Update 1/10/10: The savings and checking rates have fallen to 2.00% APY.
Update 8/28/09: It appears the bank has changed their policy on nationwide availability. A reader reported being told by the bank that they are now only accepting local customers.
You may remember my May 31st post in which I described the checking account at Solera National Bank which was offering rates up 3% APY. They're still offering these same rates as of 7/19/09 (link to rates located on their home page), and they continue to offer this nationwide. It's a small bank, and there were concerns that they would quickly be overwhelmed by deposits which would force them to lower the rates. So far that hasn't happened.
A reader emailed me some additional news about this bank. They're also offering a savings account that pays 3.00% APY on all balances (as of 7/17/09). It's their Traditional Savings Account. The rate doesn't seem to be listed at the bank's website. A reader mentioned it, and I called Friday to confirm it was still available. Like the checking account, it's a variable rate that could change at anytime. According to the CSR, they've been offering this rate since January.
Update 8/22/09: The bank now has a link on its home page to info on this savings account. The rate continues to be 3.00% APY as of 8/22/09.
The savings account doesn't have the best features, but the very competitive rate may make up for this for some people. Here are some of the main features. I've highlighted the ones that are the most objectionable.
- $100 minimum balance to avoid a $5/quarter fee
- Interest is paid quarterly, and if you close your account before interest is credited you will not receive the accrued interest.
- There is a fee of $1.00 for each withdrawal and/or transfer in excess of six per quarterly statement cycle.
- Deposit up to 20 items per month at no charge. A $0.15 fee is charged for each deposited item in excess of 20.
- Each withdrawal/transfer in excess of six per calendar month will be assessed a $10.00 fee.
- Dormant/inactive service charge fee of $15.00 per quarter is applied to accounts with a balance of $100.00 or less and no activity for 6 consecutive months.
They continue to allow out-of-state applications. As I mentioned in my previous post, small banks often change their policy on this. To apply, call the bank and ask them to email you the Customer ID Affidavit which will need to be notarized and returned with copies of your IDs. I asked the CSR to email me this Friday afternoon, but I still haven't received it. The FW member glxpass described what he received in this FW thread back in June.
It's a small, one-office bank that was just established in 2007. It's located in Lakewood, Colorado which is in the suburbs of Denver. Since it's new, BauerFinancial doesn't have rating for it. Bankrate.com gives the bank 3 stars (performing) for safety and soundness based on 3/31/08 financial data. It's a member FDIC (FDIC Certificate # 58534).
Thanks to the reader who emailed me info on this savings account.
For other high yield savings accounts, please refer to my weekly rate summary.
Edit 7/20/09: Added info that all savings account balances qualify for the 3%
12/03/09: Savings: 2.00% APY, Checking: 2.00% APY
11/14/09: Savings: 2.25% APY
09/01/09: Savings: 2.75% APY.