After reading about HSBC’s new 4.80% APY rate teaser (good through April 30, 2006), I finally decided to open an account. Before I go any further, I should say that there’s currently a $25 bonus available for opening a new account. Simply use this HSBC Direct $25 Bonus link and use ‘start‘ as your promo code.
Once that’s taken care of, the account opening process is pretty painless. It’s just a standard application that asks the usual prying information. They then use these data to pull information from your credit report for identity verification — they ask you a couple of questions such as which bank is your mortgage through, how much is your monthly mortgage payment, etc. The signature card is handled completely online and, if you’re opening a joint account, you are then asked for info on the joint account holder. Easy peasy.
Next up… Funding the account. I’ve heard that HSBC Direct and ING Direct ($25 account opening bonus) don’t play well together and, sure enough, I was unable to pull the initial deposit from ING. Rather, I kept getting errors regarding the ING Direct ABA routing number (which is 031176110, by the way). Thus, I ended up pulling the initial deposit from our local checking account. Interestingly, they gave me the option of verifying that account online by entering the login information (which they then promise to discard). Alternatively, they can make old-fashioned verification deposits in the next 1-3 days, after which you return to the HSBC website to enter the amounts and prove that you own the account in question. I chose to do the latter. So now, I wait. The test deposits should be made within two business days, after which time I can get the ball rolling.
In the mean time, I’m pushing all of our money from ING to Emigrant Direct. I know, I know. I should have done this long ago (after all, I opened an Emigrant Direct account last fall). I just never got around to doing it. Since it looks like I’ll be unable to link HSBC directly ING, I’m going to use Emigrant as the hub for shuffling our money around (I linked ING and Emigrant before ING clamped down on that sort of behavior). So there you have it. I’ll post an update when I know more.