The Ally Interest Checking Account provides a competitive APY and overdraft protection for no monthly fee
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- The Ally Interest Checking Account is known for its relatively high APY, ease of use, and low costs.
- The account is good for people who don’t mind banking digitally.
- Ally doesn’t charge monthly fees, and you can enroll in overdraft protection as well.
- See Insider’s picks for the best checking accounts »
This post was last reviewed and updated on April 30, 2021.
Ally Financial is a banking institution known for operating entirely online and for providing loans and deposit accounts. The Ally Interest Checking Account is known for offering a higher APY than many competitors and for being easy to use.
A good checking account should be low-cost to the consumer (if not free). Since this is likely the account you use to pay for things most frequently, it should also provide easy access to your money.
The Ally Interest Checking Account doesn’t charge any service fees. It lets you enroll in online bill pay and connect to Zelle to pay family and friends. The bank also reimburses you for ATM fees charged by out-of-network providers.
Ally Interest Checking Account
Annual Percentage Yield (APY)
Annual Percentage Yield (APY)
0.10% to 0.25% APY
- Competitive APY
- No initial deposit
- No minimum account balance
- No monthly service charge
- Connect your account with Zelle
- Easy-to-use mobile app
- Reimburses up to $10/month in out-of-network ATM fees
- Online bill pay
- 24/7 customer service
- Overdraft protection
- No physical branch locations
- No way to deposit cash
- You can deposit checks right from your smartphone
- Ally reimburse’s up to $10 per statement cycle for fees charged at other ATMs nationwide
- Transfer money with your voice through Ally Skill™ for Amazon Alexa
- Interest compounded daily, paid monthly
- FDIC insured
Should you open an Ally Interest Checking Account?
You may like the Ally Interest Checking Account if you prefer to do all your banking with one institution. You can also open a high-yield savings account, money market account, and CD with Ally.
If you set up a savings or money market account with Ally, you can request overdraft protection. If you overdraft your checking account while enrolled in this service, the money is automatically withdrawn from your savings or money market account. This way, you don’t have to pay an overdraft fee or risk your transaction being denied.
This account is good for people who don’t have a problem banking digitally. There are no physical branch locations, so if you’re happy doing everything online, through an app, or over the phone, you may find Ally is right for you.
The pros of an Ally Interest Checking Account
- You’ll earn a relatively high interest rate. Ally pays a 0.10% APY for account balances under $15,000, and 0.25% for balances over $15,000. These rates are better than the national average checking account rate of 0.03%.
- You don’t need any money to get started. Some bank accounts require an initial deposit to open your account, but you don’t need anything to open an Ally Interest Checking Account. However, you will need to deposit money to begin earning interest.
- Ally doesn’t charge monthly fees. Many banks charge a monthly fee for each account. You may be able to avoid this fee by maintaining a certain account balance, using your debit card a certain number of times per month, or setting up direct deposits. There’s no monthly charge with Ally.
- You can connect your account with Zelle. You can link your Ally checking account to Zelle, a platform for transferring money to bank accounts of family and friends. With Zelle, you can send money to someone, request money, and split payments between multiple people.
- The mobile app is easy to use. Ally’s mobile app is praised for having a clean interface and being simple to navigate. You can use it to deposit checks digitally and find the nearest in-network ATM.
- It’s easy and affordable to use ATMs. As an Ally member, you have free access to over 43,000 Allpoint® ATMs across America. Ally doesn’t charge a fee if you use an out-of-network ATM, but the provider that owns the ATM might. However, Ally will reimburse you up to $10 per month in ATM fees.
- You can pay bills online. You can set up one-time or recurring bill payments directly from your Ally Interest Checking Account. Online bill pay is free, but you will pay $9.95 for same-day bill pay and $14.95 for overnight bill pay by mail.
- Ally provides strong customer service. Ally customer support is available 24/7. You can call a representative or chat with one online or through your app.
