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SoFi Money is a hybrid checking/savings account, but its checking features are what makes it stand out

SoFi Review 4x3
SoFi; Alyssa Powell/Business Insider

Personal Finance Insider writes about products, strategies, and tips to help you make smart decisions with your money. We may receive a small commission from our partners, like American Express, but our reporting and recommendations are always independent and objective.

Is SoFi Money right for you?

You might like SoFi Money if you...You might not like SoFi Money if you...
  • Are comfortable banking digitally
  • Want to keep your checking and savings balances in one account
  • Qualify to earn cash back rewards and a higher APY
  • Want to earn interest on your checking account balance
  • Are looking for a cash back debit card
  • Travel and use ATMs abroad frequently
  • Aren't comfortable banking digitally
  • Want to keep your checking and savings balances in separate accounts
  • Don't qualify to earn cash back rewards or a higher APY
  • Are looking for the highest savings APY
  • Need to deposit cash

SoFi Money review

APY
0.01% or 0.25% APY
Min Deposit
None
Featured Reward
None
A five pointed star A five pointed star A five pointed star A five pointed star A five pointed star
4 out of 5 Stars
Editor's Rating
APY
0.01% or 0.25% APY
Min Deposit
None
Featured Reward
None
A five pointed star A five pointed star A five pointed star A five pointed star A five pointed star
4 out of 5 Stars
Editor's Rating
  • Pros & Cons
  • Details
  • Pros
    • 55,000+ free ATMs worldwide
    • No minimum opening deposit
    • No monthly service fees
    • No overdraft fees
    • FDIC insured for up to $1.5 million
    • Joint accounts available
    • Ability to qualify for cash-back rewards and competitive APY
    Cons
    • No overdraft protection
    • Doesn't reimburse out-of-network ATM providers' fees
    • No way to deposit cash
    • Partner banks include MetaBank, Hills Bank and Trust Company, EagleBank, East West Bank, Tristate Bank Capital Bank, and Wells Fargo
    • FDIC insurance for up to $1.5 million
    • Cash account that acts as both a checking and savings account
    • Earn cash back rewards by depositing at least $500/month into your SoFi Money account
    • Earn 0.25% APY by depositing at least $500/month — otherwise, earn 0.01% APY
    • Free access to 50,000+ Allpoint ATMs worldwide
    Read Our Review Read Our Review A looong arrow, pointing right

    It's affordable to keep your money with SoFi — there's no minimum opening deposit, and there are no monthly service fees, overdraft fees, or out-of-network ATM fees. You'll also have free access to Allpoint ATMs when you travel abroad.

    Keep in mind that SoFi doesn't charge a foreign transaction fee when you make a purchase abroad, but MasterCard may charge a 0.20% fee, and SoFi won't reimburse you.

    SoFi doesn't charge overdraft fees, but it also doesn't offer overdraft protection. If your purchase would overdraw your account, then SoFi will simply deny the transaction.

    If you deposit at least $500 per month into your SoFi Money account, then you qualify to earn cash back rewards when you use your debit card with certain companies. SoFi keeps a list of qualifying companies in its app, and participating businesses can change.

    By depositing at least $500 in your account each month, you can also earn the highest APY. Otherwise, your balance will earn just 0.01% for the month.

    Even SoFi's higher APY is low compared to what some competitors pay on their high-yield savings accounts . You may be better off using SoFi Money as a checking account and opening a separate account for savings.

    SoFi features

    SoFi is a digital personal finance company that offers loans, student loan refinancing, investment accounts, and its SoFi Money account, which is a cash management account that works as a hybrid checking/savings account.

    SoFi isn't a bank, but it's backed by multiple banks, so your deposits are FDIC insured.

    To speak with a customer service agent, call Monday through Thursday from 4:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. PT, or Friday through Sunday from 4:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. PT.

    The SoFi app has received 4.8 out of 5 stars in the Apple store, and 3.9 out of 5 stars in the Google Play store.

