TD Bank can be a good choice for consumer banking if you can meet the conditions to waive the bank's account fees. TD accounts don't require the typical opening deposit that other banks ask for, and its monthly fees can be waived with much lower balance levels as well. However, you won't be able to avoid TD Bank's fees with just a direct deposit, something that's usually an option at competing banks. TD's slightly above-average interest rates and account opening bonuses make it a good consideration for first-time customers living on the East Coast.
- Review: Should You Open a TD Bank Account?
- Checking Account Features
- Savings Account Features
- How Does TD Bank Compare to Other Banks?
Review: Should You Open a TD Bank Account?
Overall, TD Bank's checking and savings accounts earn slightly better interest rates than other brick-and-mortar banks, but tend to come with a different fee structure. If you live in one of the states that TD serves, it's a decent choice for traditional banking as long as you remember to waive the bank fees properly. TD Bank's current online bonuses for new checking customers also make it worth considering if you haven't banked with TD before.
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The recent introduction of checking bonuses also make TD a more attractive first-time option than other banks. These range from $150 on standard accounts to $300 on TD's premium accounts, but all bonuses require a certain number of debit purchases or direct deposits. The direct deposits must come from either your employer or the government, meaning that you cannot earn the bonus simply by transferring funds from another account you own.
Finally, TD provides considerably more benefits than most banks for customers who open multiple accounts. For example, the standard interest rate for TD Select Savings ranges from 0.05% to 0.30% APY, but this increases to a rate between 0.10% and 0.55% if you link an eligible TD Bank checking, mortgage, home equity or credit card account. There are relationship bonuses for checking accounts as well: TD Relationship Checking counts all your TD deposits in calculating your monthly fee waiver and provides discounts in other areas like ATM fees and incoming wire transfers.
TD Checking Account Features
TD's six checking account options represent a decent deal for the most part, especially when it comes to students and seniors. Unlike most traditional banks, TD does not require a minimum opening deposit for any of its checking accounts, although it does charge monthly fees if you cannot meet certain minimum balance requirements later on.
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|TD Convenience Checking|
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|TD Premier Checking|
|TD Relationship Checking||none|
|TD Student Checking||none|
|TD 60 Plus Checking||none|
In comparison to other standard checking options such as Chase Total Checking or Bank of America Core Checking, TD Convenience Checking seems more expensive at first glance: $16 a month total as opposed to the usual $12. However, most big banks expect customers to keep at least $1,500 in their accounts each day of the month in order to waive the maintenance fees. TD, by contrast, will let customers waive the fee with a daily minimum of just $100. Combined with the slightly higher APYs on TD's higher-tier checking options, the easy fee waivers make TD Bank one of the best choices among big banks in its region.
TD's student and senior options are also quite beneficial for younger or older customers. Students pay no monthly fee while seniors can easily avoid paying with just $250 in their account. This is a departure from TD's larger competitors, who typically require even students to meet certain banking activity requirements before they can waive monthly fees. The 0.05% APY on TD 60 Plus Checking is another added advantage over other senior checking options, although online banks tend to offer far superior rates with no age restrictions.
TD Bank Savings Account Features
Although it manages to differentiate itself from other traditional banks in its checking accounts, TD's savings interest rates aren't much better than average, even though they are higher than rates found at bigger banks.
|TD Simple Savings|
|TD Select Savings|
|TD Growth Money Market|
As with many below-average brick-and-mortar savings options, the best use for TD Bank's savings accounts is to store your savings in case you opt into overdraft protection for your linked TD checking account. If you do, your savings balance can cover the deficit whenever you overspend, although this is hardly an optimal solution: you may avoid the overdraft fee, but TD Bank charges an overdraft protection fee of $10 each time you use this service. While many people may find it convenient to keep their savings together with all their other banking accounts, TD isn't the optimal choice for earning interest.
How Does TD Bank Compare to Other Banks?
Our review of TD Bank measures its products against the options at other major banks in its area. We've included one-to-one comparisons of TD with large national brands like Chase and Wells Fargo as well as regional banks including PNC and SunTrust.
TD Bank vs. Bank of America
Bank of America is the largest bank that can be found in all of TD Bank's service areas, which means that anyone who lives close to a TD branch will find a Bank of America location nearby as well. In general, Bank of America's account choices are slightly less expensive than the options at TD Bank. This is partly due to the $1 paper statement fee charged at TD on most accounts, and although this fee is relatively simple to avoid, it's still a disadvantage for those who overlook the waiver condition.
TD's paper statement fee, along with its higher $3 ATM fee, make its basic checking accounts slightly more costly than similar options at Bank of America. Moreover, those who rely on direct deposits to avoid checking account fees will find that TD doesn't allow any direct deposit fee waivers. On the other hand, TD's standard accounts do let you waive the same fees with much lower minimum balance levels than Bank of America does.
TD Bank vs. Wells Fargo
Wells Fargo operates in most areas covered by TD, except for states in New England. Wells Fargo's greatest advantage over TD lies in small business banking —it's the largest active lender in the Small Business Administration's SBA 7(a) loan program, with over 1,500 current approvals, compared to TD's 228. If you're seeking a loan for your business and have the choice between these two banks, you may find it easier to get approved at Wells Fargo.
As far as personal accounts go, TD continues to hold the edge. Both banks are offering relatively strong sign-up bonuses, but TD requires much lower balances to waive the monthly fees, making its checking accounts a better deal in the long run. Students pay nothing at TD compared to $5 a month at Wells Fargo, and there's no separate Wells Fargo checking option for seniors comparable to TD 60 Plus Checking.
TD Bank vs. PNC
PNC is another bank that competes with TD in the same areas as Wells Fargo. Its monthly fees are significantly lower than TD's, but PNC requires a higher minimum balance of $500 to keep its standard checking account free from month to month. If you're just looking for a standard checking account, TD may be an easier option for free checking. However, PNC's Virtual Wallet program offers features that TD's services don't cover, such as savings goals and budget tracking, making PNC a better choice for those who want to manage their money more actively.
Interest rates on standard savings accounts are similar at these two banks, but PNC tends to offer slightly better rates if you decide to open premium checking and savings accounts together. You can obtain the best rate of 0.60% APY for balances under $25,000 by opening both the PNC Premiere Money Market Account and the PNC Performance Select Checking Account. People with higher balances to consider should start by looking at PNC if they have the option.
TD Bank vs. SunTrust
Although SunTrust requires more money to open a checking account than TD Bank, all you need to avoid paying monthly fees on SunTrust Essential Checking is to make 10 transactions each month out of your account, excluding bank fees and overdrafts. This type of activity requirement is usually related to sign-up bonuses, and not many banks count debit card usage as a monthly fee waiver. Consider SunTrust as an alternative to TD if you prefer to avoid balance requirements on your checking account, but don't expect a better deal in terms of interest rates.