TIAA Bank offers a competitive annual percentage yield (APY) and its Yield Pledge checking account comes with minimal fees. Also, the minimum opening deposit required isnâ€™t too big to earn the bankâ€™s APY. If youâ€™d like to earn some interest, this account is a step up from the basic checking account offered by other banks. With this account, you get access to free bill pay, mobile banking and a free Visa debit card. Your first 20 checks are free.
As of January 31, 2020, there is an introductory APY rate of 1.01% on balances up to $250,000 that is offered to new client accounts for the first 12 months. Existing TIAA Bank customers will need to fund a new account with money from an external account in order to be eligible for the intro rate.
There are two overdraft options. The first is to link another checking, money market or savings account to your Yield Pledge checking account. If you overdraw your account, the bank will pull the extra amount to cover the overdraft from the linked account covers it. You still pay a $30 fee for each overdrawn item.
The second option is a line of credit, which is variable and based on the market prime rate plus a margin of 5.90%. This rate may change at any time, and will be adjusted in your account each month (if you use it). Also, any outstanding balance requires payment from a linked account.
TIAA Bank offers a Yield Pledge program: Your checking account will remain in the top 5% of other competitor accounts â€” the 10 biggest banks in the top 10 largest banking markets. This is to encourage you to keep banking with TIAA Bank even after the introductory APY expires.
Opening a checking account can be done in as little as five minutes using TIAA Bankâ€™s online application form. Youâ€™ll need to select â€śYield Pledge Checkingâ€ť under the â€śBasic Accountsâ€ť section. Youâ€™ll then be asked to fill in your personal details, including citizenship status, address and employment information. The bank will also ask you to create a security code as an extra layer of security when contacting its customer service.
Once you agree to the bankâ€™s terms and review your information, youâ€™ll need to fund your account by online transfer, mobile deposit or via mail. Alternatively, you can call customer service at 888-882-3837 or apply at a branch in person â€” although there are only a handful of branches and theyâ€™re all in Florida.