Dedicated to Deposits: Deals, Data, and Discussion

3.00% Reward Checking Account at a Massachusetts CU - Easy Membership (M/A-COM)

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Mills42 Federal Credit Union
Update 1/02/09: The yield has fallen to 3.00% APY. Refer to the bottom of the post for the rate history.

M/A-COM Federal Credit Union has started a rewards checking account that pays 3.00% APY on balances up to $10K (0.25% for over) if the following monthly requirements are met: 1) 12 debit card transactions, 2) one recurring ACH or bill pay transaction, and 3) receive account statements electronically. If these requirements are not met, the rate falls to 0%.

Update 11/14/07: A branch visit is now required to open this checking account. A reader left the following comment:
Per CSR, effective November 7th, this account requires a branch visit to open. Interestingly, you can still join the credit union without a branch visit, but you can't get this product. The CSR stated that the account was much more popular than they anticipated, and they didn't want to pay out such a high interest rate to everyone.

Membership into the credit union is open to members of the MADD organization or the Tewksbury Historical Society, both of which are open to anyone. You can also be eligible for credit union membership if you live in parts of Massachusetts. Please see the credit union's membership eligibility page for the full details. Credit union membership requires a minimum $25 deposit into your share savings account.

Branches are located in Lowell, MA. The credit union is federally insured by the NCUA (Charter # 12666). It's a small credit union with $20.4 million in assets and 2,898 members so this could affect the reward checking account if it gets too popular.

Thanks to glxpass who mentioned this in the finding deals post and who has posted additional details in this FW thread. Credit to Credit Union Deals for the intial find.

Other Reward Checking Accounts

For other reward checking accounts in other parts of the country, please see my reward checking account page and my best checking account post.

Rate History:
01/29/09: If requirements are not met, rate now falls to 0%
01/02/09: 3.00% APY for up to $10K
04/27/08: 6.00% APY for up to $10K
03/05/08: 6.00% APY for up to $25K
10/25/07: 6.00% APY for up to $100K; 0.25% for above and if req's not met
  Tags: Massachusetts, Mills42 Federal Credit Union, checking account, reward checking account

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Comments
15 comments.
Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
This is quite a painless application process.

I mailed in my initial deposit on 10/30, the check was cashed on 11/6 and I received my debit card and PIN by 11/13.

So ... two weeks, compared to the two MONTHS it took for the same process with State Bank of Toledo.

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Comment #2 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
Thanks for the info. Did you mail in the membership application with the initial deposit?

Looks like another advantage over State Bank of Toledo is that you don't have to worry about a notarize signature.

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Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I mailed in the membership application with my initial deposit. My check also included $5.00 for the credit union to pass along to MADD, which made me eligible for CU membership.

At least you don't need to independently make the contribution to MADD ... the CU handles it on your behalf.

You're definitely right about those notarized slips of paper that State Bank of Toledo wants you to get signed. My local bank had a fit about notarizing a slip of paper that you could attach to any document. Good thing I'm well known at my local Wamu branch.

I'm quite happy with my State Bank of Toledo account, but it was a real pain to establish. They put a 10 day hold on my initial deposit (check) and would not order my debit card until the end of that 10 day period. That's the main reason the process took so long.

The customer service at State Bank of Toledo is very good. I just had them wire funds to Northwest Federal CU today to get that 6% APY 18-month CD. They wanted a fax with wire instructions and a signature, but they processed my request immediately.

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Comment #4 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
Thanks for the info. Glad to see how quick and easy M/A-COM has made the application process.

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Comment #5 by glxpass (anonymous) posted on
glxpass
Per CSR, effective November 7th, this account requires a branch visit to open. Interestingly, you can still join the credit union without a branch visit, but you can't get this product. The CSR stated that the account was much more popular than they anticipated, and they didn't want to pay out such a high interest rate to everyone.

1
Comment #6 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
Thanks for the update. I was worried that this might happen since the credit union was so small. I've updated the post with this info.

You have to wonder if something similar might happen to State Bank of Toledo especially now that they're getting publicity from Bankrate.com.

1
Comment #7 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
At least they communicated this change in writing on the webpage for their 6.01% offer -
"Account will earn 6.00% APY on balances between $10 and $100,000 when account requirements are met during the eligibility cycle (Eligibility Cycle starts on first day of each month and ends the last day of each month). To qualify for bonus dividends new members must apply for account in person. Rates are accurate as of 10/10/2007."
I'v seen some CUs where they didn't put it in writing (regarding whether personal visits were necessary), and the reusult seemed to be that half the CSRs were saying 1 thing and half the opposite.

1
Comment #8 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
At least they communicated this change in writing on the webpage for their 6.01% offer -
"Account will earn 6.00% APY on balances between $10 and $100,000 when account requirements are met during the eligibility cycle (Eligibility Cycle starts on first day of each month and ends the last day of each month). To qualify for bonus dividends new members must apply for account in person. Rates are accurate as of 10/10/2007."
I'v seen some CUs where they didn't put it in writing (regarding whether personal visits were necessary), and the reusult seemed to be that half the CSRs were saying 1 thing and half the opposite.

1
Comment #9 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
The cap is now $25,000. (This is accurate as of 3/5/08.)

1
Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Cap has been reduced to only $10,000, 6% APY maintained.

1
Comment #11 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
Wow. Another big cap reduction. This is the first time I've seen an institution cut the cap this low. Hope we don't see this repeated at other institutions.

1
Comment #12 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Really, the cap is that low?!
Are you sure? My link still says $100K.

http://www.macomfcu.org/specials.html

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Comment #13 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
..oh, I guess that link I just posted is not updated.... as in other places in the website, it does show the much lower cap. That cap reduction really blows.

1
Comment #14 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
As of 1/1/09, top rate falls to 3.00% APY up to $10K; 0.25% over $10K; and 0.0% if qualifications not met.

1
Comment #15 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
If requirements not met, the rate is 0.0 %.

1