Ally Bank Review w. 900+ User Reviews

by David Ning · 996 comments

After being GMAC Bank first and then changing it’s name to Ally Bank, everyone’s no doubt seen the new advertisements that emphasizes no fine print.  With the bank being connected with General Motors, the first thing I can think of is whether my money will be safe. Of course, I went to research further before my readers could be ripped off with this bank so this review represents my opinion of putting money with its savings account offering.

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Safety of Ally Bank

ally bankFirst things first, Ally Bank saving accounts and CDs are all FDIC insured so our money is safe for up to $250k per account. There are ways to increase the amount covered even further, but you would need to open individual, joint, and accounts under other entities such as a trust to get a higher limit. (Another way is to just open accounts across different banks, which might be easier.)

Products Offered from the Online Bank

Ally Bank offers 2 main products that we are really concerned about – an online savings account and a certificate of deposit with above average rates. The extremely good interest rates for this type of product and the bank being FDIC insured prompt me to open an account with them.

When I opened an account, it was also nice to see that I can actually open multiple savings accounts and certificate deposits all on one screen. No more submitting multiple applications and spending time filling the exact same form more than necessary.

Ally Bank is Another Excellent Option

There’s really many options out there to compete for our money, but it’s nice to see a bank with competitive rates with a simple interface. The name GMAC may spook you in opening an account, but the safety of the FDIC guarantee should provide comfort, especially since you are getting more interest by going with them.

After 2 years of originally reviewing this bank, I am still an Ally Bank customer. But before you decide, make sure that you read through some of the other user reviews below. Though most people only speak up when they have a problem, you can get an idea of the types of issues people have with their accounts.

Resources:

Other News You May Want to Know About the Ally Bank

Is GMAC Really GM?

Many people asked me about this already, and I actually had the same question myself. I always thought that GMAC Financial Services was part of General Motors but I was wrong. GMAC is actually a standalone banking operation that provides lending and banking services. The difference with GMAC to a traditional loan company is that instead of offering mortgages and home equities to consumers, GMAC offers loans and lending to GM and Chrysler dealers to finance their operations.

Ally Bank is just one of the online banks we reviewed on MoneyNing.com. Click here for the full list of high yield online savings accounts we have experience with.

Money Saving Tip: An incredibly effective way to save more is to reduce your monthly Internet and TV costs. Click here for the current Verizon FiOS promotion codes and promos to see if you can save more money every month from now on.

{ 996 comments… read them below or add one }

Tony J June 25, 2014 at 3:34 pm

I have had an Ally account for over two years and I am totally satisfied with their service and web page interface. Transfers between Ally or other banking institutions is straight forward and very easy to understand. I love the higher rates they pay on their I interest earning accounts, and that they pay any and all fees connected to any transaction at other banks. The ability to take a picture of a check for deposit is a Big Plus as well.
I read some of the complaints by other raters on this site and just scratch my head. I don’t see how their issues occurred. But, oh well to each their own. I highly recommend Ally as a No Fee, No BS bank.

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Therese July 6, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Electronic transfers to/from Ally are very easy.

But try rolling over your IRA CDs to another financial institution and it is a completely different story.
I have done this several times over the years. No one wants to let the funds go of course, but Ally is the slowest,
least efficient. Not sure what this bank hopes to gain by being obstructionist, as now I intend to remove all IRA
accounts, instead of some.

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Don August 5, 2014 at 6:33 pm

I was lured by the rates and left due to ineptness.
I asked to set up 4 regular IRA CD accounts, can’t do them all in one like competitors, with one account having all 4 CDs in them. Also set up a savings account. Been in IT since the early 80’s and an online investor since the 90’s = no problems.

I then got a huge “welcome package” of every conceivable form Keogh, SEP, Roth, savings, checking, etc. in the mail. Really, I have to wait for this mess, why not provide it online? None of the forms were prefilled with info. already supplied – hmmm, another firm I ultimately went to sent only the needed forms and prefilled.

So, I looked around found a better rate. BUT, by then my $ were already in the Ally savings account. I began moving it out. This $ amt. is more than my yearly gross salary. Well, when I went to remove the last bit out ~$80k, they had the wrong available amount on the transfer page – it did not include a previous transfer – really, other online financial institutes show you what is available including pending transactions.

When they saw their error, they stopped the ACH transaction. Ok, you’re mistake. But, I want my $ out. Contacted them. Your $ will be back in your account by Monday afternoon. They contacted me Monday afternoon. Nice person. But, your funds are not there yet…. They will be there after tonight’s batch program runs – uhh, ok.

Tuesday AM, Ally contacts me 30 minutes late. $ are there, set up the transfer. So far I could have just scheduled this on line had they had an accurate date to begin with.

