Best Environmentally Friendly Banks of February 2023



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If you're passionate about environmental justice or want to bank with a financial institution that closely aligns with your values, an environmentally friendly bank might be worth considering.

An eco-friendly bank with ethical banking practices clearly states its initiatives on its mission statement, policies, and culture. The best environmentally friendly banks also have strong bank accounts with low fees. Below, you'll find our top picks for eco-friendly banks based on which accounts you'd like to open. 

Best environmentally friendly banks of February 2023

  • Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account

  • Ando Spending Account

  • Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account

  • Clean Energy Credit Union Savings Account

  • Spring Bank Savings Account

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Best for opening a checking account

Best for opening a checking and savings account

Best for opening a high-yield savings account

Best for a Checking Account: Amalgamated Bank

Amalgamated Bank Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account

Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.80% to 0.90%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$100

Amalgamated Bank Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account

Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.80% to 0.90%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$100

On Amalgamated Bank's website

Details

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.80% to 0.90%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$100

Pros & Cons

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Earns interest

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No monthly maintenance fees

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Amalgamated Bank will donate the equivalent of half the interest you earn to charity of your choice

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Overdraft protection available

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$100 minimum opening deposit

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$34 overdraft fee

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$2.50 out-of-network ATM fee

Highlights

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  • Branches in San Francisco, New York City, and Washington, DC; You can also open an online-only account
  • Access to over 40,000 free ATMs through the Allpoint network
  • Amalgamated Bank will match the equivalent of half the interest you've earned on your account and donate it to a participating non-profit organization of your choice
  • Free overdraft protection that lets you link your checking account to an Amalgamated Bank savings account
  • Earn 0.80% APY if you have an account balance under $2,500
  • Earn 0.90% APY if you have an account balance over $2,500
  • Interest compounded daily and deposited monthly
  • FDIC insured

Best for a Checking and Savings Account: Ando

Ando Ando Spending Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

None

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Ando Ando Spending Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

None

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Details

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

None

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Pros & Cons

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No minimum opening deposit

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No monthly service fees

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No overdraft fees

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Receive direct deposits up to 2 days early if you're eligible for Early Pay

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May overdraw up to $200 if you're eligible for Covered by Ando

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Earn 1.5% cashback on debit card purchases

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No joint accounts or secondary debit cards

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$2.95 out-of-network ATM fee

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GreenDot will charge a fee when you deposit cash

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Can't overdraw more than $200

Highlights

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  • Ando only invests in products that cut down on carbon emissions and cancel out greenhouse gases
  • In the Impact Center, track how your deposits and the deposits of people you refer are being invested
  • Earn 1.5% on eligible debit card purchases pertaining to personal, family, or households goods
  • To be eligible for Early Pay or Covered by Ando, you'll need to set up direct deposit, receive at least $500 within 31 days; to continue to qualify for these programs, you must continue to receive $500 in direct deposits each month
  • Early Pay allows you receive direct deposits up to 2 days early
  • Covered by Ando allows you to overdraw up to $200 from your account without paying a fee
  • 38,000+ free ATMs in the US in the MoneyPass network
  • Debit card is made with 80% less plastic than most cards
  • Deposits are FDIC insured through partner bank, Community Federal Savings Bank

Additional Reading

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Ando Ando Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.17% to 5.00%

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Ando Ando Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.17% to 5.00%

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Details

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.17% to 5.00%

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Pros & Cons

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No minimum opening deposit

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No monthly service fees

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Pays a higher APY than most physical banks

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No joint accounts or secondary debit cards

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Must open an Ando Checking Account to qualify

Highlights

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  • Ando only invests in products that cut down on carbon emissions and cancel out greenhouse gases
  • In the Impact Center, track how your deposits and the deposits of people you refer are being invested
  • Earn 1.00% APY when you make five or more debit card transactions monthly and enroll in Early Pay (To be eligible for Early pay, you'll have to receive $500 in direct deposits within a month)
  • To earn up to 5% APY, you'll need to sign up five friends and they'll need to be active users for 60 days
  • You must open an Ando Checking Account before opening a Savings Account
  • Interest compounded daily, paid monthly
  • Deposits are FDIC insured through partner bank, Community Federal Savings Bank

