Why You Should Get a Cashback Rewards Checking Account
Maybe you’re thinking it would be nice to earn some cash back on money you’re already spending, but most cashback programs only offer rewards on credit card transactions. While the incentives may be attractive, you’re hesitant to rack up credit card debt to get them. Not paying the balance in full every month could end up costing you more in interest than you earn in rewards.
A Cashback Rewards Checking account may be the answer. It works just like a regular checking account with the added bonus of offering rewards. Every time you make a qualifying purchase using the account, you earn back a percentage of that purchase in rewards. But unlike a credit card, every purchase is withdrawn from the account—and paid for—at the time it happens. There’s no interest payments and no bill at the end of the month.
Let’s take a look at a few other reasons why a Cashback Rewards Checking account could make sense for you.
Get Started with an Account
If you can open a checking account, you can open a Cashback Rewards Checking account with an attached card. There’s no application and no credit score check. Opening a Cashback Rewards account is as easy as opening a regular account. If your credit score prevents you from qualifying for other rewards program credit cards, you’re still eligible to earn rewards with this account.
You may also benefit from one-time rewards or sign-up bonuses, as cashback checking accounts often have sign-up incentives to attract new customers.
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Earn Rewards on Your Purchases
When you use your debit card for everyday transactions, a cashback checking account is like an automated piggy bank with built-in interest. You can get cash back on on a wide variety of purchases—including groceries, retail, and transportation.
Earning rewards is as simple as making a purchase. Just use your card, and the rewards accrue on money you’re spending anyway. You can even pay monthly bills and expenses, such as utilities, cable, subscriptions, rent, and more.
Manage Your Spending
Another benefit of a cashback checking account is that you are limited to the amount of money available to spend —so you're less likely to overspend. With a cashback checking account, you reduce the risk of putting yourself in debt for the sake of earning rewards. You’re not worried about charges (and interest!) accruing on your account.
And if you set up account alerts, you can be instantly notified if your balance goes below a set amount. Being aware of those financial boundaries can help you think more carefully about your purchasing decisions.
Boost Your Savings
If you’ve been diligent about making and sticking to a budget, you may want to use your rewards to splurge on something special. With a little extra cash in your pocket, a nice dinner out, concert tickets, or other purchase you’ve been longing to make is a satisfying way to enjoy your rewards.
Often, however, life and its various expenses get in the way, making it difficult to actively contribute to your savings. Your budget may not have a lot of wiggle room after your expenses are covered, but the rewards you earn could help fill in that gap. Building up an emergency fund is a smart way to use your rewards and having the cash on hand could help you avoid unnecessary costs and fees.
Once you’ve fully funded your emergency savings, you can let those monthly bonuses accumulate for a bigger expense, such as a wedding or new home, or for even longer-term goals like retirement. The funds can easily be transferred to a savings account or certificate.
Another smart idea to use the rewards is to increase payments on any debt you currently carry, such high-interest credit card, student loan, auto loan, etc. Chipping away at the balance lowers your overall cost over time and paying off debt sooner than you expected can feel fantastic.
Maximize Your Rewards
If you do rely heavily on your credit card for much of your monthly spending, you can look for opportunities to link your debit and credit card rewards. Citadel’s Cashback Rewards Checking Account allows you to link your Citadel credit card to your checking account, so you can earn Cashback Rewards on all qualifying credit and debit card purchases.
You can use this linked credit card to make big transactions for expenditures like tuition, car payments, and appliances to maximize your rewards.
Give Your Teen a Head Start
If you have a young person in your life who is ready to open their own account, our Teen Debit Accounts offers the same advantages as our regular Cashback Rewards Checking, without the fees. As long as they have a qualifying monthly direct deposit or maintain a minimum balance in their account, teens are also eligible to earn cash back on their purchases.
This is a great way for your teen to start establishing a banking history and learning how to handle their financial accounts. They can make real saving and spending decisions, learn how to stick to a budget, and build a solid financial foundation.
Consider All Your Options
While most of the large, nationwide banks in Pennsylvania offer cashback rewards programs, these typically take the form of credit cards. As such, their checking accounts are not designed to support saving in the same way.
At Citadel, we understand how important saving is to you and we strive to deliver innovative ways for you to do this. Our Cashback Rewards Checking Account can support you in reaching your saving goals as you go about your regular spending.
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*Cashback Rewards Checking Account Disclosures
Information accurate as of and is subject to change without notice. All rates expressed as Annual Percentage Yield (APY). Minimum daily balance to earn APY is $5,000. Fees may reduce earnings.
