New High-Yield Reward Checking Account at Community & Southern Bank


High-interest reward checking accounts are looking more appealing these days when it looks like rates may be on the rise. These offer rates higher than CD rates, and you don’t have to worry about locking into a long-term low-rate CD. There are a few downsides with reward checking. It requires work to meet the monthly requirements. Rates may fall, and there’s a balance cap which can also fall. We have seen many reward checking accounts with balance caps that fell from $25K to $10K. We have also seen many new reward checking accounts with balance caps of only $10K. So I’m happy to see the new reward checking account at Community & Southern Bank with a $25K balance cap.

Community & Southern Bank’s new high-yield reward checking account is under the Kasasa brand. The checking account is called Kasasa Cash. The bank also offers another type of Kasasa checking account called Kasasa Tunes which rewards customers with free monthly downloads from iTunes or This is best suited for customers who will likely maintain small balances in their checking. The high interest rate has less value for these cases.

There’s also a savings account, called Kasasa Saver. This is a companion account to Kasasa Cash. Below is a summary of the rates and features of these two accounts as of 7/23/2013:

Kasasa Cash rates if monthly requirements are met:

  • 2.01% APY up to $25,000
  • 0.25% APY on portion of the balance over $25,000
  • 0.05% APY on entire balance if requirements are not met
  • Nationwide ATM fee refunds up to $4.99 per transaction

Kasasa Saver rates if monthly requirements are met:

  • 0.50% APY up to $50,000
  • 0.25% APY on portion of balance over $50,000
  • 0.05% APY on entire balance if requirements are not met

Monthly requirements to qualify for the above rewards:

  • 12 debit card purchases
  • 1 direct deposit or automatic payment (ACH)
  • e-statements

These Kasasa accounts are free with no monthly service fees and no minimum balance requirements. The minimum opening deposit is $25.


The bank’s Kasasa Cash page instructs readers to come by one of the bank’s locations to open an account. Community & Southern Bank branches are located in Metro Atlanta and across Georgia’s northern, eastern and western counties.

You can also open these Kasasa accounts online via if you live in an eligible area of the country. At this website, you have to first enter your zip code to view accounts. Community & Southern Bank’s Kasasa accounts show up for zip codes in several Southeast states including Georgia, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina and North Carolina.

Bank Overview

I actually documented when Community & Southern Bank was first established. It happened on January 29, 2010 when First National Bank of Georgia was closed by regulators. The FDIC arranged for a newly chartered institution, Community & Southern Bank, to acquire the failed bank. Since that time, the bank has acquired six more failed banks. These acquisitions explain why it’s a sizable community bank with $2.6 billion in assets. They also explain why the bank is in good financial shape. The FDIC’s loss share agreements ensure the acquiring banks aren’t burdened by problematic loans of the failed banks. The bank has an overall health score at of 5 stars (out of 5) with a Texas ratio of 18.90% (average) based on March 2013 data. Please refer to our financial overview of Community & Southern Bank for more details. The bank has been a FDIC member since 2010 (FDIC Certificate # 59010).

How This Reward Checking Account Compares

As I mentioned at the start, it’s nice to see a new reward checking account with a $25K balance cap. Most new reward checking accounts have balance caps of $15K or $10K. However, the 2.01% APY is a little disappointing. The best rate in the nation for a $25K cap is 4.00% APY at Southwest Airlines Federal Credit Union. However, this is primarily limited to Southwest Airline employees and employees of various businesses. There are a few areas of the country with banks and credit unions that offer rates over 3% for balances up to $25K. However, if you don’t live in one of these areas, you’ll have to settle for lower rates.

The best rate that’s nationally available is 2.02% APY for balances up to $25K at ABCO Federal Credit Union. There are higher rates available for smaller balance caps. I reviewed some of these in my recent post, Finding the Best High Interest Reward Checking Account.

The above rates are accurate as of 7/23/2013.

Other Reward Checking Accounts

To find reward checking accounts in other areas of the nation, please refer to the reward checking section of To learn more about reward checking, please refer to this reward checking overview.

KenBDG   |     |   Comment #2
Thanks anon. We wrongly had the non-qualifying rate listed. It's fixed now.

Money Market Promotion at Community & Southern Bank in Georgia

Community & Southern Bank has been advertising a promotion for its Investment Money Market Account that’s a good deal. It’s guaranteeing 1.00% APY for the first 180 days the account is opened. Minimum opening and daily balance of $2,500 is required to avoid a monthly service charge of $15. Also, a checking account with monthly direct deposit is required. This special is listed in the bank’s great rates page as of 6/17/2013. Hat tip to the reader who emailed me news of this promotion.

A branch visit appears to be required...

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6.30% 15-Month CD at a Georgia Bank (Bank of Ellijay).
The Bank of Ellijay is offering a 6.30% APY 15-month certificate of deposit. The minimum is $10K. It requires the opening of a free checking with interest account or a personal money market account or premium money market account. This is a limited time offer.

The bank is located in Ellijay, Georgia which is about 40 miles north of Atlanta.

It's a new bank that has only been FDIC insured since April, 2006.

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