    In the app, you can use a budgeting and money tracking feature called SoFi Relay. Input your information, and SoFi Relay keeps track of your account balances, investments, debts, credit score, and financial goals all in one place.

    Is SoFi trustworthy?

    The Better Business Bureau has given SoFi an A+ in trustworthiness. A great BBB rating signifies the company is transparent in how it handles business, has honest advertising, and responds effectively to customer complaints.

    Despite its strong BBB score, SoFi does have a recent scandal regarding dishonesty. In 2019, the Federal Trade Commission ordered SoFi to stop running advertisements that claimed customers could save more money by refinancing than actually possible.

    If SoFi's history of dishonest advertising makes you uncomfortable, you may decide to open an account elsewhere. If not, you could like SoFi Money.

    SoFi Money vs. competitors

    We compared SoFi Money to two other online accounts that help you save: The Chime Savings Account (Member FDIC) and the Ally High Yield Savings Account (Member FDIC).

    sofi logo
    SoFi Money
    chime logo
    Chime
    ally bank logo
    Ally High Yield Savings

    APY

    0.01% or 0.25% APY

    APY

    0.50% APY

    APY

    0.50% APY

    Out-of-network ATM fee

    None

    Out-of-network ATM fee

    $2.50

    Out-of-network ATM fee

    Reimbursed up to $10 per month

    Open an Account

    Open an Account

    Open an Account

    SoFi Money vs. Chime

    SoFi Money and Chime have one main difference: With SoFi Money, you keep your checking and savings in one account, but Chime gives you separate checking and savings accounts.

    This distinction has its pros and cons. With Chime, you won't earn interest on your checking balance, but you'll get a high rate of 0.50% APY on your savings balance. In contrast, you may qualify to earn 0.25% on your entire balance with SoFi, regardless of whether it's spending money or savings.

    With Chime, you don't need to do anything to qualify for a high APY. With SoFi Money, you must deposit $500 per month to earn the high rate.

    So your choice between the two companies could come down to the following:

    • Whether you want one account for checking and savings, or two separate accounts.
    • Whether you can qualify for the higher rate each month with SoFi.
    • Your savings account balance. If you tend to keep most of your money in checking rather than savings, then you might prefer SoFi. Chime doesn't pay any interest on your checking account. But if you make an effort to save, then you could seriously benefit from Chime's 0.50% APY on your savings account.

    You may prefer Chime if you need to deposit cash. Unlike SoFi, Chime lets you deposit cash at Green Dot locations — but you'll pay a $4.95 fee each time.

    SoFi Money vs. Ally

    Ally has both an interest checking account that pays 0.10% to 0.25% APY and a high-yield savings account that pays 0.50% APY.

    When choosing between SoFi and Ally, ask yourself the same questions you asked about choosing between SoFi and Chime: Do you want one account or two? Can you qualify for SoFi's higher APY? Do you tend to keep more money in checking or in savings?

    SoFi and Ally both have budgeting features, but they work a little differently. Your choice between the two could come down to which budgeting tool you prefer.

    SoFi tracks your balances, investments, debts, credit score, and financial goals all in one place. With Ally, you can assign each account a nickname, like "Emergency Fund" or "Travel Account" to track your progress and stay motivated. You may decide to open a separate account for each goal, but Ally has a bucket feature that allows you save for multiple goals in one account.

    Laura Grace Tarpley is the editor of banking and mortgages at Personal Finance Insider, covering mortgages, refinancing, bank accounts, and bank reviews. She is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF). Over her four years of covering personal finance, she has written extensively about ways to save, invest, and navigate loans.

    Disclosure: This post is brought to you by the Personal Finance Insider team. We occasionally highlight financial products and services that can help you make smarter decisions with your money. We do not give investment advice or encourage you to adopt a certain investment strategy. What you decide to do with your money is up to you. If you take action based on one of our recommendations, we get a small share of the revenue from our commerce partners. This does not influence whether we feature a financial product or service. We operate independently from our advertising sales team.

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