Tuesday PM, get an e-mail from Ally, well, you first have to fill out this form……

In summary, Ally is clueless on only supplying what is needed, on supplying prefilled forms when information has already supplied – not biggies, just not competitive. The biggies, can’t display how much $ in the account including pending outbound transfers (what is available), and can’t tell you when an ACH is going to happen with any accuracy. 3 phone conversations and none mentioned this form to remove $ – Sad.

My rec., go somewhere else for banking. I actually found slightly higher rates and, actually more important to me, a on line bank that has their processes in place. I still use my other financial org. for stocks, etc. but will never use Ally again.

Don

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jessica August 7, 2014 at 9:12 pm

Beware of this bank. Please read the reviews here and on many many other webpages. There are hundreds of pissed off customers. This bank is a nightmare. I tried for over a month to open an account with them, but finally gave up after getting lost in a sea of paperwork and incompetence. the customer service people are polite and friendly, but the system is broken and they were endlessly asking me to jump through hoops. many many people report having wasted huge amounts of time trying to enroll, or actually enrolling and finding it frustrating and super difficult to deposit or access their money. Having read the reviews, I am now glad they never opened my account. Bullet dodged.

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Brownie Larue August 14, 2014 at 11:09 am

I have been a customer for a couple of years now. I have a savings account and a few CD accounts. I have not had a problem with them, but their customer service is very strange. After 5+ questions to verify my identity they finally ask you what you want. Then they seem to be carrying on multiple conversations at once as they pause alot and ask you the same questions over and over. I have trouble not screaming at them to ask them if the have some kind of problem remembering my answers. I ask for a simple change and it’s like I’m at a car dealership and they have to go verify it with their manager. As we speak I have been put on hold twice so the lady can verify the changes or do whatever. Maybe I don’t have enough money in my account and they are using some kind of crazy algorithm to decide how they carry on a conversation and how many conversations they can run simultaneously. I have told them what I thought a couple of times. Luckily I only call them a few times a year.

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Lynda August 25, 2014 at 5:20 pm

Customer service is non-existent. I made a typo on a payment rendering it $45 short and rather than inform me they just put a ding in my credit and reported the entire payment 30 days late. When I called to complain I got someone in India that just kept reading me their policy from a computer screen and couldn’t even seem to understand my complaint. Do not do business with these people.

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Bob A. September 12, 2014 at 12:04 pm

I have only been with Ally for a few months, but I found it to be quite simple to use. I have a savings account only at this time, and make simple account transfers when I have money left over from my monthly budget. To date, I have no problems with Ally !

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Theresa September 16, 2014 at 7:26 am

We decided we would buy a vehicle from one of Ally’s customers. (It was financed through Ally.) I will only say that it has been 20 days and we are STILL WAITING for Ally to process the cashier’s check that was sent to them for payoff!! Yes! I said CASHIER’S CHECK! My banker said she has Never seen anything like this! Needless to say, we have called Ally bank so much to check and see if the check has processed that they know my husband by name!! This tops it all though…… Ally’s own customer service agent said today that she WOULD NEVER USE THIS BANK for ANYTHING!! That is sad! When a bank’s own employees say its bad then you know it’s bad service! It goes without saying that the fellow we are buying the car from (James) said he will NEVER use this bank again! If you are reading this…..RUN FROM THESE PEOPLE!! DONT USE ALLY BANK! They do not have their stuff together.

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Helen Roberts September 25, 2014 at 7:58 am

I am currently financing my 2013 purchase of a FIAT 500 auto with Ally and have not had any problems.

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Lacie Lembke October 7, 2014 at 12:39 pm

I had a pickup financed with Ally bank. Made all my payments like I was supposed to. when the contract was up instead of sending me the title, they sent a tow truck yesterday to repo my truck. The driver illegally came onto my private property and entered my vehicle without my permission and removed the keys. I know my rights and knew he was wrong, I told him he illegally took my keys and he was trespassing and i asked him to return my keys and leave or I would call the sheriff. He refused and turned violent. Extremely violent. As he tore out my driveway he ran into me with his truck. I ended up in the hospital over this. My 7 year old daughter could have lost her mother because of this bank. They are no better than the thugs on the street. I am a 5 foot tall 106 pound woman that was home alone. I was terrified for my life. This man did not ever attempt to slow down and would have killed me with no remorse. But I am happy to say I am ok and that low life scum didn’t get my truck. Only my keys. So now I get to be scared that he is going to come back and do God knows what. Nobody deserves what this bank has done to me.

