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Lewiston, Maine: 1 City, 2 Online Banks

Both Androscoggin Bank and offer CDs nationwide.You might not be familiar with Lewiston.

It’s Maine’s second-largest city with a population of 36,592.

You also might be unaware of two banks headquartered there offering deposit accounts online to savers nationwide.

One is Androscoggin Bank.

Androscoggin features a select list of CDs online. (Other CDs must be opened with a branch.)

I’ve taken advantage of some good specials there, like a 2% APY, 2-year add-on CD in 2010.

I’ve always found the customer service staff to be friendly and helpful.

And I like the way I get monthly interest regularly paid by ACH transfer to my Union Bank checking account.

Unfortunately, Androscoggin’s rates have lagged a bit lately. Its best deal is a 1.50% APY 60-month certificate.

But it remains one of my favorite banks.

The second Lewiston-based bank is new to the national online CD scene.

It’s, a division of Northeast Bank — and, well, I’m not exactly a fan.

On the plus side, ableBanking’s rates are reasonably competitive with current online leaders.

It pays:

  • 0.80% APY on 6-month CDs.
  • 1.00% APY on 1-year CDs.
  • 1.15% APY on 2-year CDs.
  • 1.30% APY on 3-year CDs.
  • 1.50% APY on 4-year CDs.

Those are competitive rates, but not quite as good as you’ll find on our CD Rates Leaderboard.

Also, the bank will make a donation, on your behalf, to a charity you select. It will donate $25 when you become a customer and 0.25% of your average account balances annually.

(It says this won’t create taxable income on a 1099. Northeast takes the charitable deduction.)

With all this in mind, I opened a modest CD online.

Thereafter, things quickly soured.

The problem was that ableBanking apparently wasn’t quite ready for prime time.

In particular, it hadn’t posted an accurate Truth in Savings disclosure.

The TIS disclosure I read before I opened my CD expressly said interest could be withdrawn once it was credited to the CD.

During an exchange of emails in preparation for this post, the bank told me it should have said the opposite — that interest had to be held in the account until maturity.

Others might not care, but, as a senior seeking a regular income stream, this is anathema to me.

At my request, the bank closed my new CD, without penalty and with appropriate apologies. We have amicably parted ways.

AbleBanking has also posted a corrected TIS disclosure.

Although I’d choose Androscoggin over ableBanking any day because of the interest withdrawal issue, I nevertheless wish the latter well.

It can’t hurt to have more online banks in the CD fray.

It’s just that ableBanking isn’t my kind of online bank.

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