Bank5 Connect Review - Everything You Need to Know

Full-service online bank with no-fee, interest-bearing checking accounts

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Bank5 Connect operates solely online. It was established in July 2013 as an extension of BankFive — a local institution based in Fall River, Massachusetts that’s been serving its community for over 160 years, so they know what they’re doing.

Who is Bank5 Connect Best For?

Bank5 Connect will appeal to customers looking for competitive interest rates on several key banking services like checking and savings accounts, and CDS. It is ideal for those interested in:

  • Low minimum checking and savings deposit requirements for receiving competitive interest rates
  • Instant customer service via online chat
  • CD interest rates that are higher than the industry average

Pros

  • Deposits of only $10 required to open checking and savings accounts

  • Deposits of only $100 required to earn interest on checking and savings accounts

  • Savings account can be used for overdraft protection on checking account

  • ATM access of funds for both checking and savings accounts

Cons

  • No physical bank locations

  • No way to deposit cash

  • Paper statements cost extra

  • No loan accounts

Types of Accounts

Bank5 Connect offers the following types of accounts:

  • Checking Accounts
  • Savings Accounts
  • Certificates of Deposit

Learn more about each type of account Bank5 Connect offers below.

Checking Accounts

Bank5 Connect has checking accounts with zero fees, competitive interest rates, and low deposit requirements.

Other advantages include:

  • Opening the account with just $10
  • Earning .76% APY for deposits of $100 or more
  • Free use of ATMs
  • Reimbursements of up to $15 a month for ATM fees charged by other institutions
  • Participating in a rewards program for using your debit card
  • Free first round of basic checks
  • No monthly fees
  • Easy access your checking account via a mobile app

While there are several banks and credit unions that have checking accounts with higher rates than Bank5 Connect, most that do require much higher deposits to get started – usually from $2500 to $15,000. With a minimum of just $100 to earn a .76% interest rate — when most brick and mortar banks offer no interest at those dollar amounts — a Bank5 Checking account is a good deal for many people who carry typical level balances.

While you can’t deposit cash into a Bank5 Connect checking account, you can send in paper checks and do peer to peer transfers and bank transfers as well as deposit checks in the mobile app. You can also set up your savings account as overdraft protection for your checking account to avoid overdraft fees.

Savings Accounts

Bank5 Connect offers impressive interest rates on savings accounts, along with a low minimum balance requirement, and zero fees. This makes saving with Bank5 Connect easy and fun. The current interest rate of 2.05% APY is higher than many certificates of deposits at brick and mortar banks. So, you’ll get more bang for your savings buck and keep your money liquid.

Advantages include:

  • Opening the account with just $10
  • Earning interest with a balance of $100
  • Earning 2.05% APY
  • No monthly fees
  • Accessing money through a debit card
  • Using your savings as overdraft protection for your checking account

While there are a few savings accounts out there with slightly higher rates, Bank5 Connect is impressive thanks to its low required deposit amount and lack of monthly fees. There are no hoops to jump through in order to simply save money and earn a competitive interest rate.

There is a federal limit of 6 withdrawals or transfers a month from a savings account. Each withdrawal in excess of 6 will incur a fee of $10 per transaction. It’s wise to keep money in your savings account that you aren’t expecting to access often in order to avoid this fee.

Certificates of Deposit

Certificates of Deposit, or CDs, are a secure savings vehicle. You get higher interest rates for “locking in” your money for a set period, and they are FDIC insured. CDs at Bank5 Connect offer highly competitive APYs and varying terms from 6 to 36 months.

Certificates of Deposit
Connect CD Term Minmum Deposit APY
6 month $500 1.45%
12 month $500 2.55%
18 month $500 1.75%
21 month $500 2.4%
24 month (Investment CD) $500 2.7%
36 month $500 2.9%

As you can see from the above rates, Bank5 Connect's savings accounts currently accrue more interest than the 6- or 18-month CDs. To maximize your rate of return, it’s wise to go with one of the other terms — be it 12, 21, 24, or 36 months — that carries a higher interest rate than the savings account.

