An extensive product suite and account dividends help distinguish Navy Federal Credit Union‘s offerings. But eligibility is limited to military service members and its branch network is only available in some states.
Am I eligible?
Navy Federal Credit Union is open to members of the armed forces, Department of Defense and the National Guard and their families.
What personal banking products does Navy Federal Credit Union offer?
Navy Federal Credit Union offers a wide range of bank accounts for individuals and businesses alike.
Free Active Duty Checking. You must make a Military Direct Deposit of Net Pay to qualify but you’ll get up to $20 in ATM fee rebates monthly, free personalized checks and no monthly maintenance fees.
Free eChecking. Enjoy no maintenance fees and up to $10 in ATM fee rebates monthly. To qualify, set up direct deposit or make at least 20 debit transactions per statement period.
Free Campus Checking. Only 14- to 24-year-old full-time students qualify, but the account has no minimum balance requirements or maintenance fees. It also offers free name-only checks and up to $10 in ATM fee rebates monthly.
Free EveryDay Checking. A basic checking account with no monthly service fees or minimum balance requirements.
Flagship Checking. You can waive the $10 monthly maintenance fee by maintaining an average daily balance of $1,500 or more. Earn tiered dividends based on your account balance and receive up to $10 in ATM fee rebates per statement period after setting up direct deposit.
Basic Savings. A straightforward no maintenance fee savings account that you can open when you become a Navy Federal Credit Union member and purchase one share of at least $5. Expect a low APY of 0.25%
SaveFirst. With a $5 minimum opening deposit, access terms of three months to five years with higher dividends that increase daily.
Education Savings. Qualify for tax-free earnings for education expenses but total contributions can’t exceed $2,000.
ESA Certificates. Minimum purchase amounts range from $1,000 to $100,000 with terms of three to seven years.
EasyStart ESA Certificates. A $100 minimum opening deposit is required for this 12-month term ESA certificate, but you can make additional deposits at any time.
Deposit Trust. While an existing legal trust is required before opening this account, Navy Federal savings accounts, money market accounts, checking accounts and share certificates may all serve under the Deposit Trust account.
Custodial. This account is designed to offer tax savings for those looking to administer gift money to youth under the age of 18.
Estate. A checking and savings account pairing for holding estate assets that can earn dividends and comes with personalized checks.
Payable On Death. If you’re interested in passing on your assets after you die, you can designate any Navy Federal savings account, money market account, checking account or share certificates as a Payable On Death account. Additional legal documents aren’t required to open the account.
Special EasyStart Certificate. Open this 12-month share certificate with a $50 minimum and a $3,000 max balance to take advantage of its competitive 3.5% APY.
EasyStart Certificates. EasyStart certificates come on a 12-month term and require a $100 minimum opening deposit. You can make additional deposits of $10 or more at any time.
SaveFirst. After a low $5 minimum opening deposit, access terms from three months to five years and take advantage of daily compounded dividends.
3-Year Variable. This three-year share certificate requires a $500 minimum opening deposit with the option to add funds on the 12- and 24-month anniversary dates only.
Standard Certificates. Minimum purchase amounts range from $1,000 to $100,000 and terms of three months to seven years are available.
IRA Certificates. Navy Federal IRA share certificates have a minimum purchase amount of $1,000 to $100,000 and terms that range from three months to seven years.
IRA EasyStart. Open an EasyStart IRA with as little as $100 on a 12-month term. You can make additional deposits at any time.
Traditional IRA. This retirement account allows you to make tax-deferred contributions as long as you’re below 70 and a half years of age and have an earned income.
Roth IRA. Pay taxes on your savings now and withdraw the funds tax-free when you retire. If you’re over 70 and a half and have earned income, you can make contributions without required minimum distributions.
Simplified Employee Pension. Corporations, partnerships, sole proprietorships and self-employed persons can all take advantage of this retirement plan to save for the future.
Trusteed IRA. This account blends the features of a trust with the tax benefits of an IRA. You may choose for distributions to be limited to income or you may opt to include health, education and general support distributions.
Money market accounts
Money Market Savings. This savings account has no minimum opening deposit or term restrictions, but if you’d like to take advantage of dividend rate tiers, you’ll need at least $2,500 in your account.
Jumbo Money Market Savings. With a balance of $100,000 or more in your savings account, you’ll earn Navy Federal’s Jumbo dividend rate on the entire balance of your account.
IRA Money Market Savings. You can open an account with any amount but you’ll need at least $2,500 to earn dividends. Access Navy Federal’s Jumbo rates with a balance of $100,000 or more.
Credit cards. Mastercard, Visa and American Express cards are all offered by Navy Federal. Accounts feature rewards points programs, low introductory APRs and no annual fees.
Loans. Access a variety of financing options through Navy Federal, including mortgages and auto, personal, student, home equity, motorcycle, boat and leisure vehicle loans.
What business banking products does Navy Federal Credit Union offer?
Business Checking. The Navy Federal Business Checking account features a 0.01% APY and dividend rate alongside 30 free transactions monthly and no maintenance fees.
Business Plus Checking. An $8 monthly service fee applies, but you’ll receive 50 free monthly transactions and a 0.05% APY and dividend rate.
