Bank of Hope Offers $500 Checking Bonus In Eight States

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Deal Summary: $500 Bonus when opening a new personal or business checking account with new money, offer valid through September 30, 2021.

Availability: In-branch opening at any of 58 AL, CA, IL, NJ, NY, TX, VA, and WA branch locations.

Now through September 30, 2021, California-based Bank of Hope is offering a $500 bonus when opening any new personal or business checking account with new money, and enrolling "in the Cash Bonus Offer at the time of account opening or within 30 days of account opening.” New or existing customers who currently do not have a Bank of Hope personal or business checking account are eligible to apply for the bonus.

As stated on the $500 Cash Bonus landing page,

Eligible accounts must be opened in-person at a Bank of Hope branch

  • Maintain an average balance of at least $20,000 for the first 4 months of account opening
  • Complete the following three activities within 90 days of account opening
    • 1. Request a debit card and make at least one debit card purchase or ATM deposit/withdrawal

      2. Register for Personal Online Banking or Business OnlineBanking

      3. Enroll in e-Statements

There is a limit of one Cash Bonus per eligible checking account. Only the first checking account opened during the promo period is eligible for the bonus offer.

Subsequent checking account(s) opened under the same account ownership type and account title are not eligible.

The $500 bonus will be paid into the new checking account within six months of account opening, if all the requirements are met. The checking account must be open and in good standing until the $500 bonus is paid.

Bank of Hope Checking Accounts

Bank of Hope’s product line includes five personal checking accounts and four business checking accounts, all of which qualify for the bonus. Three of these accounts are interest bearing, but none have competitive rates.

APYMINMAXINSTITUTIONPRODUCTDETAILS
0.05*%$100k-Bank of Hope (Los Angeles, CA)Interest Checking Account
OTHER TIERS: 0.01% Up to $100k
0.05*%$100k-Bank of Hope (Los Angeles, CA)Business Interest Checking Account
OTHER TIERS: 0.01% Up to $100k
0.01*%--Bank of Hope (Los Angeles, CA)Personal Reserve (Checking) Account
Rates as of October 17, 2021.

Thanks to DA reader, ichaelm, for the Forum post about Bank of Hope’s $500 checking bonus.

Availability

Headquartered in Los Angeles, Bank of Hope’s market area includes Alabama, California, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.

Opening a new checking account and applying for the $500 bonus can be done at any of 58 branches located in Alabama (1), California (32), Illinois (5), New Jersey (3), New York (7), Texas (4), Virginia (2), and Washington (4). All of Bank of Hope’s branch locations are situated in or near large metropolitan areas.

According to the Request Appointment pop-up on the $500 Cash Bonus landing page,

We are now accepting appointment requests for in-branch new account openings.
By scheduling an appointment, it will reduce your wait time in our branches.

Bank Overview

Bank of Hope has an overall health grade of "A+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 4.43% (excellent), based on March 31, 2021 data. In the past year, Bank of Hope has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $2.5 billion, an excellent annual growth rate of 22.48%. Please refer to our financial overview of Bank of Hope (FDIC Certificate # 26610) for more details.

Originally established in 1986 as the California Central Bank, Bank of Hope is the largest Korean-American bank in the U.S and the 13th largest bank headquartered in California. Between 1992 and 2016, Bank of Hope acquired seven other banks in Los Angeles, Chicago, and Seattle, becoming a major financial institution with assets in excess of $17 billion.

Bottom Line

Although it might be six months after account opening before the $500 bonus is paid, this is a nice offer that does not require a direct deposit. When interest rates are low, savings and checking bonuses are more attractive because they offer earnings not available in a liquid account or short-term CD. There aren’t any liquid accounts or CDs that currently return $500 on a $20k deposit in approximately six months. To earn $500 in a typical online savings account (with a 0.50% APY) would require a $100k balance on deposit for a year.

If you don’t qualify for Bank of Hope’s $500 bonus, check out our full list of the best savings and checking account bonus offers.

The above information and rates are accurate as of 6/17/2021.

Related Pages: checking accounts, bank bonuses

Comments
P_D
  |     |   Comment #1
Nice one. But is it worth the 40 mile round trip to the nearest branch for me? Not sure... especially if I will also have to go to the branch to close it. Although years ago I used to drive to that same area every day for work. Not a fun drive though. I do have to say I have enjoyed doing the bonus thing over these last several months, but I passed up one or two that required in branch visits especially during the pandemic.

Works out to ~7.5% annualized on $20k.
P_D
  |     |   Comment #2
The "Reserve Checking" account has no check writing and "Monthly service charge can be waived if a minimum daily balance of $1 is maintained in linked Regular Checking Account."

So in order to waive the service charge in this account you also have to have a Regular Checking account? Odd. Can't see any reason to have the Reserve Checking account.  Pays almost nothing.

For the "Regular Checking" account:

"The monthly service charge can be waived if a minimum daily balance of $500, or **average daily balance of $1,000 during each statement is maintained."

So it looks like the Regular Checking account (not mentioned) is the one you probably want and you will need to keep a $500 minimum daily balance in it to avoid service charges.

Check all of this, I only did a fast read.
alan1
  |     |   Comment #4
It seems to me that Bank of Hope's "Basic Checking Account" is superior to the "Regular Checking Account" mentioned in Comment #2.

Monthly service charge is $3. "$3 will be credited towards your monthly service charge if enrolled in e-Statements." Since enrollment in e-statements is a requirement to obtain the bonus, it seems that there would be no monthly fee.

