Best Brick and Mortar Banks [2024]: Can They Compete with Online Banks?

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Online banks are everywhere, but sometimes you need to drop into a bank branch to ask questions or solve a problem. So, where are the best brick-and-mortar banks?
Updated March 14, 2024
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Online banks are known for offering higher interest rates than traditional banks, but there are benefits to having a brick-and-mortar bank with local branches that you can visit. In-person customer service representatives can help you work through a problem, you can make cash deposits with a real person, and you can take advantage of safe deposit boxes to store your valuable items.

We’ve determined that the best brick-and-mortar banks include Bank of AmericaU.S. Bank, Chase, Citi, and a few others. We’ll walk you through our eight recommendations to help you find the right bank for you.

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In this article

Key takeaways

  • Many brick-and-mortar banks offer lower-than-average interest rates, but it’s possible to find decent interest rates if you do some research.
  • Many banks charge monthly service fees but may waive them if you meet a specified account minimum or set up direct deposit.
  • The highest interest rates and bonuses may only be available in selected locations or for certain account balances.
  • Read the fine print and understand what you’re signing up for before opening a new bank account.
  • Whichever bank you choose, make sure it’s insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) to protect your money if the bank fails.

The eight best brick-and-mortar banks

Best brick-and-mortar banks comparison

Bank Best for # of branch locations Annual percentage yield Monthly maintenance fees
Bank of America Mobile banking 3,900+ 0.01% (as of Mar. 12, 2024) on Advantage Savings $8 on Advantage Savings, waived if you meet the criteria
U.S. Bank Midwest and Western states 2,000 0.01% (as of Jan. 9, 2024) on savings $4, waived if you meet the criteria
Chase Nationwide banking 4,700+ 0.01% (as of Oct. 6, 2023) on savings Starting at $4.95, waived if you meet the criteria
Citi A large ATM network 600+ 4.45% on Citi® Accelerate Savings Starting at $4.50, waived if you meet the criteria
Wells Fargo Low minimum opening balance 4,765 Starting at 0.15% on savings Starting at $5, waived if you meet the criteria
Capital One Fee-free banking 450 4.35% (as of Mar. 4, 2024) on 360 Savings, 0.10% (as of Jan. 10, 2024) on 360 Checking None
PNC Bank Multiple account options 2,610 4.65% (as of Sep. 22, 2023) on High Yield Savings Account, 0.01% (as of Sept. 22, 2023) on Standard Savings Account Starting at $5 on savings accounts, waived if you meet the criteria
TD Bank Customer service 1,168 Up to 4.00% (as of Oct. 3, 2023) on Signature Savings Starts at $5 on the TD Simple Savings, waived if you meet the criteria

Bank of America: Best for mobile banking

Pros
  • 15,000+ ATMs across the U.S.
  • Top-rated mobile banking app
  • Offers multiple account options for checking, savings, CDs, investing, and loans
Cons
  • Offers lower interest rates in certain areas
  • $25 monthly fee on its interest-bearing checking account with a high minimum balance to waive the fee

Bank of America is the second-largest bank in the country based on assets and the third-largest by the number of branches. It offers around 3,900 retail banking centers and more than 15,000 ATMs nationwide.

If you prefer to use your phone for your banking needs, Bank of America has received top marks in mobile banking functionality. From your app, you can check your balance, deposit checks, schedule or pay bills, set up a budget, and more.

Its three checking account options come with various perks, including no overdraft fees on the SafeBalance account. Its Advantage Relationship checking account is an interest-bearing account that offers just 0.01%-0.02% (as of Mar. 12, 2024) APY but comes with a $25 monthly maintenance fee unless you meet the criteria of a combined balance of $10,000 or more or you enroll in its Preferred rewards program.

Unfortunately, Bank of America's interest rates on their personal savings accounts aren’t very high, but they align with many of the biggest banks on this list. It offers just 0.01% (as of Mar. 12, 2024) APY and requires a minimum of $100 to open an account. Bank of America’s CD interest rates range from 0.03%-5.00% (as of Sept. 22, 2023) APY depending on the term and account balance, and you must have a minimum of $1,000 to open a CD.

