SunTrust Bank Reviews — Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market, and IRA Accounts


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Since opening its doors in Atlanta, Georgia in 1890, SunTrust Bank has grown considerably, operating some 1,400 branches and 2,160 ATMs in states such as North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, and Virginia. Along with banking products, they also offer investment, mortgage, and asset management services.
Rates for SunTrust Bank’s checking and savings accounts are lower compared to its competitors, but many of these are online banks, meaning you may not get access to in-person customer service. Their money market, CD, and IRA accounts aren’t as low – though depending on the term, their rates are comparable to other banks.
This SunTrust Bank review will look at all available savings accounts, including account types, features, and interest rates. Keep in mind that rates vary based on region, so the rates listed are ones closest to the bank’s headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia.



In this review, you’ll learn:
SunTrust Checking Account Options
SunTrust Savings Account Options
SunTrust CD Rates
SunTrust Money Market Rates
SunTrust IRA Rates
Overall Review of SunTrust Bank






SunTrust Checking Account Options



Get free checks and cash deposit bonuses, but at the expense of low rates and possible monthly maintenance fees.

Balanced Banking
The Balanced Banking checking account is designed as a basic account which can also help you save on fees by preventing overdrafts. SunTrust automatically provides account holders with overdraft coverage. It’s designed so that your account will decline any ATM or debit card transactions which would cause an overdraft on your account. If an item (such as a check) is returned because of insufficient finds, you’ll pay a reduced fee of $20 instead of the standard $36.
Account holders can also opt into the overdraft protection plan, which is an upgrade option that links your checking to another SunTrust deposit account or credit card. You’ll be charged a $12.50 transfer fee for each day you’ll need to transfer money between accounts. If you choose to link an Overdraft Assurance line of credit, you’ll be charged a $7 monthly fee.
You do not earn any interest with a Balanced Checking Account, but you do get a debit card, a free starter pack of 25 checks (or 50% off personalized ones), and a 10% cash deposit bonus if you redeem the cash back into your checking account when using a SunTrust Cash Rewards credit card. There are no ATM fees at any SunTrust machines, but you do not get reimbursed for using out of network ones.
Essential Checking
The Essential checking account is designed for those who prefer to keep a lower minimum balance and may not need overdraft protection. All you need is a minimum of $100 to open the account. However, your card may still be declined for insufficient funds like the Balanced Banking account. If you get any item returned (such as a bounced check), you’ll have to pay the standard $36 fee. You can also choose overdraft protection which has the same features as the balanced checking account.
There is no interest earned with this SunTrust checking account, but you get a free starter pack of 25 checks (or 50% off personalized ones), a debit card, and a 10% cash deposit bonus if you redeem the cash back into your checking account when using a SunTrust Cash Rewards credit card. You can avoid the $7 monthly maintenance fee if you keep a $500 minimum daily balance or in qualifying monthly direct deposits per statement cycle.
Essential Checking for Students
This account is meant to help students manage their money easily as well as the ability to save on monthly fees. You won’t be charged monthly maintenance fees for up to five years as long as you’re opening a new checking account and can provide proof of active enrollment at any qualifying school. This includes high school or colleges.
Other than the differences mentioned above, the Essential Checking Account for students has the same features as the standard Essential Checking Account.
Select Checking





APY Minimum Amount to Open




0.01% $100




Rates as of 1/8/2017

The Select Checking Account is for those who want to earn interest on their deposits and intend on making more transactions. Upon account opening, you’ll receive a free starter pack of 100 checks or 50% off personalized ones. You’ll earn only 0.01% interest on qualifying deposits which is significantly lower than other banks.
In addition to not paying any fees at SunTrust ATMs, you’ll get reimbursed for two out of network ATM transactions every statement cycle.
There is a $15 monthly maintenance fee, but you can get that waived if you keep a $2,000 minimum daily balance, have at least $2,000 in qualifying direct deposits, maintain $10,000 across linked SunTrust accounts, or if you have a linked small business checking account. You can also get the monthly maintenance fees waived for up to three essential checking accounts.
Signature Advantage