(Additionally, "monthly service charge can be waived if 5 or more ATM/Debit card or ACH transactions are made per statement period.")

The minimum opening balance for the "Basic Checking Account" is $25, so it seems to me that you would only need to keep $25 in the account after the expiration of your four months of $20,000.

(There is a "$0.50 per debit created by a check that exceeds eight (8) per statement period.")

https://www.bankofhope.com/personal-banking/basic-checking
P_D
  |     |   Comment #5
That seems to be correct, but in the section about monthly service charges the only way to avoid it mentioned is by doing 5 or more transactions. So I would double check this before proceeding.

Monthly Service Charge
$3
The monthly service charge can be waived if 5 or more ATM/Debit card or ACH transactions are made per statement period.
P_D
  |     |   Comment #7
I didn't neglect it. I accurately pointed out that the section about monthly service charges does not mention that.
marcal
  |     |   Comment #16
No service charge on basic checking if you have e-statements. I opened up the account at a branch and verified the no fee.
ichaelm
  |     |   Comment #3
Ken, you don't show it on your map, but BOH also has a branch in Montgomery, AL. As it tends to have branches in the most highly populated states, the next state it will most likely open a branch in will be FL. From its website:

Montgomery
1605 Eastern Blvd
Montgomery, AL 36117
1-334-277-4118
ATM (24/7)

Mon - Fri
9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Sat, Sun
Closed
Ken Tumin
  |     |   Comment #8
Thanks ichaelm. The post has been updated to include the AL branch. For some reason, this branch wasn't in the DA database.
redfish
  |     |   Comment #9
a brief caution .... an average balance of 20k must be maintained for 4 months. if time is used to transfer funds to an opened account for instance, it might calculate as less than 20k average at the end of that particular month and disqualify the bonus.
i currently understand that a $500 balance is recommended for maintaining an open account while waiting for bonus funding ... and there are probably other ways to avoid fees as cited above. they also mentioned that it could be a bit over 6 months total to fund the bonus.
P_D
  |     |   Comment #10
Anyone know if there is a hard pull? This is basic info I want to know for every deal since it is typically a deal breaker for me. Would be very helpful if it could be part of the write up.
Sylvia
  |     |   Comment #11
P_D, according to another site, they will pull ChexSystems report, https://www.doctorofcredit.com/al-ca-il-nj-ny-tx-va-wa-bank-of-hope-500-checking-bonus-direct-deposi... (see comments). Additional info: branch visit required to open qualifying checking account, which must be funded with personal or cashiers check. Appointment necessary for branch visit. ID, social security card, and credit or debit card from another bank are requested documentation, according to one report.
P_D
  |     |   Comment #12
TY Sylvia!  Always glad to see when a hard pull is not part of the process.

I've expressed my displeasure with what I consider to be the unethical practice of pulling a hard credit report when opening a deposit account numerous times.  It really should be regulated out of practice.

A couple of years ago I had a CSR at another FI assure me there was no hard pull.  But it turned out there was.  Fortunately, in retrospect that account turned out to be a very good choice for me and that numbs the frustration of that incidence of misinformation which had troubled me for some time afterwards.
Sylvia
  |     |   Comment #13
Sure thing, P_D! I've never seen hard pulls done on accounts opened at branches, probably because you being there in person eliminates an element of risk.

I do share your annoyance with hard pulls on deposit accounts opened online. I suspect it's because the FI's (typically a credit union) use a single platform for identity authentication and account approval. While you might want only deposit products, another prospective customer/member could be looking solely at their loan products.

CSR's inability to distinguish between a soft and hard pull is a separate matter, and no less frustrating.
Sylvia
  |     |   Comment #14
The bank has 4 branches located within 25 miles of me, all in communities with good size Korean populations. The reviews I found for them on Google were hardly stellar, the majority being one star with many complaints of poor service, some written in Korean and awkwardly translated to English by Google.

Already averse to opening new accounts purely for bonuses, I was ambivalent at best. What compelled me to give them a shot was a large CD that matured last week, along with a steady stream of more to come in the next few months, with few enticing offers for reinvestment.

Today, I went to the branch closest to me, prepared to open a checking account, the first step in collecting bonus. Midway through the visit, I changed my mind. I found the staff unwelcoming, the application intrusive, the language gap worrisome.

Stepping into the branch, I got no greeting or acknowledgement despite there being at least 10 employees on the floor, and no other customer in sight. When I finally approached a banker at her desk, she merely nodded towards a cluster of empty chairs, apparently the waiting area.

Eventually, a banker beckoned. Told of my interest in the bonus, she gave me an application with the required info highlighted. In addition to the usual, they included occupation, current employer’s name and location (past employer, if retired), other banks where I have accounts and purposes of those accounts, “source of income/wealth.” For those wondering, past banks was considered optional info.

Seeing me gather my things to leave after declining to complete all highlighted items despite banker’s insistence, the branch manager walked over to reiterate necessity of info. English was obviously not their first language. I had a hard time understanding them, and probably vice versa, another reason not to proceed.
Choice
  |     |   Comment #15
Read the history of the FI and acquisitions
marcal
  |     |   Comment #17
I went into a branch in VA and was warmly welcomed. I did have an appointment. It took approximately 45 minutes to open a joint account for basic checking. All details for bonus were clearly explained. After all the paperwork was completed we were given a laminated grocery bag with post-it note pads, pens and hand sanitizer spray and a large insulated bag. What a surprise.
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