Banking » Reviews » Live Oak Bank Review 2022 – Online Savings, CDs & Small Business Loans
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Live Oak Bank Review 2023 – Online Savings, CDs & Small Business Loans

Live Oak Bank has expandedits reach across multiple investment and saving tools with a distinct focus on small businesses. Here's what you should know.
Author: Lorraine Smithills
Lorraine Smithills

Writer, Contributor

Experience

Lorraine is a freelance finance writer with years of experience in the banking sector and after a successful career in one of the largest retail and commercial financial services providers. She has a passion for helping people with less financial confidence to get control of their money through budgeting, saving, and responsible credit practices.

Review & Fact Check: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Financial Expert, The Smart Investor CEO

Experience

Baruch Mann (Silvermann) is a financial expert and founder of The Smart Investor. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.
Author: Lorraine Smithills
Lorraine Smithills

Writer, Contributor

Experience

Lorraine is a freelance finance writer with years of experience in the banking sector and after a successful career in one of the largest retail and commercial financial services providers. She has a passion for helping people with less financial confidence to get control of their money through budgeting, saving, and responsible credit practices.

Review & Fact Check: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Financial Expert, The Smart Investor CEO

Experience

Baruch Mann (Silvermann) is a financial expert and founder of The Smart Investor. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.

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Live Oak Bank

live-oak-bank-logo
live-oak-bank-logo

Live Oak Bank

Fees

$0

Minimum Deposit

Current Promotion

None

APY Savings

3.10%

Live Oak is one of the country's popular banks, having begun in Wilmington, North Carolina, in 2008 – which remains its only physical branch to date. Today, they are a nationwide bank in terms of reach and are the 246th bank in terms of size in the United States.

The bank offers competitive deposit rates and pays higher interest than its competitors. Because they are practically an online bank, they don’t have the expenses of an extensive banking network. This enables them to give out an above-average APY to their depositors.

The bank is digitally-focused – which, to them, means banking is available only through an online and mobile app. Their mobile app can let you see even your non-Live Oak account. Currently, customers have no ATM access, but the bank reports that they are working on it.

Customers can contact their help desk by phone only Monday to Friday during office hours. Or they can communicate by leaving a message on the bank’s website.

  • High APY on savings account and CDs
  • No monthly maintenance fees
  • Digital Experience
  • Limited Customer Service Access
  • No debit card
  • No ATM access

Live Oak Bank Review

Live Oak Bank Pros & Cons

Like any other bank, Live Oak has its own strengths and weaknesses. Here are the main benefits and drawbacks you should know before applying:

When it comes to deposit and loan rates, the bank is almost heaven-sent. As of January 2023, you can get 3.10% APY on Live Oak savings account.

The strict qualification process is an incentive to responsible business owners – manage your business well and you can get low-cost financing.

Live Oak bank doesn't charge monthly maintenance fees, unless you carry less than $10 in your account for more than 24 hours. 

The bank uses technology accordingly, especially in loan processing. A shorter turnaround time means customers get the benefits of the loan products earlier. For small businesses, the faster they can get help, the bigger the chance of the business making it.

The bank app is also noteworthy. Being an online bank, everything rises and falls because of the app. After being in the business for some time, the bank’s tech team has already eliminated most of the bugs.

This is a bank with no physical branch and is proud of its level of technology.

Customers who open online accounts expect everything to be available 24/7. This includes access to a help desk that can assist them at any time and any day of the week.

Since Live Oak Bank is designed for customers searching for deposit accounts and not offering a checking account, so debit cards cannot be used to make transactions.

Live Oak is an online-only bank institution; there are no physical locations where you can access your money.

If you're looking for promotions on savings accounts, Live Oak is not the right place for you, and you should look at other banks. For example, Citi savings account promotion offering $40 – $3,500 bonus, based on your deposit.

Savings Account

live-oak-bank-logo

Initial Deposit

$0

Fees

$0

APY

3.10%

Initial Deposit

$0

Fees

$0

APY

3.10%

In the competitive world of deposit rates, Live Oak consistently lands among the bunch near the top. They don’t offer the highest rate in the market, but they’re better than good.

Their savings account has no minimum balance and no monthly fee. Even if you only have $1.00 in your account, it’s still good enough to earn interest. Even better, the bank compounds interest daily.

This is straight online savings account that you can access through a mobile app. The app works with non-Live Oak Bank accounts, so you don’t need another app for your accounts in other banks. However, they won’t give you a checkbook or an ATM for this account.

Although you won’t pay any monthly fee, there’s a whole range of fees for other transactions or services. 

Certificate Of Deposits (CDs)

live-oak-bank-logo

Initial Deposit

$2,500

Term Range

6 months – 5 years

APY

2.00% – 4.25%

This product is the digital version of the traditional CD – the terms and conditions are standard except that you manage it through an app. Opening an account only takes a few minutes online.

Their opening deposit is higher than other online banks but you will find that it is still a bit low. Customers can choose terms that run from 6 months, 1 year, 18 months to two to five years. Interest goes up as the term goes longer. The bank gives a higher APY than many banks due to the monthly compounding of interest.

Deposits are eligible for FDIC coverage to the maximum that the law allows. Customers have the option to get their interest monthly. There is only one kind of CD available so those looking for special CDs would have to look for them elsewhere. Here are the basic requirements:

  • Maximum of $250,000 per account
  • Interest payable monthly
  • Early withdrawal penalty

Bottom Line: Dies Live OAK Bank Worth It?

From what we’ve seen, Live Oak wants to focus more on loans than deposits. If you’re a small business owner who needs low-cost financing, you’d find that Live Oak can help you in this area better than other lenders.

But if you have a need for financing and at the same time, other bank products and services, this may not be a good fit. Having your loan account in one bank and your deposit accounts in another bank is not always the best practice. It will be more convenient to find a bank that can serve both your financing and deposit needs.

Online Banks For Starters - Alternatives

sofi logo
Chime
APY Savings The annual percentage yield (APY) is a percentage that represents the amount of money or interest earned on your savings account over the course of a year. The APY factored in compound interest. A savings calculator can help you quickly determine how much you'll earn with a given APY.
3.75%
2.00%*
3.00%
Checking Account Fee The monthly fee on checking account
$0
$0
$0
Checking Minimum Deposit
$0
$0
$0
Mobile App Rating
4.8/5 on iOS, 4.2/5 on Android
4.8/5 on iOS, 4.6/5 on Android
4.7/5 on iOS, 4.5/5 on Android
BBB Rating
A+
F
A+

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Lorraine Smithills

Lorraine Smithills

Lorraine is a freelance finance writer with years of experience in the banking sector and after a successful career in one of the largest retail and commercial financial services providers. She has a passion for helping people with less financial confidence to get control of their money through budgeting, saving, and responsible credit practices.
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