4.25% Reward Checking Account at Incommons Bank in Texas - Local Only


Update 12/19/09: The top rate is scheduled to fall to 4.25% APY effective January 5, 2010. This was in the small print of a holiday greetings email from the bank.

Incommons Bank is offering a high yield reward checking account called In-Checking. The account offers the following rates and features if certain monthly requirements are met:
  • 4.25% APY on balances up to $25,000
  • 1.01% APY on the portion of the balance over $25,000
  • 0.10% base rate if qualifications are not met
  • ATM fee refunds nationwide without limit
The monthly requirements include:
  • 10 MasterCard debit card purchases
  • 1 direct deposit or automatic payment
  • Receive e-Statements
Additional features of the account regardless of the monthly requirements include:
  • $100 minimum initial deposit
  • No minimum balance requirement
  • No monthly service charge
They do not allow multiple accounts. In the FAQ, they're open about the reason for this:
Offering only one account per customer allows us to offer this incredible rate to everyone in our community. You may not be able to have more than one account, but at least your friends and family can share in the wealth too.

This FAQ is in the bank's micro website set up by FIRST ROI which has set up many of these sites. This is the first time I've seen an explanation like this in these FIRST ROI websites. Perhaps they're now seeing a need to limit accounts to one per customer.

Update 12/19/09: The bank has changed its policy, and it now restricts new applicants to residents of their current service area which includes Freestone, Limestone, McLennan, Bell, Falls, Robertson, Milam, Leon, Anderson, Henderson, Navarro, Hill, Bosque, Hamilton, Coryell and Brazos counties.

Update 9/04/09: I contacted the bank, and according to the service representative, this account is available nationwide (see 9/08/09 update above). Here is the information provided by the service rep:
Yes, this account can be open by persons living out of state. When we speak with you before an application is submitted we ask that you enter your Drivers License number, expiration date, and state of issuance in the comments section of the application. We will also need to obtain a copy of your Drivers License which can be sent by fax or scanned to your personal banker. Once all paperwork has been completed we will mail the documents for your signature. When we've received the completed paperwork, a copy of your drivers license, and your initial deposit your account will be opened.

Please note that small banks offering hot rates often change their policies on availability. The link to the online application is available at the bank's reward checking page.

Branches are located in the Texas cities of Waco, Mexia, Fairfield and Coolidge. The bank has been FDIC insured since 1934 (FDIC Certificate # 3342).

Other Reward Checking Accounts

It's getting hard to find reward checking accounts with rates over 5% these days. Many have lowered their rates this year.

To find reward checking accounts in other areas of the nation or to learn more about these accounts, please refer to my High Yield Checking website.

Account History:
01/05/10: 4.25% APY up to $25K
12/03/09: Application now restricted to certain Central TX counties.
09/08/09: Reader reported receiving notice that only TX residents are now being accepted.
09/04/09: Received confirmation that they're accepting customers nationwide
06/12/09: 5.01% APY up to $25K; 1.01% over; 0.10% base
Related Pages: Incommons Bank, Dallas, Waco, checking account, reward checking account

Charlie in Austin,TX
  |     |   Comment #1
I signed up with them since they are in driving distance (about 90 miles), but they let me complete the application by mail.
  |     |   Comment #2
Thanks for the helpful information. I filled out the application form online (I live in Utah). After I submitted the form I got this message: "Thank you for your application! One of our representatives will contact you within one business day."
  |     |   Comment #3
Is there a hard pull on credit report?
  |     |   Comment #4
I just received this email after I applied online from california: Dear Prospective Client,
Welcome! Thank you for visiting our website and choosing services with Incommons Bank. As part of our mission statement, we are striving to become the Best Community Bank in Central Texas therefore; our focus will be in this area. Unfortunately at this time, we will not be able to open your account as we are concentrating our efforts to the Texas area and limiting the geographic area in which we serve.
We appreciate you taking the time to research our organization and if anything should change regarding your residence, please contact us for future opportunities. Sincerely, Ben McElreath CSR (254) 420-1007
Banking Guy
  |     |   Comment #5
Thanks for the update. Sorry to see them remove nationwide availability so soon. I wonder how many applications they received over the weekend.
  |     |   Comment #6
I applied online but got a e-mail said it was on longer available for out-of-state customers.
  |     |   Comment #7
Unfortunately my prediction came true...

"Wow, that was fast for the Community, average life is like 2-3 weeks from post time here or FWF. I would start counting the days for Incommon... 2, 3, 4,..."
  |     |   Comment #8
Four days must be a record short time between the announcement on this blog that they were nationwide and their announcing that they were local-only again. I bet they had no idea how many "rate-chasers" there are out there who are dying to find a bank offering 5%.

I wonder if they will follow the pattern of others like Malvern and First State of Kansas City who went from 5% available nationally, to being available locally only, and finally dropping their rate from 5%.
  |     |   Comment #9
I live in Texas so I tried to apply but found that applications are limited to their market area:

Incommons bank is a community financial institution serving the residents of McLennan, Limestone, Freestone and contiguous counties in Central Texas. Our current service area includes Freestone, Limestone, McLennan, Bell, Falls, Robertson, Milam, Leon, Anderson, Henderson, Navarro, Hill, Bosque, Hamilton, Coryell and Brazos counties.
  |     |   Comment #10
1042 Post Above:

Yep, same pattern.

First limit to local, then dropping rate...
  |     |   Comment #11
The 5% club is quickly shrinking...
  |     |   Comment #12
Texas still have the most 5% offers.
  |     |   Comment #13
This may be the beginning of the end (of 5% RCAs) for Texas RCAs...
Charlie in Texas
  |     |   Comment #14
I have been recomending this account to all my friends.  Little did I know I got it just at the right time.  I live about 90 miles south of Waco in a suberb of Austin.


One question, and it just occurs to me I should have asked it a long time ago.  Are these accounts FDIC insured?  I know the bank is, but the rules can be so complicated and these accounts could get excluded.  I noticed of their 3 types of personal checking accounts the other two explicitly say they are FDIC insured and this one does not.
  |     |   Comment #15
Read the related forum posts... Interest rate dropping to 3% and balance cap to $10K as of beginning 2011.

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