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$25 Bonus for FNBO Direct's BillPay Account

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FNBO Direct
FNBO Direct has started a promotion for its BillPay Account. Those who have an FNBO Direct Online Savings Account can earn a $25 bonus for opening a new BillPay Account and making at least one BillPay payment during the first 90 days. The promotion is scheduled to end on 4/30/08. I received the promotion details from FNBO today by email. Below is the promotion's small print:
If you are a current FNBO Direct Online Savings Account customer, you can earn a $25.00 bonus for opening a new FNBO Direct BillPay Account. We will credit the bonus to your BillPay Account within 30 days after it is opened. In order to earn the bonus, your BillPay Account must remain open for 90 days and you must make at least one BillPay payment during that period (we reserve the right to deduct the amount of an unearned bonus from any account you have with us). This offer is only applicable to BillPay accounts opened after 03/25/08 and is limited to one bonus per household. This promotion is set to end on 04/30/08, however, we may change or discontinue this offer at any time. The FNBO Direct BillPay Account pays an annual percentage yield of 2.50%. The APY is accurate as of 03/25/08 and is subject to change. Fees may reduce earnings.

Here's the promotion page. Credit to this FW thread for this link.

For those who already have a FNBO Direct savings account, this should be an easy $25. FNBO Direct first launched this BillPay Account in November 2007. It's designed to be like ING Direct's Electric Orange account in that there are no paper checks. Check-like payments are intended to be done by online bill pay.

The BillPay account has a current yield of 2.50% APY. When it launched in November, the yield was 3.50% APY. As a comparision, ING Direct's Electric Orange Account at that time had a yield of 3.25% APY for balances under $50K. The current yield of the Electric Orange Account is 1.75% APY for balances under $50K.

Some of the details of the BillPay account based on the disclosure and the FAQs include:
  • No minimum balance required to open
  • There is no monthly fee
  • Paper checks cannot be used
  • BillPay payments from your BillPay Account may not be less than $5 or more than $10,000
  • Your ATM Card can be used at any PLUS networks ATM without a foreign ATM charge.

Update 3/31/08: I sent an email to FNBO asking about the dormant fee mentioned in the disclosure. Below is their reply:
A Dormancy fee of $25.00 would be assessed if your account has had no activity for 90 days or more. If your account remains dormant after the initial Dormancy fee is assessed, you would then be charged $5.00 for every month the account stay dormant.

That seems to be a large fee for an account that has only been dormant for 90 days. So make sure you are aware if this before you sign up for this BillPay account.

FNBO Direct is a division of First National Bank of Omaha which is FDIC insured (FDIC Certificate # 5452).
  Tags: FNBO Direct, checking account

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Comments
12 comments.
Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I have done business with literally tens and tens of banks and credit unions over the years. Almost without exception these have been good experiences and positive relationships. FNBO is the exception. They harassed me and threatened me in a manner unprecedented. I don't like FNBO.

1
Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
$25 to open a new account, kind of not worth. I thought it would be very easy since I have saving account, but still need to fill in everything.

hard or soft, $25 before tax, ...

1
Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I can't recall if FNBO Direct did a hard or soft pull when I opened my online savings account. If they did do a hard pull, would they do an additional one if I open up the BillPay account?

1
Comment #4 by Banking Guy (anonymous) posted on
Banking Guy
I did not get a hard pull when I opened the savings account last year.

1
Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
applied for the account, a day later it was active. The $25 is already in my account!

1
Comment #6 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
They not only opened my account but already paid the reward. I promptly used it to make 2 bill payments.

1
Comment #7 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I cannot understand how can they expect to make money with this deal.
Every bank is now offering free bill pay but more and more billers accept payment by credit cards at their web site.
The only reason I did not close my FNBO account is because their CC pays 2% rebate on everything.

1
Comment #8 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
Hey Guys,
I red a disclosure:
It says:
Dormant Account - $25 fee
what the heck is that ?

1
Comment #9 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
You are right. It does not spell out what is a dormant account.
It is best to close the account after 90 days and worry about it.

1
Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I asked them about the dormant account fee before I applied and was told it only applies to accounts that have inactive for two years or more.

1
Comment #11 by virgquest (anonymous) posted on
virgquest
That last comment about dormant accounts being those that are unused for 2 years is interesting because I asked them the same question and I was told, in writing, that dormancy occurred after 90 days of inactivity. Either way, I still plan to open an account to get the easy bonus.

1
Comment #12 by Anonymous posted on
Anonymous
I was the one who posted about the 2 year dormancy thing. That's strange we got two different answers. The CSR I talked to had to put me on hold to ask someone else about it, so perhaps her info was wrong. Sorry!

1