May 31st, 2010

REVIEW: Kasasa Helps Small Banks Play With The Big Boys

4 Comments | Twitter | |

kasaa

Big banks better watch out— Kasasa offers rewards checking and savings accounts through local banks and credit unions, known for their personal customer service, and levels the playing field between community banking and big banks. Kasasa was created by sister companies BancVue and First ROI, which has previously established CheckingFinder, a similar program offering free, high-interest checking accounts for community banking. However, Kasasa is unique in its rewards-oriented product options.

“Do you Kasasa?” the company blog asks. You can Kasasa in four different ways:

  • Kasasa Cash – This rewards checking account offers a near 4% interest rate for balances under $15,000 and pays back high interest in cash.
  • Kasasa Saver – This savings account combines Kasasa Cash with a high-interest savings account, and automatically deposits the high interest and ATM fee refunds of your Kasasa Cash account direct to your savings.
  • Kasasa Giving – This high-interest checking account automatically contributes your high interest and an amount per debit transaction to the charity of your choice.
  • Kasasa Tunes – Want another type of reward for your banking? This plan lets you redeem iTunes downloads each month just for using your debit card and online banking.

Community banks and credit unions may fall short of the wide accessibility and larger network of big banks, but these creative products help community banks attracts consumers with similar rewards offerings as big banks. While they might not be as generous as the multi-thousand dollar sweepstakes other big banks offer, Kasasa’s products add one more reason to the list of reasons to choose a smaller institution like a credit union over a big bank. The only catch is that these financial products are best suited for those with a lower balance of less than $15,000 to earn the highest interest rate.

Kasasa is being offered at more than 45 smaller banks and credit unions nationwide and growing. Besides giving you the choice of bonuses like charity donations and free entertainment, Kasasa’s competitive high interest rate and the community-oriented banking attitude of the local banks and credit unions that offer Kasasa beats most big banks. It’s a good alternative to the big bank experience that doesn’t sacrifice extra rewards and innovative products for a financial service that caters to you.

kasasa

Disclaimer: All information posted to this site was accurate at the time of its initial publication. Efforts have been made to keep the content up to date and accurate. However, Credit Karma does not make any guarantees about the accuracy or completeness of the information provided. For complete details of any products mentioned, visit bank or issuer website.

4 Comments

  1. Love Kasasa!! Some Kasasa accounts pay high interest on higher balances. It varies across each bank and credit union. My acount pay 3.51% on balances up to $30,000. You can see the differences on Kasasa.com

    Stacey McDonald at 6:45 pm on May 31, 2010
  2. I’ve used these rewards checking accounts for some time. Currently I earn 4% at a California bank. I have found you have to open several accounts as they become available nationally if there are none locally. Then move your money around to get the highest rate. Sign up quickly because many of the banks switch to local only once deposits come rolling in. The bank I use now was once open to accounts nationally but switched to local.

    I keep track of all the banks offering 5% or more and note some nationally available accounts at less than 5% (currently 4%).

    For very little effort earning 4% to 5% on a checking account is a great deal, especially if you have $25,000 to deposit.

    rick@rickety at 10:39 am on June 6, 2010
  3. Rick,

    How do you keep track of the banks offering 4 – 5% interest? I’ve searched all over the web and the Kasasa site but can’t seem to get any actual numbers unless I type in a zip code. Given the number of zip codes in the US, this isn’t really a viable option. Am I missing a link on a page that shows you the highest rates somewhere?

    Thanks,

    Mike at 5:58 pm on June 15, 2010
  4. I’m doing research on Kasasa and what bothers me is that no numbers are stated up front. I’ve also read about banks that offered the amazing Kasasa rates, gained 150% new deposits and then slashed the rates after the new depositors inked the deal. Seems like a shell game to me. I don’t think there’s much likelihood that these accounts will remain such fantastic deals for long.

    Marilyn at 9:37 am on November 30, 2010

Enter your comment