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More Details on WTDirect's $500 Savings Account Promotion



Update 5/24/10: The promotion has expired. Please refer to this post for more details.

Late Friday afternoon, I called WTDirect to clarify some details about WTDirect's new savings account promo in which you can earn up to $500 on top of WTDirect's regular interest. The promo came out on Thursday. Here's my initial review of the promo.

The CSR answered the phone quickly and was quite knowledgeable about the savings account and the promo. If you have any concerns or questions about the promo, call WTDirect at 1-800-983-4732.

According to the CSR, the initial deposit can be a small amount. You just have to make sure the amount that you want to qualify for the bonus is in your account by 6/15/2010. The CSR recommended that you initiate the electronic transfer no later than 6/10/2010 to ensure it reaches the account by the 15th. I was told transfers typically take 3 business days to complete. When the bonus period ends, you can withdraw money on 9/16/2010 without it affecting the bonus. This information from the CSR corroborates what the fine print appears to state. [ Update: Readers have reported in the comments of being told by CSRs that the bonus will be based on the initial deposit. I'll check with WTDirect again about this issue. Update 5/24/10: I've confirmed that the initial deposit does not matter. Please refer to this post for more details. ]

Here are some notes the CSR mentioned regarding the application:

  • There's no hard credit pull. It's just a soft pull via Equifax (for ID verification purposes). They also use ChexSystem.
  • When you submit your application, you should be approved immediately if everything goes right. There will be nothing required to be mailed. You should receive a welcome kit in the mail within 5 to 7 business days.
  • There's a possibility that your application won't be immediately approved. It may be given the status of "under review". In that case you may be requested to mail or fax in some documentation such as proof of residence.
  • Online application only allows for one beneficiary designation (see update below). However, you can add two more. This requires that you download the form from WTDirect's website. The form needs to be mailed or faxed. [ Update: A reader reported the following: "I completed my application yesterday online and it allowed me to have two beneficiaries. I didn't try but one can probably add more than two." ]
  • The promo could end early. If you apply when the promo page is still active, you should qualify for the bonus.

One other thing to note that was mentioned by the reader glxpass is that the regular interest rate (currently 1.16% APY for balances of $10K+) is variable and could go down during the promo period. This could bring the effective yield to under 5%.

Several account details are listed in the WTDirect account disclosure.

As I mentioned in the previous post, WTDirect offers free standard bank-to-bank ACH transfers. The transfer limits are large: inbound limit = $500K per transaction and per month, outbound limit = $200K. According to WTDirect's website, standard transfers may take up to 4 business days to complete.

WTDirect does offer next-day transfers, but there are some fees and limits on the transfer amounts. Here are the details described at WTDirect:

Next-Day Transfers are available to qualified clients. There is a $10 charge for each outgoing transfer, a $2 charge for each incoming transfer. Next-Day Transfers must be set up no later than 3:00PM ET to be processed in time for next-business day delivery.

Next-Day Transfers can be made only to an external account to which a previous transfer has been made. Inbound limit per transfer = $2,500. Inbound daily limit = $5,000. Inbound Outstanding Limit = $10,000. Inbound limit per 30-day period = $20,000. Outbound limit per transfer = $2,500. Outbound daily limit = $2,500. Outbound Outstanding Limit = $5,000. Outbound limit per 30-day period = $20,000.

WTDirect is a division of Wilmington Trust FSB which has been a FDIC member since 1994 (FDIC Certificate # 33911). Deposits at WTDirect are FDIC-insured with Wilmington Trust FSB.

For more details about WTDirect and this promo, please refer to my WTDirect savings account and bonus review.

Update 2:35pm CDT 5/22/10: Updates were made based on readers' comments. See [Update] notes above.

  Tags: WTDirect, savings account

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Comment #1 by numberten posted on
The description about beneficiary is not correct - I completed my application yesterday online and it allowed me to have two beneficiaries. I didn't try but one can probably add more than two.

Comment #2 by Anonymous posted on
First of all, CS at for WT is OUTSTANDING.  Ive called several times and always reached a CSR within 15-20 seconds.


