Truist One Checking Account Review — Unveiling the Intricacies


Choosing a checking account can be an overwhelming process. Between online banks operating nationwide and brick-and-mortar banks and credit unions serving your home region, there are hundreds if not thousands of legitimate institutions to choose from. Many offer more than one checking account option, sometimes several.

Not Truist. Though it’s one of the biggest banks in the United States, it offers just one main consumer checking account: Truist One Checking. 

Having just one choice with Truist certainly simplifies the decision. But Truist One is a bit more complicated than your average checking account, so don’t rush to open one until you understand all its ins and outs.

What Is Truist One Checking?

Truist One Checking is a consumer checking account from Truist, formerly known as SunTrust Bank. It has a $12 monthly maintenance fee that’s relatively easy to waive with a qualifying monthly direct deposit, minimum balance, or other linked Truist accounts.

Truist One’s perks vary based on how much you have in all eligible Truist checking, savings, investment, and other qualifying accounts. As your combined balance increases or decreases, Truist automatically moves you between benefit levels. Notable perks of higher benefit levels include substantial rewards bonuses on linked Truist credit cards, ATM fee waivers, and maintenance fee waivers on linked accounts.

What Sets Truist One Checking Apart?

Truist One Checking stands out for several reasons:

  • Relatively easy maintenance fee waivers. You can waive this account’s monthly maintenance fee with a combined balance as low as $500 or a modest monthly direct deposit. 
  • Legitimately valuable benefits as your combined balance increases. Once your balance exceeds $10,000, the perks really add up here.
  • Free, limited overdraft protection for eligible account holders. Even if you don’t have a sizable balance, you get free overdraft protection for negative balances up to $100.
  • No maintenance fee on your linked savings account. As long as your Truist One Checking account remains open, you pay no monthly fee on your linked Truist Savings account.

Key Features of Truist One Checking

Truist One has a standard set of checking account features, from a low minimum opening deposit requirement to a monthly maintenance fee with multiple ways to waive. However, its loyalty levels and associated benefits add some complexity. 

Account Minimums

The minimum to open an account is $50. Once open, you don’t have to maintain a minimum balance, though one of the waiver options for the monthly maintenance fee involves keeping a $500 balance in eligible Truist accounts.

Account Fees & Waiver Requirements

Truist One has a $12 monthly maintenance fee. There are five ways to waive it in any given statement cycle:

  • Receive at least $500 in qualifying direct deposits into your account
  • Maintain a balance of at least $500 in eligible linked Truist deposit and investment accounts as of the last business day of the statement period
  • Have a personal Truist credit card, loan, or mortgage, excluding Lightstream personal loans
  • Have a linked small-business checking account with Truist
  • Be a student under age 25

ATM Access

Truist has a network of about 3,000 branded ATMs offering fee-free withdrawals. Withdrawal fees and other transaction fees may apply outside this network.

Free Linked Savings Account

Truist One comes with a complimentary Truist Savings account, which normally carries a $5 monthly maintenance fee. However, this isn’t much of a benefit because Truist Savings yields basically nothing (.01% APY on all balances). 

First Book of Paper Checks Free

You get a free 10-pack of paper checks when you open your Truist One account. Reorder fees depend on your loyalty level.

Overdraft Protection

Truist One comes with complimentary overdraft protection, known as Negative Balance Buffer, for negative balances up to $100. Truist generally declines transactions that would result in an overdraft greater than $100.

To qualify, your account must be open for at least 35 days, be funded and have a positive balance at the time of approval, and receive at least one direct deposit totaling $100 per month for two consecutive months. Moving forward, you must receive at least one direct deposit totaling $100 each month to remain qualified.

Loyalty Levels & Benefits

As a Truist One account holder, you’re automatically assigned to one of five benefit levels based on the total combined value of all eligible Truist accounts. Eligible accounts include checking, savings, CD, and investment accounts.

  • Level 1 (up to $9,999.99): This level comes with all the standard features of Truist One. Other notable benefits include a 10% rewards bonus on a linked Truist credit card spending and a $25 discount on Truist’s annual safe deposit box fee.
  • Level 2 ($10,000 to $24,999.99): Notable benefits include a 20% credit card rewards bonus, 50% check reorder discount, one out-of-network ATM fee reimbursement per month, and an additional Truist One checking account (which is useful if you want to set up a custodial or joint account for a minor).
  • Level 3 ($25,000 to $49,999.99): Notable benefits include a 30% credit card rewards bonus, free check reorders, three out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements per month, and two additional Truist One checking accounts.
  • Level 4 ($50,000 to $99,999.99): Perks include a 40% credit card rewards bonus, free check reorders, five out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements per month, and three additional Truist One accounts.
  • Level Premier ($100,000 and above): Perks include a 50% credit card rewards bonus, free check reorders, and unlimited out-of-network ATM fee reimbursements.

Mobile Features

Truist has very well-reviewed mobile apps for Android and iOS. They’re comprehensive and user-friendly, allowing you to do pretty much anything you can using Truist’s standard online dashboard. Mobile check deposit is a big plus.

Deposit Insurance

This account comes with federal deposit insurance up to the standard FDIC limit of $250,000. 

Pros & Cons

Truist One Checking has some clear advantages for active users, but it’s not perfect.

Pros

Truist One Checking has some potentially valuable perks, especially if you have substantial balances across all linked Truist accounts.

  • Valuable benefits with higher balances. Truist One’s benefits really add up as your balance increases. If you have at least $25,000 deposited across linked Truist bank and investment accounts, Truist One is much more generous than comparable accounts.
  • Complimentary overdraft protection. All Truist One account holders enjoy complimentary overdraft protection for negative balances up to $100. That’s a rare perk for a big bank.
  • First book of paper checks free. This account comes with a free book of paper checks, an increasingly rare perk in the new paperless banking normal.
  • Relatively easy to waive the monthly maintenance fee. Truist One does have a monthly maintenance fee, but an abundance of reasonable waiver requirements means it’s easy for most account holders to avoid.

Cons

Truist One Checking has some notable access issues, including a relatively small ATM network and a large but highly regional branch footprint.

  • Small ATM network. Truist One has only a few thousand ATMs in its network, which is fewer than most banks of its size.
  • Branches aren’t available nationwide. Truist’s branches cluster in the eastern U.S., especially the southeast. If you live outside this area, you might have trouble banking in person.
  • Poor yields on linked savings account. Truist makes a big deal of its linked savings account, but you can do better with literally hundreds of other choices elsewhere.

How Truist One Checking Stacks Up

Truist One Checking has a lot in common with Chase Total Checking, another popular checking account from a well-known big bank. Before applying for either, see how the two compare.

Truist One Chase Total Checking
Monthly Fee $12 $12
Waiver Options Yes, relatively easy Yes, more difficult
ATM Network 3,000+ machines 15,000+ machines
Branches About 2,200 About 4,600
Loyalty Levels Yes No

Truist One’s advantages over Chase Total Checking include its relatively easy monthly fee waiver options and its generous loyalty perks. If you have a Truist credit card and significant balances across all linked Truist accounts, Truist One is the better choice. But Chase Total Checking is superior if you’re looking for a big branch and ATM network.

Final Word

Truist One Checking is one of the better big-bank checking accounts around, thanks in large part to its easy-to-achieve monthly fee waivers. It’s also a strong choice for account holders with sizable (and growing) balances. The more you have in your linked Truist accounts, the more generous this particular account becomes.

That said, Truist One Checking isn’t the best choice for people who prefer online banking but feel like giving traditional banks another shot. For that, look to a bank with an even broader ATM and branch footprint, like Chase or Bank of America.



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