The 24-month CD is particularly attractive. With most CDs, you can’t add funds after opening the account. With the 24-month investment CD, however, you can transfer funds into your CD account anytime you like. You do still have to keep your funds in the CD for the full 24 months (from the original date of issue) to avoid a penalty of six months interest.

Other great features:

  • $500 minimum deposit
  • No monthly fees
  • FDIC insured for up to $250,000 across all accounts at this institution
  • At maturity, you can roll over your funds into a new term or add additional funds
  • Free bank transfers from external banks to fund your CDs

How to Set Up an Account at Bank5 Connect

Setting up a Bank5 Connect account is a straightforward process. Before you begin, you will need the following documentation.

  • A valid ID (any of the following)
  • State ID
  • Military ID
  • Driver’s License
  • Passport
  • A social security number
  • A way to fund your account such as a:
  • Debit card
  • Credit card
  • Checking account
  • Savings account

If you don't interact with the online interface for 45 minutes, you'll lose everything you’ve inputted. For this reason, it's a good idea to have all of your documents together and easily accessible so you can fill everything out at once.

To set up an account, simply click the “open an account” button directly from the home page or go to the account opening wizard here.

You’ll see this secure form:

From there, you’ll be able to go step by step through the process of opening an account in about 10 minutes.

Account Fees

There are very few fees associated with Bank5 Connect's accounts. Here are the few we’ve found. Other than the paper statements fee, they are all “penalty” fees and are quite low compared to many other banks.

Account Fees
Checking Service Fee
Paper Statement per Statement Cycle $1.00
Levies $25.00
Garnishments $25.00
Stop Payment $15.00
Uncollected Funds $15.00
Insufficient Funds $15.00

Savings fees are the same as checking fees with the exception of an additional $10.00 fee for each withdrawal over 6 withdrawals a month. (Read more above.)

Bill Pay Service

With online bill pay, you can set up your checking account to automatically pay each of your monthly bills so you'll no longer have to write checks for recurring payments. You can pay each bill on or before the due date and the money is transferred immediately.

Mobile Banking App

Bank5 Connect has a robust and secure mobile app that makes it easy to bank on the go.

Features include:

  • One-time fund transfer scheduling
  • Bill pay
  • Mobile check deposits
  • Quick balance (you can view your balance without having to log in)
  • Fingerprint login for security

Customer Service

Bank5 Connect has excellent and instant customer service during extended business hours. You can reach them by chat from 8:00 am to 4:00 PM every day through the “contact us” button on every page or by clicking here.

They also have phone support at 1-855-522-2655 with the following hours:

Customer Service
Mon – Wed 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM EST
Thu – Fri 7:30 AM to 7:00 PM EST
Sat 7:30 AM to 3:00 PM EST
Sun 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM EST

Finally, you can use their online form here to contact them anytime.

About Bank5 Connect

Bank5 Connect is the online-only extension of a 160-year-old local bank in Massachusetts – BankFive. Because Bank5 Connect operates solely online, they have lower overhead and are able to offer highly competitive interest rates on all their accounts, including checking, savings, and CDs.

Bank5 Connect doesn't have loan accounts or money market accounts at this time. Bank5 Connect also has industry standard security practices with strong encryption as well as consumer driven security alerts. There are no history of breaches with this company.

The Bottom Line

Benefits

Bank5 Connect is a solid online-only banking institution. With small minimal deposits of $10 to open accounts and $100 to start receiving interest on both checking and savings accounts, they are an attractive option for both small and larger depositors. With extended hours for customer service and an easy-to-use chat app, all of your banking questions can quickly be answered.

Drawbacks

Bank5 Connect's biggest weak spot is that it doesn’t offer a money market account or loan services. If you need these services, you'll have to go through a different institution. Another potential downfall is that Bank5 Connect is online-only. So, if you’d rather bank at a physical branch, then this probably isn't the bank for you.