I applied for the account on Thursday morning, when I only knew about the $100 promotion.  When I found out that evening about the $500 promotion, I was told to call back and speak with a supervisor on Friday morning to see what they could do for me.

I did so, and they had no problem applying the "new" $500 promotion code to my account.  The only small "problem" is that one of the very helpful CSR's told me that the "intiial" deposit had to be $50k in order to qualify for the $500, and you couldnt deposit that amount in "installments" or at a later time.  It had to be all at once at the INITIAL funding deposit.  He said given the circumstances, he would talk to a supervisor, and allow me to deposit an additional 40k in the next few days or week to qualifiy.

Also later called back and spoke to a supervisor (again, extremely polite and helpful) and she basically said "yeah, you should try to deposit the additional 40k as soon as possible" but we are aware of your situation and have noted your account, and it shouldnt be a problem at all."


Just wanted to give a heads up to everyone about that--again, they seem to be pretty flexible and helpful, but it seems that  (at least everyone Ive spoken to) everyone is saying you HAVE TO deposit the 50k all at once, during the initial funding step.


Hope that helps anyone.

Comment #3 by Anonymous posted on
@ # 2

The fineprint for the promo on their website says:

This offer is available to new WTDirect clients only. Primary account holder must NOT have held a WTDirect account in the past 12 months. WTDirect account must be opened and funded via electronic (ACH) transfer received by 6/15/10.  Bonus is based upon the lowest daily balance during the promotional period of 6/15/10 – 9/15/10.  Bonuses will be paid approximately 2 weeks after the end of the promotional period to clients whose accounts are open and in good standing.  Wilmington Trust employees and their family members are not eligible. WTDirect reserves the right to cancel or modify this promotion at any time without notice.


There is nothing in there that would make me think your assertion is true that one has to fund this account with the full amount right away. All you have to do is get your ducks in a row by 6/15/10 and then leave it in there for 3 months.

Comment #4 by Michigan (anonymous) posted on
I call yesterday and was also told by the CRS that the bonus was based on the initial deposit. I was interested in ultimately depositing the Max $ 50,000.00 but didn’t have it all in one location for an initial transfer. Plus if I transfer it now, I’ll only get the 1.16 %. If you figure the bonus period 6-15 thru 9-15 and the period before to be sure you get in on the promo before they close it, your overall rate is going down. So, after jumping through all their hoops, maybe you might earn something less then $ 100.00 compared to rewards checking paying 4% (that might go down during this time period).  I’ll call again and see what the CRS says regarding when the money has to be there to qualify. My initial thought was to sign up with a small deposit  (before they quickly close it.)  and wait until funding with the $ 50K by 6-15.

Comment #5 by Anonymous posted on
@ #3


Im not asserting anything.  Im simply passing on what was told to me by two different CSR's and one supervisor.


I also am aware of (and reviewed) the fine print on the promo.



Comment #6 by Brian (anonymous) posted on


Can you explain this:

"If you figure the bonus period 6-15 thru 9-15 and the period before to be sure you get in on the promo before they close it, your overall rate is going down."


Doesnt WT give you their highest rate (right now 1.16%) on all accounts regardless of balance for the first 60 days?  Thats what the fine print says.

Comment #7 by Anonymous posted on
Signed up easily on-line this morning.  WT is asking to do trial deposits to verify my existing on-line savings account from which I am transferring funds, so may take a few days.

Comment #8 by Anonymous posted on
I set up this account and the online system was pretty easy to navigate. I got instant approval that said an email would follow-up to confirm, although I haven't gotten the email after 15 mins. I set it up to do a transfer from another account for the initial funding and they need to do test deposits first, so there will be a few days delay to get the confirmation before I can transfer the $50,000 into the account.

