If you are focused on finding a mobile banking service provider that provides a high-yield bank account, then, you got to check this Level Bank review to see if this meets exactly what you are looking for.
Mobile banking is not new. In fact, it has been there for quite a while now.
However, back then, it was mostly the younger generations who get into online banking. Adults prefer traditional or convention banks. This is not surprising though because younger people are more explorative and they’re into anything digital, while the older ones are okay with what they are used to.
But things changed last year when the worldwide pandemic hit the country. A lot of people of all ages get into mobile banking since outside activities were limited.
Since then until now, and in the coming years, experts believe that online banking or the fintech industry will continue to grow.
According to Statista, as of February 2021, there is 10,605 financial technology (Fintech) startups in the United States. With such a number, it has made the region the most Fintech startups across the world.
If the current trend will continue, and we mean people clamoring over online or mobile banking, there would be even greater opportunities for fintech companies.
Now, if you think about it, there are lots of options available. So, the question now would be, how to choose the best one for you.
Well, it will boil down to what your banking needs and preferences are. Knowing your needs and preferences will help trim down your options to make it easier to choose the one that’s for you.
As mentioned, there are a lot of mobile-centric service providers out there. But today, we are going to particularly focus on what Level Bank is and what it has to offer.
Level Bank is a fintech company that is known for providing a high-yield checking account.
In the next few sections, this Level Bank review will focus on providing answers to the following questions:
- What is Level Bank?
- Who is Level Bank best for?
- What are the products offered by Level Bank?
- How to bank with Level Bank?
- Is Level Bank safe?
- What to like about Level Bank?
- What not to like about Level Bank?
WHAT IS LEVEL BANK?
When choosing a bank, in this case, a mobile banking solution, it is important to look into its history first.
This way, you get to see how credible and trustworthy the bank is, and of course, how stable it.
So, with that said, before we even talk about the technical stuff, here’s a quick backgrounder about Level Bank —
According to the founder of Zero Financial, the firm that owns Level Bank, Bryce Galen, “Level was built to challenge the status quo in banking and put an end to the era of big banks holding people’s money while giving them no interest, a clunky app experience, and frustrating customer service.”
Level Bank aims instead “to give customers dramatically better rewards and interest, a design-forward app, and superior customer support.” The company’s goal is to “revolutionize the way people engage with their finances on a daily basis.“
With Level Bank, all account holders are able to enjoy earning interest on their money, at the same time, are ensured that their deposits are safe because their money is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) through its partnership with the Evolve Bank & Trust, which is a member of FDIC.
Furthermore, Level Bank offers “unlimited cash back on qualified purchases with your Plus or Premium membership, no overdraft fees or minimum balance requirements, and access to interest-free cash advances up to $500.“
In addition to that, customers can also “take advantage of ATM operator fee reimbursements worldwide (up to $4 per reimbursement), and the ability to get paid up to two days early.”
Level Bank is based in Walnut Creek, California.
If you are interested to know more about what Level Bank is all about, what to expect from it, and why it’s one of the bests, we recommend you watch the video below by Magnified Money:
WHO IS LEVEL BANK BEST FOR?
Now that you already know what Level Bank is all about, it’s time to look into who would benefit from it the most.
Generally speaking, Level Bank should be great for people who are open to adapting to new financial technology tools and services.
It would appeal to individuals who want debit card access, at the same time, earn cashback on purchases. Of course, it would also be appealing to those looking for a high-interest rate in a liquid account.
Additionally, Level Bank is ideal for people who want mobile banking, 24/5 customer support, as well as those who want to get away from banking fees.
WHAT ARE THE PRODUCTS OFFERED BY LEVEL BANK?
Now, we get into the most exciting part.
In the previous sections of our Level Bank review, we talked about what this fintech company is all about, and of course, who would benefit the most from it.
This time around, we are going to talk about one of the most important details you need to know – the products that the bank offers.
Level Bank is an online bank that provides customers with “cash management” services.
Although it may look the same as traditional checking accounts, its features are different.
