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North Country Savings Bank1.05%-$25kAdvantage Checking
Accounts mentioned in this post. Rates as of August 21, 2014

High-Yield Reward Checking Account with a $50K Cap at North Country Savings Bank - Available Nationwide


North Country Savings Bank

North Country Savings Bank is offering a high-yield reward checking account called Advantage Checking. The account has the following rates and features if certain monthly requirements are met:

  • 2.00% APY on balances up to $50,000
  • 0.75% APY on portion of balance over $50,000
  • 0.15% base rate if monthly requirements are not met
  • Refunds ATM fees nationwide up to $25 per cycle

The monthly requirements include:

  • 10 MasterCard debit card purchases
  • One direct deposit or automatic payment (including direct debit or EagleNET bill payment)
  • Enroll and receive e-statements

Additional features of the account regardless of the monthly requirements include:

  • $25 minimum initial deposit
  • No minimum balance requirement
  • No monthly service charge
  • Accounts with balances below $100 and no activity for 180 days will be closed
  • Qualifications for the first monthly cycle are waived

There's an online application available at the bank's micro-website. According to the CSR, people from any state can apply online without visiting a branch. The only restriction stated in the application is that all applicants must be U.S. residents and at least 18 years of age. The application does require that you print and mail some documentation. Note, it's common for small banks to change their policy on nationwide availability, so please contact the bank for the latest rules.

Branches are located in northern New York State in the cities of Canton, Massena, Ogdensburg and Potsdam.

North Country Savings Bank has the highest ratings for safety and soundness: 5 stars (superior) at BauerFinancial (based on 6/30/09 data) and 5 stars (superior) at (based on 3/31/09 data. The bank was established in 1909 and has been a FDIC member since 1943 (FDIC Certificate # 16030). It's a small bank with $248 million in assets and $188 million in deposits based on 6/30/09 FDIC data.

Other Reward Checking Accounts

Compared to other nationwide reward checking accounts the interest rate at North Country Savings Bank is a little low. On the plus side, the $50K cap is better than average. Hopefully, both the rate, the cap and the nationwide availability will hold. As we've seen throughout this year, all three are susceptible to change. The latest example of this is at West Bank which just announced that it'll be lowering its balance cap from $50K to $30K. Earlier this year, it had also lowered the top rate and restricted new accounts to only Iowa residents (see post).

To find reward checking accounts in other areas of the nation or to learn more about these accounts, please refer to my High Yield Checking website.

Rate History:

  • 10/01/10: 2.00% APY up to $50K; 0.75% over; 0.15% base
  • 07/02/10: 2.50% APY up to $50K
  • 09/25/09: 3.00% APY up to $50K; 1.01% over; 0.15% base

  Tags: New York, North Country Savings Bank, checking account, reward checking account

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Comment #1 by Anonymous posted on
Alos, there may be trade among rate, limit, and number of required transactions. One may want to sacrifice a bit on rate and get the $50K limit. I will take 4%/$50K vs. 4.5%/$25K. But 4% is my absolute minimum since I use the money on HELOC, which has the rate of 2.24%. The 2% earning is my minimum margin.

Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
They are still taking natinal applications, and use Chex Systems on the credit check.