Back in 2012, ING Direct became Capital One 360. Without going into a huge amount of detail as to why, it boiled down to the financial crisis and what ING owned in assets according to the European Union. In order for ING to carry on, the US version of its banking arm had to be sold. In stepped Capital One and the rest is history.
I’ve personally used ING Direct since 2003. I first opened up a savings account and then in 2008 took the plunge with its checking account and started to do all of my banking online. When it was announced that Capital One was buying ING, and re-branding it Capital One 360, fear ran wild. Customers worried that Capital One would destroy ING Direct and the greatness of its product. Others began to fear endless spam from Capital One to sign up for their credit cards.
Luckily, as of this writing, none of the above has occurred. It’s been business as usual, except for a name change and a new color scheme. In fact, Capital One has even made the online banking product better. The following details all of the good and not-so-good about Capital One 360. (Note: if you open an account now, you’ll get a $25 bonus!)
My Capital One 360 Review
Capital One 360: The Good
Overall, Capital One 360 is awesome. To access my account, I can either log in online or log in via the app for my smartphone. Everything you would want to do, you can, including:
- Check Balances
- Pay Bills
- Transfer Money – Between accounts or external accounts. External transfers usually take two business days to arrive in you account and have a short hold.
- Mobile Check Deposit – Super easy to use. I’ve deposited over 100 checks and all have been accepted.
- Person2Person Payments – You can pay anyone with a bank account. You don’t need to send them a check either. From your Capital One 360 account, simply enter in their name, email address and the last 4 digits of their account number. Once they verify the information in the email they receive from Capital One 360, the money transfers to them instantly (if they are also Capital One 360 account holders) or within 2 business days (if they don’t have a Capital One 360 account).
- Create Sub-Accounts – This is personally my favorite of all. I get to have 25 sub-accounts. This means that I can have 25 individual savings accounts. You may be wondering why on earth would someone need that many savings accounts? Here is why: I like to break out my savings. I have my emergency savings fund, and then a separate account for each of my other non-monthly bills. So there is a car insurance account, a home insurance account, etc. I set up a bi-monthly transfer from my checking account to these accounts so that I have the money when the insurance bill comes. I like having them separate because it lets me see what I truly have for an emergency fund, what I have saved for gifts, etc. I even have a credit card savings account. Since I primarily use my credit card for purchases, I simply total up my weekly purchases and transfer money from my checking to my savings account. That way I am guaranteed to have the money to pay off my credit card in full each month.
Other features of Capital One 360 include:
- Direct Deposit – Direct deposit checks clear same day, giving you full access to the money. I use PayPal a lot and these transfers take between two or three days and clear immediately.
- Write Checks – There are two ways to go about this. The first is to go into the bill pay section and choose to “send a check”. Then, you fill out the information and Capital One 360 mails the check for you – for free! The second option, which began last year, is to order physical checks. They do cost you money, $7.50 for 100. I decided to get them, just for the rare occasion someone doesn’t accept a credit card. If you don’t want their basic check and you still want to send a check, you can always go the third party route.
- Automatic Savings Plan – This allows you to set up re-occurring transfers between accounts in the future.
- Interest Bearing Checking and Savings Accounts – This was a bigger deal when interest rates were higher, but not so much now. Savings accounts earn a flat 0.75% and checking accounts earn an interest rate depending on your balance. Up to $50,000 earn 0.20%; from $50,000 to $100,000 earn 0.80%; and anything more earn 0.85%.
- Branch Deposits – This is new and was just announced. You can now deposit cash at any Capital One branch ATM for you Capital One 360 account.
- Email Notifications – I get an email whenever there is an external withdrawal in my account. For example, when I pay my mortgage through my lender’s website, I get an email from Capital One when the money is being taken out of my account. This is a great reminder as sometimes you forget when money is coming out of your account. You can check your balance and verify you have the funds to cover it.
