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When I first started to take initiative and improve my finances, the first step was to build a solid savings base.
I knew that by having a large pile of savings, I would cover myself if emergencies happened.
And having this savings would also allow me to focus on investing my money and growing it faster.
Thanks to my finance background, I understood the power of compound interest and wanted to find a savings account that offered me a high yield.
This is because the higher the interest rate, the more interest I would earn.
Today, many online banks try to be the one stop shop for all your banking needs.
As a result, they don’t offer competitive interest rates, thus taking longer to grow your savings.
Luckily, CIT Bank is here.
They offer one of the highest yields in the country so your savings will grow as fast as possible.
In this post, I am going to show you why I keep my savings with CIT Bank and why you should too.
Table of Contents
CIT Bank Review | The Best Place To Grow Your Savings
Who Is CIT Bank?
Founded more than 100 years ago, CIT Bank began as a brick and mortar bank specializing in helping businesses and individuals with their money.
Today, CIT Bank is primarily an internet bank, but it does have a few physical branches in California under the OneWest Bank division.
As a banking institution in the US, it is regulated by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency.
As of June 30, 2019, the company had roughly $50 billion in assets.
CIT Bank Products
CIT Bank offers a variety of products and services that helps you in meeting your financial goals and improving your finances.
These products include:
- Money markets
- Savings builder
- Jumbo CD
- Term CD
- No-penalty CD
Here is a detailed look at each one.
Recently, CIT Bank introduced a checking account to customers. This makes CIT a one stop banking solution.
The checking account follows the same premise as other accounts, meaning no fees and a competitive interest rate.
They also offer up to $15 in ATM reimbursement fees a month and work with many digital payment solutions including Zell, Bill Pay, Apple Pay, and Samsung Pay.
Money Market Accounts
CIT Bank’s money market accounts are the most beneficial when you maintain a minimum of $25,000 in your account.
When you do, you’ll receive a 0.45% APY, which is one of the highest available.
A savings builder account enables you to earn the high rate of the money market account but without the $25,000 minimum deposit requirement.
Here is a short video introducing the Savings Builder account.
Simply open a savings builder account with a $100 deposit and continue to deposit $100 every month thereafter, and you’ll receive their 0.40% APY rate.
If you fail to make a $100 deposit in any month, your rate will drop for that month, but will revert to the 0.45% rate in the next month that you deposit $100.
CIT Bank has some of the best CD options available.
The jumbo CD will maximize your return on investment without any stress on your part.
Terms range from 2 to 5 years and have various rates.
There are no account opening fees, interest is compounded daily, and your CD is FDIC insured.
With an opening deposit of $1,000 you can open a high-yield CD for terms ranging from 6 months to 5 years, and rates with various rates as well.
There is no fee to open an account, your interest compounds daily, and your CD is FDIC insured.
Open a no-penalty, 11-month CD with only $1,000 and have access to your funds without fear of penalties if you need to make an early withdrawal.
Interest is compounded daily and funds are insured by the FDIC.
Opening An Account With CIT Bank
Opening an account with CIT Bank is simple and can be done in less than 10 minutes.
In fact, there are just 3 simple steps to opening an account, regardless of the bank product you want.
- Step #1: Click here to go to CIT Bank and enter your personal information.
- Step #2: Set up an electronic transfer to fund your account, or mail in a check or wire your deposit. All savings accounts require $100 to open and a CD requires $1,000.
- Step #3: Wait for the confirmation email from CIT Bank.
That is all there is to it.
Of course, if you are opening a Savings Builder account, I recommend you set up a monthly transfer of $100 so you guarantee yourself the highest yield possible.
CIT Bank Fees
This is another area where CIT Bank shines.
They don’t charge any of the typical fees most banks charge.
For instance, you won’t see any of these fees:
- No account opening fees
- No monthly maintenance fees
- No inactivity fees
- No account closure fees
And with a minimum deposit of $25,000, there no wire transfer fees either.
But if your balance drops below this, there may be a fee for outgoing wire transfers.
Note the fee is only on outgoing wire transfers. There are no fees for incoming wire transfers.
For Savings Builder accounts, instead of charging a fee, you earn a lower interest rate if your balance falls below the minimum amount or you don’t make the required monthly deposit.
However, once your balance is higher than the minimum or you complete the required monthly deposit, you earn the highest interest rate again.
Advantages And Drawbacks
Here is a quick summary of the things that makes CIT Bank stand out from other banks.
Hands down the biggest advantage CIT Bank offers is the interest on its savings products.
They are consistently ranked at or near the top on terms of highest interest paid in the country.
Another great benefit is the low minimums you need to earn the high interest rates.
Many other banks will advertise a high interest rate, but you need an absurd amount to earn this rate.
Not with CIT Bank. You earn the advertised rate with as little as $100 deposited monthly into your account.
You can access your account online or through the CIT Bank mobile app.
With the app you can check balances, transfer money and deposit checks, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
This feature comes with CIT Bank’s money market accounts. It is there version of PayPal, which let’s you easily pay friends and family.
There are a few wish-list items I would like to see improved upon or implemented with CIT Bank.
Longer transfer times
It typically takes a transfer to or from CIT Bank up to 5 business days to complete.
The reason for the longer time is the fraud protection and review that CIT Bank puts transfers through.
