1,000
  • Minimum opening deposit: $100
  • Minimum balance to earn APY: $1,000
  • Monthly account maintenance fee: $10 (this can be waived)
  • ATM fee: N/A
  • ATM fee refund: N/A
  • Overdraft fee: N/A

This money account gives you a much more competitive APY, but only if you can meet its minimum balance requirements. To waive the monthly maintenance fee, you will need to maintain a minimum of $1,000 in your account.

Account holders get access to online banking and you can access your cash through bank transfers. Since this is a savings account, you’re limited to six certain transactions a month as mandated by Federal Reserve Regulation D, or else you’ll be charged a $15 fee each excess one that you make.

How to get Washington Federal’s Gold money market account

You can head to your local branch or call customer service to open an account. You can email the bank to schedule an appointment to try and speed up the process.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Washington Federal’s money market account compares

The Gold money market account rate is around the same as what the best offerings are out there. However, some of these accounts offer slightly better rates with lower opening minimum deposits. If that’s a big concern for you, then you’ll want to check out our list of the best money market rates.

Washington Federal IRA options

IRA CD rates

A hodge-podge of rates on a narrow selection of terms.
Special rates
TermAPY
(with Green or Stellar Plus checking account)
APY
(without Green or Stellar Plus checking account)
7 months0.40%
0.30%
13 months0.90%
0.85%
19 months1.90%
1.85%
Regular rates
TermAPY
($1,000 minimum balance)
APY
($90,000 minimum balance)
14 days to 2 months N/A0.10%
3 months0.05%
0.10%
4 to 5 months0.10%
0.15%
6 to 11 months0.15%
0.20%
12 to 17 months0.25%
0.30%
18 to 23 months0.30%
0.35%
24 to 35 months0.30%
0.35%
36 to 47 months0.40%
0.45%
48 to 59 months0.45%
0.50%
60 months0.50%
0.55%
  • Minimum opening deposit: $1,000
  • Minimum balance amount to earn APY: $1,000
  • Early withdrawal penalty: Depends on length of term:
    • 1 year or less – 90 days’ interest
    • Up to 4 years – 180 days’ interest
    • 4 years and up – 365 days’ interest

This account is best for those who want a guaranteed rate of return on their retirement account. Interest is compounded daily and credited to your account depending on your deposit amount and CD term. Accounts with $10,000 or more may choose to have their interest credited monthly. Otherwise, terms more than a year will be credited at maturity or annually and those that are a year or less will only be credited at maturity.

You have a 10-day grace period when your account matures and you can either make additional deposits, renew for another term or withdraw cash. If you do nothing, your account will automatically be renewed according to the chart below.

Original termRenewal term
14 days to 2 months1-2 months
3 monthssame
4 to 5 monthssame
6 to 11 months6 months
12 to 17 months12 months
18 to 23 months18 months
24 to 35 months24 months
36 to 47 months36 months
48 to 59 months48 months
60 monthssame

You can also open this account for a minor. The minimum opening deposit and amount to earn the advertised APY is $100.

How to get Washington Federal’s IRA CDs

To open an IRA CD account, you’ll need to do so in person or or call customer service. You may be able to speed up the process by emailing the bank to set up an appointment.

SEE DETAILS Secured

on WaFd Bank’s secure website

Member FDIC

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How Washington Federal’s IRA CD rates compare

These IRA rates are slightly lower than what’s currently being offered out there. The main advantage is that you can open a Washington Federal IRA CD account with a lower opening deposit. If that’s important to you, then some of the rates for these IRA CDs can be a great choice. Otherwise, you can choose from our list of the best IRA CD rates.

Overall review of Washington Federal’s banking products

You can’t open any of Washington Federal’s banking products online. Otherwise, the rates really worth considering are the money market and CD rates. If you want a good savings or checking account, you’ll want to look elsewhere for better rates.

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