- Free ATM’s – The app is great because you can enter your address and it will show you where you can go to access a free ATM. There are 40,000 currently, so finding one isn’t difficult.
- Overdraft Line of Credit – You basically sign up for this and they offer you an overdraft. For me, I took $1,000 overdraft coverage. It costs me absolutely nothing unless I go into the negative. Once that happens, I get charged interest on my negative balance until I deposit money to bring my balance positive again. The charge for doing so is then applied at the end of the month. So, if I overdraft my account by $20, I get charged interest on that $20 until I make a deposit. There is no “fee” for overdrawing. Most banks charge $35. The one time I overdrew my account I owed $0.20. They take this amount from your checking account at the end of the month.
Capital One 360: The Bad
This review is my honest opinion and experience with Capital One 360 and to be completely honest, there are only a few gripes I have with it:
- Mobile Check Deposit – Above I raved about how easy it is to use, and it is. The issue I have is the hold times on checks. For mobile deposit to a checking account, it works as follows:
- The first $200 is available next business day with the remainder being available in 5 business days
- For mobile deposit to a savings account, the hold is 5 business, regardless of the amount.
This is what frustrates me, the length of the hold. I’ve had instances where I deposit a check on a Monday night and if one of the next five days is a holiday, I am looking at the following Tuesday for the hold to clear.
Overall, it isn’t the end of the world, it is just annoying. But not enough to make me switch banks. [**UPDATE** Since I posted this, Capital One has heard my (and others) cries about hold times. They have since adjusted their hold times and in many cases, you have access to 100% of your deposit in 2 business days.]
- Deposit Limits – There is a $5,000 daily limit on depositing checks via mobile. For most, this isn’t a deal breaker, but I wanted to mention it.
- High Balance For Highest Checking Account Interest Rate – Another one that most people won’t care about, but you need a balance of $100,000 or more to earn the highest interest rate on your checking account. The fact that you earn interest on any balance however is more important and a strong positive for Capital One 360.
Security of Capital One 360
With all of the hacking stories in the news, we can’t not talk about security. Capital One 360 is on top of its game in this instance. You have to create a fairly strong password to even get into your account for starters. But what is nice is the protection they use when you link your account up to sites like Power Wallet or Personal Capital. In this case, you never give these 3rd parties your login info. You first have to allow for the access from within your account. You will get a pass code that you then use on the 3rd party programs so they can access your accounts.
This is really nice because now if that 3rd party is ever hacked, the hacker doesn’t have your username or password. You can also revoke the access from within your Capital One 360 account, which means you don’t have to go to all the other sites that access your account and tell them to stop.
Ah fees. This section will be short because Capital One 360 really doesn’t charge fees. There are no monthly account fees and no ATM fees. There are also no foreign transaction fees. And as I mentioned, there is no overdraft fee if you overdraw your checking account like with other banks. You simply use your line of credit.
Of course, if you stop a check, there is a fee (and this true regardless of the bank you use). Here is a detailed list of the fees for a Capital One 360 checking account. There are no fees for a Capital One 360 savings account
In all, Capital One 360 rocks. I haven’t had any issues since the changeover, it’s still business as usual. All of the features are great and both the website and the smartphone app are simple to use. In addition to checking and savings accounts, Capital One 360 also offers:
- Certificates of Deposit
- Business Savings and Certificates of Deposit
- Home Loans (Fixed, Adjustable and Home Equity)
- Kid’s Savings Account
- Wallet app (an awesome budgeting app)
- MONEY (a checking account for your teen that you co-manage)
- Capital One Investing (formerly Sharebuilder for investing)
Bonus For New Accounts
With all that said, I highly recommend Capital One 360. Since Capital One acquired ING Direct, they have also increased their referral bonuses. If you open a Capital One 360 checking account through my blog with at least $250, you earn a $25 bonus. For the Capital One 360 savings account, again with at least $250, the bonus is $25.