With Level Bank, customers get to enjoy unlimited cash back on purchases, as well as a 0.50% annual percentage yield (APY) on deposits.
Unlike most credit cards that restrict cashback rewards to certain categories, Level Bank has no restrictions. Furthermore, the bank offers a no-fee service, which is definitely rewarding for customers.
For your information, Level Bank does not charge the following fees:
- Minimum balance fees
- Overdraft fees
- Non-sufficient funds fees
- Foreign transaction fees
- Add-on ATM fees
Level Bank offers cashback rewards, and it is made available every after a transaction is completed. Thus, you get to enjoy your rewards as soon as you can.
Apart from that, Level Bank also lets you cash out your balance through Lyft and DoorDash.
The amazing thing is, all of these are doable by simply using the Level Bank mobile app.
Now, to be able to qualify for cashback rewards, it is important to note that purchases must be signature-based “credit,” which basically means they can’t be used for buying other debit cards, ATMs, or ACH transfers.
The Level Bank account comes in three different options. These are:
- Level Standard
- Level Plus
- Level Premium
Now, let dig deeper into each of these to get to know them better —
The Level Standard account is basically the base level plan. It offers solid options at no cost at all.
With the Level Standard account, customers get to enjoy a 1.0% unlimited cash back on all qualified purchases using your Level Debit Card with qualifying direct deposits in the account every 31 days.
Also, customers who opt for this option get one ATM fee reimbursement, a $300 ATM withdrawal limit, as well as a 0.50% APY on deposits
If you want to enjoy better features, you may opt for the Level Plus option, which is the cheapest paid plan that Level Bank offers.
This account comes with benefits that slightly improve the Level Standard option.
All Level Plus account holders pay a monthly fee of $5, which when compared to other mobile banks out there is still lower.
Also, account holders get to enjoy 1.0% unlimited cash back, free cash advance of up to $150, three ATM fee reimbursements, as well as a $500 ATM withdrawal limit, limited merchant perks, message-based support, and of course, a 0.50% APY on deposits.
This plan is definitely a great option if you want to enjoy better features without having to spend so much on monthly fees.
The last but certainly not the least option of all is the Level Premium. Obviously, by the name itself, it means it provides customers the best features of all the three Level plans.
By opting for Level Premium, which entitles you to a $15 monthly fee, you get to enjoy several perks like a 1.5% unlimited cash back, a free cash advance of up to $150, five ATM fee reimbursements, $1,000 ATM withdrawal limit, as well as exclusive merchant perks, phone and message-based support, and of course, a 0.50% APY on deposits.
Customers get to enjoy discounts from exclusive merchants like Postmates, Lululemon, Spotify, Starbucks, and Sukoshi. Discounts are up to $25 for every merchant.
Meanwhile, for both Level Plus and Level Premium, ATM reimbursements are up to $4 per incident for the number of times listed.
By the way, all Level cards can be used at any ATM that accepts Visa cards.
HOW TO BANK WITH LEVEL BANK?
So, in the previous section of our Level Bank review, you already found out the products that this mobile banking service provider offers.
This time, we are going to talk about how to actually bank with Level Bank.
To open a Level Bank account, all you need to do is to visit the Level Bank website or download the mobile app, which is available for both Android and Apple device users.
Ultimately, though, you need to have a mobile device to use the services offered by Level Bank.
Anyway, when opening an account, similar to other banks, you will be asked to provide basic personal information including your name, address, mobile number, as well as your Social Security number. You should also have with you a government-issued identification like a driver’s license or passport for verification purposes.
Please note that the bank does not require any minimum deposit to be able to open an account, which means you can have an account with as little as $1.
It is also important to note that Level Bank customers can set up direct deposits for their paychecks into their Level Bank account. Generally, Level Bank posts the deposit on the same day the money is received, which means it could be up to two days earlier than the scheduled payment.
As mentioned in the previous section, for Level Standard, the bank does not charge any monthly fees. However, for Level Plus and Level Premium, the bank charges $5 and $15, respectively.
