How to Redeem Bonds

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Only an owner listed on a savings bond can redeem the bond.
Only an owner listed on a savings bond can redeem the bond. (Image: Creatas/Creatas/Getty Images)

U.S. savings bonds are savings certificates issued by the U.S. Treasury and registered to an individual owner or co-owners. Savings bonds earn interest, which is credited to the value of a bond, and bonds can earn interest for up to 30 years. A savings bond can only be redeemed by an owner listed on the bond.

Take any savings bonds to be redeemed to your local bank. It is best to use a bank where you have an account, but any bank will redeem bond worth less than $1,000 with proper identification.

Provide picture identification and your Social Security number and the bank will redeem the bond on the spot if the redemption value is under $1,000 or, for larger bond values, you have a banking relationship at the bank.

Mail the bond to a Treasury Retail Securities Center for bonds the bank will not redeem. A bank officer must still verify the signature and your address and record the Social Security number. The bank will have the address for the nearest Retail Securities Center and the bond will be paid out by government check.

Tips & Warnings

  • A savings bond cannot be redeemed during the first year after issue. Bonds redeemed in the first five years will incur an interest penalty.
  • To redeem bonds with values greater than $1,000 at your bank, you must have had an account there for at least 6 months.
  • Find the current value of a bond using the savings bond calculator in the Tools section of the TreasuryDirect.gov website.

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