Best for a High-Yield Savings Account: Atmos Financial

Atmos Financial Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account

Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

1.20% to 2.40%

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Atmos Financial Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account

Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

1.20% to 2.40%

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

On Atmos Financial's website

Details

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

1.20% to 2.40%

Minimum Deposit Amount

None

Pros & Cons

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High interest rate

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No monthly service fees

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No minimum balance requirements

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Measure the carbon impact of your deposits through Atmos

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Create up to six accounts for individual savings goals

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No joint bank accounts

Highlights

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  • Atmos is an eco-friendly online banking platform that has pledged to finance zero fossil fuel companies and projects
  • Earn a base rate of 1.20% APY
  • Earn 2.40% APY if you choose to make monthly recurring donations to a non-profit organization on the Atmos app
  • Interest compounded daily and deposited monthly
  • Funds FDIC insured through Evolve Bank & Trust

Best Eco-Friendly Credit Union: Clean Energy Credit Union

Clean Energy Credit Union Clean Energy Credit Union Savings Account

Clean Energy Credit Union Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.15%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$5

Clean Energy Credit Union Clean Energy Credit Union Savings Account

Clean Energy Credit Union Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.15%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$5

On Clean Energy Credit Union's website

Details

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

0.15%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$5

Pros & Cons

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Low minimum opening deposit

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No monthly maintenance fees

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Low interest rate

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Must keep at least $5 in account to maintain membership

Highlights

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  • To become a member of Clean Energy Credit Union, you'll need to become a member of a participating organization or work at Clean Energy Credit Union, Our Climate, or 350 Colorado
  • Must keep at least $5 in account to maintain membership
  • Interest compounded and deposited monthly
  • NCUA insured

Best Eco-Friendly Local Bank: Spring Bank

Spring Bank Spring Bank Savings Account

Spring Bank Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

3.00%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$25

Spring Bank Spring Bank Savings Account

Spring Bank Savings Account

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

3.00%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$25

Details

Annual Percentage Yield (APY)

3.00%

Minimum Deposit Amount

$25

Pros & Cons

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Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction.

High interest rate

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Low minimum opening deposit

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Possible to waive monthly service fee

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Need at least $100 in your account to earn interest and avoid monthly service fee

Highlights

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  • 2 branches in New York
  • Free access to Citibank ATMs or MoneyPass ATMs
  • You need at least $100 in your account to earn interest and avoid $5 monthly service fee
  • Interest compounded daily deposited monthly
  • FDIC insured

Comparing the Best Environmentally Friendly Banks of February 2023

Amalgamated Bank (jump to Amalgamated Bank account details »)

Why it stands out: The Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account  is a solid interest-earning checking account with zero monthly service fees. It stands out from other checking accounts because Amalgamated Bank matches the equivalent of half the interest you earn on the account and lets you donate that amount to a charity that's partnered with the institution. 

Green practices/policies: As a Fossil Free certified institution, Amalgamated Bank has pledged not to invest in fossil fuels projects. According to the bank's website, 24% of its lending is solely focused on climate protection and property-assessed clean energy financing. 

Amalgamated Bank is also B Corp certified since 2017, which means that it has met the B Lab's standards for social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability.

Certification(s): Certified B Corp, GA BV Member, Green America certified, Fossil Free certified

Look out for: While the Amalgamated Bank Give-Back Checking Account doesn't charge monthly service fees, you'll want to be mindful of the bank account's other fees. The account has a $34 overdraft fee. If you withdraw money from an out-of-network ATM, Amalgamated Bank will also charge you $2.50 per transaction. 

Your banking experience also may depend on where you live. Amalgamated Bank has branches in New York City and San Francisco, but if you don't live in these cities you'll have to be comfortable with an online-only banking experience.

Ando (jump to Ando account details »)

Why it stands out: Ando has solid bank accounts with zero monthly services fees and $0 minimum opening deposits. The Ando Spending Account stands out because you can earn 1.5% cash back on debit card purchases — a unique perk that isn't offered for many checking accounts. 