Meanwhile, for all three plans, customers are not charged overdraft fees, non-sufficient funds fees, low balance fees, as well as foreign transaction fees.
To be honest, this feature is great given the fact that a lot of mobile banks charge certain fees way more than what their competitors charge.
IS LEVEL BANK SAFE?
The safety and security of both your personal data and your money are important to Level Bank.
So, to ensure all your data is protected, Level Bank uses bank-grade encryption. More so, the bank is PCI-DSS v3.1 compliant, and also applies PCI standards when dealing with any sensitive information.
With regards to the Visa debit card, it comes with Visa protection, which means all protection that comes with using a Visa card — it’s called the Visa Zero Liability — applies to it. The card comes with built-in protection so you won’t be responsible should there be any unauthorized charges.
With Level Bank’s partnership with Evolve Bank and Trust, which is an FDIC member, all deposits are insured by the FDIC. This means FDIC insurance of up to $250,000 is provided per depositor, per account category in the event of a bank failure.
So, yeah, ultimately, Level Bank is very safe to use and to bank with.
WHAT TO LIKE ABOUT LEVEL BANK?
Now that we have already discussed all the important details about Level Bank – from what the bank is about to the products it offers and how to bank with them, it’s time to come up with a list of summary of the things that we like about Level Bank.
Some of the things that we particularly like about the bank are as follows:
- Plan Options – We like the fact that customers are provided with three different plan options starting with a no monthly fee plan to the premium one. This helps reach out to more classes of people.
- No Overdraft and Insufficient Funds Fees – Level Bank does not charge overdraft fees as well as insufficient funds fees, which makes it even more appealing for people who want to get away with these types of fees.
- No Foreign Transaction Fees – Another plus for Level Bank is the fact that it does not charge customers for foreign transaction fees, making it a good choice for constant travelers.
- Free Cash Advance of Up To $150 – This perk is another one that makes Level Bank stand. It’s nice knowing that the bank is able to provide a cash advance of up to this much.
- Up To 1.5% Unlimited Cash Back on Debit Card Purchases – The percentage of cashback on debit card purchases is also something that makes Level Bank worth it. This perk, however, is only available for the Level Premium option.
- Accessibility – Level Bank is a mobile bank, which means you can easily access your account anytime and anywhere you want for as long as there is an internet connection near you. Also, while it does have a website, you can only enjoy the services offered by the bank through its mobile application, which is available for both Apple and Android devices.
- FDIC-Insured – Thanks to the bank’s partnership with Evolve Bank and Trust, which is a member of the FDIC, all deposits are insured up to $250,000 in case of a bank failure.
- Bank-Level Security – Another thing that we like is that Level Bank uses bank-level security to ensure that all accounts are safe and secured from fraudulent acts as well as identity theft.
WHAT NOT TO LIKE ABOUT LEVEL BANK?
Of course, this Level Bank review will not be complete without sharing with you the downsides of this mobile banking platform.
Some of the things to not like (but hopefully can be improved on) about Level Bank are as follows:
- No Physical Branches – As mentioned, Level Bank is a mobile bank, which means it does not have any physical branches. If you are the type who would want to avail the benefit of having mobile bank access as well as conventional or in-person bank access, then, this is not for you.
- Does Not Allow Cash or Check Deposits – Unfortunately, Level Bank does not support cash or check deposits. But, who knows? Maybe the company is already working on it.
- Limited Products – Apart from the Level Bank Account that comes with three different plans, Level Bank does not offer any other product or services. With very limited options, this trims down to a very specific customer base. But then again, we do not know anything. Maybe the bank will eventually offer a few more in the coming years?
FINAL THOUGHTS ON LEVEL BANK REVIEW
Level Bank is a fintech company that offers high-yield bank account. Although the products are limited to just one compared to other financial institutions of similar type, Level Bank makes sure customers are given options – from a free plan to paid ones.
Overall, do you think this is the kind of bank that suits your needs and preferences?