Bank of America is a Member FDIC.

Visit Bank of America

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U.S. Bank: Best for Midwest and Western states

Pros
  • Many account options include checking, savings, CDs, and more
  • Account fees are waived if you meet specific criteria
  • Money market accounts have no monthly maintenance fees
  • Pays interest on its Bank Smartly checking account
Cons
  • Only available in 27 states
  • Has below-average interest rates on savings, certificates of deposit (CDs), and money market accounts
  • Charges a $36 overdraft fee

U.S. Bank has 2,000 branches in the U.S. spread across 27 states in the Midwest and West.

While the interest rate offered on its savings account, 0.01% (as of Jan. 9, 2024) for any balance, is well below the national average of 0.47% (as of Feb. 8, 2024), the Bank Smartly checking account offers APY rates ranging from 0.001%-0.005% (as of Sept. 22, 2023) depending on your account balance.2

U.S. Bank has the free Smart Rewards program, which provides benefits based on your total account balance across all of your U.S. Bank accounts. It also offers rewards like an increase in your savings interest rate, waiving ATM fees, and even waiving your monthly maintenance fees if you keep a minimum average balance of $1,500 or have direct deposits of $1,000 or more.

U.S. Bank is FDIC-insured.

Visit U.S. Bank | Read our U.S. Bank Smartly Checking review

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Chase: Best for nationwide banking

Pros
  • Has the most branches of any bank in the U.S.
  • Has physical branches in 48 states (no branches in Alaska and Hawaii)
  • Offers frequent sign-up bonuses and new customer offers
Cons
  • Charges account maintenance fees unless you meet specific criteria
  • Has low interest rates on savings accounts and CDs for terms over 12 months
  • High overdraft fee ($34 per overdraft, up to 3 times a day)

Chase Bank is one of the largest banks in the world, both by assets and branch locations, and it often appears on lists of the best banks in the country. It has more than 4,700 branches in the U.S., the most of any other bank, plus more than 15,000 ATMs. Chase offers multiple checking account options and has savings, CDs, credit cards, and home and auto loans.

Although Chase doesn’t offer interest on its checking account and low interest, just 0.01% (as of Oct. 6, 2023) APY on its savings accounts, the easy access from almost anywhere in the U.S. can make this a good primary bank option while you keep your emergency fund in a high yield savings account. Chase also has CDs and offers 0.01%-5.00% (as of Oct. 6, 2023) APY depending on CD term and account balance.

Although Chase does charge overdraft fees, its Overdraft Assist program can help you avoid the $34 charge if your account is overdrawn by $50 or less and if you bring your account balance to overdrawn by $50 or less by the end of the next business day.

Chase is a Member FDIC.

Visit Chase | Read our Chase review

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Citi: Best for a large ATM network

Pros
  • Offers up to 4.45% APY on Citi® Accelerate Savings accounts
  • 65,000+ ATMs across the U.S.
  • Everyday checking account has a $0 minimum opening deposit and $0 overdraft fees
Cons
  • Its highest savings interest rates are only available in some states
  • Limited physical branches

Citi offers a wide range of products and an extensive network of ATMs nationwide. It has fewer physical branches than other banks, with only around 600 in the U.S. If you do live close to a branch, Citi can be a good option because of the above-average interest rate on its Citi® Accelerate Savings account.

Unlike many brick-and-mortar banks, the Citi® Accelerate Savings account offers a 4.45% annual percentage yield (APY) in some locations, and the monthly fee of $4.50 is waived if you maintain a monthly balance of at least $500. It has two checking accounts: Access Checking, which does not support check writing, and Regular Checking, which does. Both accounts have no overdraft or returned item fees. Although Citi charges account maintenance fees, they can be waived if you keep a minimum balance.

Citi also offers CDs with multiple terms ranging from three months to five years that only require a $500 minimum opening balance and provide interest rates ranging from 4.30%-4.90% (as of Sep. 22, 2023) APY.

Citi is FDIC-insured.

