PNC Bank Virtual Wallet, $75 New Account Bonus

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PNC Bank has a new online banking product called Virtual Wallet which combines multiple bank accounts and online money management tools into one site.

Virtual Wallet is comprised of 3 accounts working together:
• Your SPEND account is a non-interest-bearing checking account.
• Your RESERVE account is an interest-bearing checking account used for short-term savings goals. [currently 0.10% APY]
• Your GROWTH account is a savings account which earns interest and can be used for longer-term savings goals. [currently 2% APY up to $25k]

The SPEND account has a $25 minimum to open, while the other two have no minimum opening requirement. None of them have minimum monthly balances or monthly fees. Online statements are required, and you only get 3 free checks per month. ATM fee reimbursements are available if you keep $2,000 combined in the SPEND and RESERVE accounts. Looks to be available online to any state.

I see the motivation, but couldn’t this just be done with two accounts? The SPEND and RESERVE are basically the same… 0.10% APY difference?

If you open an account by 7/4 and initiate a direct deposit of at least $400 by 8/31/09, you can get a $75 bonus. Early closure fee of $25 if you close within 180 days. $75 also available with other PNC checking account types, but you can only get one bonus.

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  1. Only US citizens are eligible 🙁

  2. Jonathan, why did it catch your attention? Altogether (rates, requirements and restrictions) it doesn’t look very attractive. Maybe if you just want to get the $75-$25=$50 bonus and get out though…

  3. Can anyone comment if transferring from another bank account will register as a direct deposit with PNC?

  4. Is there any simple way to do a direct deposit that works? I’m self-employed and don’t have the option to do a true DD. Sometimes bank to bank transfer works, but often not. But there has to be a better way somehow.

  5. Mike, I just went to the site and this seems to clarify that a bank to bank transfer is no good: “The Direct Deposits must be made by an employer or an outside agency. Transfers from one account to another or deposits made at a branch or ATM do not qualify as Direct Deposits.” Therefore I will stand clear of this offer as I don’t have DD.

  6. Mike from Cash Flow Moe says

    I have a rewards checking account with Renansant Bank that pays 4.00% with no minimums. There are are few requirements each month that are easily attainable such as use of a debit card, direct deposit, paperless statements, etc. If you check with banks in your area, I bet you can find a similar deal. Then setup a spreadsheet to track the money any way you would like.

  7. I think this is a good setup, and I would switch to PNC if I hadn’t already created a similar setup at BOA. The reason that the SPEND and RESERVE accounts need to be seperate is that:

    * the SPEND account is for your discretionary spending (food, entertainment, clothing). Stuff you can “dial down” if things are tight. An allowance.
    * the RESERVE account is for your fixed costs. Mortgage, Utilities, Car, etc.
    * the GROWTH account is your short term emergency fund.

  8. Actually,

    *the RESERVE account is for short time saving i.e., a new iPod, a vacation.
    *the GROWTH account is for long term saving.

    The Virtual Wallet is geared towards Gen-Yers who’ve just started their first job or tech savvy adults. You only get three paper checks but you get free online bill payment and free overdraft transfers amongst other things.

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