Ohio's SaveNOW Bonus Program Provides a Little Help to Savers

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The government hasn't made it easy on savers over the last couple of years as interest rates have plummeted, but here's an example of a state government that's trying to help a little. The State of Ohio launched in April a savings program called the SaveNow Bonus. Here's how the Ohio Treasurer described it:
The initiative, an investment of the Ohio Treasury, rewards Ohioans for furthering their financial education by providing them with a 3.25% interest bonus in their savings account. Participants will receive the bonus upon the satisfactory completion of a requisite one-year period of financial instruction.

Unfortunately, the interest bonus is limited to $5,000.

Not all banks in Ohio have signed on. According to the Cincinatti Business Journal, participating banks include PNC/National City, Liberty Savings, Wayne Savings and MainSource Savings.

4% Deal at Liberty Savings Bank

Liberty Savings Bank has a special savings account for this program called the SaveNOW Savings account. The savings account has a base rate of 0.75% APY as of 5/10/09. After one year, you can qualify for an extra bonus rate of 3.25%. Here are some of the important features as listed at the bank's SaveNOW page:
  • No minimum balance; only $10 to open
  • No monthly service fee
  • Maximum balance on which you can earn the interest rate bonus is $5,000
  • Deposits can be made to the account any time and should not exceed $500 at a time
Compared to a 2% savings account, you can earn up to $100 more in this account over a year.

Liberty Savings Bank also offers a reward checking account that currently pays 4.01% APY on balances up to $25K (see post). It also offers a companion savings account called reward savings that allows you to earn 2.01% APY on all balances if you meet the reward checking requirements.

Liberty Savings Bank has been FDIC insured since 1984 (FDIC Certificate # 32242).

Thanks to the reader who mentioned this SaveNOW account in the Daily Deals & News Post.
Comments
gaelicwench
gaelicwench (anonymous)   |     |   Comment #1
The obvious is that the savings account is available to Ohio residents only. Let's hope other states will pick up on this and do the same for its residents.

I'll keep my eyes open on participating banks/credit unions in PA. Something's gotta give here for those of us who truly want to save. With rates such as they are, who the heck wants to currently......
Carrie @ Moneysavingmethods.com
Carrie @ Moneysavingmethods.com (anonymous)   |     |   Comment #2
As an Ohio resident, I am excited to hear about this.

I will be looking into this more today!
3.75% Reward Checking Account at Liberty Savings Bank - Nationally Available
Update 11/22/09: The top rate has fallen to 3.75% APY. Refer to the bottom of the post for the rate history.

Liberty Savings Bank is offering a reward checking account that's called High Interest Checking. It has the following rates and features if certain monthly requirements are met:
  • 3.75% APY on balances up to $25,000
  • 0.75% APY on balances over $25,000
  • 0.10% base rate if qualifications are not met
  • Refund of ATM fees of up to $25 per cycle
The monthly requirements include:
  • 15 signature-based (credit) debit card purchases
  • One direct deposit or 3 online bill pays
  • Receive e-statements
Additional...



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