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Best Banks in Arizona

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by Javier Simon Updated

Finding the Best Banks in Arizona 

With hundreds of banks to choose from in the state of Arizona, picking the right one is no simple task. But luckily for you, the research experts at SmartAsset conducted an in-depth analysis of banks throughout the Grand Canyon state. We zeroed in on crucial factors like accessibility, customer service, and affordability of products to bring you the best banks in Arizona.

Bank APY Minimum Deposit Highlights
Bank of America Bank of America logo Read More 0.03% $100
  • Best national bank
  • Thousands of branches throughout the country
BBVA Compass BBVA Compass logo Read More 0.05% $25
  • Best regional bank
  • Subsidiary of Spanish multinational Banco Bilbao Vizcaya Argentaria
MidFirst Bank MidFirst Bank logo Read More 0.10% $100
  • Best in customer service
  • One of the largest privately owned banks in the United States
BMO Harris Bank National Association BMO Harris Bank National Association logo Read More 0.05% $25
  • Best affordable checking accounts
  • Operates in major markets including New York, California and Texas
First National Bank Texas First National Bank Texas logo Read More 0.05% $1 in person or $20 online
  • Best savings account
  • Operates in Arizona, Texas and New Mexico
Chase Bank Chase Bank logo Read More 0% $25
  • Best bank for students
  • Operates more than 16,000 fee-free ATMs throughout the U.S.

How We Determine the Best Banks in Arizona 

SmartAsset researchers started out by examining the 15 largest banks in Arizona. Next, we boiled the list down to the top performing banks including regional and local institutions. We then composed our final list by selecting the banks that stood out in different categories such as best savings accounts, most affordable checking accounts and customer service. Of course, we focused on important ranking factors like interest rates, minimum deposits, and overall fee structures. We also looked out for ease of access to both your funds and customer support. Read on the learn more about what the best banks in Arizona have to offer.

Best National Bank: Bank of America

Bank of America

With more than 100 Bank of America offices sprinkled throughout the Copper State, Arizona residents can easily find a branch with fee-free ATMs and trained customer service specialists. And when you walk through any of their doors, you can find just about any financial product you’d expect from a giant firm like Bank of America. 

The bank offers checking accounts and savings options designed for all types of customers from those just starting to build their finances to people who want to save for their retirement or invest their wealth. 

Bank of America charges a low $12 monthly service fee for customers holding its basic Core Checking account. However, the bank will waive it if you make at least one direct deposit of $250 or more during a statement period. You can also avoid the fee by maintaining a minimum daily balance of $1,500. The bank also offers checking accounts designed for students and another one geared toward local businesses. Those planning for retirement can open everything from a rollover 401(k) to an individual retirement account (IRA). 

Bank of America also offers access to investment products including mutual funds through Merrill Edge

And for customers on the go, Bank of America offers a top-ranking app certified by J.D. Power. The firm applauded the app for its user friendliness and presentation of key information. The app offers features like mobile check deposit, bill pay and fingerprint scan. You can also transfer money through Zelle. Similar to options like Venmo, this app allows you to transfer funds to another person using just their email address or phone number. 

Best Regional Bank: BBVA Compass

BBVA Compass

BBVA Compass serves several communities throughout the Southwest including Arizona, where it runs more than 70 full-service branches. However, you can find everything you’d expect from a national bank at BBVA Compass. The bank offers checkings, savings and certificate of deposit (CD) accounts. You can also apply for a loan or a mortgage. 

The bank charges no monthly service charge for its ClearChoice Free checking account. And you can open one with as little as $25. BBVA Compass also provides two different savings accounts and a money market account (MMA). You can waive the monthly service fee for each of these options by meeting certain requirements. For example, the bank will waive the $15 quarterly service charge on the ClearChoice Savings account if you establish a recurring minimum transfer of $25 into the account from a BBVA Compass checking account. The bank will also eliminate the fee if you keep a minimum collected balance of $500.

Furthermore, BBVA Compass gives its customers access to a comprehensive mobile banking app as well as MoneyFit, an online personal finance resource center. If you sign up for a checking account online, you get enrolled in Remote Banking free of charge. You  can contact BBVA Compass financial advisors through text, email, chat or phone. So if you prefer to handle all your banking online, BBVA Compass has you covered.

Best Customer Service: MidFirst Bank

MidFirst Bank

Following a U.S. Retail Banking Satisfaction Study by J.D. Power, MidFirst Bank ranked highest in the Southwest region. The study ranked customer satisfaction across factors like problem-solving capabilities, versatility of products and overall fee structures.

This Oklahoma-based bank manages 25 branches throughout Arizona. Through MidFirst Bank, you can find a range of products designed for individuals as well as businesses of all sizes. MidFirst Bank offers four checking accounts, three savings accounts, CDs and IRAs. You can also apply for auto, boat, RV and motorcycle loans in addition to credit cards and unsecured loans. If you have kids, you may be interested in its iSave Savings account designed for children under 17. The bank charges no monthly service fee for this FDIC-insured savings account, and you can open one with $25. The bank also offers several online and educational resources.

