TIAA Bank Review

Is TIAA Bank a good bank?

We publish unbiased reviews; our opinions are our own and are not influenced by payments from advertisers. Learn about our independent review process and partners in our advertiser disclosure.
TIAA Bank

Based out of Jacksonville, Florida, TIAA Bank is an online-only bank established in 2017 when TIAA acquired EverBank Financial Corp. It promotes high-yield checking and savings accounts with an uncommon promise: Yields always will be among the top 5% of competitor accounts. TIAA Bank has $42.4 billion in assets, as of March 2020.

  • Pros and Cons
  • Company Overview
Pros and Cons
Pros
  • Highly competitive APYs on checking, CD, and money market accounts

  • Live customer support

  • Reimbursements for ATM fees

Cons
  • No physical banking locations

  • Must have higher balances to get the best rates

  • Best rates on checking and money market accounts last only for your 1-year introductory term

Company Overview
  • Official Website www.tiaabank.com
  • Bank Products Offerings Checking, savings, money market accounts, certificates of deposit, and credit cards
  • Customer Service Available by phone (888-882-3837) seven days a week from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Eastern. Email contact form is also available on the website.
  • Year Founded 2017

Who Is TIAA Bank Best For?

TIAA Bank is a good fit for people who looking to earn high yields on their accounts and who have the ability to maintain a high enough balance to take advantage of the best possible rates. Customers will find:

  • Guaranteed high returns on checking, savings, money market accounts, and CDs, relative to the market
  • A network of more than 80,000 free ATMs across the U.S.
  • Up to $15 in reimbursements for out-of-network ATM fees per month
  • Mobile check deposits using TIAA Bank’s mobile app

What Does TIAA Bank Offer?

TIAA Bank offers the following types of accounts:

Checking Accounts

Yield Pledge Checking

Yield Pledge Checking is guaranteed to produce yields in the top 5% of competitive accounts. TIAA Bank collects data from large banks in large markets at the end of every month to define what constitutes the top 5%. Also included are monthly ATM reimbursements up to $15 on out-of-network ATMs, and if you have a minimum balance of more than $5,000, you'll get unlimited ATM reimbursements. A Yield Pledge Checking account requires a minimum opening balance of $100.

The account also comes with specific purchase protections when using your debit card, including extended warranty protection, price protection, and return protection.

Other features include:

  • No monthly fees
  • Mobile check deposits
  • Free online bill pay

After an initial 1-year introductory APY of 0.40%, as of Sept. 25, 2020, ongoing APYs vary depending on the amount of money you deposit.

Checking Rates
Balance Ongoing APY
$100,000 to $10,000,000 0.25%
$50,000 to $99,999.99 0.20%
$25,000 to $49,999.99 0.15%
$0 to $24,999.99 0.12%

Basic Checking

Basic Checking has nearly all of the same features of Yield Pledge Checking, but it pays no interest and requires only $25 to open an account. There are no monthly fees as long as the average daily balance remains at least $25. This is a good account for anyone who prefers not to keep a lot of money in a checking account but needs the basic functionality.

Basic Savings

TIAA Bank offers a single savings account option good for people who want to start saving and build their funds. Its annual percentage yield of 0.55%, as of Sept. 25, 2020, is still higher than what can be found in basic savings accounts at brick-and-mortar locations. Accounts can be opened with a minimum of $25, and no monthly fees are charged as long as the average daily balance remains at least $25.

Other advantages of the account include:

  • Mobile check deposits
  • IRA eligibility
  • FDIC insured up to $250,000 per depositor

Yield Pledge Money Market

Savers with at least $500 can take advantage of TIAA Bank's high-yield guarantee with a money market account. It functions in much the same way as savings accounts but with better interest rates for at least the first year.

Account advantages include:

  • IRA eligibility
  • Guaranteed high yields
  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • Mobile check deposits

After an initial 1-year introductory APY of 0.55%, as of October 1, 2020, ongoing APYs may vary depending on the amount of money you deposit.

Money Market Rates
Balance Ongoing APY
$100,000 to $10,000,000 0.50%
$50,000 to $99,999.99 0.50%
$25,000 to $49,999.99 0.50%
$10,000 to $24,999.99 0.50%
$0 to $9,999.99 0.50%

To get the best rates of return on your money, mark the expiration of any promotional APYs on your calendar. Banks count on you to forget and just leave your money with them at the lower rate.

Certificates of Deposit (CDs)

TIAA Bank offers a two types of CD: a Basic CD and a Bump Rate CD. The Bump Rate CD is available for a 3.5 year term and pays 0.70%. If rates increase before the end of the term, you'll have the option to "bump" your rate to the higher rate, once per term. You'll need $1,500 to open one.

Basic CDs are available in a variety of rates and terms and require a minimum $1,000 deposit to open. Rates are as of Sept. 25, 2020.

Basic CDs
CD Term for Basic CDs Basic CD APY
3-month 0.25%
6-month 0.35%
9-month 0.45%
1-year 0.50%
1.5-year 0.55%
2-year 0.60%
2.5 year 0.60%
3-year 0.70%
4-year 0.80%
5-year 0.90%

Other Financial Products From TIAA Bank

In addition to its standard personal banking options, TIAA Bank also offers the following services:

  • Mortgage lending
  • Precious metal services
  • Foreign currency services

TIAA Bank Customer Service

Customer service representatives are available via phone seven days a week from 8 a.m.–11 p.m. Eastern Standard Time by calling 1-888-882-3837. Customers also can submit inquiries online by clicking the email link.

If you press 0 after calling, you will be connected to a real human.

How to Bank With TIAA Bank

To open an account, visit tiaabank.com or call 1-888-882-3837. As with any financial institution, you need to provide personal information to open a bank account.

You can start the account opening process by clicking the “open an account” button on most account pages of the TIAA bank website.

This will take you to a page where you can select all the accounts you want to open.

At that point, the account opening wizard will walk you through the process. It’s simple and easy, but if you get stuck there is 24/7 customer service available at 1-866-755-9143.

Final Verdict

BENEFITS

TIAA Bank offers highly competitive rates on checking, money market, and CD accounts through its Yield Pledge accounts. The Yield Pledge means you can rest assured that your money is earning in the top range of returns across other banks for the accounts and terms you select. This can be great for peace of mind and ease of use. TIAA Bank also has real people answering their customer service line, so it’s easy to get the answers you need without having to speak to an answering service.

DRAWBACKS

While TIAA Bank does offer accounts with opening deposits of just $25, these accounts don’t have particularly competitive interest rates. You can get higher interest rates on both checking and savings accounts elsewhere than what TIAA offers for its basic accounts. If you are not opening a Yield Pledge account, you may want to shop around for alternatives.

Article Sources

The Balance requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy .
  1. Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. "TIAA Bank." Accessed Aug. 18, 2020.

  2. TIAA Bank. "Yield Pledge Checking." Accessed Aug. 18, 2020.

  3. Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. "TIAA Bank Financials." Accessed Aug. 18, 2020.

  4. TIAA Bank. "Basic Accounts." Accessed Aug. 18, 2020.

  5. TIAA Bank. "3.5-Year Bump Rate CD." Accessed Sept. 25, 2020.

  6. TIAA Bank. "Contact Us." Accessed Aug. 18, 2020.