To earn Cashback Rewards and avoid a $10 monthly service fee, one of the following criteria must be met:
- Receive monthly qualifying direct deposit(s) into your Cashback Rewards Checking totaling $1,000 or more OR
- Maintain an average daily balance of $5,000.00 in your Cashback Rewards Checking Account
A qualifying direct deposit is defined as a recurring direct deposit of payroll, pension, Social Security, Government benefits, or other regular monthly income, electronically deposited into the account. Internal or external transfers from one account to another, mobile deposits, and deposits made at a banking location, ATM, or through Online and Mobile Banking do not qualify as a direct deposit.
Earn Up to $120 in Cashback Rewards Annually:
When Cashback Rewards transaction requirements are met, earn 1% cash back on Citadel debit and/or credit card purchases that post to your account each statement cycle. Maximum Cashback Rewards: $10 per month. Cashback Rewards will be calculated at month end on net purchases (purchases minus any credit or returns). ATM withdrawals, credit card cash advances, and credit card balance transfers are not considered purchases and will not earn Cashback Rewards. A Citadel debit or credit card must be linked to your Cashback Rewards Checking account to earn Cashback Rewards on purchases. Each Citadel debit or credit card may only be linked to one Cashback Rewards Checking account. When Cashback Rewards Checking balance requirements are not met, Cashback Rewards will not be earned.
Full balance of available Cashback Rewards may be redeemed at any time during the year through Online and Mobile Banking, Citadel’s Mobile App, or by contacting Citadel. Partial redemptions are not allowed. Cashback Rewards not redeemed by the account anniversary date will automatically be deposited into your checking account during the following statement period. Earned Cashback Rewards can only be deposited to your Cashback Rewards Checking account. Account must be active and in good standing at time of cash back redemption.
Up to $120 Cashback Rewards Match:
After the first 12 months that your Cashback Rewards Checking account is open, we will match the Cashback Rewards you have earned. Your Cashback Rewards match will automatically be deposited into your Citadel Cashback Rewards Checking account during the following statement period. If your account is closed or you switch to another Citadel checking product prior to the end of the 12th consecutive statement period, your Cashback Rewards will not be matched. The account must be active and in good standing at the time of Cashback Rewards match processing.
Additional Account Information:
The Cashback Rewards Checking Account is not available for business accounts or public funds. Limit 5 Cashback Rewards Checking accounts per member. Cashback Rewards Program may be modified or withdrawn at any time.
A $5 monthly inactivity fee will apply if there is no activity on any Citadel account for one year – this fee is waived if the combined balance of all deposit accounts is $500 or more. Inactivity is defined as a 365-day period during which there were no customer-initiated transactions on any Citadel account.
Important Information about Overdrafts and Overdraft Fees:
An overdraft occurs when the available balance in your account is not sufficient to cover a transaction. Citadel offers several options for you to avoid the potential embarrassment and extra expenses caused by a bounced check or insufficient funds. These include:
- Transferring funds from a Citadel Savings and/or Money Market Account
- Advancing funds from a Citadel Personal Line of Credit
- Courtesy Pay
As a Citadel member, if you have a checking account and qualify, you will automatically be enrolled in Courtesy Pay when you open your account. If you wish to use one of the other options, which may be free or less expensive than Courtesy Pay, you can sign up at any time. To learn more, please ask a Citadel Representative. For a complete list of fees associated with overdrafts, please refer to Citadel’s fee schedule.
This notice refers to our Courtesy Pay program:
Citadel offers Courtesy Pay for its members and may pay overdrafts for the following types of transactions:
- ACH withdrawals
- Bill Payer payments
- Recurring debit card transactions (e.g., monthly payments debited from your account)
We pay overdrafts at our discretion, which means we do not guarantee that we will always authorize and pay any type of transaction. If we do not pay an overdraft, your transaction will be declined and not paid.
If you want to use Courtesy Pay to pay overdrafts for one time, everyday debit card transactions (e.g. Starbucks®, Home Depot®, grocery stores, gas stations, etc.), you must opt in and give us your permission. You can opt in by:
- Completing the opt-in form in Online and Mobile Banking by selecting 'Courtesy Pay' under 'Accounts' in the main menu.
- Visiting any Citadel Branch
- Calling Citadel toll free at (800)-666-0191
You cannot use Courtesy Pay to pay for overdrafts on ATM withdrawals.
When you use Courtesy Pay, we will charge you a fee of $33 each time we pay an overdraft. There is no limit on the amount of total fees we can charge you for overdrafting your account. Any fees charged will count against your Courtesy Pay limit. For information on Citadel's check clearing policies, please contact us at (800)-666-0191 . You can opt out of Courtesy Pay at any time. Please visit any branch, or contact us at the toll free number above.
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