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KeyBank: $150 Checking Account Bonus

KeyBank logoKeyBank will give you a $150 bonus if you open a checking account and make $1,000 in cumulative direct deposits within 60 days of account opening.

To qualify, you must open your account online ( by Oct. 3 using offer code ONFT0614.

You’ll also need to live in one of the 12 states where KeyBank operates: Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Indiana, Maine, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Oregon, Utah, Vermont and Washington.

You also must not have had a personal KeyBank checking account in the last 12 months.

The offer says the qualifying direct deposit must be your paycheck, pension or government benefits (such as Social Security).

If you don’t have any potential sources of direct deposits, you might still be able to earn this sign-up bonus. Anecdotally, KeyBank often counts any ACH transfer as a direct deposit.

KeyBank will credit your $150 bonus within 90 days of meeting the requirements as long as your account isn’t overdrawn.

Six checking accounts are eligible for this promotion. The best option is the KeyBank Hassle-Free Account, which has no monthly fee.

The easiest way to sign up for this account from the promotion page is to click the “compare eligible checking accounts” link or the “eligible KeyBank checking account” link instead of the “find a checking account now” button.

Don’t be alarmed by the account’s $40 annual fee for Relationship Rewards membership. This is an optional service that you don’t have to participate in. It gives you reward points when you use your debit card, get online statements, use online bill pay, make mobile deposits and more, but it’s complicated and probably not worth the fee or the trouble.

The Hassle-Free account does not pay interest, does not come with paper checks and does not reimburse you for non-Key Bank ATM fees.

To get perks like these for “free,” you’d need to choose a Key Advantage checking account that has an $18 monthly fee. The fee is waived with a $10,000 minimum monthly balance or a KeyBank mortgage automatic payment deduction of $500 or more each statement cycle.

You can get paper checks with the Key Express Checking account and still pay no monthly fee when you deposit at least $500 per month or make eight transactions.

Here are some additional fees you’ll want to avoid to preserve the full value of this KeyBank bonus offer:

  • Assuming you choose the Hassle-Free checking account, if you use a non-KeyBank ATM, KeyBank charges $2.50 per ATM transaction, plus you’ll have to pay the ATM owner’s fee.
  • Make sure to keep your account open for least 180 days, or you will be charged $25 for early account closure.
  • If your account has no customer-initiated activity for three months and a balance of less than $5,000, KeyBank will charge you a $5-per-month inactive account fee. You can easily avoid this fee if you make one withdrawal or deposit each month to keep your account active.

Hassle-Free checking also comes with free mobile deposits for Android phones and iPhones using the KeyBank app. The deposit limit is $2,500 per rolling 30-day period.

Overdraft protection isn’t available on this account, so there are no overdraft fees.

Unlike other offers we’ve seen, KeyBank does an excellent job of explaining exactly who qualifies for this deal in its FAQs, available through the main offer page.

It’s nice to see that kind of transparency from a bank.

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