Live Oak Bank Review
Live Oak Bank is an online bank for small business owners with high APY and no monthly fees. Could it be a good fit for your business banking?
Live Oak Bank At A Glance
- High-yield savings accounts of up to 4.0% APY and CDs of up to 5.40% with easy eligibility requirements
- No monthly fees or ACH fees
- Up to $10M in FDIC insurance available for balances of $350k+ (standard $250k available to all users regardless of account balance)
- High APY
- No monthly fee
- Certificate deposit (CD) options
- Up to $10m FDIC coverage available
- No cash deposits
- No checking account
- High outgoing wire transfer fees
- 3% foreign transaction fee
- Limited same-day transaction processing
Table of Contents
- Services Offered By Live Oak Bank
- Live Oak Bank Rewards & Perks
- Live Oak Bank Fees
- Live Oak Bank Eligibility Requirements
- Live Oak Bank Features
- Live Oak Bank Customer Service
- Live Oak Bank Reviews
- Is Live Oak Bank Safe?
- How Does Live Oak Bank Compare To Other Banking Options?
- The Bottom Line: Is Live Oak Bank Worth It?
Services Offered By Live Oak Bank
- High-yield savings
- Certificate deposits (CDs)
- Term loans
- SBA loans
- USDA Loans
Live Oak Bank Overview
If you want to earn interest on your business’s hard-earned money, Live Oak Bank is one of the best options. Live Oak Bank is an online personal and business banking institute that offers high-yield business savings accounts and certificate deposits (CDs).
You can earn up to 5.4% with Live Oak Bank, plus there are no monthly fees and unlimited transactions. Live Oak Bank also offers various loans to help give your business access to the funds it needs.
Live Oak Bank does have some high additional fees like foreign transaction fees and wire transfers, and there are no cash deposits. Currently, there is no checking account either, although Live Oak Bank will be offering a business checking product soon. (You can sign up for alerts on the checking product launch on the Live Oak Bank website.)
If the cons, like cash deposits and high foreign transaction fees, don’t affect your business, Live Oak is a great high-yield savings option.
Best Suited For
- Businesses that want to earn interest on their savings
- Businesses that are looking for a secondary bank specifically for savings (Live Oak would be ideal for emergency funds, revenue cushions, long-term savings, etc.)
- Businesses with large savings balances that need the option of up to $1m in FDIC coverage — Live Oak Bank helps small businesses be able to have one highly-insured savings account rather than multiple smaller savings accounts just to make the standard $250k FDIC insurance add up
- Businesses that want access to business funding through their banking institution
What To Watch Out For
- Live Oak Bank doesn’t offer checking accounts, so you will likely need to have another primary bank (while inconvenient, the high-yield earnings with Live Oak may more than make up for it)
- Live Oak Bank has a 3% foreign transaction fee
- Live Oak Bank does not accept cash deposits
- Dormant Live Oak Bank accounts will be closed after 24 months
Live Oak Bank Rewards & Perks
Live Oak Bank offers up to 4.0% APY* for savings accounts and 5.4% for Certificate Deposits (CDs) with interest compounded daily. These earnings are incredibly competitive, with some of the highest APYs in the online business banking market.
*Some locations on Live Oak Banks’ website say 4.0% APY for business savings, and others say 4.4% APY.
Live Oak Bank Fees
|Monthly Maintenance Fee
|$0 for in-network ATMs; 3% for foreign ATMs
|Minimum Opening Deposit
|$0 – $2,500
|Wire Transfer Fee
|$0 – $19
|Cash Deposit Fee
|Foreign Transaction Fee
|Excessive Transactions Fee
|Stop Payment Fee
Live Oak Bank is transparent with its fee schedule, so you can know exactly what you’re getting into before you sign up. Live Oak Bank has no monthly maintenance fees and no ACH fees.
You will find a 3% foreign transaction fee, which is quite high compared to other online business banks. Wire transfers are $0 for incoming transfers but $19 per outgoing transfer.
There’s also a 3% out-of-network ATM fee. While most companies don’t protect against third-party out-of-network ATM fees, Live Bank is the first that I’ve seen charge its own out-of-network ATM fee.
