Living in the great state of Washington has a number of not-so-obvious perks, including close proximity to Canada, living in a state named after our first president, and being an unlikely target for WMD’s (just don’t piss off Canada). Another not-so-obvious perk would be that you’re eligible for BECU Bank’s Savings Account with Member Advantage.
This Credit Union’s program, open to Washington residents only, offers an interesting hybrid of High-Yield APY and more “standard” saving rates. Both accounts offer a whopping 6.17% APY for the first $500 of your balance; above that balance, you get a .75% APY for your Savings account and .25% for your checking account. So with a relatively small balance, that 6.17% will be dishing out some serious interest over the years.
Is this the right account for you if you’re looking to stash away, say, $10,000? Probably not: within 10 years, any savings account with an Annual Percentage Yield above 1.34% should be able to beat out the savings you get if you had that same $10,000 split into $9500 in the BECU Savings account and $500 in the checking account in order to get maximum mileage out of that 6.17% APY.
However, if you’re a Washington resident doing your checking with a bank that doesn’t offer a 6.17% APY on the first $500 of your account, then you may benefit greatly from opening a small checking and savings account with BECU in order to take advantage of this great rate. You’d also get the benefit of free online banking, bill payments, CO-OP Network surcharge-free ATMS, and no fees to maintain the savings accounts.