HomeStreet Bank Review: Should You Make a Switch?

See how HomeStreet Bank stacks up to your bank or credit union.

When HomeStreet Bank merged with Simplicity Bank in March 2015, it became part of a bigger, stronger bank, which enabled it to provide a wider range of services for a larger customer base. Dedicated to building individualized relationships with its customers, HomeStreet Bank has branches in Washington, California, Oregon, Hawaii and Utah.

HomeStreet donated more than $1 million to local, nonprofit organizations in 2016 and more than 18,000 hours of employee volunteer time in the surrounding communities. Due to its efforts, the bank has received consistent “outstanding” ratings under the federal Community Reinvestment Act.

Keep reading for a full review of HomeStreet Bank. Learn about what it has to offer, and decide if it’s the best bank for you.

HomeStreet Bank Offerings

HomeStreet has 112 branches in Hawaii and the western U.S. It provides the following products and services:

  • Retail banking
  • Consumer loans
  • Lines of credit
  • Mortgage lending
  • Residential construction lending
  • Commercial lending
  • Commercial real estate lending
  • Commercial capital
  • Investment services
  • Insurance
  • Private banking
  • Wealth management

HomeStreet also provides live customer service for its customers. You can reach a representative from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. PST at 800-809-1377.

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See: 11 Must-Have Features All the Best Bank Accounts Offer

HomeStreet Bank Checking Accounts

If you want to open a checking account, HomeStreet offers five checking accounts:

  • Choice Checking: You’ll have access to more than 23,000 national ATMs, free online and mobile banking with bill pay, free starter checks and two ATM fees refunded per month. You’ll need $100 to open the account, but you won’t pay a monthly service charge.
  • Select Checking: You can use more than 400,000 national ATMs and get refunded for all charges from non-HomeStreet machines — as long as you have at least one $500 direct deposit to your account each month. Online and mobile banking are included with this no-fee account.
  • Premium Select Checking: You’ll get the same features as Choice Checking, plus unlimited ATM refunds and interest on your account balance — 0.30% APY for balances from $2,500 to $9,999, and 0.40% APY for balances of $10,000 or more. If your balance drops below a $2,500 daily balance, you’ll pay a $10 maintenance fee.
  • Seattle Seahawks Checking: Set up a direct deposit of $500 and get a $100 bonus with this account, plus unlimited ATM fee refunds, free starter checks, online and mobile banking and no monthly service charge.
  • Bank On Program Checking: If you’re a Washington resident without a checking account, this free account is available to you with no monthly service charge or minimum balance requirements — and you’ll earn 0.05% APY on your balance.

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Related: Best Second-Chance Checking Accounts

HomeStreet Bank Savings Accounts

Home Street’s other personal banking products include three types of savings accounts. Here are the details on each, as well as rates as of Aug. 7, 2017:

  • Money Market Account: If you have $1,000, you can open this account and enjoy unlimited access to your money along with a 0.45% APY on your balance. If you balance drops below $1,000 during the monthly statement cycle, you’ll pay a monthly service charge.
  • Statement Savings: With $100, you can open this savings account that charges only $1 per month if the balance drops below $200 during the statement cycle. You’ll also earn 0.05% APY on your money.
  • Holiday Club Account: Save for the holidays with this account, which transfers your money into your checking account in November. You’ll earn 0.25% APY on your money, but you’ll pay $10 for any early withdrawal you make.

Find Out: Questions to Ask Before Opening a Savings Account

HomeStreet Bank CD and Retirement Accounts

HomeStreet’s CD accounts include custom CDs, which you can open with $500 and choose terms that range from a month to five years. The Set Your Own Goal CD requires $25 to open, and you can cash it in without paying a penalty when you reach your predetermined savings goal.

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The special Home Purchase CD requires $100 to open. You can add to the CD at any time with contributions of at least $25. The IRA CD is unique in that you can open it with $500 and use any custom CD you want — and you can add $100 or more to the IRA at any time.

HomeStreet Bank Mortgages

HomeStreet has a First Time Homebuyers Program through which borrowers can access FHA, VA and conventional loans. You might even qualify for mortgage insurance on a loan amount of up to 97 percent of the house’s appraisal value.

Compare: Average Mortgage Rates in the U.S.

HomeStreet Bank Pros and Cons

So you can better decide if HomeStreet Bank might be right for you, understand its advantages and drawbacks. Here are the pros and cons of HomeStreet Bank to consider:

Pros of HomeStreet Bank

Online and mobile banking are two major HomeStreet Bank advantages. Here are some other benefits the bank offers:

  • Extended Validation SSL from VeriSign for online banking security
  • Mobile app
  • FDIC insurance for up to $250,000 per deposit account
  • Opt-in overdraft program

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Cons of HomeStreet Bank

Unless you live in the Pacific Northwest, California or Hawaii, you can’t bank at HomeStreet. A couple other of the institution’s drawbacks include:

  • No 24/7 live customer service
  • Interest rates for deposits accounts on the low side

Should You Bank With HomeStreet?

If you want a one-stop bank that has a commitment to helping its community, offers the same top-tier products and banking features the major players provide, then HomeStreet might fit the bill. Although it doesn’t have 24/7 customer service and its branches are limited to the West Coast and Hawaii, if you live in one of the states it serves, you might want to consider it for your banking needs.

Keep Reading: How Many Bank Accounts Can You Have at One Bank?

About the Author

Barri Segal

Barri Segal has 20+ years of experience in the publishing and advertising industries, writing and editing for all styles, genres, mediums, and audiences. She has been writing on personal finance topics for 12 years and gains great satisfaction from making a difference in consumers’ lives.

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