All-in-all, if you don’t regularly have wire transfers or foreign transactions, then Live Oak Banks fees will fit your business just fine. However, if you process many foreign transaction fees or outgoing wire transfers, you may want to look at other online business bank options.
Live Oak Bank doesn’t provide any information on ACH or wire transfer limits. Live Oak Essential or Plus account holders have a limit of $10,000/day for POS purchases.
Transaction Processing Times
Transactions with Live Oak take 1-2 business days, so long as the transaction was requested before 4:00 PM ET. Checks or mobile deposits are the exception, with processing times of up to 5 business days.
Live Oak Bank Eligibility Requirements
US residents with valid SSNs are eligible for Live Oak Bank so long as they fit into the following business structures:
- Sole proprietors
- Limited partnerships
There are no minimum balance requirements for a Live Oak Bank savings account. There is a $2,500 minimum balance for CDs. There is also a $350,000 minimum balance required for Live Oaks’ Insured Cash Sweep service, which gives businesses up to $10m in FDIC insurance (all businesses with Live Oak get $250k in FDIC insurance coverage regardless of account balance).
Note: It’s important to note that dormant accounts will be closed after 24 months of inactivity. Since Live Oak Bank is a high-yield savings solution, it’d be easy to set it and forget it, but you’ll need some sort of regular activity to keep the account active.
How To Open A Live Oak Bank Account
You can open a Live Oak Bank account online or through the Live Oak app. You’ll likely need standard documents for opening a bank account.
Live Oak Bank Features
For a high-yield business savings account, Live Oak offers a good amount of features, the chief being the earning potential. In addition to high APY, you’ll find:
- Unlimited ACH transfers
- Mobile check deposit
- Wire transfers
- Mobile Live Oak app
- FDIC insurance up to $250k with up to $10M options available
- Authorized signers available
- Accounting integrations
Live Oak Bank does not support cash deposits.
Live Oak Bank Customer Service
Live Oak Bank has multiple support avenues that are easy to find. According to customer reviews, Live Oak has good customer service.
|Live Oak Bank Support
|Dedicated Support Representative
|Knowledge Base or Help Center
|Videos & Tutorials
Live Oak Bank Reviews
Most of Live Oak Bank’s customer reviews revolve around its bank accounts, but there are a few specific to the loans Live Oak offers. Live Oak receives 4.5/5 stars on TrustPilot based on 436 customer reviews, and many users say they have multiple accounts with Live Oak because of their positive experience. The company receives a C- with BBB and is not accredited, but there have been only two complaints in the last year.
Negative Live Oak Bank Reviews & Complaints
- One report of an account being closed without giving back the remaining balance
- QuickBooks integration needs work
Positive Live Oak Bank Reviews
- Great customer support
- Easy to use
- Strong security
Is Live Oak Bank Safe?
Live Oak Bank is one of the only online banks to offer up to $10m in FDIC insurance to eligible businesses (most cap out at the standard $250k). They are upfront with their privacy policies and security information and more than meet the standard security practices for online banking services. They also make an effort to educate their customers on the best personal online security practices they can take to prevent fraud.
How Does Live Oak Bank Compare To Other Banking Options?
|Live Oak Bank
|1.5% APY + 1% cashback
|Varies by eligible merchant purchase
|Monthly Banking Fee
|$0 – $10
|Foreign Transaction Fee
The Bottom Line: Is Live Oak Bank Worth It?
When it comes to high-yield business savings, Live Oak Bank offers one of the highest rates you’ll find. If you want your hard-earned money to earn you more money, Live Oak could be a great option.
This bank is also a good choice if you want your bank to offer lending. Live Oak Bank offers SBA loans, USDA loans, and term loans. Learn more about Live Oak Bank loans in our full review.
The main thing Live Oak Bank has going for it is high APY and no monthly fee. You won’t find fintech features like invoicing or accounting like you would with LendingClub and Lili Bank. You also won’t find business checking yet, so if you want additional features, a checking account, or no foreign transaction fees, a Live Oak bank alternative might be a better fit for your business.
Or, you could always use Live Oak Bank in addition to another online bank. Live Oak’s business savings account is a great option for storing emergency funds, cash reserves, etc. If you’re going to be storing a large sum in savings, it might as well be earning you interest.
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