The Ando Savings Account may be appealing if you'd like to earn a solid interest rate. The Ando Savings Account pays 0.17% APY when you first open an account. However, you may be eligible to earn up to 5% APY for balances up to $5,000 per month. Here are the requirements you'll need to meet to earn a higher interest rate:

  • Earn 1% APY if you 1) make five or more debit card transactions per month, and 2) enroll in Early Pay through your Ando Spending Account. 
  • Earn 2% APY if you meet the requirements to earn 1% APY and invite two friends to open an Ando Spending Account and be active users for 60 days
  • Earn 3% APY if you meet the requirements to earn 1% APY and invite three friends to open an Ando Spending Account and be active users for 60 days
  • Earn 4% APY if you meet the requirements to earn 1% APY and invite four friends to open an Ando Spending Account and be active users for 60 days
  • Earn 5% APY if you meet the requirements to earn 1% APY and invite five friends to open an Ando Spending Account and be active users for 60 days

To maintain a premium interest rate, you must continue to make five or more debit card transactions per month and meet the requirements for Early Pay through your Ando Spending Account. If not, your interest rate will drop back down to 0.17% APY for that month.

Green practices/policies:  If you join Ando, you'll have access to the platform's Impact Center, which may be used as a tool to help you cut carbon dioxide emissions based on your banking activity. The Impact Center also shows you how your deposits are being used for investments.

As a Fossil Free certified financial institution, Ando has pledged to only invest in green initiatives. Ando is also B Corp certified since 2021, which means that it has met the B Lab's standards for social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability.

Certification(s): Certified B Corp, Fossil Free Certified

Look out for: Ando is an online-only banking platform, so it doesn't have any physical branches. You also won't be able to open a joint bank account.

Atmos Financial (jump to Atmos Financial account details »)

Why it stands out: The Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account is a great high-yield savings account because it doesn't have minimum balance requirements or monthly maintenance fees. You may also earn a competitive interest rate if you choose to make monthly donations of at least $1 to a non-profit organization that's partnered with Atmos Financial

Green practices/policies: As a Fossil Free certified financial institution, Atmos Financial has pledged it will not invest in projects that are harmful to the environment, such as fossil fuel projects or fast fashion companies.

When you open the Atmos Financial Climate-Positive Savings Account, Atmos calculates the carbon impact of your account balance, which you'll be able to see on the platform's mobile app.

Certification(s): 1% for the Planet, Fossil Free certified (Pending B Corp certification)

Look out for: Atmos Financial is an online-banking platform, so it doesn't have any physical branches. You also won't be able to open a joint bank account.

Clean Energy Credit Union (jump to Clean Energy Credit Union account details »)

Why it stands out: Clean Energy Credit Union has low minimum opening deposits and doesn't charge monthly service fees. While the Clean Energy Credit Union Savings Account pays a low interest rate, Clean Energy Credit Union has a high-yield checking account that might be ideal if you're searching for a solid interest rate.

Green practices/policies: As a Fossil Free certified financial institution, Clean Energy Credit Union has pledged it will not invest in fossil fuel projects.

Clean Energy Credit Union also offers a variety of loans that can be used for green energy projects. For example, you apply for a clean energy vehicle loan, green home improvement loan, or electric bike loan.

Certification(s): Fossil Free certified, Green America certified

Look out for: Credit unions require you to be a member to open a bank account. To be eligible for membership at Clean Energy Credit Union, you must meet one of the following requirements:

  • Be an employee or volunteer at Clean Energy Credit Union, Our Climate, or 350 Colorado
  • Join a non-profit organization or association from this list
  • Have an immediate family member or household member who meets one of the requirements listed above

To join Clean Energy Credit Union, you have to open up a savings account with at least $5. If you would prefer to only open a checking account, you might consider banking with a different institution.

Your banking experience may also depend on where you live. Clean Energy Credit Union doesn't have any physical branches, but it is still part of the Co-op Shared Branch network. You'll have to use this search tool to see if there are any locations in your area.

Spring Bank (jump to Spring Bank account details »)

Why it stands out: Spring Bankhas low minimum opening deposits and monthly service fees. Even though it's a local bank, you'll have free access to Citibank ATMs and MoneyPass ATMs.

The Spring Bank Savings Account also pays a high interest rate as long as you have at least $100 in your account.

