Banking » Compare Banks » Axos vs Varo: Compare Banking Products (2023)
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Axos vs Varo: Compare Banking Products (2023)

Both Axos and Varo offer fee free accounts to make managing your money easy. However, Axos allows you to upgrade your checking account to enjoy up to 1% on your balance, while Varo’s checking account works best with its savings account. This will make it easier to access the higher savings rate, which is far better than Axos’s rate.
Author: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)
Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Writer, Contributor

Experience

Baruch Silvermann is a financial expert, experienced analyst, and founder of The Smart Investor, which helps consumers make better financial decisions.  Silvermann’s areas of expertise include investing, banking, and credit cards. Silvermann has contributed to Yahoo Finance and cited as an authoritative source in financial outlets like Forbes, Business Insider, CNBC Select, CNET, Bankrate, Fox Business, The Street, and more. Aside from being a finance expert, his background includes working as a business and financial analyst. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.

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: Baruch Mann (Silvermann)
Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Writer, Contributor

Experience

Baruch Silvermann is a financial expert, experienced analyst, and founder of The Smart Investor, which helps consumers make better financial decisions.  Silvermann’s areas of expertise include investing, banking, and credit cards. Silvermann has contributed to Yahoo Finance and cited as an authoritative source in financial outlets like Forbes, Business Insider, CNBC Select, CNET, Bankrate, Fox Business, The Street, and more. Aside from being a finance expert, his background includes working as a business and financial analyst. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.

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.

We earn a commission from our partner links on this page. It doesn't affect the integrity of our unbiased, independent editorial staff. Transparency is a core value for us, read our advertiser disclosure and how we make money.

Table Of Content

Axos is a well-established online-only banking service. It has been in business since 2000 and is constantly expanding its services for both individuals and businesses. The bank is a subsidiary of Axos Financial and is headquartered in San Diego, California. Despite the fact that the bank has three locations, the vast majority of its customers are served online.

This online bank, which provides checking, savings, CDs, investing, and other services, has a lot to offer. A variety of checking account options allow customers to earn interest or cash back. The APY on Axos Bank's Rewards Checking account isn't the highest among online banks, but it's sufficient to justify opening an account as part of a larger online banking strategy, and there are almost no fees.

Varo is an online banking app that provides a variety of deposit and loan options. It was established in 2015 and is headquartered in San Francisco. Varo provides high-yield savings accounts and cash-back checking accounts, as well as a fee-free ATM network (more information from Varo can be found below) and automatic savings tools.

Customers who wish to make a deposit may do so through Varo's partner Green Dot, which has a presence in thousands of locations across the country in stores such as Walmart, 7-11, Walgreens, and others.

Banking Options

Savings Account

While Axos does have a savings interest rate that is more than the 0.5% basic rate offered with Varo, you can qualify for a rate of up to 3% by receiving $1,000+ in direct deposits during a qualifying period or maintaining a savings balance of $5,000 or more. Additionally, you can receive a higher rate if you average a $0 balance between your savings and checking account.

Additionally, you don’t need the $250 minimum deposit required for an Axos savings account, as you only need $0.01. But, once your account is up and running, you don’t need to meet any minimum account balance requirements with Axos.

However, it is important that you have both a Varo checking and saving account to take advantage of this product. Axos savings accounts are not dependent on having an Axos checking account.

Checking Account

Both the Axos and Varo checking accounts are fee free and have similar features, such as early access to paycheck funds, but while the Varo checking account is designed to work with its savings account, Axos has a number of independent checking account options.

We’ve examined the Essential Checking account, which is the basic account, but you can also upgrade to Cash Back checking that offers up to 1% cash back or Rewards checking that pays 1% interest on account balances. These account options are also fee free, but there are some opening requirements. For example, you need $50 to open a Rewards Checking or Cash Back Checking account.

CDs

There is no comparison here. While Axos offers CDs with a minimum deposit of $1,000, Varo does not actually offer CDs. So, although the 0.20% rate on Axos CDs can be easily beaten on the wider marketplace, it has to take the prize here.

Credit Cards

Unfortunately, while Axos has an impressive product line, at this time, the bank does not offer even one credit card option. If you want financing, you have to apply for an Axos personal loan.

