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Not sure if this has been shared, but I just read that ING now requires those that accept a referral to deposit $250.00 or more to get the free $25.00. You get nothing if you deposit less than that. ING is slowly fading off my radar screen.


ramseesforever
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Greetings, ramseesforever, where did you read that? Good to know if true.

xraymd
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Yep, it's true as of 10/13/05 - now it takes at least $250 of deposited funds to ING on account opening to earn $25 with a referral. Still may refer up to 25 people but those are the new terms - I read it directly from the ING website after accessing my account. It also does not show any longer how many more referrals to go until I hit 25 - just gives me a link for the next available referral, so it appears that I can only refer one person at a time (until, I assume, the next link is presented).

xraymd
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From ING's web site, after accessing my account:

If your friend opens an account with at least $250, we will also deposit a $25 bonus in their new account and a $10 thank you bonus in your Orange Savings Account.

Not only does the deposit have to be $250 to earn the $25, it has to be $250 to earn the referring customer the $10. I guess ING found too many people grabbing the referral fee and not being big enough customers to justify the aquisition cost.

Oh, well. I couldn't in good conscience collect $10 for referring someone to an account with 3.4% interest when I've transfered a bunch of money to Emigrant at 4%, anyway.

For me, the referral bonus is peanuts; what I really want is a an institution that I can trust to raise interest rates they pay me as the rates they can loan at go up.

Patzer
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I just remembered that when I bought my house, my interest rate went up .5% between when I did the paperwork and when I signed--that added another 50$ to my mortgage. Hmmm. that adds up.

So, I just opened an Emigrant account, but does Emigrant allow you to open up multiple sub-accounts like ING does? That's a feature of ING I really like.

Those of you who have opened Emigrant accounts--did you close your ING account? Why? why not? How hard was it?

b
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Greetings, bleplatt, I am in the process of trying to open an Emigrant account (it is taking a surprisingly long time - the last step is a snail mail step and I've been waiting over a week now to get that mail to truly access my account). Is your Emigrant account open for use yet? How long did it take?

So I can't answer you yet about Emigrant and subaccounts, nor can I answer you about closing ING. I know that for NEW ING accounts, one must deposit at least $250 to earn the $25 bonus - it's still possible to deposit less but then no bonus would be given - but I don't know that there is (at this point) any MINIMUM balance one must maintain on ING to avoid fees. So I don't actually plan to close my ING account even though I hope to keep the bulk of my funds at Emigrant. The difference between 3.4% at ING and 4.0% at Emigrant does have an impact at the balances I've been maintaining. But on small deposits, the difference becomes much more negligible. (For instance, the difference between $250 on deposit at 4% at Emigrant for a year and $275 because of the bonus on deposit at 3.4% at ING for a year is about 65 cents over 12 months.)

So I'll be waiting for someone with enough experience to answer your questions but my answer is that so long as ING does not force a minimum balance upon me, I will keep that account open because it works so well to date. I just may not keep very much in it!

xraymd
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So, I just opened an Emigrant account, but does Emigrant allow you to open up multiple sub-accounts like ING does? That's a feature of ING I really like.

I don't find such a feature, and don't know what happens when one tries to open a second account.

ING's "sub-accounts," as they are frequently referred to on this board, are nothing more than multiple accounts with ING. ING just makes it really easy to have lots of accounts.

Good luck,

Bruce
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I've been waiting over a week now to get that mail to truly access my account). Is your Emigrant account open for use yet? How long did it take?

xraymd,

My snail mail was about a week arriving (perhaps a bit more). It outlined steps to set up online access. One of the setup screens suggested it may take a couple of days for onine access to be active.

My online access wasn't active for about 5 days, so I called 'em yesterday. Was advised by Shawn (Sean?) that high demand leaves them with a backlog and they'd expedite my online setup. I had access within the hour.