Green practices/policies: According to the bank's website, Spring Bank offset over 192,000 kg of carbon dioxide equivalent in 2019.

Spring Bank is also B Corp certified since 2016, which means that it has met the B Lab's standards for social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability.

Certification(s): Certified B Corp, CDFI

Look out for: Spring Bank has two branches in the New York City area. If you don't live near a branch, you may still open an account online, but you'll still need to live in New York.

Other Eco-Friendly Banks That Didn't Make the Cut and Why

  • Aspiration Account: Aspiration is a fintech company that's a Certified B Corp and Green America certified. It may be a good option if you're searching for a cash management accoun. Our top picks offer higher interest rates or have more banking options, though.
  • Androscoggin Bank: Androscoggin Bank is a local financial in Maine that's B Corp certified. Most of its accounts have low minimum opening deposits, but also include monthly service fees unless you meet certain requirements.
  • Bank of the West: Bank of the West is based mostly on the West Coast, and has partnered with 1% for the Planet to offer a checking account. Through the checking account, the brick-and-mortar bank donates 1% of its net revenue earned from the account to environmental non-profit organizations part of the 1% for the Planet network. The main downside to this account is that you'll need to meet certain requirements to waive a $10 monthly service fee. Read the full review of Bank of the West here.
  • Brattleboro Savings & Loan: Brattleboro Savings & Loan is B Corp certified and has branches in Vermont. Its checking account doesn't charge monthly service fees, but you'll need to meet specific requirements to waive monthly service fees on its savings account.
  • Beneficial State Bank: Beneficial State Bank is based on the West Coast and has numerous certifications. While its checking account doesn't charge monthly service fees, its savings account does. Our top picks don't charge monthly service fees on their accounts. Read the full review of Beneficial State Bank here.
  • City First Bank: City First Bank is a Black-owned bank with numerous certifications —it's recognized as an MDI, CDFI, Certified B Corp, and GA BV member — and it may be worth considering if you live in Los Angeles or Washington, DC, because it has branches in these cities. It didn't become one of our top picks because it charges monthly service fees on its checking and savings accounts. Read the full review of City First Bank here.
  • Clearwater Credit Union: Clearwater Credit Union is a GA BV member and CDFI. It has branches in Montana, but anyone in the US who is over the age of 18 and a US citizen can become a member. Clearwater Credit Union might be a good option if you're looking for a free checking account, but its savings account has monthly service fees unless you qualify to waive the fee.
  • Climate First Bank: Climate First Bank has locations in Florida and is Fossil Free certified. When you open a Regeneration Checking Account, you'll donate $100 to Project Regeneration, a non-profit organization focused on climate justice. Most of our top picks have lower initial deposits or more appealing perks, though.
  • Lead Bank Lead On Checking Account: Lead Bank is a Missouri-based brick-and-mortar financial institution that is also a GA BV member. Its savings and checking accounts don't charge monthly service fees but may not have unique perks like our top picks.
  • Mascoma Bank: Mascoma Bank is B Corp certified. It might be appealing if you're a resident in Vermont and New Hampshire who prioritizes a traditional banking experience, but its checking accounts have monthly service fees unless you qualify to waive them.
  • National Cooperative Bank: National Cooperative Bank has one branch in Ohio, and it's a GA BV member. It might be ideal if you're looking for an interest-earning checking account or money market account, but you'll need to meet specific minimum balance requirements to waive monthly service fees on accounts.
  • Piscataqua Savings Bank: Piscataqua is a B Corp certified financial institution with one branch in New Hampshire. It wasn't chosen as one of our top picks because its checking account has minimum balance requirements.
  • Self-Help Credit Union: Self-Help Credit Union is Fossil Free certified. It has branches in North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and Virginia, as well as a sister credit union named Self-Help Federal Credit Union with branches in California, Illinois, and Washington. To become a member of either credit union, you'll only need to donate $5 to the bank's non-profit the Center for Community Self-Help. It didn't become one of our top picks because the credit union's checking account fees.
  • Sunrise Banks: Sunrise Bank is B Corp certified and a GA BV member. It has branches in Minnesota and South Dakota and might be ideal if you're a resident in one of these states searching for a solid free checking account. But its savings accounts have monthly service fees unless you meet specific requirements. 
  • Virginia Community Capital Checking Account: Virginia Community Capital has numerous certifications — it's recognized as a CDFI, Certified B Corp, and fossil-free financial institution. While it has solid free checking and savings accounts, it lacks distinguishing features.
  • Verity Credit Union: Verity Credit Union is a GA BV member with branches in Washington. It solid rewards checking account options, but to join Verity Credit Union, you must live in the state of Washington. 
  • Vermont State Employees Credit Union: Vermont State Employees Credit Union is a GA BV member. To become a member, you'll need to live or work in the state of Vermont join the Northeast Sustainable Energy Association. While the bank has solid free checking and savings accounts, it lacks standout features.

