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Joint Account?

Can I create a joint Smarty Pig account? ...My husband and I both want access to the account for deposits/withdrawals. Right now, it looks like only one person can have that access and the other can only view.
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  • @kristyv Thank you for posting your question. At this time, all SmartyPig accounts are individual accounts for regulatory reasons, but we hope to offer joint accounts in the future.

    That said, you can add co-owners to your account with either limited or view-only access. With limited access, your co-owner will be able to make contributions, add or delete funding sources, etc, they just will not be able to close your goal and access the funds. With view-only access your co-owner will be able to watch you save and meet your goal, which perfect for teaching children to save.

    Thanks again for contacting us. Feel free to contact me directly at support (at) smartypig (dot) com if you have any further questions.
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  • I’m concerned
    Kristyv has an excellent point. We are very concerned that if this isn't addressed soon we won't want to continue as 'piglets'.
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  • Tiffany Brewer (Customer Support) May 11, 2009 16:01
    @sideflare This policy is determined by West Bank, our banking partner. I passed your comment to West Bank and they gave the following response:

    Currently, SmartyPig accounts are only available under single ownership. West Bank is not considering changing this policy at the present time.

    Please feel free to contact me at support(at)smartypig(dot)com if you have any other questions regarding this policy.

    Thanks, Tiffany
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  • I’m amazed...
    Wow, I'm surprised by West Bank's response.

    Every other bank I've come across (e.g. ING Direct, Bank of America, etc.) allows joint accounts.

    I guess SmartyPig / West Bank is not a good solution for spouses or partners who want to save money together?

    Any suggestions? Are there other savings accounts with an interest rate as high as SmartyPig?
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  • You may not be able to have a joint account but having a co-owner is pretty close to the same thing. A co-owner can still deposit money from their own account and keep track of the savings goals set up. They just cant close the goals and get the money out.... It might be a little restricting the way its set up but me and my spouse are co-owners and it works well for us...
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  • Tiffany Brewer (Customer Support) May 23, 2009 17:36
    @George Kao Please feel free to contact me directly at support(at)smartypig(dot)com and I will be happy to put you in touch someone at West Bank. Thanks, Tiffany
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  • How many co-owners can I add to my account? And will the co-owners see all my goals, or only those which I have authorized for their viewing / participation?
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  • I’m hoping for change of policy.
    This isn't a trivial question. At smartypig.com there's no right of survivorship or POD (pay on death) provision, so in the middle of a tragedy, we would have to deal with lawyers, and access to any funds a spouse or loved one had on deposit with smartypig.com could be greatly delayed, perhaps for a lengthy period of time. What other reputable banks function like this?

    Smartypig.com has a lot of great features, but it also has a lot of risk for couples because of this joint account/POD issue. (Being a co-owner does NOT solve the problem. The co-owner has no rights.) If they solve this, my spouse and I would be a real fans and deposit more money. Until then, I only have a trivial amount with Smartypig.com and the rest with Discover Bank online (at a slightly lower interest rate, but less risk) where we can have true joint accounts online and a POD beneficiary. There's nothing special about Discover Bank, I would have gone with any other online bank that has a good rating, FDIC, joint accounts, POD beneficiaries, and no fees.

    Come on Smartypig.com help out your loyal clients by giving us true joint accounts & POD beneficiary provisions.
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  • I’m also hoping for a change of policy
    I just signed up with my fiancee without realizing that joint accounts are not available. We are trying to save for our wedding next year and can't truly see how much we can and will save by that date without splitting up the savings goals. To me, this is not a good way to do it because we want to look at our account as a couple and not as two individuals each saving for two different savings goals!!! I'm so tempted to close this account already (I just opened this a few days ago)!
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  • Wow, this is a big issue for us. Unfortunately, until this policy changes our big savings goals will NOT be with smartypig.
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  • This is a HUGE issue, because what is the MAIN person on the account (is a PIGLET) and passes away. How will that spouse be able to close or gain access to close that account? Instead of going through all the hoops when it is also their money being put into the SMARTYPIG's account?
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  • I’m still hoping for a change but getting ready to jump ship entirely.
    So far we aren't getting any satisfaction from "get satisfaction"--feels like smartypig is not listening and does not care.
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  • SmartyPig Users,

    While there are no plans in place at this time to allow joint accounts, we are working as quickly as we can with our banking partner to provide the benefit of adding a beneficiary to your SmartyPig account. Look for this enhancement in the upcoming months.

