Updated June 18, 2018

CIT Bank Review: Savings and CD

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CIT Bank offers high interest rates on its online savings and CD accounts. But there are some downsides. Here's what you need to know before you open an account.

CIT Bank Promo Code
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Overall Score

4.5

Savings

4.5

Money Market

5.0

Customer Service

4.0
5-point scale (the higher, the better)

Pros and Cons

  • High APY
  • No minimum deposit for savings
  • No monthly service fees
  • No checking accounts
  • No ATM card

Bottom Line

Solid online bank with excellent rates and no monthly fees

If you want to earn a more impactful return on your savings, you want to look beyond traditional savings accounts that pay very little interest. There are other savings options that offer higher returns.

In this article, we will look at how you can use CIT Bank's Money Market, Premier High Yield Savings Accounts and CDs to help grow your savings account balance.

How It Works

CIT bank offers some of the highest interest rates on the market. The accounts available are money market, high yield savings, and Certificates of Deposit (CDs). The accounts work in different ways.

  • CIT Bank's Money Market Account offers 1.85% annual percentage yield (APY). This account gives you more flexibility in how you access your money. It allows person-to-person payment and bill pay (coming soon).

  • CIT Bank's High Yield Investor Savings Accounts can earn up to a 1.55% annual percentage yield (APY). They work much like typical savings accounts, except that CIT Bank does not have physical branch locations or an ATM network.

  • CIT Bank's CDs require you to deposit your savings for a set period of time. Withdrawing funds from a CD before the term has ends will incur a penalty. Also, CDs often have a higher minimum deposit than savings accounts. Due to these requirements, some CDs earn a higher APY than savings accounts.

Now that we've covered the basics, let's get into the specifics.

High Yield Investor Savings

CIT is an online bank, so they don't have the overhead cost that brick-and-mortar banks do. This allows CIT Bank to offer a low minimum deposit and a high APY on its Premier High Yield Investor Savings Account. Here is some addition detail:

  • 1.55% APY on balances under $250,000
  • 1.55% APY on balances over $250,000
  • Minimum deposit of $100 to open
  • No account opening fees
  • No maintenance fees
  • Daily compounding interest
  • Free online and mobile banking with Bill Pay
  • FDIC insured

As with any savings account, you'll be limited to 6 withdrawals per month. This is a standard, federally-imposed limitation.

If you need to withdraw money from your CIT savings account, you have a few options: external transfers, wire transfers, and mailed checks. It's important to note that CIT Bank doesn't have an ATM network, so you won't be able to withdraw cash directly from your savings.

    Open a Savings Builder High Yield Savings Account and Get a 2.15% APY. Terms Apply

    Premier High Yield Savings Account

    • 1.55% APY
    • $100 Minimum Opening Deposit
    • No Fees to Open or Maintain Account
    • Daily Compounding Interest
    • No Minimum Daily Balance Requirement
    • FDIC Insured

Is CIT Bank Safe?: CIT's Premier High Yield Savings Accounts are FDIC insured. This means that if CIT Bank defaults, the federal government guarantees the balance in your savings account, up to $250,000.

Money Market Account

CIT's Money Market Account offers a rate even higher than the High Yield Savings and most of the CDs. If you want a good rate plus more access flexibility, this account is hard to beat. The opening minimum deposit is $100.

    Money Market Account

    • 1.85% APY
    • $100 Minimum Opening Deposit
    • No monthly maintenance fee
    • FDIC Insured

To access money in a CIT Bank Money Market Account, you need to use People Pay. People Pay is a free service that lets you send money to anyone with an email address or cell phone number.

Keep in mind: There is a limit of six transactions (such as transfers or withdrawals) per monthly statement cycle. This is a federally imposed regulation.

Certificate of Deposit (CD)

There are a few key factors to consider when deciding on a CD: the term length, the minimum deposit, the annual percentage yield (APY), and how its interest compounds. (Of course, the reputation of the institution is another factor, but we know that all of CIT Bank's savings accounts and CDs are FDIC insured.)

Here are your options:

    Open a CD with CIT

    Term CDs

    • $1,000 Minimum Opening Deposit
    • Up to 2.50% APY
    • Up to 5 years
    • No monthly maintenance fee
    • FDIC insured
    • Daily Compounding Interest

    No-Penalty CD

    • Option to Withdraw Full Balance and Interest After 7 Days of CD Funding Date
    • $1,000 Minimum Opening Deposit
    • Up to 2.05% APY
    • 11 Months
    • No monthly maintenance fee
    • FDIC insured
    • Daily Compounding Interest

    Jumbo CDs

    • $100,000 Minimum Opening Deposit
    • Up to 1.75% APY
    • Up to 5 years
    • No monthly maintenance fee
    • FDIC insured
    • Daily Compounding Interest

Why We Like CIT Bank

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Here are a few things that we like about CIT Bank's high yield savings accounts and CDs:

  • Low minimum deposits: If you have just started saving or want to set aside a small balance, CIT can be a great choice. Their minimum deposits for Premier High Yield Savings, term CDs, and no-penalty CDs are some of the lowest in the industry.