Are These Banks Trustworthy?

We include ratings from the Better Business Bureau to evaluate how financial institutions address customer issues and handle transparency. Clean Energy Credit Union and Spring Bank haven't been reviewed by the BBB, yet.

Keep in mind that a great BBB rating doesn't necessarily mean you'll have a smooth relationship with a bank. Reach out to current customers or read online customer reviews to get a well-rounded perspective of a bank.

Ando and Atmos Financial's partner bank, Evolve Bank & Trust, have an NR rating because the BBB is reviewing their profiles. 

In 2022, the Justice Department required the bank to pay $1.3 million in a settlement that claimed Evolve Bank had discriminatory lending take place from 2014 to 2019. 

Why Trust Our Recommendations?

At Personal Finance Insider, our goal is to create useful content that helps you make good decisions about your money. We recognize every person has distinct preferences, so we provide ample options to help you find the most suitable financial product or account.

We research extensively to make sure you know the standout features and limitations of a financial institution.

Methodology: How Did We Choose the Best Eco-Friendly Banks?

First, we researched to find financial institutions with green initiatives and green certifications. We looked at each bank's mission statement, policies, and culture to see how the bank tackled sustainability and climate change. We also assessed the requirements that needed to be met to receive green certifications and designations.

Then, we reviewed each institution to find the most-well rounded banking options. We compared minimum opening deposits, monthly services, and interest rates (for savings accounts). We also took into consideration if a bank product had special features — like environmental impact scores or donation opportunities.

For our list, we chose institutions that had clearly outlined green initiatives and strong bank accounts with minimal bank fees. Most of our top picks are also available throughout the US.

Frequently Asked Questions

Many big banks invest billions in fossil fuel projects and companies. However, environmentally friendly banks, also commonly referred to as sustainable banks or green banks, are financial institutions or online banking platforms with policies and initiatives involving sustainability and environmental action. 

When sustainable banks make investments or provide loans for customers, many will prioritize green initiatives. Some sustainable banks will also deny financial products to companies that earn substantial revenue from environmentally harmful production.

Most green banks will partner with non-profit organizations focused on combatting climate change. Many will also seek a green certification or designation.

Certification and designations by third-party organizations ensure that institutions are meeting a set of standards over time. For example, a financial institution that has a B Corp Certification has been reviewed for its social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.

If you'd like to know if a bank is committed to environmental justice, you can visit the non-profit organization's website to see if the bank is listed as a sustainable bank. You can also review the requirements the institution needed to receive the certification.

Below, is an overview of all the certifications and designations mentioned in our guide:

  • B Corp CertificationB Lab is a global non-profit network that issues a B Corp Certification to companies that fulfill high standards of social and environmental performance, accountability, and transparency.
  • Community development financial institution (CDFI): To become a CDFI, a financial institution must complete a certification process through the US Department of Treasury's Community Development Financial Institutions Fund. One of the primary requirements to become a CDFI is that a financial institution must have banking services and lending opportunities in predominantly low-income and underserved communities. 
  • Green America Certification: Green America is a non-profit organization dedicated to environmental justice. The organization certifies businesses that advocate for social change and meet their Green Business Standards. 
  • Global Banking on Values (GA BV)GA BV is made up of an international network of mission-driven banks focused on social impact and environmental sustainability. Banks are evaluated to see if they meet certain standards to become a member.
  • Fossil Free Certification: To receive a Fossil Free Certification by the volunteer organization Bank. Green, financial institutions must commit to financing zero fossil fuel companies and projects now and in the future.
  • Minority depository institution (MDI): An MDI is a financial institution recognized under the FDIC's Minority Depository Institution Program or the NCUA's MDI Preservation Program. To become an MDI, banks or credit unions must be primarily owned or led by Black Americans, Native Americans, Hispanic Americans, or Asian Americans. Financial institutions may also be required to serve these respective groups in their communities.
  • 1% for the PlanetBusinesses that join 1% of the Planet have pledged to turn over 1% of annual gross sales to non-profit organizations listed on the global network's website.