APY Minimum Amount to Open




0.01% $100




Rates as of 1/8/2017

The Signature Advantage checking account is meant for those who intend on making large and frequent transactions. After a $100 minimum opening amount, you’ll need to keep at least $25,000 in balances across your SunTrust accounts to avoid the $25 monthly maintenance fee.
This includes your balance in your checking accounts plus IRA or brokerage accounts through SunTrust and any linked accounts such as money market, CDs, savings, checking, and trust accounts.
You get unlimited free personalized checks and earn interest at 0.01%, which is very low compared to other banks. Account users get a debit card and unlimited transactions. You’ll also get all ATM fees reimbursed and waive the monthly maintenance fees for up to four essential checking accounts.
How SunTrust Bank’s checking accounts compare
Even though SunTrust offers services like in-person customer service and digital payments like Apple Pay®, their rates fall way short when stacked against other competitors’ checking accounts rates . Other places offer the ability to earn interest no matter what type of checking account you choose. They also have no monthly maintenance fees whereas SunTrust only waives them if you maintain a minimum amount. While SunTrust has no ATM fees on some of their accounts, other major competitors offer unlimited domestic ATM reimbursement for all their accounts.
If you have existing accounts with SunTrust or enjoy in-person customer service and a wide variety of products with one bank, this bank can be a good choice. However, if you want to earn more than 0.01% APY, then you’re better off going elsewhere.
How to get a SunTrust Bank checking account
To open a SunTrust checking account , go to their website and fill out an online application. You’ll need to provide personal details including your phone number, address, Social Security number and a government-issued ID. You can also do so at your local branch. You can only open a Student Essential Checking Account in person.




SunTrust Savings Account Options




Low opening minimum deposit amounts and the ability to earn interest, but rates are lower than competitors.

Essential Savings
The Essential Savings account is a basic savings account for those who don’t need a lot of bells and whistles. There is no minimum opening deposit or monthly maintenance fees, though you need to have at least a balance of $0.01 to prevent account closure. To avoid a $3 monthly statement fee, opt for electronic instead of paper statements.
Your money is insured up to the FDIC limit ($250,000) and you can link this account for overdraft protection with your other accounts. There is access to in-person, online, and telephone banking, but you do not have the ability to write checks. The Essential Savings Account does not earn you any interest.
Since this is a savings account, federal banking regulations only allow you up to six withdrawals per month. Otherwise, you’ll be charged $6 per withdrawal with a maximum of six every month.
Select Savings





APY Minimum Amount to Open




0.01%
*Earn an annual 1% bonus, up to $25,
if you link your account to a Select Checking or
Signature Advantage Checking account. None




Rates as of 1/8/2017

The Select Savings Account gives you a bonus for customer loyalty. You’ll need a minimum opening deposit of $100 and your money is insured up the maximum amount set by the FDIC. You also have the same access as the Essential Savings Account, including the withdrawal limits set by federal banking regulations.
However, there is a $7 monthly maintenance fee. You can get that waived if you maintain a $1,000 daily collected balance or set up an automatic transfer of $25 from a SunTrust personal checking account. All deposit amounts earn 0.01% APY.
How SunTrust Bank’s savings accounts compare
If you’re looking to open an account to link other SunTrust products, a savings account is a great way to get overdraft protection. However, if you’re only looking at the rates, you’re better off looking elsewhere.
Many online banking options provide at least 10 times what SunTrust is offering with no account minimums or monthly maintenance fees. You do earn a bonus if you opt for the Select Savings account, but it may not negate the higher rates competitors are offering on savings accounts .
How to get a SunTrust Bank savings account
You can open a SunTrust savings account by filling out an application on their website. To complete an application you’ll need to provide personal details including your phone number, address, Social Security number, and a government-issued ID. You can also complete an application at your local branch.




SunTrust CD Rates



Offers competitive rates and a lower minimum deposit amount compared to other banks.






Term APY




6 Month CD 0.35%


12 Month CD 1.25%


18 Month CD 1.34%


36 Month CD 1.49%


58 Month CD 1.98%




Rates as of 1/8/2017

SunTrust’s CDs are FDIC insured and features terms from 6 months to 10 years. You’ll need a minimum of $2,000 to open an account and your rate is guaranteed based on your opening deposit amount. You’ll start earning interest from the date you make your deposit and is compounded daily. You can keep interest earned in your CD account or withdraw it into another account.
SunTrust’s CDs are automatically renewed. You’ll be sent a reminder a minimum of 10 days before your account matures. During this grace period, you can either choose to renew the CD, withdraw it, or transfer it to another type of account.
Early withdrawal penalties are based on the amount of time that is left until the maturity date. Keep in mind that you may have to pay the penalty using the principal amount if the interest earned is not enough to cover it.
The early withdrawal penalties are as follows:

1 to 30 days remaining: 7 day’s interest
32 to 90 days remaining: 1 month’s interest
91 days to 11 months remaining: 3 month’s interest
1 to 3 years remaining: 8 month’s interest
3 years to 7 years remaining: 12 month’s interest
7 years and over: 24 month’s interest

How SunTrust Bank CD rates compare
SunTrust Bank’s CD rates are pretty comparable to its major competitors. Their 6-month and 18-month CD rates are slightly lower than other banks, but other terms fall significantly lower. In addition, their minimum opening deposit amount is higher for shorter terms. Other places also offer a wider variety of CD accounts , including those that have the potential for rate increases.
How to get a SunTrust Bank CD
You can fill out an online application to open a CD account. To complete the application, you’ll need to provide your personal information such as your address, Social Security number, and a federal issued ID. If you have a co-applicant, they’ll also need to provide their details. Once the application is complete, you can then find your CD at your local branch or online using an external bank account.
Otherwise, you can head to your local branch to open an account.



