|APY||ACCOUNT TYPE||HOW THEY COMPARE|
2.20% - Barclays Online Savings Account
2.85% - Barclays 36 Month Online CD
1.60% - National Average
Salem Five Direct is an online division of Salem Five Cents Savings Bank, an innovative bank located in Salem, Massachusetts with over 150 years of banking experience. On the Salem Five Direct website you will find unique bank product offerings developed exclusively for clients seeking to conduct business on the internet. These offers will not be available through the Salem Five branch network and will change from time to time. The Salem Five Direct mission is to offer unprecedented value to our direct banking customers through exclusive product features at highly competitive prices.
I figure I can address a lot of the issues and complaints I've seen in reviews based on my own personal experience with Salem Five Direct. I've experienced some of these issues first-hand and can shed some real experience versus speculation.
First thing's first- the rates. The rates are solid. I was a long-time Ally customer, but the promotional rate is what attracted me to the bank. I started at around 1.5% I believe and currently I'm at the 2.05% rate. I have never experienced a reduction in rate based on a bait and switch tactic as others have described. May have happened to others, hasn't happened to me through about 3 rate increases.
Rate Increases- this is another thing. Most online banks simply give you the rate increase. Salem is different. They cite these are promotional rates, but every time I've contacted customer service, they give me the new higher rate. Annoying that they don't automatically give you the rate? Sure. Understandably, they like to highlight these as promotional rates, so as a customer, I understand. Getting the increase is as simple as logging in, and chatting w/ customer service.
Account Setup- One of the more tedious processes. Took somewhere around 7 or so days for me to get this set up. They have a bunch of verification processes and you have to follow the right steps before being able to get mobile access to the app, but if you follow the steps, you'll be set up fine. I do think this could be more streamlined, but they're a small brick and mortar bank based our of the Boston area, so they don't have as many resources as the big banks out there. With that said, customer service has always been helpful.
Paper Statement Fee- Yes, this exists. Your account is automatically set up with it. There is a charge- I believe $2.95. I didn't notice it until it came on my statement. I saw it, I contacted customer service, they removed the fees and showed me how to opt out. Easy. It was annoying that it was the default, and I don't think that should be the case, but they were helpful in solving the issue for me.
ACH Limits- Some have cited limits on ACH transfers. This is universal across the board. You run into this transferring via ACH to other bank accounts. There are very few banks with unlimited funds. If you want to close your account, it will be tricky to transfer bulk funds. This may not be the best account if you need significant liquid funds. HOWEVER, there is a workaround. I ran into this before, but the easy way to navigate this (if you're not in a rush for instant funds), is to use a piggyback eOne Checking account. You can transfer unlimited funds between the Salem Savings and Checking account instantly, and write yourself a check to transfer via digital check deposit to other accounts. Yes, you'll have to wait for the check to clear with your other financial institution, but this is how I've navigated transferring larger sums. Works for my needs, may or may not work for yours.
Mobile App- It does what I need it to do. I can deposit checks, I can initiate transfers, etc. It's not the benchmark in banking apps, but it works.
Transfer Speed- Not the quickest. My other banks have them beat. Typically I see funds enter my account around 48-72 hours on business days. Again, not a big deal for me.
Customer Service- Although I've gone through these headaches, customer service has been great with helping me navigate it. From setting up the free checking account to help with fund transfer, being patient with me while I asked about the initial mobile setup process, and waiving the paper fee for me, they've always been great about it. They don't make the rules, but they've helped me navigate the quirks.
Sure, there are aspects of my experience that can certainly be improved, but as long as you navigate accordingly, I've always emerged a happy customer. The only real gripe I have is that the best rate is not automatically applied to my account, but again, they always accommodate my requests.
Hopefully this gives an unbiased perspective based on my own experience.
I always like to make a quick phone call to a prospective bank's customer service staff before jumping tor the highest interest rate. Most times there is a reason, a necessity for offering those rates. Based on my conversation Salem I believe is going through growing pains and the CS rep, Allison is overwhelmed with the response. She left me with the impression that she really would rather I take my business elsewhere. She was honest in admitting that they have been modifying some of there procedures and especially ornery fees because of complaints, (ie.the $3 ACH external transfer fee for each transaction). But I've dealt with the lengthy and unnecessary application process with other banks where you must provide superfluous documents and information, and then wait.. Hopefully they will get it right some day, hire more people and streamline their system. i wish them the best. For now the extra point 15 percent is by far not worth the anxiety of dealing with banks like this. There are currently fair to good internet banks offering 1.7% on money markets.
There are generally two types of banks I avoid. First, because I don’t like to keep changing accounts, I avoid banks that don’t have a record of consistently competitive rates. Second, I put banks I consider deceptive on my “never again” list. Salem falls into this second category.
Avoid this bank unless you don’t mind logging in to your account frequently to see the real interest rate you’re earning. Even though their website or DA may show the rate they pay on an account with the exact name (e.g. eone Savings) as one you have, they eventually shift you to a special established customer rate that is lower than all of the advertised rates.
When I asked them to close my account, they sent a letter making it clear to me just how stupid they must think I am. They wrote, “In lieu of closing the account, perhaps you would be interested in our newest eOne Savings account product, with a 1.50 percent Annual Percentage Yield rate. This is a promotion being offered to attract new customers, much like your initial rate was when you opened your account… We are committed to keeping our rates competitive.” If they were committed to keeping their rates competitive, why would they lower the rates to established customers while only new customers in the identically identified savings account could earn the competitive rate? Simply deceptive. Avoid them.
|FDIC Certificate #||23296|
|Return on Assets - YTD||0.98%|
|Return on Equity - YTD||9.59%|
|Annual Interest Income||$186.3MM|
|Assets and Liabilities|
|Assets||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$5.01B$4.68B|
|Loans||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$3.77B$3.51B|
|Deposits||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$3.71B$3.40B|
|Equity Capital||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$508.7MM$470.6MM|
|Loan Loss Allowance||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$34.0MM$28.7MM|
|Unbacked Noncurrent Loans||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$15.4MM$13.7MM|
|Real Estate Owned||Q4 2018vs Q4 2017||$1.3MM$1.6MM|
This section lists recent deals, promotions and rate changes submitted by our community within the past 90 days. Always verify official rates and promotions with the bank or credit union.
Always verify rates and promotions with the bank or credit union. We are not Salem Five Direct; we are a rate comparison website and cannot provide official rates or promotions.
* The APY shown varies based on the deposit amount. Expand the listing to see APYs for other deposit amounts.
|APY||MIN||MAX||ACCOUNT NAME||VIEW DETAILS|
|OTHER TIERS: 0.25% → $1m+|
|APY||MIN||MAX||ACCOUNT NAME||VIEW DETAILS|
|OTHER TIERS: 0.10% → $1m+|
|APY||MIN||MAX||ACCOUNT NAME||VIEW DETAILS|
|3.00%||$10k||$500k||36 Month eCD Special|
|3.00%||$10k||$500k||48 Month eCD Special|
|2.50%||$10k||$500k||18 Month eCD Special|
Salem Five Direct is an Internet only bank and does not have branch locations. Its headquarters is located at 71 Washington Street - Salem, MA 01970