Wednesday, October 10, 2007

A Quick Post: More Experiences with ING Direct

So my ING Direct Electric Orange Checking Account is open now. Despite their warnings and my previously stated concerns, I had no problems hooking it up with MY bank's Money Market Accounts. I have done this a lot (draft from my MMA, and wonder if either ING is being particular about that or if maybe my Bank just dresses up a regular checking account with a MMA name, gives it a shitty interest rate, and then fee me every time I use it more than 6 times a month). But it is done now.

My plan is to keep most of my money there earning a little bit of interest and then dole it out to accounts at my two brick and mortar banks as needed. So I was eager to set up my second link. According to the FAQ, there should be an Add a Link link in the My Links tab but I have yet to see it. There were only instructions for adding them by mail. I wasn't sure what was happening but I did figure there was something that triggered it's appearance. But I wasn't sure if it was just a minimum deposit, a cleared credit and identity check, or a certain waiting period. Seems like something they might want to put in there FAQ for the curious.

While I was waiting for that to happen, I went ahead and opened a savings account with them. What sealed that decision was the slightly higher interest rate for long term parking and the fact that you needed one of their savings accounts to open an investment account with them. I'm nowhere near ready to do that, and given the high expense ratios on the limited selection of in house funds they have, I might not.

I definitely won't open an IRA with them, preferring to have more choices with one of the other guys. But I might consider an investment account, some of their funds seemed capable of producing a "better than savings account" return (avg. of course) for money I might put away for that camper or boat or lakehouse. But that is a ways down the road.

Anyway, setting up the Savings account was just as simple. My new Orange Savings Account (OSA) was automatically linked to not only my Orange Checking Account but also to my Brick & Mortar Bank as well. The OCA doesn't count as one of the 3 linked accounts you have. The limit is on 3 external accounts.

But to get back to "Add a Link". I called their customer service # (make sure you dial 888 instead of 800), and very shortly got a rather pleasant American on the line (or a close enough facsimile of one) who told me that the answer was: 30 days you must be a customer. Although she didn't say it all Yoda-ish like that. That would have been cool.

Looks like my other checking account will still be dependent upon the US Mail for now. But hey, in the 10 years I've done that, they've only lost one! (and it was just crazy late to get there)

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