Bank of the Sierra has a reward savings account that is a companion account for the reward checking account. It can be useful for those who have maxed out the $25K cap on the reward checking account but don't want to open up another reward checking account. That money can go into this reward savings account. The rate is lower than most reward checking rates, but it's higher than most internet savings account rates. The only potential issue is that you have to meet the reward checking qualifications. If you don't, the yield on the savings account falls to practically nothing.
The rates and features of this savings account are listed at the bank's Sierra Reward Savings page as of 6/02/2010:
- 2.09% APY on balances up to $25K
- 0.50% APY on portion of balance over $25K
- 0.12% base rate if reward checking requirements are not met
- No monthly service charge
- No minimum balance requirement
- Limited to 9 savings withdrawals per quarter with no charge ($2 for over)
Bank of the Sierra's reward checking account continues to pay a very competitive 4.09% APY on balances up to $25K as of 6/02/2010. Unfortunately, this is no longer a nationwide deal. The bank's application states that it's limited to residents of CA and WV. Please refer to my Bank of the Sierra reward checking review for more details.
Branches are located in several Central California cities including Fresno, Bakersfield, Hanford and Porterville. The bank has been FDIC insured since 1978 (FDIC Certificate # 22597).
Why West Virginia?
Why is West Virginia included with California as the only two states eligible for these accounts? The bank doesn't have any branches outside of CA. A reader thought they may have meant Nevada (NV). I just called and asked the CSR about this. The CSR confirmed that WV is correct, but she didn't know why. The only thing I can think of is that they may have a West Virginia bank acquisition in mind. However, I checked all the West Virginia banks at BauerFinancial, and there are no zero- or one-star banks, and there is only one two-star bank. Any ideas why WV is included?
Other Reward Savings Accounts
Several other banks and credit unions have added reward savings accounts to go along with their reward checking accounts. I reviewed these types of savings accounts in this January post.
Thanks to the reader who emailed me news of this Bank of the Sierra reward savings account.