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Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account Review: A Hard to Ignore Checking Account

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The Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account has a maximum APY that bests even the top savings accounts we've reviewed. But its tiered APY system means that not everyone will qualify for this high rate. That said, there's still plenty to love about this account. Read our full review to learn about all its perks.

Use Promo Code "MAY150" for a $150 bonus!

From 5/1-5/31, Earn a $150 New Account Bonus when you apply for a Rewards Checking account and set-up qualifying direct deposits totaling at least $1,500 a month within the first 3 months your account is opened.

Axos Bank Rewards Checking
Open Account

Member, FDIC

Rates as of May 18, 2022
  • High APY
  • Free domestic ATMs
  • No minimum balance
  • Variety of checking accounts
  • Domestic ATM fee reimbursements on all checking and savings accounts
  • Competitive APY on savings accounts
  • No maintenance fees on any account
  • Low APYs on CDs
  • No branch locations
  • Unimpressive customer satisfaction ratings

Full Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account Review

Top perks

Earn Up to 1.25% APY: The Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account's APY makes it one of the most lucrative checking accounts we've seen. Interest-bearing checking accounts are still relatively rare, and those that exist usually have APYs that fall far short of the rates of savings accounts. But with this account, you only earn interest on balances up to $50,000.

There's a tiered system that determines your APY. You must meet all the requirements for all tiers to get the highest potential APY. Keep in mind, though, that account holders won't receive any interest during the statement cycle if they're not meeting the base 0.40% tier requirements.

APY tier Requirements
0.40% APY Receive monthly direct deposits totaling $1,500 or more
Get an additional 0.30% APY Use your Axos Visa® Debit Card for a total of 10 transactions per month (min $3 per transaction)or sign up for Account Aggregation/Personal Finance Manager in Online Banking
Get an additional 0.20% APY Maintain an average daily balance of $2,500 per month in an Axos Managed Portfolios Account
Get an additional 0.20% APY Maintain an average daily balance of $2,500 per month in an Axos Self Directed Trading Account
Get an additional 0.15% APY Use your Rewards Checking account to make your full monthly Axos consumer loan payment
Data source: Axos Bank.

Unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements: Axos Bank doesn't have a network of fee-free ATMs, but this shouldn't concern you because it does offer unlimited domestic ATM fee reimbursements. Few banks do this, and it's a nice option if you don't want to worry about finding a fee-free ATM near you. Note that your ATM may still charge you a fee that could temporarily reduce your balance until Axos Bank reimburses you for it. You could also get slapped with ATM fees if you take your Axos Bank debit card abroad, so plan accordingly.

No minimum balance requirements: You need at least $50 to open your Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account, but after it's open, it doesn't matter how much you keep there. You're still eligible to earn interest on your purchases and you don't have to worry about monthly maintenance fees if your balance drops too low.

Unlimited free mobile deposits: Axos Bank doesn't charge you fees for mobile deposits or restrict how many mobile deposits you can make in a month. This is ideal for people who still get paid with physical checks and don't want to run to a branch location or incur extra fees for doing what's most convenient.

FDIC insured: Finally, Axos Bank accounts are covered by the same FDIC insurance as traditional bank accounts. This covers you for up to $250,000 per depositor, per institution, in the event of a bank failure.

What could be improved

APY qualification requirements: The Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account uses a tiered system where the highest APY is only available when meeting the deposits and transactions monthly requirements. While the base tier is still high and many people can qualify for it, the tiered structure is complex overall and most people won't receive the maximum APY.

Fees

Fees Monthly Maintenance ATM Withdrawal Overdraft Stop Payment Insufficient Funds
Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account $0 $0 after Axos Bank reimbursement $0 $10 if you make your request online, or $35 if you require assistance from an Axos Bank representative $0 for items generating a negative balance of less than $25, otherwise $25 per item with a maximum $75 per day
Data source: Axos Bank

How to access your money

Axos Bank gives you several ways to access your funds. Here's a closer look at how to deposit and withdraw money from your Rewards Checking Account.

Deposit options

You can deposit money into your Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account in any of the following ways:

  • ACH transfer
  • Mobile check deposit
  • Wire transfer
  • Mailed checks

You'll need $50 to open your account, and Axos Bank will prompt you to fund your Rewards Checking Account in one of these ways when you sign up. Axos Bank does not charge fees for incoming wire transfers, but the bank you're transferring the money from may charge you an outgoing wire transfer fee if you're funding your account in this way. Use one of the other methods if you don't want to worry about running into extra costs.

Withdrawal options

You can withdraw money from your Axos Bank Rewards Checking account in any of these ways:

  • ACH transfer
  • Wire transfer
  • Requesting a mailed check
  • ATM withdrawal
  • Point-of-sale cash withdrawal

Note that with any method other than an ATM withdrawal, it could take a little while to receive your funds. Plan accordingly by withdrawing the money in advance to avoid running into problems.

Alternatives to consider

Rates as of May 18, 2022

This checking account is right for you if:

The Axos Bank Rewards Checking Account is a great option for those who deposit more than $1,500 to their account every month and use their debit cards frequently. Its APY bests most savings accounts, and even those who don't qualify for this rate can still earn an APY that's far above average. The account's unlimited ATM fee reimbursements also make it a good fit for those who don't want to go out of their way to get their cash for free.

The account's main drawback is that its tiered interest model disadvantages those with small balances and those who rarely use their debit cards. If either of these apply to you, there are better checking accounts out there that offer a high interest rate with fewer strings.

RELATED: How To Open a Checking Account

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