Citizens Access is the online brand of Citizens Bank which was first established in 1828 in Providence, Rhode Island.
Citizens Access offers a number of banking products including:
- an online savings account
- certificates of deposit (see Citizens Access CD rates here)
- mortgages and refinancing
- student loans
For the purpose of this review, we will focus on their online savings account as it is currently among the highest yielding online savings accounts on the market.
Please note that the account is FDIC-insured up to $250,000 per depositor or $500,000 for joint accounts. The FDIC treats both Citizens Bank and their 100 percent online subsidiary Citizens Access as the same entity for coverage, so if you have a deposit account already with Citizens Bank this will count towards your coverage limit.
To see if this account is right for you, continue reading our review below.
Citizens Access Online Savings Rate + Account Details
The Citizens Access Online Savings account is a fairly straightforward account that can be opened online in 5 minutes. The minimum deposit requirement to fund the account is higher than usual at $5,000.
To put this yield into perspective the current national average for a savings account sits at just 0.39% APY according to FDIC data and only a handful of institutions are paying around 5.00% APY.
Opening and Funding the Account
Opening a Citizens Access Savings account can be done online in 5 minutes with a simple 5 step process (as shown above). To get started, navigate here.
Here’s what you’ll need to complete the process:
- Social Security Number
- Residential Address
- Your bank account number from which you will be transferring the initial $5,000.
- Your bank or credit union’s routing number.
If you’d prefer to send a physical check to fund your new account, you may also do that. Here’s how:
- Make the check payable to you from another US financial institution. Citizens Access does not allow foreign checks.
- Endorse the back of the check with your signature, your Citizens Access account number and “For Deposit Only to Citizens” on the endorsement line.
- Mail to the following address: Citizens Access PO Box 6801 Carol Stream, IL 60197-6801
Accessing Your Funds
As a purely online bank, Citizens Access does not have any physical branch locations or ATM access.
When you would like to access the funds in your online savings account, you have two options.
- Set up a recurring transfer to an external bank account.
- Contact Citizens Access (888) 201-6505 and have them mail you a physical check.
If you’re in the market for a competitive, no-frills online savings account, then Citizens Access may be a solid option for you. The rate is quite competitive and if the Fed continues to raise prime rates, we expect this account’s APY to continue to climb along with the market.
On the downside, this account lacks many features other savings account offers such as mobile apps for both Apple and Android devices. Many online savings accounts have robust apps allowing consumers to transfer funds, make mobile check deposits, etc.
There is also no ATM card or ATM access associated with this account, so accessing cash will always be a two step process of first transferring it to your external bank account, then using your current debit/ATM card for withdrawals.