12 Best Banks in North Dakota for 2024

Picturesque landscapes and unique wildlife draw throngs of tourists to North Dakota. But it’s also a great place to live and work, with agriculture and energy attracting top employers to the state.

If you’re among the millions who call North Dakota home, finding a bank that fits your needs is likely a top priority. Whether you’re in the market for a new bank or you’re thinking about a new credit card or CD, we have a list of some of the top banks in North Dakota to help you narrow your options.

Welcome to North Dakota

12 Best Banks in North Dakota

From brick-and-mortar banks to online banking options, North Dakota has a little something for everyone. The state has a larger share of small, local banks than we typically see, but there are also plenty of large banks with nationwide branches. Here’s our list of the 12 best banks in North Dakota to help you narrow down the options.

1. U.S. Bank

U.S. Bank combines the advantages of local accessibility with the broad offerings of a national bank. You’ll find more than 2,000 branch locations in the U.S., including throughout North Dakota.

U.S. Bank is currently welcoming new applicants with a special offering:

  • Earn up to $450 when you open a new U.S. Bank Smartly® Checking account and complete qualifying activities.
  • Subject to certain terms and limitations. Offer valid through September 26, 2024. Member FDIC.
  • Offer may not be available if you live outside of the U.S. Bank footprint or are not an existing client of U.S. Bank or State Farm.

The account includes a free debit card that can be locked or unlocked if ever misplaced or stolen. There are no ATM transaction fees at U.S. Bank ATMs and no surcharge fees at over 40,000 MoneyPass® Network ATMs.

The checking account requires a $25 opening deposit and a $6.95 monthly fee. This fee can be waived for those 24 and under, 65 and over, or military members (must self-disclose).

Additionally, the fee can be waived with monthly deposits of $1,000+, an average balance of $1,500+, or holding an eligible U.S. Bank credit card. Qualifying for any Smart Rewards® tier (Primary, Plus, Premium, or Pinnacle) also waives the fee.

2. Gate City Bank

Gate City Bank is a local bank that offers the convenience of 44 branches in 23 cities throughout North Dakota and Central Minnesota.

One of the standout features of this bank is its policy on ATM fees. No matter where you are in the world, you can use any ATM and Gate City Bank will refund all third-party fees. That’s pretty incredible.

When it comes to checking accounts, you’ve got choices. One option is the Totally FREE Checking account that only takes $50 to open. You won’t be burdened with monthly maintenance fees, and there are no minimum balance requirements either.

If you’re thinking about saving, Gate City Bank has low rates on savings accounts. However, their CDs offer up to 4.84% APY and their money market accounts go up to 2.50% APY, which are rates worth considering.

Beyond just personal banking, Gate City Bank has some extra perks. They offer a wide variety of loan options, from home to auto loans. You can even get a free custom debit card, giving you a more personalized banking experience.

3. SoFi

SoFi is a fully online bank, perfect for those who prefer digital banking. It offers impressive rates, with a 4.60% APY on savings accounts and 0.50% APY on checking accounts. The good news doesn’t stop there—there are no monthly fees, so you can focus on growing your money.

Banking with SoFi also comes with some nice extras. One perk is early direct deposit, which could get your paycheck in your account up to two days early.

Your funds are safe with SoFi; they offer up to $2 million in FDIC insurance. They also provide up to $50 in overdraft coverage at no additional charge, provided you have qualifying direct deposits.

New to SoFi? You could get a welcome bonus ranging from $50 to $300, depending on your initial deposit amount.

Need to take out cash? SoFi provides you with access to over 55,000 Allpoint® ATMs, so finding a spot to withdraw your money is straightforward.

4. Bell Bank

Bell Bank, headquartered in Fargo, has branches across North Dakota as well as in Arizona and Minnesota. One unique feature is that you can use your free debit card at any ATM nationwide without incurring fees from Bell Bank. Plus, they’ll refund the first four third-party ATM fees you rack up each month. 

There are no monthly maintenance fees for checking accounts, making it simple and affordable to manage your finances. Additionally, there’s no minimum deposit to open an account and no ongoing balance requirements.

Bell Ban also offers free identity theft recovery insurance and ChangeSaver™, which allows you to “round up” your debit card purchases to the nearest dollar, then the rounded-up amount is automatically moved to your savings account.

As for deposit accounts, you can get up to 3.04% APY on savings accounts. If you’re interested in CDs, they currently offer a promotional rate of 5.10% APY for 7-month terms and 5.05% APY for 14-month terms.

Apart from the usual banking services, Bell Bank also offers wealth management services and has competitive rates for auto and personal loans.

5. GO2bank

GO2bank is an online-only bank that simplifies the process of opening a checking account. You can also benefit from a high-yield savings account with an impressive 4.50% APY for balances up to $5,000.

Depositing cash is straightforward with more than 90,000 accessible locations, and you can use up to 55,000 ATMs without incurring additional fees.

