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Best Banks In Washington

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by Lauren Perez Updated

Finding the Best Banks in Washington

Washington residents have access to a great selection of banks, both big and small. Big banks provide the largest number of branches while more regional banks can offer more account options and more community. Below, not only did we find the best banks for Washington residents, but we also found the best accounts including the best savings account, checking accounts and more. 

Bank APY Minimum Deposit Highlights
Chase Bank Chase Bank logo Read More 0.01% $25
  • Best National Bank
  • Thousands of branches throughout 26 states
Umpqua Bank Umpqua Bank logo Read More 0.01% $25
  • Best Regional Bank
  • Helpful features and banking perks
Banner Bank Banner Bank logo Read More 0.05% $25
  • Best Customer Service
  • 82 branches throughout Washington
Umpqua Bank Umpqua Bank logo Read More 0% $25
  • Best Free Checking Account
  • ATM rebates up to $10
HomeStreet Bank HomeStreet Bank logo Read More 0.30% $2,500
  • Best High-Yield Checking Account
  • Solid rates compared to the competition 
Washington Federal Bank Washington Federal Bank logo Read More 0.10% $100
  • Best Savings Account
  • Best rate in Washington at a non-online bank
U.S. Bank U.S. Bank logo Read More 0.01% $25
  • Best for Students
  • Branch access in 26 states 

How We Determined the Best Banks in Washington

To find the best banks in Washington, we started with the top 15 banks in the state based on number of branches. This ensures Washington residents will have easy access to our top picks whether a national or regional bank. We then examined each bank’s account offerings to find the best accounts available. We took into account fees, interest rates, minimum balances and more. 

Best National Bank: Chase Bank

Chase

Chase Bank offers Washington residents access to a whopping 202 branches in the state. This is the most out of any bank in Washington. Plus, you can find Chase branches in 25 other states, making it pretty convenient for traveling. You’ll also have online and mobile access to your accounts wherever you are. 

You can open a few different accounts with Chase. You can check out a couple savings accounts, a variety of certificates of deposit (CDs) and a few different checking accounts. Just be careful of each account’s monthly fees, ATM fees and more. Chase also does not have the best interest rates out there, with most accounts earning at the lowest possible rates. 

Best Regional Bank: Umpqua Bank

Umpqua Bank

Based in Oregon, Umpqua Bank maintains 83 branches in its neighboring state of Washington. You can visit the bank at any of these branches or online to open any of its accounts. The bank offers a simple savings account, two money market accounts (MMAs) and three checking accounts. Each account charges a monthly fee, although you can waive these fees by meeting transaction or balance requirements. 

Unfortunately, Umpqua Bank offers some of the lowest rates in the industry. If you’re looking for the best CD rates or high-earning savings accounts, you won’t find that here. 

Best Customer Service: Banner Bank

Banner Bank

For the best banking customer service in the Northwest, head to Banner Bank. You can find the bank at any of its 82 Washington branches. The bank operates more branches in California, Idaho and Oregon. You can also reach customer service by mail, over the phone during business hours or through its 24/7 automated phone system. There are also a number of links found on the website to help you report fraudulent activity, report lost or stolen cards, add travel settings and more. 

Banner Bank offers a variety of bank accounts from savings accounts to long-term CDs to interest-earning checking accounts. Most Banner Bank accounts charge a monthly fee, but if there is a fee, you can waive it with certain transactional or balance qualifications. You won’t find great interest rates here, though. 

Best Free Checking Account: Umpqua Bank Embark Checking Account

Umpqua Bank

The best regional bank in Washington offers its customers the best free checking account. The Embark Checking account doesn’t charge a monthly service fee. You could face a $3 fee if you choose to stick with paper statements. You can simply sign up for paperless statements or be 62 years or older to avoid that paper statement fee. 

Umpqua will reimburse you up to $10 in ATM fee rebates as long as you have an account balance of at least $2,500. Still be wary of using out-of-network ATMs as Umpqua bank does charge a $2.50 fee per transaction.

You can also open an Umpqua Grow Savings account with no monthly service fee if you connect the two accounts and complete a monthly transfer from checking to savings. 

Best High-Yield Checking Account: HomeStreet Bank Premium Select Checking Account

HomeStreet Bank

HomeStreet Bank Premium Select Checking Account earns interest according to balance tiers, with higher balances earning at a slightly higher interest rate. You’ll need at least $100 to open an account, but at least $2,500 to start earning interest at 0.30% APY. Balances of $10,000 will earn the higher rate of 0.40% APY. 

The account charges a $10 monthly fee that you can avoid by maintaining a minimum daily balance of $2,500. You are allowed two fee-free transactions at non-HomeStreet Bank ATMs per statement cycle. 

Best Savings Account: Washington Federal Passbook & Statement Savings Account

Washington Federal

The Washington Federal Passbook & Statement Savings account earns 0.10% APY. You’ll need at least $25 to open the account or $10 to open it for minors. To earn interest, however, you need at least $100. There is a $4 monthly fee, waivable with a balance of $200 or greater. 

Best for Students: U.S. Bank

U.S. Bank

U.S. Bank’s Student Checking account is a great account option for students in Washington. There’s no monthly service fee to worry about, which is definitely helpful on a student budget. If you choose to go old school and still receive paper statements, there will be a $2 fee for each, while eStatements come at no extra cost. 

The account also includes a helpful ATM feature. When you’re in a pinch and need cash, U.S. Bank will allow four fee-free ATM transactions per statement period at non-U.S. Bank ATMs. The ATM itself may charge you its own small fee, but U.S. Bank won’t charge you. 

Tips for Saving Money

  • No matter which bank accounts you end up opening, it’s important to use yours to its fullest potential. If there is a monthly fee, you should definitely try to meet the qualifications to waive it, if any. Or perhaps you just need to link your savings and checking accounts to grow your money at an even better rate. 
  • It’s also important to be conscious of the bank fees you could face for certain transactions. For example, avoid overdrafting your accounts since that could set you back more than $30. On savings accounts, making more than six withdrawals or transfers a month could lead to a pileup of excessive transaction fees.
  • If you need outside, professional help to efficiently manage your money, maybe consider working with a financial advisor. The right advisor can take a look at your finances and accounts and determine where you need to cut costs or invest more. Our financial advisor matching tool can get you started immediately. We’ll take your financial needs and goals into account to pair you with qualified advisors in your area. 
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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