    We will keep you posted on our progress. We place a great deal of emphasis on listening to our users, and thank you for your feedback and suggestions!

    Thanks,
    John
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  • Any idea how many months we will have to wait for this (partial) improvement?
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  • I’m extremely concerned.
    I had no idea that co-owners did not have right of survivorship benefits until reading an online review. This is a HUGE concern as I have a substantial savings with SP and have encouraged my elderly parents to put the bulk of their nest egg here as well. I may relocate funds until this very important issue is resolved.
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  • 1
    You are not being asked to re-invent the wheel- most every other bank offers "the benefit of adding a beneficiary to your account"- when can we see this resolved?
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  • The glaciers are melting faster than Smartypig is moving to add survivorship benefits.
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  • SmartyPig Users,

    While there are no plans in place at this to time to add Joint Accounts, we are pleased to announce we have added the ability to create a Payable on Death (POD) Account to your SmartyPig Profile. To add a POD account and assign a beneficiary to it, please log into your SmartyPig profile. On the left hand side of the screen, please click “Edit Profile”. Next to Payable On Death (POD) Beneficiary, please click “Add”. Next, enter in the information of your designated beneficiary and confirm the requirements of your beneficiary and click "Save". Please be sure to then click "Save Changes" on the Edit Profile page.

    We are very excited to add this new feature for our users, and appreciate all the feedback and suggestions you have provided on this topic.

    Thanks,
    John
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  • Tiffany Brewer wrote:
    "This policy is determined by West Bank, our banking partner."

    Since then, customer funds been moved from West Bank to BBVA Compass. So of course the question becomes: what's BBVA's policy?
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  • I’m frustrated
    Dear John,

    Thank for responding to customer feedback about the need for a POD account. I'd like to join the chorus of folks asking for the ability to create joint accounts. This is an essential element to any married couple's financial planning. I look forward to more information on a concrete timeline for making joint accounts available.

    Thanks, Melinda
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  • This reply was removed on 2011-01-02.
    see the change log
  • Nice to see others want the same thing as I do.

    I just closed my account because of the lack of a joint account option, but will definitely consider coming back if it's added, as I do like being able to divide up my savings into goals (although there are some limitations that I'm not a fan of, but I'll put that in another topic).

    Even if there's no option to create a joint account, a usable alternative would be to allow me to add a user to a goal/account with higher access than "limited", so that they can not only contribute to the goal(s), but can also close them and have them transfer into their own bank accounts.
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  • I’m frustrated
    You used the excuse of WestBank's intransigence previously to preclude having joint accounts but you no longer have that to fall back on now. I know for a fact that BBVA Compass allows joint accounts. What's the hold-up now?
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  • hi. a few of my friends want to join smartypig but we all would like to see joint accounts implemented first. please add this. thank you.
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  • Tiffany Brewer wrote:
    "This policy is determined by West Bank, our banking partner."

    Since then, customer funds been moved from West Bank to BBVA Compass. So of course the question becomes: what's BBVA's policy?


    You used the excuse of WestBank's intransigence previously to preclude having joint accounts but you no longer have that to fall back on now. I know for a fact that BBVA Compass allows joint accounts. What's the hold-up now?


    It's unfortunate that Mrs. Pesek (formerly Brewer) has disconnected from the SmartyPig community. Due to her promotion to Director of Security & Compliance, perhaps? (Marriage and promotion in the same year? Life's good.)

    Meanwhile, if there ever was a time that the community should assume that they're left to their own devices on this question, that time was certainly long ago.