Good luck,

Bruce
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I knew this was coming. ING has been falling further and further behind on interest rates and now the minimum cap on the referral bonus. It really makes perfect sense, at least the cap part does.

The only thing ING has going for it over the two that I consider it's competitor right now (Emigrant and HSBC) is the ease of opening an account and the slick web interface. Again, though, they are falling further behind in the savings yield and the rate they are falling behind is increasing. I'm keeping my account open with them but most of my funds are elsewhere.

Emigrant pays 4.0% as you know, but the account opening can take upwards of three weeks and the web interface is only adequate.

HSBC now pays 3.75%, are somewhere inbetween Emigrant and ING on opening an account at about 1.5 weeks and they have a usable bank type interface. They also pay a signup bonus of $35 as long as you have funds with them for at least 45 days.

I'd say if you are just now opening an account, go with Emigrant or HSBC.
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ING's "sub-accounts," as they are frequently referred to on this board, are nothing more than multiple accounts with ING. ING just makes it really easy to have lots of accounts.

Greetings, Bruce, mlk58 appropriately corrected my use of the sub-accounts terminology and it squares with what you've said. What ING does is set you up with a unique CUSTOMER NUMBER which you sign in with and under which all of your open accounts are accessed. Indeed, each new account you open under ING (which is a snap, by the way, and can be done on the fly without having to contact customer service) has its own account number but since you can nickname those accounts and they are all collected under the Customer Number, the actual account numbers don't seem so important to keep at the forefront the way it is important to keep the Customer Number at the forefront when accessing ING.

Since the separate accounts really BEHAVE like sub-accounts in terms of how one opens and accesses them, I think it was easy to devise this more descriptive terminology. What I've been told is that if you wanted to CLOSE one of these accounts under your Customer Number, it does take a call to customer service. If one wanted to close out any access to ING through the Customer Number, as in closing out ING entirely, I also presume one must contact customer service.

I guess it's just been really easy to say "sub-account" as a shorthand for how it is techincally set up in ING. No matter what, it's a nice feature!

xraymd

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Greetings, ClimbingOut, is the $35 bonus for HSBC obtained via referral? If so, could you please refer me? (Reply by email to this post via the checkboxes you'll find beneath the reply box when you are composing your reply.) Does HSBC have any kind of a minimum balance requirement to avoid fees and does it have an account closing fee?

It's beginning to remind me of the Wild West days of online banking in the late 1990s. In 1998-2001 or so I think I earned northward of $600 just in bank opening bonuses alone. Not to mention the crazy interest rates around 7% APY. Boy, that was fun! Read back over this board and on the Online Banking board to see what people were saying at that time in posts of that vintage. Anybody remember SFNB, x.com, Bank Caroline, USABancshares.com, Bankdirect, American Banker? And I think Netbank and FIB are still with us, anemic as they may be.

Thanks for sparking those memories!

xraymd
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Nope, the bonus at HSBC is earned just by opening the account and leaving money in it for at least 45 days. That's about it :) It does take an average of 2 weeks to fuly open the account though. The verification process is quick, about 48 hours before the amounts appear in your linked account (and they leave them in there unlike Emigrant), but you won't gain access to your account online until the snail mail the account number and password.

Just go to http://us.hsbc.com and click on savings to start the process.

You do have to keep quite a good list of information available for the HSBC account: your application number, customer number, account number, password, position of Polaris at the time of opening, but it's a nice bank to deal with.

It definitely brings back some memories. I believe we are right at the begining of a long period of inflation and rising rates. And just like last time I suspect that we will find the brick and mortar banks lag way behind. It pays to keep on top and move your accounts when necessary. At least it's easier these days. I remember when opening more than one checking and savings account was almost a no-no.
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I guess it's just been really easy to say "sub-account" as a shorthand for how it is techincally set up in ING. No matter what, it's a nice feature!

For me, this is the best feature of ING. I have a hard time keeping track of sub-pots of money if I have it in one large pot. Mentally, all I see is the "large" pot.

