Kiplinger finance: Loyal customers get bank perks
BY LISA GERSTNER Money Power
Sunday, February 17, 2013
2/17/13 at 4:10 AM
Being a bank customer can be a little like going out with someone who only wants you for your money.
But if you're willing to commit to one bank with a chunk of cash, you may find yourself being courted in style. The country's largest banks offer their most attractive pricing and perks to customers who have tens of thousands of dollars in linked accounts.
To get the best benefits, you'll need to tuck at least $25,000 into such relationship accounts. Benefits typically include access to enhanced customer service (sometimes with a dedicated banker or team), breaks on fees, higher interest rates on bank accounts and lower rates on loans. You also get breaks on checking overdraft fees and charges for account services.
If you're a hands-on investor, you may appreciate the commission-free trades in self-directed investing accounts (up to a monthly or annual limit) that Bank of America provides to its Platinum Privileges clients and Wells Fargo to its PMA customers. You could also get a break when you take out a mortgage or other loan. A member of Citibank's relationship service, Citigold, can get up to $2,500 off closing costs or .375 percent off the interest rate on a first mortgage.
The largest banks also have private divisions that offer exclusive benefits and wealth-management services to the very well-heeled. Chase customers with total assets of about $500,000 to $5 million who are willing to keep at least $250,000 with Chase are eligible for Chase Private Client, which includes access to a team headed by a dedicated banker and a J.P. Morgan adviser.
Original Print Headline: Loyal customers get bank perks
Lisa Gerstner is an associated editor at Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine. To send her a question or comment, go to tulsaworld.com/kiplingerfeedback.