Varo has just one credit card option that is designed to help you to build your credit. This is a secured card with no annual fee, no APR and no minimum security deposit.

You can simply add money to your “Believe” secured account and then use your credit card for making purchases. When you pay your balance in full and on time each month, this will be reported to the credit bureaus. You can even see your credit score in the app, so you can monitor any changes.

Personal Loans

While Varo doesn't offer personal loans to its customers yet, Axos Bank offers personal loans on their website. It may be difficult to qualify with Axos Bank if you have a low credit score, a high debt-to-income ratio, and no income or credit history.

Your credit should not be affected during the pre-qualifying process, regardless of how you apply. You can pay off your loan early and save a significant amount of money in interest because Axos personal loans do not charge an early payoff fee.

After your loan has been approved and you have agreed to the terms, you should receive funds within two days.

Customer Service

Axos has a 24/7 helpline, but you can also chat with the Evo virtual assistant or browse the extensive support page on the website.

Varo has a website help center with an extensive FAQ section. There is also a contact email and customer service phone number, but there are no details of when the phone lines are open to receive calls.

Online/Digital Experience

Both Axos and Varo have an easy to use website to explore products and access support and help with various finance topics. This ensures a great user experience, particularly if you’re not sure exactly what banking services and products are the best option for you.

Both the banks also have highly rated apps. The Axos app is rated 4.7/5 on Apple Store and 4.5/5 on Google , while Varo’s app is rated 4.6/5 on the Apple Store and 4.5/5 on Google Play.

These apps allow you to not only transfer funds and manage your transactions, but you can access support and manage your card. You can even locate the nearest fee free ATM through the app, making it highly convenient if you’re in an unfamiliar neighborhood.

Which Bank is The Winner?

These banks offer similar products, so how do we decide which is the better bank? We’ll need to look a little closer to make that determination.

Both Axos and Varo offer fee free accounts to make managing your money easy. However, Axos allows you to upgrade your checking account to enjoy up to 1% on your balance or 1% cash back on your debit card purchases, while Varo’s checking account works best with its savings account. This will make it easier to access the higher savings rate, which is far better than Axos’s rate.

Another key difference is that Axos does offer CD products, with a minimum deposit of $1,000 and a flat rate of 0.20% regardless of term. Varo has no such CD products. However, Varo does offer a secured credit card to help you build your credit, while Axos has no credit card options at all.

FAQs

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The mobile app also keeps customers informed with push notifications on their phones, particularly about their transactions and account balances.

Although younger customers perceive it to be an intelligent and cutting-edge bank, it is still a work in progress, as many common banking products are missing from their offering.
They also offer loan products and a digital financial advisory service that is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Customers appreciate how useful this is for budgeting and spending analysis.

Although Ally Bank has no account minimums and good interest rates, Axos has a broader product offering and access to a large no-fee ATM network. Furthermore, Axos Bank has a strong online presence, making it easier to access services.

Axos Bank also offers extended banking hours, no foreign transaction fees, and low requirements for waiving monthly fees. However, Ally is one of the top banks in the country and much larger than Axos. Its interest rate is basically good so the differences are minor.

Axos offer s a couple of checking account options, depends on your needs & balance:

  • Essential Checking: There are no monthly or overdraft fees with this account. There is no minimum balance requirement, and domestic ATM fees are reimbursed indefinitely. Axos Bank may also allow you to receive direct deposit funds up to two days ahead of schedule.
  • Rewards Checking: The Reward Checking account has a $50 minimum balance and all of the benefits of Essential Checking, but it has a higher APY of 0.40 percent (requires $1,500 in monthly direct deposits). To receive the full rate, you must use your Axos debit card for 10 or more transactions per month and receive at least $1,000 in direct deposit per month.
  • CashBack Checking: This account gives you 1% cash back on all purchases that require a signature. It has no monthly fees and allows you to write unlimited checks.
  • First Checking: This is intended for children aged 13 to 17 in order to teach them good money management skills. The account has a 0.10 percent annual percentage rate and no monthly or overdraft fees. There are daily transaction limits, and parents can also restrict account access.
  • Golden Checking: This account is available to people over the age of 55. There is a $50 minimum balance requirement, but all balances earn 0.10 percent APR.