    Any ideas on how to come up with the answer to this old old question ourselves?
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  • It does seem that the SmartyPig service has become uniformly terrible of late. Combine that with the recent announcement of upcoming reductions in interest rates and I think it's probably time to go.
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  • I’m frustrated
    It seems that the interval between replies to popular requests like this for basic functionality found in all other banking products is approximately a year given the gap between employee responses. I suppose we should be happy we're getting any attention at all on this issue, especially with how unresponsive SmartyPig has become in general.
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  • I’m frustrated
    1
    From BBVA Compass:

    Hi Kyle,

    To your point this is not a matter strictly of capability. The bank followed the same structure as the previous SmartyPig bank partner which did have concerns about allowing joint accounts for the SmartyPig product. We are discussing adding this functionality but cannot give you an exact date when it might be available. Since you are in the industry some additional explanation: there is some development on our part because it does not function exactly like a traditional banking product. The accounting is split between the bank and SmartyPig's platform. So for us to accurately give FDIC insurance etc. we would have to make sure we accurately track the joint account holders.

    In the meantime the account owner can assign a POD. The POD can be set up with view access to the account if the primary owner wishes. I know this is not exactly what you are looking for but hope it helps in the interim. Please let me know if you have further questions. Thanks,

    Shawn
    SVP Product Management
    BBVA Compass
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  • I’m frustrated!
    I have been saving with Smartypig for several years. I've had close to 10k in there at times. I just recently became aware of this "joint" account issue, and frankly, I'm surprised and disgusted that I cannot add my husband of 6 years as a joint owner.

    We are trying to get a home loan, and our broker is trying to put it only in my husband's name (due to my lack of income as a stay-at-home mom, and debt ratio). However, when he took my name off the loan, he said he cannot count this Smartypig savings account as my husband's, since his name does not appear on the statements or the account. Just adding him as a "limited user" does not fix the problem. This is a BIG deal for us, could cost us the loan, simply because we can't prove that my husband has access to these reserved funds. Ridiculous!

    We are seriously considering clearing out our account at Smartypig and opening another savings somewhere else, even if interest is slightly lower. Very disappointing, because I loved Smartypig and recommended it to everyone I know!

    Broker says that we need to call BBVA Compass and ask to get his name added to account through them. I will try tomorrow, but I have my doubts, if this is held in Smartypig's name. If BBVA Compass will not add his name onto joint account, you can bet that we'll close our Smartypig account the same day! How frustrating that this has been asked for over 4 years, and it's still ignored by the company. :( I thought they prided themselves on communication and customer service. So far their responses sound like lip-service and nothing more.

    And I will let everyone know in my circle why I no longer recommend Smartypig, should we lose this loan because of this. Guess I was naive to believe this money was in a good place.
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  • Thank you for your post and sharing your thoughts and concerns with us. We understand that our service may not meet the specific needs of everyone, however, we truly appreciate your feedback and always take it into consideration and share this with our banking partner where the accounts are held. SmartyPig accounts are individual accounts, and do not function like a typical bank account as we are not a bank. Rather we are a goal based savings platform where individuals can save in advance for items they would like to purchase, while your funds are held at our FDIC insured banking partner. We do offer the ability for each user to designate a POD beneficiary to their account, along with the ability to add limited access users to share in your savings goals. Please feel free to contact Support(at)SmartyPig(dot)com if you have any further questions. Thanks, Angie
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  • Just a reminder to onlookers that SmartyPig stated:

    This policy is determined by West Bank, our banking partner.


    ... and that the NEW banking partner, BBVA, stated:

    We are discussing adding this functionality but cannot give you an exact date when it might be available.


    So the roadblock is BBVA.

    In the service of supporting the SmartyPig community and SmartyPig's vision of the "Social Web" (6/13/08 blog), if somebody like Angie could get an update from BBVA, that'd be taken an upstanding thing to do.

    EDIT to add 6/13/08 blog link: http://blog.smartypig.com/read/the-fu...
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