Comment #9 by Michigan (anonymous) posted on
Brain - To get the bonus your money has to be there from 6/15 thru 9/15. On $ 50,000.00 you will get an extra $ 500.00 in bonus money. Plus you get the 1.16%. During the time period 6/15 thru 9/15 including bonus money and the 1.16% you will get around 5.16%. When I called yesterday 5/21, they said the bonus was only paid on the initial deposit. So, from 5/21 thru 6/14 there is no bonus money. All you will get is the 1.16%. If you factor the extra 24 days into the interest rate calculation it will bring the 5.16% rate down.  Right now I’m getting 4% on a rewards checking account. Some people commented that they were told they could open an account with a small amount and add to it. I was just reporting what I was told. My strategy was to open the account with a small amount so if they decide to cancel the promo; that I could still participate. I will call again and ask a different CRS. If you can open small and increase it by 6/15 and still participate in the promo then for me it will make sense to do it. If not then I’ll just keep the 50K in reward checking. My main point is that there is a discrepancy in the information the CRS are telling people regarding the initial deposit in relationship to the paying the bonus. Bonus only paid on initial deposit vs. balance in the account during the time period 6/15 thru 9/15.

Comment #10 by Anonymous posted on
Opened an account on 5/21 with 50K.  Was very much impressed with the site and the ease of the application.  Regarding previous posts concerning beneficiaries, the application clearly stated that up to 3 could be listed.  I listed 3.  In addition, it was a joint account registration. My application was approved quickly, perhaps 3 minutes.  As also mentioned in the first comment posted here, I did not get an email from WT as the application process said I would.  I expect that I will not get anything from them until they make the test deposits in my funding external account.  I will then need to verify them for the account to become active.  All in all, a very good experience.  I hope this continues to be the case after the account is activated.

Comment #11 by Anonymous posted on
I think people should know the promo site state:

Just open and fund your account by June 15th, maintain your initial deposit for three months, and you’ll receive a cash bonus.

Comment #12 by NoMoreBailouts (anonymous) posted on
The offer's fine print says "no minimum deposit required to open the account" yet during the application process it said a $1 minimum was necessary.

In any case, if you do fund the initial deposit with $1-$9,999, as long as you don't withdraw any prior to the promotional 6/15-9/15 period, I see nothing in the fine print that prevents you from qualifying for the $500 bonus. Reason being, if you deposit enough additional money to reach $50K by 6/15 and maintain it until 9/15 your initial deposit is still part of the total therefor you are still satisfying the requirement of "maintain your initial deposit." (as stated in post #11 above)

Furthermore, under the *** (triple asterisk) of the promo page it clearly says cash bonus based on deposit amount, NOT initial deposit.

If WTD says they won't honor the bonus based on the above scenario they would be shysters IMO and not worthy of anyone's money. A reportable offense would be in order.

Comment #13 by Anonymous posted on
Hi Bank Deals Guy,

Please post an update after you talk to WTD about the issue "the bonus will be based on the initial deposit." It does not make sense if the bonus is based on the initial deposit.



Comment #14 by Jack (anonymous) posted on
I called WT Direct tonight and the CSR told me the bonus is based on the amount on deposit between 6/15 and 9/15 and will be paid AFTER the bonus period ends.  Depositors can withdraw their money on 9/16 and still receive the bonus but should keep the account open so that WT Direct can transfer the bonus into the account.  Also, interest is always paid on the second business day of the month.

Comment #15 by Anonymous posted on
Thank you for contacting WTDirect.  We will be happy to assist you
with your request.

We have received your email regarding our recent promotion.  You will
be able to open the account with an initial deposit of as little as
$1.00.  Please make sure that you have the qualifying balance of
$10,000 to $50,000 (depending on how large of a cash bonus you would
like to receive) in the account by June 15.  Please maintain that
balance until September 15.  As long as the qualifying balance is in
the account from June 15 through September 15, it does not matter
what your initial deposit is.

Comment #16 by Anonymous posted on

Comment #17 by Anonymous posted on
I was just told by CSR the bonus is over!!!  Lucky few that got in

Comment #18 by Michigan (anonymous) posted on
5/24/2010 – I just called for clarification regarding the bonus payment being paid on only the initial deposit vs. balance from 6/15 thru 9/15. The CRS said the promo is now closed and that they did have some misunderstanding about how the bonus was paid but it would be paid on balance from 6/15 thru 9/15 (not just the initial deposit as I was told). I thought it didn’t make sense when the CRS told me last Friday that it was only paid on the initial deposit and questioned her. Just goes to show that I should have call back and verified her answer with another CRS agent. Now that it is close, I obviously cannot participate in this promo due to incorrect information received from the CRS.