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RN Lambeth October 20, 2014 at 10:29 am

“WOW” just saw an promo by ALLY, that said GRIN and SHARE, trust ALLY!!!!!!!@#x??..awhhhh…(I think it should be GRIN,and BARE…!!!) Last week paid off my vehicle (Months / Year early!!);PD extra amount each month also) with ALLY / GMAC..OK ……; so I called them today(customer service this am,OCT20,2014)to check status on my title….READY for THIS !!!! I WAS ADVISED THAT;
I HAD PAID WITH “unauthorized funds”(paid through online Chase “THE WHOLE NOTE PERIOD,SAME THING…same way)and that the check was being “HELD” for approved funds for TEN (10) days!!!!!, and that I had OVER PAID by 20 cents!!!!, and they would be cutting me a check in this time. NEXT TIME…need a Better “ALLY”…I will go somewhere else…..My money has been from that same account in the tune of est.$34k for my vehicle, and all of a SUDDEN for est $400 balance(1/2 much as a payment) my funds are NOT ACCEPTABLE?????? “WOW”…. all of a sudden the GOOD GUY customer is the “ENEMY”, Not an “ALLY”…GET IT….”WOW”….

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Alexander November 17, 2014 at 12:54 pm

Ally has been giving me problems for a while but I’ve had one last issue this week that has made me decide to go somewhere else.

First of all, the mobile app is horribly buggy and crashes or doesn’t work the majority of the time. I have to force quit out of it and restart pretty much every time I want to even log it to check my balance. Considering that the mobile app is the only way to get money into your account unless you want to physically mail in your checks this makes every deposit a huge hassle.

Even once you get the check deposited it takes upwards of a full week for that money to be available because apparently all operations at Ally, a completely online bank, stop once it’s past 5 pm on the East Coast. I can deposit a check at 2 pm on a Wednesday where I live and it won’t even show up as submitted until Thursday and then it’s not approved until Friday night. But since nothing happens at Ally on the weekends, even though that check shows up as approved, you can’t use it until Monday or later if it happens to be a three day weekend.

All this is normal for them even if you don’t let something bad happen, which brings me to this weeks incident. A week ago a tried to use my card and it was declined. I didn’t think much of it because the card is kinda old and the magnetic stripe is worn, so I just used cash. A week later when I tried to deposit a check I saw my account was over drafted because of transactions at a gas station in Canada. I’ve never been to Canada. When I called customer service they were nice and understanding and refunded my money, but I guess they never felt the need to call or even email me about the fact that they had deactivated my card almost a week earlier.

So even though they were understanding, they put a hold on the check I deposited for “excessive overdrafts” and now it will be an extra five business days before I can use that money. The only overdraft I’ve ever had was because someone besides me spent my money.

In general Ally is sloppy and unprofessional. It’s their policy to deactivate your card for fraudulent charges, not tell you about it until you call them, and then to punish you for overdrafting your account.

Stay far, far away from this bank. They will cause endless headaches for you.

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bennyw November 18, 2014 at 10:43 am

I have been one of the happy Ally bank customers for years but I feel compelled to leave negative comment here.

The mobile app (Android version) sucks big after major redesign in October 2014. It’s indeed horribly buggy. It doesn’t allow you to login. Even you found a way to work around to it, you could not deposit any checks. In all, this app looks like that it was designed by inexperienced developers and tested by inexperienced QA guys. It’s totally unacceptable for an online only bank. About half month later they published an update which was supposed to fix these major bugs. But only partial of the issues were fixed. A good portion of people still can not deposit and login issue still persists so far (11/18/2014). I could barely manage to suffer for half month of no mobile bank service and somewhat login inconvenience so far. But I can not imagine how people survive without the ability to deposit any single check for more than 1 and half months. Oh yes, you can deposit with a computer but not everyone has a scanner. And yes, they do allow you to mail checks to them with free prepaid envelopes. But the mail time delays fund availibility more.

For those who have doubts about what I say, check Ally Bank app review here https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ally.MobileBanking . Maybe some will see this comment long after, scroll back to see reviews starting from beginning of October 2014.

No mobile bank service for some people for one and half month and still counting. Good job, Ally.

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David November 21, 2014 at 10:21 am

Ally told me it would close my account if I did not provide a physical street address. I value my privacy, and I have a post office box which receives all my mail. This is a common practice in the United States and has been so for a very long time. Anyway, I told Ally to go ahead and close the account. There was no attempt to transfer me to an account recovery specialist, no understanding of privacy; it was goodbye to the customer, full stop. This is a despicable bank. That must be the reason why so much official effort is being made online and elsewhere to portray Ally as “number one,” as if this bank is the greatest thing since sliced bread. It isn’t. To Ally, the customer is an adversary.

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