  • High rates: CIT's Money Market Account offers such a high APY that it outperforms their savings and most of their CDs. This is great news for anyone looking to save, but especially for those who can't pay the high minimum deposits that some other banks require. And if you meet a higher minimum deposit, you can earn even higher interest rates on their CD.

  • Minimal fees: CIT cuts out many fees that other banks profit from. For example, you will not be charged any account opening or maintenance fees.

Reasons You Might Skip CIT Savings

For all of CIT's advantages, the bank's savings product offerings do have some characteristics that need to be considered:

  • No checking accounts: This isn't a huge setback for those who are familiar with transferring money between financial institutions. If you like to keep all of your accounts in one place, this could be a downside.

  • No branch locations: In exchange for the high interest rate on your Premium savings account, you are required to do your CIT banking online and over the phone. And because CIT has no ATM network, you won't be able to deposit or withdraw cash directly to/from your account. Solution: link up to a checking account with a brick-and-mortar bank.

  • No IRAs: CIT personal banking products are limited to savings accounts, CDs, and custodial accounts. These CDs do not qualify for use in a retirement or trust account.

  • No Relationship Rewards: Some retail banks in the US are now offering relationship bonuses to incentivize their customers to keep all of their business in one place. If you move your savings balance to CIT from your retail bank, you may miss out on some of these bonuses. Contact your bank for more details.

How it Compares

    CIT Bank

    Money Market Account

    • 1.85% APY
    • $100 Minimum Opening Deposit
    • No monthly maintenance fee
    • FDIC Insured

    HSBC Bank

    HSBC Direct Savings - 2.01% APY

    • Earn 2.01% APY on all balance tiers
    • No monthly maintenance fee
    • Minimum balance to earn APY is $1
    • Member FDIC
    Ally Bank

    Online Savings Account

    1.85% APY on all balance tiers. $0 minimum opening deposit. No fees to open or maintain account. No minimum daily balance requirement.
    • Consistently Competitive Rates
    • 24/7 Customer Care
    • Ally Bank, Member FDIC
    Barclays

    Online Savings Account

    1.90% APY. No monthly maintenance fees. No minimum balances to open.
    • A rate that's 21x better than the national average
    • No minimum balance and no hidden fees
    • Link directly to any existing bank account

Common Questions

If you're still interested, you probably have some questions. We'll clear up some of the basics here:

  • Should I open a CD or savings account?
    This is a really broad question and everyone has different investment goals. The decision comes down to how much you're looking to set aside, how much risk you are willing to take and how much you'll need to access your savings. It is always best to contact your financial professional.

    If you can commit to not touching your savings for at least 1 year and can meet the minimum deposit, you may be able to earn a higher interest rate with a CD versus a savings account. If you need liquidity, a savings account allows you to more flexibility to withdraw your savings when needed.

  • How can I deposit funds with CIT Bank?
    For both savings accounts and CDs, there are three ways to deposit funds: transfer funds electronically, mail a check, or wire funds to your new account.

  • What is the penalty for early withdrawals from CDs?
    It depends on the term of your CD. Here's how it breaks down:

    • Terms up to 1 year: 3 months' interest on the amount withdrawn
    • Terms from 1-3 years: 6 months' interest on the amount withdrawn
    • Terms over 3 years: 12 months' interest on the amount withdrawn

Bottom Line

If you're ready to start building your savings, then CIT's deposit accounts could be right for you. CIT offers good rates higher than many other competitor online banks.

Even if you only have $100 in savings, you can start earning interest in their money market or high yield savings account. Or, if you have at least $1,000 set aside and aren't concerned about liquidity, you can earn an even greater return with a CD.

Disclaimer: Opinions expressed here are author's alone. Please support CreditDonkey on our mission to help you make savvy decisions. Our free online service is made possible through financial relationships with some of the products and services mentioned on this site. We may receive compensation if you shop through links in our content.

Disclaimer: This content was first published on December 16, 2017. This content may have been updated on June 18, 2018. Information including rates, fees, terms and benefits may vary, be out of date, or not applicable to you. Information is provided without warranty. Please check the bank's website for updated information.

More from CreditDonkey:


Best Online Savings Account


Best CD Rates

How to Invest Money

How to Invest Money

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    HSBC Direct Savings - 2.01% APY


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