Premium Business Checking. This account has tiered interest rates of 0.35% to 0.45% and comes with 100 free monthly transactions. You can waive the $20 monthly maintenance fee by maintaining an average daily balance of $5,000 or more.
Business Money Market Savings. There are no term restrictions associated with this account but you’ll need a minimum account balance of $2,500 to earn daily dividends.
Business CDs. Open a business CD with as little as $100 with terms of three months to seven years available and no maximum purchase amount.
Credit cards. Both Navy Federal’s Visa Business and Mastercard Business cards have no annual fees, earn rewards points and offer rates as low as prime plus 5.9% APR.
Loans. Expand your business capital with business lines of credit and commercial vehicle, commercial real estate, investment property and secured and unsecured term loans.
Insurance. Navy Federal offers both retirement and health insurance with 401(k) profit-sharing plans, group insurance, dental coverage and vision plans. You can also apply for group life insurance, accident packages and short- and long-term disability coverage.
How does Navy Federal Credit Union compare with other banks?
Navy Federal Credit Union has an impressive list of over 29 banking products. But there are still some things to watch out for.
No monthly fees. Almost all of Navy Federal’s personal checking accounts offer free ATMs and charge no monthly maintenance fees.
No minimum balance requirements for most accounts. The only checking account that has a minimum balance requirement is the Flagship Checking, which is Navy Federal Credit Union top-tiered account.
Interest-bearing accounts. The Flagship Checking account earns 0.35% to 0.45% APY depending on your account balance while the other accounts earn 0.05% APY.
Overdraft fees. If you overdraw on your account, you’ll pay a $20 fee unless your savings account is linked to your checking account. In this case, Navy Federal Credit Union will transfer money to cover the difference for free.
Inactivity fee. You’ll pay a $3 fee each quarter if your checking account is dormant for more than 12 months and you have less than $50 in your account.
Monthly fee for Flagship Checking. You’ll pay a $10 fee if your account balance dips below $1,500.
Low opening deposits. You can open most savings accounts with $5.
Several account options. Navy Federal Credit Union offers five different savings account options ranging from basic accounts to education savings accounts.
Low APYs. The Share Savings account is mandatory for all credit union members and earns a low 0.25% APY.
High minimum balance for high APY. The Jumbo Money Market Savings Account has the highest APY at 1.35%, but it requires a $250,000 minimum balance to earn this rate.
No ATM card. Navy Federal Credit Union savings accounts don’t come with an ATM card. But you can access your money with a debit card if you have a linked checking account.
Flexible terms. Navy Federal Credit Union CD terms range from three months to seven years.
Strong APYs. All of Navy Federal Credit Union‘s CD rates are competitive. The lowest rate you’ll earn is 1.1% for a three-month CD.
Three-year variable rate CD. With this CD, your rate automatically increases on your 12 and 24-month anniversary.
Varying minimum deposits. You’ll need anywhere from $5 to $100,000 to open an account, depending on which CD you choose and what APY you want to earn.
Early withdrawal penalty. Expect to pay a penalty equal to 90 days to 365 days if you access your money before it matures.
Comprehensive selection. From money market accounts to personal loans, Navy Federal’s product suite is substantial.
Earns dividends. Since Navy Federal is a member-owned credit union and many of its financial products earn daily dividends.
Mobile banking. Bank on the go with Navy Federal’s free mobile app for Apple, Android and Kindle Fire devices.
Membership perks. As a member of this credit union, you’ll get access to special discounts from Geico, Enterprise, Herz, RealtyPlus and more. Plus, you can earn wards when you shop at select retailers.
Limited eligibility. Navy Federal Credit Union‘s products are restricted to US military service members, veterans, Department of Defense civilians and their families.
Poor online reviews. Navy Federal is not accredited, has a Trustpilot TrustScore of 2.6 out of 5 and a Better Business Bureau rating of 1 out of 5 stars based on 61 customer reviews.
Limited branch network. Navy Federal’s branch network doesn’t include Arkansas, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Montana, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, West Virginia or Wisconsin.
Improper debt collection. In 2016, Navy Federal Credit Union was ordered by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to pay $28.5 million for debt collection misconduct, including making false threats and restricting account access for its members.
Navy Federal Credit Union customer service
Connect with Navy Federal in one of five ways:
Phone. Access member and account service 24/7 by calling 888-842-6328.
Mail. Send a query by mail to Navy Federal, PO Box 3000, Merrifield, VA, 22119-3000.
Live chat. Chat with a Navy Federal rep in real time, Monday through Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. and Sundays from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., EST.
In person. Visit your local Navy Federal Credit Union branch.
Social media. Raise a question or share feedback with Navy Federal on Facebook or Twitter.
Compare Navy Federal Credit Union to the competition
If you’re looking for a financial institution that doesn’t have membership requirements, consider these top-rated banks:
Navy Federal Credit Union has a comprehensive suite of consumer and business banking products to choose from with accounts that pay dividends and round-the-clock customer support. But its eligibility is limited to military service members and its online reputation isn’t favorable.
Shannon Terrell is a senior writer for Finder who has written over 400 personal finance guides. With a focus on investments and personal finance, she breaks down jargon-laden topics to help others make informed financial decisions. She studied communications and English literature at the University of Toronto.
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