Visit Citibank

Wells Fargo: Best for a low minimum opening balance

Pros
  • Has multiple checking account options
  • $25 minimum balance to open an account
Cons
  • Charges a $35 overdraft fee on most of its checking accounts
  • Offers comparatively low interest rates on savings and 1-year CD terms

Wells Fargo is the second largest bank by branch locations in the U.S. and offers four checking account options. All checking and savings accounts only require a minimum opening of $25. The fees and features of the accounts vary, but the Everyday checking account offers check writing and digital payment, and the $10 monthly maintenance fee can be waived if you keep a minimum daily balance of $500 or have $500 or more in qualifying electronic deposits.

Wells Fargo offers two savings account options that earn slightly more APY than some competitors. The Way2Save account makes 0.15% APY, which isn’t much compared to online banks but is better than many other brick-and-mortar banks. Platinum savings customers can earn anywhere from 0.25%-2.50% (as of May 9, 2023) APY based on your account balance.

Wells Fargo is a Member FDIC.

Visit Wells Fargo

Capital One: Best for fee-free banking

Pros
  • Charges no fees to open, keep, or use your 360 checking or savings account
  • 360 Checking earns 0.10% (as of Jan. 10, 2024) interest
  • Competitive rates on savings and CDs
  • No minimum balance requirements
Cons
  • Limited branches
  • Cash deposits are not accepted at some partner ATMs

While Capital One is primarily an online bank, it also has physical locations in some areas. It offers much higher interest rates on its savings account than many banks on this list. The 360 Savings account offers 4.35% (as of Mar. 4, 2024)% with no account fees or balance minimums, and it also pays 0.10% (as of Jan. 10, 2024) interest on its 360 Checking account.

While that’s not much compared to some other savings accounts, earning interest on a checking account is not guaranteed at all banks and is a feature to consider when looking for the best checking accounts.

Although Capital One has some physical branches, primarily in New York and New Jersey, its network of 77,000 ATMs is available nationwide through a partnership with MoneyPass and Allpoint. However, Capital One-branded ATMs can accept cash deposits, but the partner ATMs cannot. Customers can also make check deposits through the Capital One Mobile app.

On its CDs, Capital One offers from 4.10%-5.25% (as of Sep. 7, 2023) APY. Capital One also lets you decide when your interest is paid: at the end of the term, monthly, or annually.

Capital One is FDIC-insured.

Visit Capital One | Read our Capital One review

PNC Bank: Best for multiple account options

Pros
  • Offers a competitive interest rate on its high-yield savings account
  • Receive a signup bonus for using the Virtual Wallet
Cons
  • Limited access to the highest APY on a high-yield savings account
  • Only available in 29 states in the U.S.

PNC Bank is only available in 29 states in the U.S., but its account offerings and sign-up bonuses can make it a solid choice for people who live near a branch. PNC offers multiple account options, including business, student and military banking, and its checking account is provided through Virtual Wallet.

While PNC Bank offers a competitive 4.65% (as of Sep. 22, 2023) rate on its high-yield savings account and $0 monthly maintenance fees, the account is not available in all locations. To apply for a high-yield savings account with PNC, you must first enter your zip code to see if your area offers it. PNC does not provide CDs but does have credit cards, loans, and prepaid and reloadable cards.

PNC Bank is FDIC-insured.

Visit PNC Bank

TD Bank: Best customer service

Pros
  • 24/7 customer support
  • No minimum deposit is required to open a checking or savings account
Cons
  • Must have a savings account balance over $100,000 to earn the highest interest rates
  • Only available on the East Coast

TD Bank is available to people on the East Coast and has standard checking and savings accounts, CDs, credit and debit cards, loans, and individual retirement accounts. If you live or work near a local branch, you can find robust banking features and slightly higher interest rates than some competitor brick-and-mortar banks. It also offers plenty of customer service options to suit various needs. You can call TD Bank from its app to reduce wait times, chat with its virtual assistant, or even send a DM with Facebook Messenger.

It offers a low 0.02% (as of Sept. 22, 2023) APY on its Simple Savings account, but its Signature Savings account can earn up to 4.00% (as of Oct. 3, 2023) depending on your account balance. Customers looking for CDs may find rates ranging from 1.00%-5.00% (as of Sep. 22, 2023) depending on your balance and if you also have a TD Bank checking account.