SunTrust Money Market Rates



Rates are comparable to other major banks, but only for its introductory rate.

Signature Money Market





APY Minimum Amount to Open




0.01% $100


Special intro rate of 1.01% for the first three months $10,000




Rates as of 1/8/2017

The SunTrust Signature Money Market Account only requires a $100 minimum opening deposit, but you’re not earning any significant interest at 0.01% APY. However, SunTrust offers an introductory rate of 1.01% for the first three months if you make a $10,000 opening deposit. After this period, you will be reverted to their standard APY of 0.27%. Interest is compounded daily and is credited to your account every month. For balances below $10,000, you’ll need to contact SunTrust customer service to ask as they differ depending on if you’re opening a new account or not.
There is a monthly maintenance fee of $15 for this account. However, you can get that waived if you have at least a daily collected balance of $5,000 or make one automated transfer from a SunTrust checking account of $100. You are also limited to six withdrawals as per federal banking regulations. If you make more than six withdrawals during a statement cycle, you’ll be charged a $15 excessive withdrawal fee with a maximum of six.
How SunTrust Bank’s money market account compares
While the introductory rate for balances of $10,000 and above is pretty high compared to other banks, this account falls short in amounts less than that.
Their minimum opening is lower, but that’s not necessarily an advantage since you’ll need to pay a monthly maintenance fee for balances below $5,000 or if choose not to make monthly automatic transfers. Other competitors don’t charge fees on their money market accounts .
Some even give you a free debit card as well as the ability to link multiple accounts and write checks.
How to get a SunTrust Bank money market account
Opening a SunTrust Bank money market account is the same process as any checking or savings account. The fastest way to do it is online. Once you provide all necessary details including those of your co-applicants, you’ll then need to find your account online or at your local branch.




SunTrust IRA Rates


IRA CDs





Term APY




12 Month CD 1.25%


18 Month CD 1.35%


36 Month CD 1.50%


58 Month CD 2.00%




Rates as of 1/8/2017

SunTrust Bank’s IRA CDs require a $2,000 minimum opening deposit and your rate will be based on how much you initially deposit. You can earn tax-deferred earnings and your account is insured up to the FDIC limit. You’ll earn interest from the date you make a deposit and it’ll be compounded daily. Depending on your status, you may be subject to contribution limits so it’s best to check with a SunTrust advisor.
Any interest earned can be rolled into the principal or withdrawn. You’ll earn only 0.01% interest on qualifying deposits which is significantly lower than other banks.ther account. You can see how your investment is doing anytime by logging into SummitView®, which is SunTrust’s wealth management software. Also, your IRA CD will be automatically renewed once the 10 day grace period (including non-business days) is over. You will be sent a reminder when the IRA CD reaches maturity, but there will not be a confirmation of renewal.
Like their regular CDs, there are early withdrawal penalties or if you decide to transfer ownership of your CD before the maturity date. These penalties are based on how much time is left until your maturity date.
The early withdrawal penalties are as follows:

1 to 30 days remaining: 7 day’s interest
32 to 90 days remaining: 1 month’s interest
91 days to 11 months remaining: 3 month’s interest
1 to 3 years remaining: 8 month’s interest
3 years to 7 years remaining: 12 month’s interest
7 years and over: 24 month’s interest

If you haven’t earned enough interest to cover the early withdrawal penalty, SunTrust will use some of the principal amount to cover it. In addition, you may be subject to an additional tax penalty by the IRS if you’re less than 59 ½ years old.
How SunTrust Bank IRA CD rates compare
SunTrust Bank’s CD rates are higher than the national averages. Their 12-month CD IRA, however, falls short, as other institutions offer IRA CD rates that are much higher . SunTrust also doesn’t offer shorter terms and their minimum opening deposit is higher compared to competitors.
How to get a SunTrust Bank IRA CD
To open a SunTrust Bank IRA CD, you’ll need to call the SITS client advisory center at 1-877-962-9032 to speak to a representative.




Overall review of SunTrust Bank


SunTrust Bank’s CD and IRA rates have competitive rates and the bank offers a wide variety of terms. However, their checkings and savings accounts fall short, with many of them not earning you any interest. If this is important to you, then you’re better off looking elsewhere. Many alternative online banks offer much higher rates with no monthly maintenance fees.
However, SunTrust does provide a wide variety of banking and investment products. You can choose anywhere from the most basic of accounts to products intended for frequent use. SunTrust also gives you the ability to link multiple accounts and offers financial incentives to do so.
If you like brick and mortar banks as well as keeping all your finances in one place, SunTrust is a good option. Even if their savings and checking accounts don’t have the best rates, you may be able to make up for it with their CDs and IRAs.


The post SunTrust Bank Reviews — Checking, Savings, CD, Money Market, and IRA Accounts appeared first on MagnifyMoney .

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