One highlight is the option to receive your paycheck or government checks a few days early. There’s a $5 monthly fee for the checking account, but this can be easily waived if you set up a recurring direct deposit.

If you happen to spend more than you have, GO2bank has a feature that covers you for up to $200, providing a bit of a safety net. For those interested in building or improving their credit score, GO2bank offers a Secured Visa Credit Card that can help you accomplish just that.

6. Bremer Bank

Bremer Bank is a regional bank with locations in North Dakota, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, making it a convenient choice for people in the upper Midwest.

The basic checking account has a $3 monthly fee, but this can be easily waived. You can get the fee removed by either signing up for free online statements, maintaining an average balance of $1,500, or if you are under 21 or over 64 years old.

Opening an account requires a $100 minimum deposit, but after that, there are no minimum balance requirements. When it comes to ATMs, you can use Bremer Bank and MoneyPass ATMs nationwide without any fees.

The interest rates at Bremer Bank are fairly competitive. While their savings account rates are on the low side, you can earn up to 3.00% APY on CDs and up to 3.30% APY on money market accounts.

Bremer Bank also offers some additional benefits that add value to their banking services. For example, your first order of checks is free, and your checking account comes with a complimentary financial plan.

7. American Express National Bank

American Express National Bank is a strong option if you’re comfortable with online banking and don’t need physical branch locations. Their Rewards Checking account is particularly appealing, offering a 1.00% APY and the ability to earn points on your debit card purchases.

What’s more, the account comes with no monthly maintenance fees and no overdraft fees, so it’s easy to manage your finances without worrying about extra costs.

Opening an account is straightforward—there’s no minimum deposit requirement, and you don’t have to maintain a specific balance. When it comes to withdrawing cash, the bank provides fee-free access to over 37,000 MoneyPass ATMs across the country.

Interest rates are also competitive. In addition to the 1.00% APY on checking account balances, you can earn a 4.15% APY on savings accounts and up to 4.65% APY on certificates of deposit.

One of the biggest advantages of banking with American Express National Bank is the availability of 24/7 customer support. Whether you prefer phone or chat, real-time assistance is always just a click or call away.

8. Bravera Bank

Bravera Bank is a small local bank with branches in Bismark and Dickinson in North Dakota, and also extends its reach to Great Falls and Billings in Montana. What makes this bank special is its strong focus on lending.

They offer an array of loan options that aren’t just limited to home and personal loans; they also provide specialized loans for things like boats, RVs, and even snowmobiles.

The bank stands out for its small business services, offering various loans and multiple business checking account options to meet the needs of local business owners.

There are no monthly service fees, and you also don’t have to worry about maintaining a minimum balance, making it straightforward to manage your accounts. A noteworthy perk is their $1,000 bonus for new homeowners who decide to refinance their mortgage within two years of the initial loan.

9. First Community Credit Union

First Community Credit Union is a member-focused institution with locations in North Dakota and Minnesota. Once you qualify for membership, you have access to a range of financial products, including three different fee-free checking accounts. Two of these accounts come with rewards for your purchases, while the third offers a generous 2.50% APY on your balance.

One of the standout features is their extensive ATM coverage. Not only can you use First Community Credit Union ATMs for free, but you also have fee-free access to 32,000+ MoneyPass locations, 30,000+ CO-OP machines, and 6,700+ NYCE Network ATMs nationwide.

When it comes to savings, FCCU offers highly competitive rates, including up to 5.03% APY on CDs. They also have competitive loan rates and various offerings tailored for small business owners.

10. Wells Fargo

Wells Fargo is a national bank that’s a convenient option for frequent travelers or those who appreciate widespread accessibility. With branch locations and ATMs across 37 states, including multiple locations in North Dakota, you’re rarely far from a Wells Fargo facility.

They currently have a special promotion where you can earn a $300 bonus. To qualify, you just need to open a new account with an initial deposit of $25 and make at least $1,000 in direct deposits within the first 90 days.

One of their most popular checking options is the Everyday Checking account. Although it comes with a $10 monthly service fee, it’s fairly easy to get this fee waived.

You can do so by maintaining a $500 daily balance, receiving $500 or more in electronic deposits, being between the ages of 17 and 24, or linking your account to a Wells Fargo Campus card.

When it comes to savings and investments, Wells Fargo offers up to 2.51% APY on savings accounts and up to 4.76% APY on CDs. Additionally, the bank offers various credit cards with generous rewards and bonuses, enhancing the overall value of banking with them.

11. VISIONBank

VISIONBank is a local gem for residents in the Fargo area, boasting three strategically placed locations in South Fargo, West Fargo, and North Fargo.

While it’s a community bank, you aren’t limited to just its branches for ATM use. You can use any MoneyPass ATM across the country without incurring fees, which adds a layer of convenience.

There are no monthly fees or no minimum daily balance requirements for checking accounts, which makes it easier to manage your finances without worry.

This North Dakota bank also has appealing rates, particularly on CDs, where you can earn up to 4.78% APY. While the savings account rates are described as low, the high-yield CDs can be a great way to grow your money over time.