You can contact general customer support by dialing 888-643-3477 Monday through Friday from 7am to 7pm as well as Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The contact section on the bank’s website displays a clear breakdown of how to get in touch with different departments.

Best Affordable Checking Accounts: BMO Harris

BMO Harris

BMO Harris bank currently manages 50 branches throughout Arizona. When you walk in, you can open one of three different checking accounts. The bank charges no monthly service fee for the SmartAdvantage checking account as long as you opt-in for eStatements. Otherwise, you’d only face a $2 fee for paper statements. And even though it serves as the bank’s basic checking account, it does offer some useful perks. For instance, you’d have fee-free access to more than 40,000 nationwide ATMs through the AllPoint network.

If you want some overdraft protection, you can sign up for the BMO Harris Smart Money account. The bank charges no overdraft or insufficient fund fees. You can also waive the $5 monthly service fee if you’re younger than 25. 

But if you’re tired of non-network ATM fees, you may be interested in the BMO Harris Premier account. Every month, you get up to $25 back in ATM fees charged by other banks. Furthermore, BMO Harris waives the following fees for Premier account holders. 

  • Cashier’s checks
  • Money orders
  • Paper statements
  • Check images 

You can waive the $30 monthly service fee by maintaining a daily minimum balance of $25,000. The bank will also terminate the fee if you have a BMO Harris Financial Advisor account or a combined $50,000 minimum balance with relationship waiver.

In addition to mobile banking, customers also have access to BMO Harris Total Look®. This interactive tool allows you to view all your banking accounts through a single interface regardless of where they are held.

Best Savings Account: First National Bank Texas

First National Bank Texas

1st National Bank Texas offers the most affordable savings accounts we’ve encountered in our study. You can open a Savings Account with just $1 at a branch or $20 online. The bank also gives you several options to avoid the $5 monthly service fee. Just do one of the following: 

  • Maintain minimum daily balance of $100
  • Establish a monthly recurring direct deposit of at least $100 from an external account not with 1s National Bank Texas. 

This account generates an APY of 0.05%. And although you shouldn’t expect to get rich off the interest in a savings account, this option offers a very inexpensive way to start building a good savings habit. 

Furthermore, you can open a Kids Count savings option designed for customers younger than age 21 with just $1. This account collects a tiered interest rate, which means it can climb as the balance breaches certain thresholds. It starts off with a current 0.05% APY and can reach 0.13%. However, you may be able to find more suitable options by exploring our study of the best savings accounts for kids.

Best for Students: Chase

Chase

If you’re embarking upon your college days, you may be interested in opening a Chase College Checking account. The bank charges no monthly fee for customers who are 24 years old or younger and can prove enrollment. 

The account also comes with a wealth of digital features including mobile banking with bill pay and photo deposit. In addition, you can easily transfer money through the Zelle app. All you need is the recipient's phone number and email address. 

And you can keep the account open once you turn 25. However, the bank will charge you a $6 monthly service fee. You can waive this fee by establishing direct deposit or by keeping an average balance of least $5,000. Direct deposits can come in the form of ACH credits through payroll, pension or government benefits such as Social Security.

Arizona is home to more than 200 Chase branches. You can also find this banking giant at more than 4,000 locations throughout the country.

 

Tips for Better Saving 

Money market accounts usually offer higher interest rates and better access to your money than savings accounts. If you want to explore the best of what’s out there, check out our study of the best money market accounts on the market today. 

CDs tend to generate higher APYs than both savings and money market accounts. But you’d have to lock up your money for a certain term. To help you find the right one to invest in, we gathered the best CD rates available today. 

Saving money is easier when you have goals and strategies on how to get there. You can use our savings calculator to figure out how much you need to sock away and for how long to reach your destination. 

If you want professional money management help, we can help you find a financial advisor. Our interactive tool asks you some simple questions about your goals before linking you to local advisors who can help you meet those goals.

Save more with these rates that beat the National Average
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Best Places to Save

SmartAsset’s interactive map highlights the places in the country where people have the opportunity to save money. Zoom between states and the national map to see the best places to save.

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Rank County Median Household Income Cost of Living Purchasing Power Estimated Tax Rate

Methodology Where you live can have a big impact on how easy it is to save money based on several regional factors. Our study aims to find the most suitable places for people to save based on median household income, average living expenses and income tax burden.

First, we calculated the average cost of living in each county for a household with two adults (one working). We then created a purchasing power index for each county. This reflects the counties with the highest ratio of household income to cost of living.

To better compare income tax burdens across counties, we applied relevant deductions and exemptions before calculating federal, state and local income taxes for a family making $50,000 annual income in each location. Next, we created an effective tax rate index for each county, which reflects the counties with the lowest ratio of income taxes to the assumed $50,000 annual income.

Finally, we calculated the weighted average of the indices to yield an overall best places to save score. We used a three-fourths weighting for purchasing power and a one-fourth weighting for tax rates. We indexed the final number so higher values reflect places that are better to save.

Sources: US Census Bureau 2016 5-Year American Community Survey, MIT Living Wage Study