Published on February 3rd, 2016 | by William Charles80
[Expired][CT, MA, PA & NY] First Niagara $200 Checking Bonus
Offer is now expired, view the best offers by clicking here.
Reposting since this offer is now live again.
Offer at a glance
- Maximum bonus amount: $200
- Availability: CT, MA, PA & NY
- Direct deposit required: $250+
- Additional requirements: Yes, see below
- Hard/soft pull: Soft, ChexSystems
- Credit card funding: Up to $1,000 in initial funding, no American Express cards
- Monthly fees: $9.95 – $25, waivable
- Early account termination fee: 180 days, $25
- Expiration date:
December 31st, 2015March 31st, 2016
- Receive a $200 sign up bonus when you open a Pinnacle or Pinnacle Plus checking account with First Niagara when the meeting the following requirement:
- Receive a direct deposit of at least $250 within 60 days of account opening
The Fine Print
- Your direct deposits need to be an electronic deposit of your paycheck, pension or government benefits (such as Social Security) from your employer or the government
- The cash bonus will be deposited into your new checking account within 30 days from end of month in which direct deposits totaling $250 or more are made to your account
- Account must be open and maintain a positive balance in order to obtain the bonus
- Valid only for individuals who have not had any consumer checking relationship with First Niagara in the previous 365 days
- Customers must be residents of CT, MA, PA or NY to participate in this offer
- All bank account bonuses are treated as income/interest and as such you have to pay taxes on them
Once the bonus posts, it’s possible to downgrade to other of their other accounts (Simple or Choice) to make it easier to avoid the monthly fees before you cancel after six months.
Pinnacle Checking $15 Monthly Fee
- Maintain an average daily balance of at least $1,000 or
- Maintain at least $25,000 in combined deposits or loans with First Niagra (excluding mortgages)
PinnaclePlus Checking $25 Monthly Fee
- Minimum daily balance of at least $5,000 or
- Maintain at least $50,000 in combined deposits or loans with First Niagra (excluding mortgages)
Early Account Termination Fee $25
If you close your account within 180 days, First Niagara will charge you a $25 early account termination fee. If your account has a balance of $0, it will go into negative and be reported to ChexSystems. This would make it nearly impossible to open bank accounts in the future.
Previously First Niagara offered a $250 bonus (open to everybody) then a $250 bonus (same restricted states) and then a $100 bonus. I think $200 is about as good as it’s going to get if you didn’t get on the original $250 bonus offer. If I lived in the area for this bonus then I’d sign up and complete it as follows:
- Open a Pinnacle Checking account, fund with a rewards earning credit card with $1,000 (earning me some rewards and enough to keep the account fee free)
- Set up a direct deposit of $250+ with employee payroll if easy to switch/split otherwise use one of the work arounds
- Wait for bonus to post
- Withdraw all but $1,000 to keep the account fee free
- Close account after 180 days to avoid any early account termination fee, making sure to withdraw all remaining funds first.
The other thing to consider is that it’s possible to get a bonus from First Niagara every year and a half (you need to keep the account open for 180 days to avoid the early account termination fee and then wait another 365 days before you can get the bonus again).