Synchrony Bank Review 2019

Synchrony Bank Logo

4.2/5

Synchrony Bank is an internet savings bank that issues credit cards and offers several accounts paying some of the market’s best rates.

ATM Fee Refunds
High APYs
No Monthly Fees

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Bankrate's overall ratings for financial institutions comprise weighted averages up to five stars of five main categories: customer service, savings accounts, checking accounts, money market accounts (MMAs) and certificate of deposit (CDs).

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When a financial firm offers more than one checking, savings or MMA accounts, Bankrate reviews the account with the highest APY. Each bank is evaluated based on the 12-month certificate of deposit (CD) it offers.

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About Synchrony Bank

Synchrony Bank is a subsidiary of Synchrony Financial, a leading financial services company based in Stamford, Connecticut. Until 2014, Synchrony Bank was known as GE Capital Retail Bank, an extension of General Electric.

Customers who open accounts through Synchrony gain access to high-yield traditional and IRA CDs. Savings and money market accounts are offered as well. A number of credit cards, including some available at Amazon and Lenscrafters are issued by Synchrony Bank.

Synchrony Bank is ideal for consumers who are comfortable banking entirely online. You’ll also love this bank if you want a new high-yield savings account or CD. If you need to visit a branch from time to time or you want to bank through a mobile app, you should open an account at a different bank or credit union.

 Pros

  • Synchrony consistently offers great rates on deposit products.
  • Customers can visit any ATM in the Accel or Visa Plus networks.
  • Account holders automatically qualify for a loyalty perks program that offers discounts on travel and leisure and other benefits based on account balances and the number of years customers have kept their accounts open.

 Cons

  • The only physical branch location in Bridgewater, New Jersey has closed.
  • Reimbursements for ATM surcharges are limited to $5 per month, unless you qualify for the highest reward tier in the loyalty perks program.

Synchrony Bank Services

CDs Rating

5/5

Synchrony Bank offers traditional CDs with terms ranging from three to 60 months. Traditional and Roth IRA CDs are also available. Early withdrawal penalties vary depending on the length of the term. For terms of 12 months or less, the penalty is 90 days of simple interest. Interest earned through the account, however, can be withdrawn at any time and moved into an internal or external bank account.

 Pros

  • Pays competitive rates.
  • Interest is compounded daily and can be paid out before maturity.
  • Multiple standard terms are offered.

 Cons

  • No special CDs are available.
  • Long-term CDs have harsher early withdrawal penalties.

CDs available from other banks

Goldman Sachs Bank USA Logo
2.70% APY
$500 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
Investors eAccess Logo
2.70% APY
$500 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
Rising Bank  Logo
2.87% APY
$1,000 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
Savings Rating

5/5

Synchrony Bank customers can open a high-yield savings account through the institution’s website. There are no monthly maintenance fees or minimum balance requirements. The yield offered by the bank is typically competitive. Savings account holders do not have access to checks, but they can make mobile check deposits. Just note that transfers and ATM withdrawals are limited under federal law to six transactions per monthly statement cycle.

 Pros

  • The High Yield Savings account offers a competitive yield.
  • There’s no minimum balance requirement.
  • An ATM card is available for customers with savings accounts.
  • Up to $5 in non-Synchrony Bank ATM surcharges are reimbursed per statement cycle.

 Cons

  • There are savings accounts available with higher yields.
  • Other banks that waive all foreign ATM fees.
  • You may be limited on how much you can withdraw from an ATM at a time. Customers of brick-and-mortar banks may have a higher daily withdrawal limit.

Savings accounts available from other banks

Goldman Sachs Bank USA Logo
2.25% APY
$0 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
Vio Bank Logo
2.46% APY
$100 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
UFB Direct Logo
2.45% APY
$10,000 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
MMAs Rating

3.8/5

Synchrony offers a money market account that has no minimum balance requirement. The yield is higher than what the biggest banks pay but lower than what many online banks offer. It has check-writing privileges and your first check order is free. For money market account holders, if you use a non-Synchrony Bank ATM, you can get up to $5 in ATM surcharges reimbursed.

 Pros

  • An ATM card is available for customers with money market accounts.
  • Account has check-writing privileges.
  • Customers with money market accounts are eligible for a free order of checks.

 Cons

  • There are money market accounts available with higher yields.
  • There are banks that waive all foreign ATM fees.
  • All balance tiers for APY are the same, so there’s no incentive to deposit a large amount of money.

MMAs available from other banks

Capital One Logo
2.00% APY
$10,000 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
Sallie Mae Logo
2.30% APY
$0 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
State Farm Bank Logo
2.25% APY
$1,000 MINIMUM DEPOSIT
Bank Experience Rating

2.4/5

You won’t have access to a branch at Synchrony Bank. So if you have an account with the bank and you need assistance, you can contact a representative via the online chat service or make a phone call. The bank also won’t charge you a fee to use an ATM; however, the ATM operator may charge you a fee. Should that occur, Synchrony says it will refund you up to $5 per month. If you’re a Diamond Reward Tier customer, you will get unlimited ATM refunds. Synchrony Bank’s parent company has a mobile app, but savings account customers cannot use it to log in to their accounts.

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