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Old 03-04-2012, 10:43 AM
 
Location: Johns Creek, Georgia
955 posts, read 2,863,816 times
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I am looking to open up a new bank account outside of chase and bank of America. What would you say are the top five safest banks in Atlanta? Is suntrust bank one of them?

Thanks.
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Old 03-04-2012, 11:20 AM
 
2,375 posts, read 3,729,905 times
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Per Clark Howard, stay away from the BIG BANKS. I would recommend Delta Community Credit.

As long as you deposits are within the FDIC covered amount, you don't need the SAFEST bank. What you want to be focusing on is the bank with the highest earning rates, lowest borrowing rates and lowest fees
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Old 03-04-2012, 02:34 PM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA (Sandy Springs)
5,003 posts, read 2,779,057 times
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Any FDIC insured bank covers the first $250k in an account.
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Old 03-04-2012, 02:44 PM
 
8,283 posts, read 10,220,858 times
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This really depends on how you bank.

For example, if you go all over town and want access to money any time, you're going to pay so many fees in ATM charges from a smaller bank that you may as well have just gotten a big bank.

A lot of times if you bank with the same bank that your employer uses and you sign up for direct deposit, you don't pay any fees.

Clark's answer may be overall correct, but there is no one size fits all. Different services are important to different people, so you have to think about what is important to you and who is best positioned to serve those needs.

I personally use Wells Fargo for checking. That's because I have been with them since they were Wachovia, my employer is with them, and I get free checking, savings, and online bill pay. No matter where I am in Atlanta, I am never far from a Wells Fargo ATM. They are even in every QT. If they ever charged me a fee, I'd bolt in a second, but they never have for anything.

Having said that, I use banks that don't even have physical branches for various forms of savings (for example, I have a special account that I use only to pay myself each month to save up for a car, I have a special account that I pay myself every month for taxes instead of having escrow with my mortgage, etc.) I keep all these accounts at separate banks just because I believe in diversification and it makes it easier for me to keep the money separate and earmarked for what I want it for. I'm probably more disciplined than most, I guess....but I make a modest income and I have to be smart if I want to retire at 65.

If you have different needs like needing a bank to take out a car note, personal loan, etc., credit unions are probably the way to go. They just aren't very convenient for quick and easy access to your money through ATMs. I think some of them may have programs where the reimburse you for fees incurred taking money out at ATMs that aren't their's, but that may just be USAA.
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Old 03-04-2012, 03:56 PM
 
1,209 posts, read 3,499,830 times
Reputation: 306
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrpanda View Post
I am looking to open up a new bank account outside of chase and bank of America. What would you say are the top five safest banks in Atlanta? Is suntrust bank one of them?

Thanks.
Are you asking "safest" because in theory FDIC may only be able to pay out what it has in its account, which may not cover in the case of a "collapse"? I think Congress made a "statement" (not law) decades back that they would back the FDIC no matter what.

Is that why you are asking for safest?
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Old 03-04-2012, 04:50 PM
 
Location: Johns Creek, Georgia
955 posts, read 2,863,816 times
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What do you guys think about SunTrust and BB&T? I am just looking for high rated banks. I think Chase and BoA has pretty low rating.
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Old 03-04-2012, 04:58 PM
 
Location: MMU->ABE->ATL->ASH
9,110 posts, read 17,071,904 times
Reputation: 9959
for your bank, Since you are doing Real Estate investing, I would go in and meet a few of the bank managers/loan officers, and find who you like, Interview them like you are hiring them for a job (you are).

SunTrust BB&T seem to have good reps. But also look at some of the local non/chain banks. See what they can offer you.
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Old 03-04-2012, 05:01 PM
 
2,683 posts, read 5,199,462 times
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Many small banks and credit unions and even online banks like ING Direct have agreements that you can use many atms for free. For instance with ING Direct any chase ATM is free and most CVS's have chase ATM's.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ATLTJL View Post
This really depends on how you bank.

For example, if you go all over town and want access to money any time, you're going to pay so many fees in ATM charges from a smaller bank that you may as well have just gotten a big bank.

A lot of times if you bank with the same bank that your employer uses and you sign up for direct deposit, you don't pay any fees.

Clark's answer may be overall correct, but there is no one size fits all. Different services are important to different people, so you have to think about what is important to you and who is best positioned to serve those needs.

I personally use Wells Fargo for checking. That's because I have been with them since they were Wachovia, my employer is with them, and I get free checking, savings, and online bill pay. No matter where I am in Atlanta, I am never far from a Wells Fargo ATM. They are even in every QT. If they ever charged me a fee, I'd bolt in a second, but they never have for anything.

Having said that, I use banks that don't even have physical branches for various forms of savings (for example, I have a special account that I use only to pay myself each month to save up for a car, I have a special account that I pay myself every month for taxes instead of having escrow with my mortgage, etc.) I keep all these accounts at separate banks just because I believe in diversification and it makes it easier for me to keep the money separate and earmarked for what I want it for. I'm probably more disciplined than most, I guess....but I make a modest income and I have to be smart if I want to retire at 65.

If you have different needs like needing a bank to take out a car note, personal loan, etc., credit unions are probably the way to go. They just aren't very convenient for quick and easy access to your money through ATMs. I think some of them may have programs where the reimburse you for fees incurred taking money out at ATMs that aren't their's, but that may just be USAA.
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Old 03-04-2012, 09:24 PM
 
Location: Mableton, GA USA (NW Atlanta suburb, 4 miles OTP)
11,319 posts, read 22,446,033 times
Reputation: 3882
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrpanda View Post
I am looking to open up a new bank account outside of chase and bank of America. What would you say are the top five safest banks in Atlanta? Is suntrust bank one of them?

Thanks.
I've been very happy with Suntrust over the past seven years. They seem to be willing to bend over backwards when issues occur, also ... when a mailed check they send on time (triggered via their bill pay web site) was late to arrive, they were right there to defend me as "our mutual customer" and set up conference calls with the payee to resolve the issue. When someone tried to pass forged checks against my account, they were very quick to stomp on it and kept me informed during the entire process. Etc.

Credit Unions are also very good ... I've been members of two in the past, but neither one has much presence in the Atlanta metro area.
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Old 03-05-2012, 03:57 AM
 
Location: Atlanta, GA
1,052 posts, read 1,353,783 times
Reputation: 498
I would say Suntrust is the best bank in Atlanta! I have been with them for years. I am with Suntrust Private Wealth Management now, and I have never had a problem with them. They handle my investments, trusts, mortgages on my investment properties, credit card, safety deposit box, insurance, personal checking, LLC accounts for business, etc. Their online system is great for viewing my accounts. My financial advisor at Suntrust is always there whenever I need anything.
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