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Ally Bank is an online bank that arose from the banking division of General Motors Acceptance Corporation. GMAC used to be an auto financing company before being purchased by Ally Bank. This bank now offers a wide range of products. Among the products available are credit cards, home loans, investing products, savings accounts including certificates of deposit, and checking account options. Ally Bank serves millions of customers and provides high-quality banking services.

Axos is a well-established online-only banking service. It has been in business since 2000 and is constantly expanding its services for both individuals and businesses. The bank is a subsidiary of Axos Financial and is headquartered in San Diego, California. Despite the fact that the bank has three locations, the vast majority of its customers are served online.

Read Full Comparison: Axos Vs Ally Bank Comparison – Which Is Better?

Axos Bank is still committed to providing a “100% digital” experience, as evidenced by the absence of branches. When there are no branches, customers benefit from higher rates of return on financial products. Axos Bank is also a full-service bank, providing individuals and businesses with deposit accounts and loans.

Discover Bank, while not a full-service bank, is part of the Discover Group, which provides a wide range of loan products. If you have a Discover Bank account, you will be in their system if you ever need a loan or a credit card. With the exception of Delaware, Discover Bank does not have bank branches.

Read Full Comparison: Axos vs Discover: Which Bank Account Is Better?

Axos Bank offers home improvement loans as well as checking and savings accounts online. Because Axos is a low-cost online lender, it is able to pass on significant savings to its customers. Axos waives many fees and reimburses ATM and rewards checking fees.

Chime is an online-only company that works with two banks to provide checking and savings accounts. Online banking with Chime is not the same as using a traditional banking system. Chime secures and protects your online financial accounts. It is a safe place to keep your money and access it without any technical difficulties.

Read Full Comparison: Axos VS Chime: Which Online Bank Is Better?

Marcus, on the other hand, made Goldman Sachs banking more accessible to the general public when it debuted in 2016. Our in-depth Marcus review can help you decide if this online bank is right for you. Goldman Sachs is one of the world's largest investment banks, with offices in every major financial center and a client list that includes other banks as well as the state of New Jersey. With Marcus, however, you could be next on the list.

Axos online bank, which provides checking, savings, CDs, investing, and other services, has a lot to offer. A variety of checking account options allow customers to earn interest or cash back. The APY on Axos Bank's Rewards Checking account isn't the highest among online banks, but it's sufficient to justify opening an account as part of a larger online banking strategy, and there are almost no fees.

Read Full Comparison: Axos vs Marcus: Which Online Bank is Better?

Chime differs from many banks and other financial institutions in that it screens customers in an unusual way. If you don't have perfect credit or are still building your credit history, this may make it easier to open an account with Chime.

Varo, a mobile-only bank, was established in 2015. As a result, there are no bank branches. To use Varo's services, first download and sign into the bank's Apple and Android mobile apps. Varo offers a lot of functionality for on-the-go users, which may entice you to go online.

Read Full Comparison: Chime vs Varo Comparison: Which Online Bank Wins?

SoFi offers a Spend and Save account that is part savings account and part checking account. You can earn 0.25 percent on your entire balance, but you can also establish savings vaults. These are separate funds within the account that allow you to allocate funds to various savings goals. This allows you to save for both short and long-term goals without having to manage multiple savings accounts.

Varo, on the other hand, has a more traditional savings account that offers an impressive up to 3% interest rate. Higher rates are available if you keep a savings balance of $5,000 or more or receive $1,000 or more in direct deposits during the qualifying period.

Read Full Comparison: SoFi vs Varo Bank: Which Account Is Better For Your Money?

Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Baruch Mann (Silvermann)

Baruch Silvermann is a financial expert, experienced analyst, and founder of The Smart Investor, which helps consumers make better financial decisions.  Silvermann's areas of expertise include investing, banking, and credit cards. Silvermann has contributed to Yahoo Finance and cited as an authoritative source in financial outlets like Forbes, Business Insider, CNBC Select, CNET, Bankrate, Fox Business, The Street, and more. Aside from being a finance expert, his background includes working as a business and financial analyst. Above all, he is passionate about teaching people how to manage their money and helping millions on their journey to a better financial future.