Joint Account?

  • Question
  • Updated 3 years ago
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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Posted 7 years ago

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Tiffany Brewer, Customer Support

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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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sideflare

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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

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@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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George Kao

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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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Gerald

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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

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@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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pinktyke

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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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Hap

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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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Joseph Benedict R. Laihee

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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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annemariefrance1

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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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Ronald Bernard

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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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Hap

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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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John Grask, Employee

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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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Hap

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Any idea how many months we will have to wait for this (partial) improvement?
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EKL

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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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donarmstrong9

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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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Hap

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The glaciers are melting faster than Smartypig is moving to add survivorship benefits.
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John Grask, Employee

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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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WorkingDaddy

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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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melinda

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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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brent.pearson

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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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dcoulson

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You could always just add all the accounts you need to use and share a login. It's still tied to one individual, but it's probably not going to have much of an impact if you and your partner have mixed finances.
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Kyle Goodwin

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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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Mike Ferrari, Co-Founder

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Kyle, similar to our previous banking partner, West Bank, BBVA Compass is not offering joint ownership on SmartyPig accounts at this time. At the request of our customers, we did add the POD Payable On Death beneficiary feature a while back. I will certainly forward your thoughts on to the BBVA Compass SmartyPig team. Thanks. Mike Ferrari, SmartyPig co-founder
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Kyle Goodwin

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This doesn't make any sense. BBVA Compass offers joint savings accounts to anyone wanting to sign up for one in the absence of SmartyPig so why is SmartyPig not able to offer this as well? There must be some reason specific to SmartyPig why they are not allowing it through that channel. Joint accounts are table stakes, they're not an esoteric feature that only a few people want.
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Mike Ferrari, Co-Founder

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Kyle, shoot me an email anytime. I'd be happy to put you in touch with someone at BBVA Compass to address any of your issues or concerns. Mike Ferrari, SmartyPig Co-founder (mferrari@smartypig.com)
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Kyle Goodwin

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Done. I will follow up and post what I learn here for the others to see.
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WorkingDaddy

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Looking forward. My clueless efforts last week (just prior to the end of SP's year-long absence from this thread) to contact BBVA directly haven't yielded anything.
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Kyle Goodwin

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Please see below for the reply I received from BBVA Compass.
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putbadstuffhere13

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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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Mike Ferrari, Co-Founder

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Thanks for the note. I will forward your request on to our banking partner, BBVA Compass, and see if this is something they want to consider adding. Mike Ferrari, SmartyPig co-founder
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WorkingDaddy

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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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Mike Ferrari, Co-Founder

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Per my comments above, similar to our previous banking partner, West Bank, BBVA Compass is not offering joint ownership on SmartyPig accounts at this time. Per your feedback, and the feedback above from others, I will forward on to the BBVA Compass SmartyPig team. Mike Ferrari, SmartyPig co-founder
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Kyle Goodwin

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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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Mike Ferrari, Co-Founder

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Kyle, as to your comment regarding our service, I hate hearing that. If there is something we are not doing, I want to hear about it. Please feel free to email me anytime. Mike Ferrari, SmartyPig co-founder (mferrari@smartypig.com)