TD Bank has a $0 minimum deposit requirement for its checking and savings accounts, and CDs require a minimum opening balance of $250.

TD Bank is FDIC-insured.

Visit TD Bank

How to choose the best brick-and-mortar banks

Finding the right bank for you can take time, but it’s worth it in the long run. If you’re looking for a new brick-and-mortar bank, consider the following before you open an account.

  • Find the right account: Many banks offer similar features, but each puts its own spin on it. Some banks offer higher interest rates, while others may offer cash back or other perks for signing up for an account. Some account features that used to be standard, like writing checks, may no longer be supported at all banks, so make a list of the features you need and search for a bank that offers them.
  • Look for low or no fees: Look for banks that either don’t charge monthly maintenance fees or will easily waive them for maintaining a small balance or setting up a direct deposit. Pay attention to other fees the bank may charge, like overdraft, ATM, or stop payment fees since these can be higher than at online banks.
  • Convenience: If you use a brick-and-mortar bank, it should be conveniently located by your home, office, or other places where you spend a lot of time. While mobile banking has made handling your finances more convenient, you’ll still want to pick a bank with multiple branches and a strong network of ATMs.
  • Find the best interest rate: Finding a brick-and-mortar bank that competes with the rates at the best online banks may take more work, but you can do it. Pay attention to the different amounts offered on various checking and savings accounts and what you need to do to earn the highest rates (like maintaining a certain savings balance or having multiple accounts with the bank).
  • Look for sign-up bonuses: Banks often offer a sign-up bonus to entice you to open a new account with them or maintain a certain balance. Look out for high account fees that might negate the sign-up bonus or create multiple hoops you must jump through to get the fee waived.

FAQ about brick-and-mortar banks

What bank has the most brick-and-mortar locations?

Chase Bank had the most brick-and-mortar locations as of 2022, with more than 5,023 branches in the contiguous U.S. Chase Bank has branches in every state except Alaska, and there is only one Chase ATM at Kapolei's Disney Aulani Vacation Club in Hawaii.

Wells Fargo and Bank of America were in second and third place, with 4,765 and 4,088 branches in 2022, respectively.

What are the downfalls of a brick-and-mortar bank?

Brick-and-mortar banks generally have higher overhead costs and may charge more fees or pay less interest than their online competitors. As you look for a good brick-and-mortar bank, consider their account features, the costs and minimum balance requirements, and the interest rates they offer on checking, savings, or CD accounts.

What are the best brick-and-mortar bank rates?

Bank rates are based on multiple factors, including where you live, your balance, and your chosen account. Even if your bank offers a competitive interest rate, it does not mean you’ll qualify for it. Keep an eye on the rates your bank offers, and if they start to dip too low, look around for another option with higher rates and fewer fees.

Are brick-and-mortar banks worth it?

If you want a bank you can visit for customer service issues, cash deposits, or a safety deposit box, brick-and-mortar banks can meet your needs. You’ll need to watch to ensure you’re earning the best interest rate possible and that account fees are reasonable or waived based on your account criteria.

Best brick-and-mortar banks: bottom line

While online banks may earn better interest rates or have fewer fees, some brick-and-mortar banks can still be beneficial. Before you select a bank, whether brick and mortar or online, read the fine print, understand any account fees or minimum balance requirements, and search for a bank that fits your lifestyle.

Methodology

The banks the editorial team chose for our list of best brick-and-mortar banks may be current or past FinanceBuzz partners. This list is not reflective of all banks in the market. When evaluating these financial institutions, we considered factors such as the number of branch locations, size of the ATM network, monthly fees, and more.

Recap: the best brick-and-mortar banks

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Author Details

Kate Daugherty Kate Daugherty is a professional writer with a passion for providing others the head start they deserve on their financial journeys. Largely self-taught, Kate relied on books, blogs, and trial-and-error to learn how to budget and save for the future, all while working to pay back about $15,000 in student loans.

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