SFGI Direct Bank Review

Is SFGI Direct a good bank?

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SFGI Direct is the online-only banking division of Summit Community Bank, a regional bank with offices in West Virginia and Virginia. It's owned by Summit Financial Group, a $2.40 billion company based in Moorefield, West Virginia.

SFGI Direct offers just one account—a high-yield, online-only savings account—but delivers an interest rate competitive with major national banks.

What We Like, What We Don't Like

What We Like
  • High interest rate for your savings account

  • No monthly fees

  • Scheduled transfers for easy savings

  • 128-bit encryption

What We Don't Like
  • $500 minimum deposit

  • Only offers savings accounts and nothing else

  • Limited to linking with one outside banking institution for transfers

Who Is SFGI Direct Best For?

SFGI Direct is a good option for people who are satisfied with their local bank but want higher interest rates on their savings. This online bank has features that make saving easy, and watching your interest add up can be rewarding.

This bank could be a good option if you want:

  • A consistently competitive rate on your savings account
  • No monthly fees
  • Easy transfers from your outside checking account
  • The ability to manage your account online

What Does SFGI Direct Offer?

SFGI Direct offers a single type of account: a savings account.

SFGI Direct Savings Account

The SFGI Direct Savings Account is simple, easy to use, and pays a highly competitive interest rate on your savings.

Advantages include:

  • An interest rate of 1.01% annual percentage yield (APY) as of July 15, 2020
  • No monthly fees
  • Online application process
  • Ability to set up automatic transfers from your external account
  • Ability to transfer money from your SFGI Direct savings to your external account
  • FDIC-insured up to $250,000
  • Customer service available via phone and online

This account can only be funded with electronic transfers from another bank account—no paper checks will be accepted.

Since SFGI Direct doesn’t offer any type of ATM card, checking account, or money market account, you must perform an electronic transfer when you want to withdraw your money. Transfers usually take two banking business days. If you need instant access to your savings, SFGI Direct won't be a good fit for you.

The minimum initial deposit is $500. All deposits made to SFGI Direct are covered by FDIC insurance up to $250,000 per depositor. If you have deposits in both Summit local community banks and SFGI Direct, they count together toward the maximum federal insurance.

The bank reserves the right to limit withdrawals to six per month, and warns that it may close your account if you exceed that number.

SFGI Direct Customer Service

You'll access your SFGI Direct savings account through the website. If you need help, you can reach the company by calling 1-877-776-9722 Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. (all times Eastern). You can also contact them by using the live chat feature on the website, via an online form, or by sending correspondence through the mail.

How to Bank With SFGI Direct

It's easy to open an account with SFGI Direct. Click the “Open an Account” button on their home page or visit their sign-up page directly.

You’ll go through their account-opening wizard, which looks like this:

This process requires several pieces of documentation, including:

  • Social Security number
  • Valid ID, which can include:
    • State ID
    • Driver’s license
    • Passport
    • Military ID
  • Previous address, if you've lived at your current residence less than two years
  • A United States-based savings or checking account (including routing and account numbers) for funding your SFGI direct account

Collect everything you need before you start the application process. For security purposes, your session will time out if you leave it inactive for 30 minutes. If that happens, you will lose the work you’ve done.

SFGI Direct does not accept wire transfers or checks sent through the mail.

The Bottom Line

BENEFITS

SFGI Direct offers a highly competitive interest rate on its savings account, plus there are no monthly fees.

DRAWBACKS

If you need additional services such as checking accounts, loans, or certificates of deposit, then you will need another bank in addition to SFGI.

Article Sources

  1. SFGI Direct. "About SFGI Direct." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  2. Summit Community Bank. "About Us." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  3. SFGI Direct. "Frequently Asked Questions." Accessed May 12, 2020.

  4. SFGI Direct. "Savings Account Disclosure and Agreement Terms to Establish an Account with SFGI Direct, a Division of Summit Community Bank," Page 3. Accessed May 12, 2020.

  5. SFGI Direct. "Welcome." Accessed May 12, 2020.