So, ING has been a godsend in developing a large, overall amount of savings divided up among my small goals.

I think what I will do is put my emergency money--which has the largest amount--or my Sallie Mae payment--in Emigrant where it'll make just that little bit more.

mmmmm

off to think.

b
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xray, one other thing about HSBC. They offer an ATM card to access the funds in your HSBC account. It makes it much better in terms of keeping emergency funds in that account in that if its a true emergency, you can just withdraw funds via the ATM. I find the website as user friendly as ING, except that I don't think you can set up subaccounts. Hope that helps.

Marcusfan (sorry to hear of your recent difficulties at work)
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Thanks for the link to HSBC. I noticed their site doesn't provide any details regarding any fees associated with transactions.

Do any of you know whether there are fees to transfer funds in or out, using another HSBC account or a different bank entirely?


Also, RE: the ATM card. Since I live nowhere near an HSBC branch, I'd have to use non-HSBC ATM machines.

Believe it or not, I've never paid an ATM fee in my life, so I have no idea what banks typically charge to access other bank networks.

$2, $3, hopefully not more than that?

MP
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HSBC ATM fee is $1.50 at non-HSBC ATM's. Also no fees for bank to bank transfers from linked accounts.

Marcusfan
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One thing I don't like dealing with HSBC, they don't make their fee disclosure very accessible.

If you just have the online savings account, transfers out of it to a linked account are not charged. No fees to transfer in. There are excess transaction fees (Regulation D), but I cannot find a rate table. I'm waiting on the paperwork to arrive in the mail.

ATM charges do apply, I recall seeing a disclosure on that when I signed up, but once again I can't find their fee disclosure on the web site.

I don't recommend using them as a primary account unless you live within their network. If you use them like ING as an online savings account and treat that savings account properly you will not incur any fees.

If you are looking for a complete online alternative to your local, you can't do better than Presidential Bank. 4.0% interest checking if you maintain $500 in the account. The savings are even better at 4.15% (I believe) The only reason I don't use them is that they have ATM fees for non-network transactions which means just about everything out here for me. I'd have to completely move back to checks to make it work.
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If you are looking for a complete online alternative to your local, you can't do better than Presidential Bank. 4.0% interest checking if you maintain $500 in the account

I'm a happy Presidential Internet Checking Plus customer, and I wanted to clarify this. Presidential has 2 Internet checking account types. "Internet Checking" has a $500 minimum balance, but only pays 1.25% interest. "Internet Checking Plus" pays 4% interest, but has a $1000 minimum balance requirement, and also a $200/month direct deposit requirement. With that high interest, I don't mind keeping $1000 in there, but the direct deposit could be a problem for some.

We've been using them since Jan, and do all our electronic bill payments from the account. No problems whatsoever.

SA
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Those of you who have opened Emigrant accounts--did you close your ING account? Why? why not? How hard was it?

I can't speak of the ease of using Emigrant. It was strange though getting asked the questions, and having to create an ID only to be told that it was only used once, and to still be waiting for mail verification before I can access anything.

Money talks. ING better move their rate soon or I might close that account I've had for a few years. They've been aggressively pushing their 5/1 ARM at, surprisingly, the same rate I got on my FIXED 30 year mortgage. If they're lending at 5.5%, they need to start paying the savers something. Even my PNC Money Market account is earning more @ 3.5%, and I have immediate access to it since they're across the street from work. :)

- Lan
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I've recently opened my emigrant direct account and while the interest rate is nice, I would describe the interface as sub-adequate. The "sub-account" feature of ING was very nice as mentioned above, however I also liked the daily interest totals. It was part of my daily routine to check my account and see how much it'd gone up overnight. I see no such feature at emigrant. The account creation process was arduous and I had to call customer service twice, once because my logons weren't working and the other because I couldn't transfer money in due to no "external relationship". Ultimately though I guess I'd rather have the 60 basis points over the bells and whistles.

Scott
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