Sovereign Bank is offering a checking and money market promotion in which you can earn a bonus of $150 and receive a 1.50% APY guarantee for 3 months in the money market account. The promo is scheduled to expire 3/13/2010. Here's the promo page link.
First, here are the requirements for the $150 checking account bonus:
- Open a new Sovereign Premier Checking, Business Owner Premier Checking, Interest Checking, or Partnership Checking account by March 13, 2010, with a minimum opening deposit of $100
- Open any Sovereign savings or money market savings account with a minimum opening deposit of $100 or already have a savings or money market savings account
- Enroll in Online Banking at account opening
- Set up and receive one direct deposit within 60 days of opening your account
- Request a Sovereign Debit Card and make 5 Debit Card purchases within 60 days after you open your account
When you qualify, you will receive a credit of $150 to your new checking account within 75 days after you open your checking account.
Some important small print:
- Offer available only to residents in the following states: ME, VT, NH, CT, RI, MA, NY, NJ, PA, MV, MD, DE, and District of Columbia.
- Direct deposits you initiate from an account at another bank do not qualify
- The amount of the bonus credited to your account will be reported to the IRS as interest
- Current personal checking customers or anyone who has had a personal checking account with Sovereign Bank in the last 6 months are not eligible for this offer.
- Current savings customers are eligible
An important note regarding the Interest Checking is that direct deposit is required to avoid a $10 monthly fee. On the plus side is that they provide free checks. The Premier Checking is even worse in terms of potential fees. A $15,000 combined balance is required to avoid a $30/month fee. For the savings accounts, the Money Market Savings appears to be a good choice since it has no monthly maintenance fee and no minimum balance requirement. Note, the monthly fees and minimum balance vary considerably based on your state.
Here are the requirements to qualify for 1.50% APY for 3 months:
- Open a new Premier Checking account and open a new Premier Money Market Savings account by March 13, 2010
- Bonus rate will apply for each day your balance is $10,000 to $499,999 and is guaranteed for 3 months from the date you open your account
Some important small print:
- Same geographic restriction as mentioned above
- Anyone who has had a Sovereign savings, money market savings, or personal checking account with Sovereign in the last 6 months are not eligible for the bonus rate
Unlike the checking account promotion, this requires a Premier Money Market Savings account. Details of this account are in the promo page (click more for this account in the promo page). The Premier Money Savings is free of minimum balance requirements and has no monthly fees as long as you have a Premier Checking account (which, as I mentioned, has its own fees)
When I called Sovereign Bank in April 2008 regarding a similar promotion, I was told that there's no account closure fee if an account is closed after 90 days. Otherwise, it's $25. The CSR also said they don't perform a hard credit inquiry. They just use ChexSystem in the application.
There's an online application link in the promo page. However, the small print states that residential addresses must be located in the northeast states (see above).
Branches are located in the Northeast in the states of Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. The bank is a FDIC member (FDIC Certificate # 29950).
Other Bank Bonuses
Refer to the Bank Bonus page for the other bonuses at banks and credit unions around the nation.