Bank of America Preferred Rewards status can be quite valuable in terms of making you eligible for a nice bonus on credit card rewards (Greg has written about how Preferred Rewards Platinum status makes Bank of America cards awesome). Good news for those folks who need to use some of their savings at the moment is that Bank of America is temporarily suspending status reviews.
Top-tier Platinum status requires putting $100K on deposit or in investments with Merrill Lynch. Ordinarily, once you receive Platinum status, they will review your account again 12 months later to see if you still qualify. In other words, you could deposit $100K (if you have the cash and/or investments available) and then sometime after being granted Platinum honors you could theoretically move the money out and maintain your status for a year and/or use/deplete funds in that account without worrying about beefing it back up to $100K until the 12-month mark.
Due to the current financial situation, Bank of America has sent an email to at least some card members letting them know that they have temporarily postponed the review process, so members will not currently be downgraded even if their accounts have dipped below the required thresholds. The email does note that if you have earned a higher tier, you’ll still be upgraded — you just won’t be penalized for having less in the bank than usual at the current moment.
That’s good news, especially for those who may be out of work and need to tap the funds they used to qualify. The email goes on to say that when they resume reviews they will let you know if your status has changed — it doesn’t exactly say they’ll give you advance notice before they begin reviews again, but I imagine they might.
For those with Platinum honors and the Premium Rewards card, this means continued 2.62% cash back everywhere, which is a great return on everyday spend.