This is a good thing. However I wish the transfers were a little speedier.
No ATM card
With a CIT Bank savings account, you will not get an ATM card. The only way to get access to your savings is to set up a transfer using the mobile app or website.
While this can be seen as a drawback, I see it as a bonus.
By making it so you can’t withdraw money on a whim, your savings stays in your account for when you really need it.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are the most common questions I get asked about CIT Bank.
This is a great place to focus on if you are short on time.
Is CIT Bank a legitimate bank?
CIT Bank has been in business for over 100 years and is regulated by the United States Treasury.
In addition to offering online banking to customers, they have roughly 60 physical branches in California under the name OneWest Bank.
Finally, FinTech Breakthrough rated CIT Bank the best personal financial company for 2019.
Is CIT Bank secure?
CIT Bank does everything it can to keep itself and customers data secure.
For starters, they use state of the art 188-bit SSL encryption to have a secure browser.
In addition, they automatically sign you out of your account after a period of inactivity as well as layered security so only you can access your account information.
For a complete run down of the security measures CIT Bank takes to keep secure, see below.
CIT Bank is owned by CIT Group.
CIT Group offers banking services through CIT Bank and also offers financing, leasing, and other services to small business in the United States.
Is CIT Bank and Citibank the same?
They are two completely different companies.
Many people falsely believe they are the same since the parent companies sound the same.
CIT Bank is owned by CIT Group and Citibank is owned by Citigroup.
Does CIT Bank offer a high interest rate?
CIT Bank consistently offers some of the highest interest rates on all of the products they offer.
And they don’t make you jump through hoops to earn this premier interest rate.
Just deposit a certain amount or set up a monthly deposit of $100 and you are set.
How long does it take to transfer money to CIT Bank?
Transfers to and from CIT Bank take on average 3-5 business days to complete.
This is typical for the banking industry, though some now offer faster transfer times.
What products does CIT Bank offer?
CIT Bank offers a handful of high interest bank products for consumers.
- Savings Builder
- Money Market Accounts
- Certificates of Deposit
- Premier High Yield Savings
The interest rates on these products varies. To get the most current rates, click here.
Is my money with CIT Bank safe?
The money you deposit with CIT Bank is covered by FDIC Insurance.
This insurance protects up to $250,000 worth of deposits.
This means that if CIT Bank goes bankrupt or out of business, you will get your money back.
What fees does CIT Bank charge?
CIT Bank charges very little fees.
In fact, the fees are only related to certain activities and not on the accounts themselves.
With CIT Bank, you are not charged any account opening fees or monthly service fees.
The few fees they do charge are on outgoing wire fees and overdraft fees on their money market account.
Why does a high interest rate matter?
The higher the interest rate on your savings, the faster your money compounds and grows.
Here is a simple example for you.
Let’s say you have $5,000 and can put it into a savings account that earns 0.50% interest or one that earns 2.25% interest.
Here is how much interest you earn in 5 years in each account.
As you can see, the higher interest paying account grows your money faster.
This is why you want to make sure when you open your savings account with CIT Bank, you set up a monthly transfer of $100 so you earn the highest interest rate they offer.
CIT Bank Alternatives
There are a lot of online banks out there, but not all are created equal.
Here are two alternates to CIT Bank that compete well.
CIT Bank vs. Ally
What makes Ally stand out vs. CIT Bank is they offer checking accounts. Because of this, they could be you only bank you use.
In addition to this, they pay competitive interest rates on their savings products. However, their rate is not as high as CIT Bank.
You can click here to learn more about Ally Bank.
CIT Bank vs. Capital One 360
Capital One 360 also offers a complete banking experience like Ally Bank does.
The difference with Capital One 360 is the interest they pay on their savings accounts is considerably lower than CIT Bank and Ally Bank.
Still, they are easy to use and many customers are happy with them.
As of this writing, Capital One 360 is offering a bonus on their savings accounts. If you click this link and open your account with $250, they will give you $25!
CIT Bank vs. Betterment Everyday
Betterment offers a checking and savings product as well, called Betterment Everyday.
The main difference between these accounts and CIT Bank is Betterment is not a bank. It partners with banks to offer you a banking product.
Betterment does not charge any fees on their checking or savings accounts and both earn interest.
And like CIT Bank, Betterment Everyday offers FDIC insurance on your money.
At the end of the day, CIT Bank offers savings products to help you save money. And it does an amazing job at this.
It doesn’t have any frills or bells and whistles, which allows them to offer one of the highest interest rates in the country.
While some people might see the lack of extras as a drawback, I see it as a strength.
Your savings is there to grow and to be used for specific goals. By not having the extras, your money grows faster and stays in your account to grow.
And when I was first starting to work on improving my finances, this is what I wanted.
So I opened up an online bank account and I shredded the ATM card. I didn’t want easy access to the money.
I wanted it to grow and compound.
And that is what it did.
If you want to start improving your finances you need to build a savings cushion and CIT Bank helps you do this efficiently and effectively.
I have over 15 years experience in the financial services industry and 20 years investing in the stock market. I have both my undergrad and graduate degrees in Finance, and am FINRA Series 65 licensed and have a Certificate in Financial Planning.
Visit my About Me page to learn more about me and why I am your trusted personal finance expert.