If you’re a small business owner, you’ll appreciate VISIONBank’s dedicated business banking services, including competitive loan rates. To top it all off, VISIONBank offers robust mobile banking options, allowing you to manage your finances easily from your smartphone.

12. BNC National Bank

BNC National Bank strikes a balance between the feel of a local bank and the reach of a national bank. With branches located across North Dakota, particularly in the Bismarck area, as well as Minnesota and Arizona, customers have convenient access to the bank.

Opening a checking account is relatively simple, requiring just a $50 deposit. Once the account is open, you won’t be burdened with monthly fees or the need to maintain a minimum balance, making it user-friendly for those who want uncomplicated banking.

ATM access is also versatile. You can withdraw cash without fees at BNC Bank, MoneyPass, and even Pulse ATMs. This extensive network ensures you’ll likely find a convenient ATM wherever you are.

Additional perks include free checking for individuals aged 50 and over, which could be beneficial for those in that age bracket. Small business owners aren’t left out, either; the bank offers various business loans to suit different needs.

How to Choose the Best Bank in North Dakota

Selecting the right bank is a crucial decision that can have a significant impact on your financial well-being. Here are the key factors you should consider to identify the best bank in North Dakota for your specific needs:

  • Location: Proximity to branches and ATMs is important if you prefer in-person interactions or need regular access to cash.
  • Fees and requirements: Be sure to scrutinize the bank’s fee structure. Monthly maintenance fees, overdraft charges, and other potential costs should be factored into your decision.
  • Interest rates: Consider the Annual Percentage Yields (APYs) offered on checking, savings, and CDs. Competitive rates are often a strong indicator of the best banks in North Dakota.
  • Account types: Make sure the bank has the kinds of accounts you require, whether it’s checking, savings, or even business accounts.
  • Online and mobile banking: A user-friendly online platform and mobile app are essential for straightforward financial management.
  • Customer service: Accessible and reliable customer service is invaluable, especially in emergencies. Look for options like 24/7 support and online chat features.
  • FDIC or NCUA insurance: Ensure that the institution is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) or the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) to protect your funds up to certain limits.
  • Additional services: Beyond basic banking needs, consider whether the bank offers other services like loans, credit cards, or investment advice.
  • Bonuses and rewards: Incentives such as sign-up bonuses or cash-back offers can be attractive but should be weighed against other factors like fees and interest rates.

Types of Banks in North Dakota

When looking for the right place to manage your money in North Dakota, you’ll find various types of banks to suit your financial needs. Here’s a closer look at each type, complete with examples:

  • National banks: These institutions have an extensive footprint with branches and ATMs across multiple states. They offer a comprehensive range of financial services, including everything from basic accounts to specialized investment products. In North Dakota, national banks like Wells Fargo and Bank of America are prominent options.
  • Regional banks: Operating primarily in specific geographic locations such as the Midwest, regional banks often strike a balance between broad access and localized service. Bremer Bank and BNC National Bank are notable examples in North Dakota.
  • Community banks: Focused on serving their local communities, these smaller banks provide personalized service. Bravera Bank, Dakota Community Bank & Trust, First International Bank & Trust, Gate City Bank, and VISIONBank, are such community banks in North Dakota.
  • Online banks: Online-only banks provide services exclusively online and usually offer competitive interest rates on savings accounts and lower fees. Examples include SoFi, GO2bank, and American Express National Bank.
  • Credit unions: Owned by their members, credit unions often offer favorable interest rates and a more personalized service experience. Black Hills Federal Credit Union, Dakotaland Federal Credit Union, and First Community Credit Union are credit unions open to residents of certain communities in North Dakota.

Frequently Asked Questions

Which bank has the most branches in North Dakota?

Gate City Bank has the most branches in North Dakota. You’ll get 44 branches across North Dakota and Central Minnesota. As far as national banks go, though, U.S. Bank has the most branches in the state, at 11.

How much do I need to deposit into a savings account in North Dakota?

Each savings account will come with different requirements, but many do require you to maintain a certain balance. In some cases, banks will set a minimum to earn interest. So, that $25 you have in the account might not be earning a dime of interest.

Taking two of the state’s top banks into consideration, Gate City requires $100 to earn interest, while Wells Fargo requires you to keep $300 in the account to avoid a $5 monthly service fee. In all cases, if you can keep a higher balance, look into the best interest for your money, whether that’s a high-yield savings account, a CD, or a retirement savings account.

If you’re in the market for a new bank account, there are plenty of financial institutions in North Dakota that can fill your needs. Whether you’re looking for an in-person banking experience or you want the convenience online banks offer, it’s important to shop around. The good news is, once you’ve found a good bank account in North Dakota, you can stick with that bank for a long time.

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Stephanie Faris
Meet the author

Stephanie Faris is a professional finance writer with more than a decade of experience. Her work has been featured on a variety of top finance sites, including Money Under 30, GoBankingRates, Retirable, Sapling, and Benzinga.