CIT Bank offers one of the highest interest rates available for a savings account with their CIT Savings Builder. It doesn’t have monthly fees and gives you the ability to withdraw your money at any time. Additionally, it is FDIC insured so you can feel safe knowing you’re protected.
01/20/20 Update: The interest rates have settled at 1.8% and CIT Bank is now offering a bonus worth up to $200!
There are many reasons why you should have some of your cash available at a moment’s notice. One of the primary reasons is to have an emergency fund in case something unexpected comes up.
Another reason is you’re saving for something big, like a down payment on a house or car. Money for these things should be in something safe, but it doesn’t mean you want to earn peanuts for interest.
Likewise, it’s the same for those starting to build up their savings. You want to have your money work for you and not just sit in an account that earns little in interest.
Here’s my review of CIT Bank and their CIT Savings Builder savings account, and why I consider it one of the best savings account currently available.
About CIT Bank
CIT Bank, owned by CIT Group, is an established bank founded in 1908 in California. It is a FDIC insured bank offering a wide variety of financial products including savings, money market, and certificates of deposit (CDs), and home loans.
Although it does have several branch locations, they’re all in California, so it’s really an online bank for all intents and purposes. You can conduct all your bank transactions and manage your activity through their web site, on their app, and over the phone.
Not having many branches is actually a good thing for us! Since they don’t have a lot of overhead expenses more traditional banks have, they pass that onto customers with their extremely competitive product offerings, like their savings account called the CIT Savings Builder.
What is the CIT Savings Builder?
Their CIT Savings Builder is a high-yield savings account that CIT Bank launched in early 2019. It offers a MASSIVE interest rate compared to the average bank.
I found out during my research that a typical bank is offering around 0.09% APY in interest. The CIT Savings Builder, on the hand, is currently paying out 2.30% APY – that’s almost 26 times more interest!
To make it real, let’s consider you had $25,000 in savings you’re putting away for a house down payment and each month you put in another $100.
Putting this money in a regular savings account will give you an ending balance of $31,126.50 after 5 years.
If you had put this into the CIT Savings Builder, you would have grown your balance to $34,568.52, for a difference of almost $3,500! Just for putting your money in a better account!
What are the details?
The CIT Savings Builder doesn’t have any monthly fees; not to open an account, electronically transfer money, receive money, or to close an account. It also requires just $100 to open an account and has a $0 minimum balance to keep it open.
How can you beat that? ::mic drop::
It does have a two-tiered structure (the base rate and higher rate). However, the requirements to get the higher rate I’m mentioning are pretty simple and straightforward:
To receive the higher interest rate (currently at 2.30% APY), you need to have either of the following:
- Monthly deposit of at least $100
- Average monthly balance of $25,000 or more
The first option, depositing $100 a month, is a lot easier. It may be hard for some to put in $25,000.
If for whatever reason you can’t do either option in a particular month, your account will earn at the base rate (currently at 1.26% APY). That’s still a lot better than normal, and the good thing is, you’ll get the higher rate again once you deposit at least $100 in a month or have your average monthly balance of $25,000 or more.
What else do I need to know?
I was trying to make a pros and cons list and really couldn’t come up with ANY significant negative things about the CIT Savings Builder. If I had to nitpick… like really nitpick, then it would be the following 3 things:
- No ATMs & ATM Cards: CIT Bank doesn’t issue ATM cards for their Savings Builder. Like other online banks, you can transfer your money from CIT Bank to another bank for free whenever you want. I don’t remember last time I needed an ATM card (credit cards all the way, baby), but it may be important for you.
- Higher Rate Requirements: As I wrote about, to receive the higher interest rate, you need to deposit $100 monthly or have a monthly balance of $25,000 or more. It would be perfect if there were no requirements, but I think this is reasonable considering how much they are paying out.
- I Can’t Come Up With Anything Else: I love things in threes and wanted the list of things I didn’t like to have three reasons too, but I can’t! Fellow ninjas – if you know of another negative, please let me know and I’ll add it to the list.
Is the CIT Savings Builder right for me?
The Savings Builder is ideal for people who have extra cash that they’re saving for a short-term or medium-term goal and want to earn a much higher interest rate than the average savings account.
If you have $25,000 or more laying around in a low interest account, the right financial decision is to open a Savings Builder account and transfer your money in. The rate is extremely competitive and by putting $25,000 in, you’ll always earn the highest interest rate possible. You can set it and forget it until you need the money for that big purchase.
Even if you don’t have $25,000 available, if you can commit to depositing $100 a month, you’ll still get the top rate, so this is also ideal for someone starting to build their savings and is able to contribute to it monthly.
The Bottom Line
The Savings Builder from CIT Bank is the perfect place for you to stash away your emergency savings, a down payment for a house or car, a vacation coming up, or just as a rainy day fund. It’s also great for someone who may not have a lot of cash, but want to build up their savings and earn a high interest rate while doing it.
Here at The Money Ninja, we’re big proponents of maximizing your money – it’s out motto! We don’t want to just save our money, we want to save our money in the BEST way possible. You work hard to save it and whatever account you put it in needs to work hard for you too. That’s what this new CIT Bank Savings Builder product will do.
You can view more information or sign-up for a new account on CIT Bank’s site for their Savings Builder product.