WaFd Bank

Savings and Checking Accounts

I have been with Washington Federal for 4 years. I have a checking, savings and home loan, but this review is for the checking and savings accounts and the staff. I have found it easy and convenient to work with Washington Federal. All of the personnel are friendly and helpful. I don't use the ATM, I usually go in and personally make deposits or write a check somewhere for a withdrawal. Their are no fees. The customer service experience has been better than any other bank. Because of the small size it is much easier to get in and out and get my business done quickly. I have always had any questions answered quickly and professionally. As a bonus, you can often find a tray of cookies available in the lobby! Great bank! I highly recommend it.

Washington Federal is a great bank!

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I have been banking with Washington Federal for 5 years. I opened a checking and savings account to go with my home construction loan. I used the checking and saving to move money between accounts and make payments to my contractor. Having an account here helped me keep track of all the transactions with the contractor. The customer service is exemplary in all areas. Once I rolled into a home loan, I kept the checking and savings and use them to keep extra funds. They have a very low fee schedule and a great minimum balance on accounts. I also think their interest rates are better than my other bank. So it is beneficial to keep money in savings here. I highly recommend them as a great local bank. I recommended them to my neighbors and they are also very happy with the experience they have had with them.

Customer Care Home Run

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Customer care? Customer service? Customer support? Client services? I’m not quite sure what the trendiest term is for what, essentially, is how a company addresses its customers’ or clients’ needs, but I prefer customer or client care. Why? Well, right there in the label is the notion that an organization cares about its customers or clients. That’s at least a start.

There’s little guarantee (we know they don’t exist in real life, don’t we?) that just because an organization has the name right, that they also have the thing itself right. How many customer care departments have you encountered where there is no real “care” evident? I’m old so there have been quite a in that category over my lifetime.

WaFd Bank (formerly Washington Federal Bank), headquartered in Seattle, Washington, is not a large banking organization (although it operates in eight states and maintains over 200 local branches), and it did not appear on any of the several lists of “best customer service” banks that I consulted. If, however, the response I received from WaFd’s leadership after I fired off an unhappy customer email yesterday reflects the organization’s commitment to customer care, real customer care, then I wouldn’t be surprised to see WaFd climb the ladder of those “best of” lists, as well as the list of largest banks determined by assets and customer accounts.

The details of the situation that resulted in my displeasure aren’t important, and it did take several calls to get things resolved. However, what is important is that at multiple organizational levels (call center, branch management, executive leadership), I encountered at least one person who displayed exemplary customer care.

At the call center level, despite my admittedly irritated phone demeanor, Nick, the fourth online banking consultant with whom I spoke, performed quintessentially. Nick was patient, attentive, listened well, established rapport, diagnosed the issue, informed me of how he intended to address the situation, and informed me that, although he couldn’t complete the fix himself immediately, he would bring the problem to the attention of those who could. He also assured me that he would follow-up before he completed his shift for the day. Nick did follow-up with a call, checking all the boxes for outstanding customer care.

Moving on to the local branch level, being advised that the local branch needed to be involved in the fix, I called our local Silver City, New Mexico branch, specifically seeking to connect with Jaclynn Rodriguez. We had opened our WaFd free-checking account in January of 2020 with Ms. Rodriguez and her customer interface skills were superb. The few times we have needed to connect with the local branch, we sought out Ms. Rodriguez and have yet to be disappointed.

I eventually reached Ms. Rodriguez late in the afternoon and through her efforts the troubling situation was resolved in fewer than 30 minutes. Consistent with our previous experiences, Ms. Rodriguez had been the ultimate professional, displaying all the traits exhibited by Nick above, including the addition of problem resolution with a vocal smile.

During my time on hold, I began detailing the experience, including documenting the individuals I had spoken with, noting the time I was spending on these calls, etc. Having already spent far more time than I would have liked on the situation, I decided to take additional time to write to WaFd’s executive management. Honestly, I wasn’t really expecting much except perhaps a standard, cookie-cutter email response within a few days.

My email was sent at 5:24pm to multiple individuals on the executive leadership team, including Brent Beardall, president and CEO, and Cathy Cooper, executive vice president and retail banking group manager. At 7:16pm, I answered a call, and to my pleasant astonishment, the caller was Michelle Coons, New Mexico regional president. Seriously? After 7pm on a Friday evening? A follow-up call from a regional president? For the mathematically challenged, it had been less than two hours since my email was sent.

Ms. Coons was on her way into an athletic facility to watch her son’s football game when she called, but she told me that she had received a call from Mr. Beardall who had read my email and wanted immediate action taken. Ms. Coons had obliged, assuring me that their team was investigating the situation and would follow-up.

I must admit to feeling a tad regretful that my email had resulted in Ms. Coons losing some valued time with her son, and I ended the conversation after a few minutes. Let me be clear, Ms. Coons didn’t not seem in a hurry to get off the phone. She seemed most concerned about my experience and about making things right.

The response from WaFd’s leadership thus far had already been world-class, but this morning I opened my inbox to see an email from Ms. Cooper, the executive vice president I mentioned above. I saw the email this morning, but it was time-stamped 9:02pm last night. An email from WaFd’s leadership team at 9pm on a Friday night, following a call from a regional president?

Okay, you might not be impressed, but by now you should be able to tell that I most certainly am. Surely there’s a hefty dollop of damage-control involved, but listen folks, we have a microscopic account balance at WaFd. Viewed financially- actually, from any perspective- we are not upper echelon customers. Heck, we’ve only banked with WaFd for just under two years, so we are not even long-term customers. And yet, we received upper echelon customer care initiated and executed by the most senior of WaFd’s executives.

The story that I might have told today, had WaFd’s executive leadership team not cut that narrative off at the pass, would not have been a pretty one. However, their response reminded me that this was the very first time that I had been displeased with WaFd’s customer care. Of course, perfect is nice, but 99.9% ain’t bad either. Instead of panning WaFd for yesterday’s experience, today I am singing the praises of an organization whose leadership team is willing to go the extra mile to address its customers' concerns and to protect organization’s public profile.

I don’t often think about having a vast fortune, but today I wish I did so that I could make a momentous deposit at our Silver City, New Mexico WaFd branch. Maybe one day. Thank to every member of the team that contributed to the restoration of my faith in excellent customer care and in WaFd Bank!

Horrible Customer Service

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Poor customer service. New web page doesn't support quicken. Been trying to get support for 4 weeks. No responses in their online chat or email. Always have to wait on hold and don't get call backs. They say with Stellar checking you get free checks don't believe it. Getting hard to believe anything from them, especially when you can't get responses. This bank has gone downhill fast. I was with First Mutual then WaFd bought it. Was ok at first, but now just an extremely poor customer experience. Avoid. I am now looking to move my longtime account with them to another bank.



Health Grade Components

FDIC Certificate #28088
Year Established1917
Primary RegulatorFDIC
Profit Margin
Return on Assets - YTD0.98%
Return on Equity - YTD9.36%
Annual Interest Income$153.3MM
Assets and Liabilities
AssetsQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$20.57B$19.54B
LoansQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$15.10B$13.04B
DepositsQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$16.55B$15.14B
Equity CapitalQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$2.13B$2.10B
Loan Loss AllowanceQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$171.4MM$172.7MM
Unbacked Noncurrent LoansQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$33.6MM$40.0MM
Real Estate OwnedQ1 2022vs Q1 2021$9.5MM$5.3MM

Rates for WaFd Bank are currently being reviewed.



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