I get a lot of banking offers in the mail. Unfortunately, most of them want me to set up some sort of direct deposit, which is almost impossible for us since we have to have direct deposit at our current bank (Chase) in order to qualify for free checking. I could, of course, switch banks every 6 months to take advantage of some of these offers, but I usually have better things to do.
But I always check out any banking offers I get in the mail anyway, just in case they have reasonable terms and come with a big, fat bonus. Fortunately, I got one of the mail last week that met the criteria, and I was all over it.
How I Made $200 This Week
The deal was this: Huntington Bank was offering up $200 in cash if I opened one of these *asterisk-free checking accounts. You’ve seen the commercials. They don’t charge any fees (unless you buy checks), and there is no minimum required balance. All I had to do was use the free debit card they sent me for ten purchases within 60 days. That’s all.
So I did.
I set up the account and put $300 in there immediately, then went to the grocery store to get the job done.
Then I went about my business picking up things like bread, milk, grapes, oatmeal, and stuff for salads. When I was done, I headed for the self check-out aisle, because I would never, ever ask a cashier to split my groceries into ten separate transactions.
But I’m more than happy to do it myself.
I Love Free Money
So, now that the deed is done, I expect $200 in cold, hard cash to be deposited into my account in the next 60 days. And since I already got the free checking account, I figure I’ll go ahead and use it for some kind of targeted savings account. A vacation fund, perhaps? Or maybe I will do something boring like add it to my Vanguard account or buy groceries. #AdulthoodSucks
Regardless, I love any situation where I can score free money just for doing something I was going to do anyway. And I’ll gladly spend 20 minutes scanning my own groceries to earn $200 buckaroos.
Current Bank Bonus Offers
Want to earn some free money of your own? Here are some of the current bank offers that might be available in your area:
- Capital One 360- $50 Bonus
- Chase Premier Plus Checking- $250 Bonus
- Nationwide Bank- $200 Bonus
- PNC Bank- $300 Bonus
- U.S. Bank- $150 Bonus
These obviously are not all of the offers out there, so keep your eye out for others. Also make sure to watch the mail for any targeted offers you might receive. I earned $350 for opening a checking and savings account with Chase several years ago, and it all started with something I received in the mail. People do sell their targeted offer coupons on ebay, but I am pretty much against paying for a coupon that someone else got for free.
$6 for a $400 Chase coupon? Really?
Are Free Banking Offers Worth It?
In my opinion, some are and some aren’t. It just depends what they’re asking for in return and whether the payout is worth my time. If they want me to set up 5 direct deposits and use a debit card for 30 transactions per month, then the answer is no. Actually, hell no. But a speedy online set-up and a quick grocery trip? I’ll sign up for that all day long.
Have you signed up for any free money lately? Do you think free banking offers are worth it?