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iPod nano Checking Account Bonus at a California CU (Valley)


Valley Credit Union
Valley Credit Union is offering a free iPod nano or shuffle for opening a new checking account with direct deposit. According to the promotion page, you can qualify for the iPod nano when you open the Valley Peak Checking Account. The Free checking and two other checking accounts qualify you for the iPod shuffle. According to the CSR, the direct deposit has to be a minimum $1,500 per month, and according to the small print, it must remain active through 12/31/08. The offer expires 7/31/08.

At the first look of the Valley Peak Checking it appears to be the best option since you'll qualify for the iPod nano. It has no monthly fees. The only balance requirement is if you want interest. In that case there's a minimum balance of $10,000. It looked too good to be true so I called the credit union. As I had thought, there's a catch. According to the CSR, this requires a minimum opening balance of $10,000.

One more note about this Valley Peak Checking, it's a little like a reward checking account. You qualify for a 1% rate boost (1.75% APY) if you meet one of the following monthly requirements: 1) direct deposit of $1,500, 2) 3 signature-based debit card purchases, or 3) receive E-statemtns and pay two bills with Bill Pay. Unlike the typical reward checking, a $10K balance is required to earn interest.

You can qualify for the iPod shuffle with the Free Checking which has no opening or minimum balance requirements.

According to the CSR, they do a hard credit inquiry in the application. They have the iPods at the branches so you can get these when you open the account at the branch. But the CSR said this promo could be done by mail.

There's also a special 10% APY 12-month CD with a minimum/maximum deposit of $1,000. It's called the Perfect 10 Certificate, and it has been going on since my last post on this credit union in May 2007. Like the iPod promotion, it requires a checking account with a $1,500 direct deposit. According to the CSR, you can do both the iPod promotion and this promotion. However, it should be noted that in the small print of the iPod promotion page it states "This promotion may not be combined with any other offer." So your miles may vary.

Another downside to this deal is that the credit union has a $10 one-time membership fee in addition to the minimum required balance of $50 in the Regular Share savings account. The CSR said this fee could not be waived.

Membership is open to those who reside, regularly work or regularly worship in Santa Clara County, Contra Costa County or Alameda County. You can also be eligible to join via select employee groups and immediate family. Please refer to the credit union's Membership Page for the full details.

The credit union is federally insured by the NCUA (Charter # 61034).

Thanks to the reader who mentioned this promotion in the finding the best deals post.

  Tags: California, Valley Credit Union, checking account

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