- You can enroll in overdraft protection. This free service is available to anyone who has an Ally savings or money market account along with the checking account. If you overdraw from your checking account, Ally will automatically withdraw funds from your other account to cover the difference.
The cons of an Ally Interest Checking Account
- There are no physical locations. Ally doesn’t have any brick-and-mortar branch locations. If you prefer to walk into a branch and speak with a banker face-to-face, Ally might not be the right fit.
- You can’t deposit cash into your account. Ally’s setup makes it convenient to deposit checks, but it’s not good for people who need to deposit cash. Because there are no physical locations, you can’t just walk into a branch and ask a teller to put your cash in the account. Ally probably isn’t a good match for people who get paid in cash or regularly receive cash as a gift.
Ally Interest Checking Account features
Setting up an Ally Interest Checking Account online is relatively quick and easy. It will take a few business days for any money you transfer from an external bank account to show up in your Ally account.
Ally doesn’t require an opening deposit or a minimum account balance. You don’t have to pay a monthly service charge, either.
You’ll receive a 0.10% APY if your balance is under $15,000, and 0.25% if your balance is over $15,000. This interest is compounded daily and paid monthly.
With Ally, you can deposit checks digitally, but you can’t deposit cash. You have access to over 43,000 Allpoint® ATMs, and if an out-of-network ATM provider charges you a fee, Ally will reimburse you up to $10 per month.
You can set up bill payments directly from your Ally account, and you can link the account to Zelle to transfer money directly between your checking account and others’ bank accounts.
Individual Ally accounts are FDIC insured for up to $250,000, and joint accounts are insured for up to $500,000.
How does Ally compare to similar checking accounts?
|Ally Interest Checking Account||Capital One 360 Checking Account||Simple Online Checking Account|
|Minimum account balance||$0||$0||$0|
|Online or in-person||Online||Online and in-person||Online|
|APY||0.10% for $15,000< 0.25% for ≥ $15,000||0.10%||0.01%|
|ATM access||Yes; reimburses up to $10/month for out-of-network fees||Yes; does not reimburse out-of-network fees||Yes; does not reimburse out-of-network fees|
|Overdraft protection||Transfer money from savings or money market account||Transfer money from savings or money market account, denies purchase, or same-day grace||Denies purchase|
|Customer service||24/7 live chat or phone access||24/7 live chat; call 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. ET||Call M-F, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET; Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET|
Ally vs. Capital One 360
Neither Ally nor Capital One charges users monthly fees to maintain a checking account. Both companies allow you to connect with Zelle, and both make it easy to deposit checks digitally.
Capital One does have physical branch locations (although they are limited). If there’s a branch near you, you may prefer Capital One if you like in-person banking.
If you have more than $15,000, you may prefer to go with Ally, which pays 0.25%.
Capital One offers several options for overdraft protection. You may choose to transfer money from your savings or money market account (like you would with Ally), settle for having your purchase denied, or receive “next day grace,” which gives you 24 hours to replace the overdrawn funds. If you don’t enroll in overdraft protection, you’ll settle for a $35 fee, while Ally’s is only $25.
Capital One does provide access to ATMs, but unlike Ally, the bank doesn’t reimburse out-of-network ATM fees. Capital One also isn’t known for having customer service as strong as Ally’s.
Ally vs. Simple
Both Ally and Simple are online-only banking institutions. Both offer conveniences like mobile check deposit.
Simple offers a robust budgeting feature. Through your Simple account, you can set up automatic payments, see how much fun money you have left every month, and view reports about how you spend your money.
Simple APY is currently lower than Ally’s. Simple also doesn’t offer as many overdraft protection options as Ally. If swiping your card would overdraw your account, Simple just denies the purchase.
Simple’s customer service representatives aren’t as accessible as Ally’s. While Ally offers 24/7 customer support, Simple only operates from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. ET on weekdays and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET on Saturdays, and it’s closed Sundays.
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