Beneficial State Bank, Amalgamated Bank, and City First Bank have the most certifications and designations for their social and environmental impact.

However, keep in mind that you may also want to look at the overall bank experience before choosing where to bank. You'll need to consider what you prioritize in your account — minimum opening deposits, bank fees, access to cash — before making your decision.

The following US institutions have received a Fossil Free Certification, which means that these financial institutions will not lend to fossil fuel companies or projects.

  • Ando
  • Amalgamated Bank 
  • Atmos Financial
  • Beneficial State Bank 
  • Clean Energy Credit Union
  • Climate First Bank
  • Self-Help Credit Union
  • Virginia Community Capital 

Experts' Advice on Choosing the Best Bank

To learn more about what makes a good bank or credit union and how to choose the best fit, four experts weighed in:

PFI Banking Expert Panel that includes Tania Brown, Roger Ma, Laura Grace Tarpley, and Mykail James

Insider

We're focusing on what will make a bank most useful, including customer service, fees, rates, and more. Here's what they had to say about finding a bank. (Some text may be lightly edited for clarity.)

How can someone determine whether a bank is the right fit for them?

Mykail James, CFEI:

"The No. 1 thing about a checking account is you should know what provider the debit card is coming from. And a lot of people don't think about that, because there are places that don't accept MasterCard or don't accept an Amex."

Laura Grace Tarpley, Personal Finance Insider:

"I would look for the bank that charges you the least in fees. This means either no monthly fees, or you qualify to waive the monthly fees. If you never overdraw from your account, then a bank's overdraft fees won't matter much to you. But if you occasionally overdraw, then I'd look at the fees or overdraft protection options."

What should someone look for in a brick-and-mortar bank?

Tania Brown, CFP:

"How can that bank grow with you? If you are 25, single, or newly married, and all you need is a checking account, that's going to look very different 15 years from now when you may have had a couple of jobs, you may have an IRA roll over, or you may want a financial adviser."

Mykail James, CFEI:

"How accessible it is. So where are the branches? And if I am to go out of town or something, how accessible is my money to me?"

What should someone look for in an online bank?

Tania Brown, CFP:

"With an online bank, absolutely online customer service because you do not have the advantage of walking inside and talking to a human being. How often are you able to get them? What are their hours?"

Roger Ma, CFP:

"How onerous the transfer process is, transferring money in and transferring money out. Is it same day, next day? Is it pretty easy to sync a brick-and-mortar checking account to this particular high-yield savings account?"

Mykail James, CFEI:

"When it comes to online banks, you want to be a little bit more strict about what type of interest rates they're providing. That's the biggest thing, because online banks are supposed to have the higher interest rate because they don't have the overhead of the brick-and-mortar. You want to make sure that it's well above the national average. What type of securities do they provide? Do they have two-factor identification? If it's an online bank, they should definitely have — at the bare minimum — two-factor authentication in how easy it is to change your passwords and things like that, because you want to be a little more hypersensitive about the cyber security for a strictly online bank."

Sophia Acevedo is a banking reporter at Insider who covers banking and savings for Personal Finance Insider. She is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF). She joined Insider in July 2021 as a fellow for the Personal Finance Insider Reviews team. Before joining the Insider team, she was a freelancer based in Los Angeles and worked briefly in publishing. She also graduated from California State University Fullerton in 2020. You can reach out to her on Twitter at @sophieacvdo or send a quick email at sacevedo@insider.com. Read more about how Personal Finance Insider chooses, rates, and covers financial products and services >>

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