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Editor's Note: APYs listed in this article are up-to-date as of the time of publication. They may fluctuate (up or down) as the Fed rate changes. CNBC will update as changes are made public.
The biggest difference between opening a savings account with a brick-and-mortar bank versus an online bank is that the former has branches you can visit in person, whereas the latter operates entirely on the web.
Online banking has become more popular because of the higher interest rates and lower fees offered. But many consumers still choose to open bank accounts with the traditional big brick-and-mortar banks solely for the personal, one-on-one experience that they provide.
With about 5,400 physical locations and over 13,000 ATMs, Wells Fargo is the largest brick-and-mortar bank in the nation by number of branches. For those looking to open an account at a bank with the most opportunity for in-person access, Wells Fargo is your best choice.
The WellsFargo Way2Save® Savings ranks on CNBC Select's list of the top brick-and-mortar savings accounts because it has a low minimum daily balance requirement in order to avoid the monthly service fee ($5 per month) and makes it easy to automate your savings through Save As You Go®.
Below, we take a close look at the WellsFargo Way2Save Savings by breaking down its annual percentage yield (APY), access to your cash, perks and fees so you can decide if this brick-and-mortar savings account is right for you.
Annual Percentage Yield (APY)
$25 to open
$5 per month, with options to waive
Up to 6 free withdrawals or transfers per statement cycle
Excessive transactions fee
Each withdrawal over the 6 per month limit will be assessed
Overdraft protection when you link your savings account to your checking account
Offer checking account?
Offer ATM card?
Yes, if have a Wells Fargo checking account
See our methodology, terms apply.
The current APY for the WellsFargo Way2Save Savings is 0.01%, which is about on par with the rate most brick-and-mortar savings accounts offer.
Wells Fargo has about 5,400 branches and over 13,000 ATMs throughout the country — making it the largest brick-and-mortar bank by physical footprint and easier access to your cash.
Each withdrawal over the six-per-month limit will be assessed and may come with a fee. Those who link a Wells Fargo checking account can opt for overdraft protection. Opting in is free to do, but a single transfer fee will be assessed if the bank ends up transferring funds to cover your transactions.
The six-per-month deposit and withdrawal limit is a federal law known as Regulation D that has been temporarily lifted during the coronavirus pandemic.
Wells Fargo makes it easy to set aside cash with Save As You Go when customers link a Wells Fargo checking account to their Way2Save account.
Wells Fargo will automatically transfer $1 of a customer's funds from their checking to their savings for each qualifying transaction that is a non-recurring debit card purchase or online bill payment when you opt into Wells Fargo Online® Bill Pay.
Reach your savings goals quicker by setting up additional automatic transfers from your checking account each month.
The WellsFargo Way2Save Savings account requires a $25 opening deposit, which is a standard amount for most brick-and-mortar savings accounts. Some even require higher, like a $100 minimum with the Bank of America Advantage Savings, and some may require $0 to open, such as with the Chase Premier Savings.
There is a $5-per-month maintenance fee, which is on the lower end. Monthly fees can range from $4 to $25, depending on the bank. Account holders can avoid the monthly fee on their Way2Save by maintaining a $300 minimum daily balance (low compared to the elevated Wells Fargo Platinum Savings requiring a $3,500 minimum daily balance) or by setting up their choice of automatic transfers from their checking to their savings: $25 in total, $1 each business day per month or at least one Save As You Go transfer.
If you are someone who prefers in-person banking, Wells Fargo with its thousands of physical locations, is a good bet for opening a new savings account.
The WellsFargo Way2Save Savings stands out for making it easy to waive your monthly service fee and to hit your savings goals through Save As You Go.
For those who prefer banking with U.S. Bank or PNC Bank, consider their two brick-and-mortar savings accounts we rated as our favorites: U.S. Bank Standard Savings Account and PNC Bank Virtual Wallet®.
To determine which brick-and-mortar savings accounts offer the most convenience, CNBC Select analyzed dozens of U.S. savings accounts offered by the largest national banks and credit unions. We narrowed down our ranking by only considering those savings accounts that come from brick-and-mortar banks with broad availability, offering access to at least 2,000 physical branches and over 4,000 non-fee ATMs in the U.S.
While the accounts we chose in this article are from the largest banks, we compared each savings account on a range of features, including its fees, opportunities to earn interest higher rates, customer service and any other special offerings or programs. We also considered factors such as insurance policies, users' deposit options, other savings accounts being offered by the same bank and customer reviews when available.
All of the accounts included on this list are FDIC-insured up to $250,000. Note that the interest rates and fee structures for brick-and-mortar savings accounts are subject to change without notice. Product and feature availability vary by market so they may not be offered depending on where you live. Most brick-and-mortar banks require you to enter your zip code online for the correct account offerings. Any return on your savings depends on the associated fees and the balance you have in your brick-and-mortar savings account. To open a savings account, most banks and institutions require a deposit of new money, meaning you can't transfer money you already had in an account at that bank.