Consumers Credit Union Review 2022: High Rates and Convenience

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GOBanking Rates Score

Quick take: Probably the best feature of Consumers Credit Union is its high APY rewards verification. It also has an attractive savings account, but both accounts have minimum requirements. Although CCU is based in Illinois, membership is open to everyone and offers several ways to bank with CCU without visiting a branch.

  • Savings and CD Rates
  • Verification
  • Banking experience
  • Overdraft fees

How did we calculate this?

Advantages

  • Rewards verification has a very high APY
  • Membership is open to anyone who pays a one-time non-refundable fee of $5
  • Members have several different options for banking without visiting a CCU branch

The inconvenients

  • Minimum requirements must be met to get the best checking and savings APYs
  • CD rates aren’t as impressive
  • Overdraft fees can be high for customers who don’t have a linked account to cover overdrafts

About Consumers Credit Union

Consumers Credit Union was founded in 1930. Today it has over 178,000 members and over $2.8 billion in assets. CCU offers a wide range of banking products, including checking, savings, CDs, loans, credit cards, and IRAs.

It is insured at the federal level by the National Credit Union Association. While CCU only has physical branches in Illinois, anyone can join for a $5 membership fee.

Features of Consumer Credit Union

GOBankingRates gave Consumers Credit Union an overall rating of 4.4 based on the following four characteristics.

Savings and CD Rates

The CCU Membership Share Savings Account can be opened with a minimum deposit of $5 and pays a %APY. CCU also offers a Smart Saver account which pays a 0% APY if minimum requirements are met each month. This account has a minimum deposit requirement of $50 and a maximum of $1,000 can be deposited each month. Smart Saver account holders who do not meet the minimum requirements earn a %APY.

CCU’s minimum deposit for all regular certificates is $250 and maturity dates range from 91 days to five years. Certificate dividends are compounded daily. Prices vary from %APY for a 91 day certificate at 0% APY for a 22 month certificate. CCU also offers jumbo and IRA certificates.

Verification

Account verification doesn’t get much better than CCU reward verification. Account holders who meet the minimum requirements can earn a % at %APY on balances up to $10,000, with lower rates above $10,000.

This is in addition to no maintenance fees and reimbursement of all ATM fees. CCU also offers free interest-free verification with no minimum requirement.

Banking experience

CCU offers mobile banking, online banking, SMS banking and access to over 30,000 ATMs for members.

Members not in the Illinois area can use CU Service Centers® Network if they need to visit a physical checkout. These branches are part of a shared branch network that provides services to members of all credit unions in the network, including CCU.

Live chat is available to online banking customers 24 hours a day, every day of the week. Customers can also receive assistance by phone Monday through Saturday.

Overdraft fees

Account holders who link another eligible deposit account to their checking account receive up to six free transfers per month from the linked account to cover overdrafts. Then, a $30 fee will be assessed for each overdraft.

Account holders who do not have a linked deposit account may be eligible for the courtesy payment. CCU will cover overdrafts up to an approved amount for Courtesy Pay customers, but a $30 fee for each overdraft will apply.

Consumers Credit Union vs Competitors

For those considering joining a credit union, here’s how Consumers Credit Union compares to a few of its competitors.

Alliant Credit Union

Alliant Credit Union pays a 0.00% APY on their high rate checking account, but the account has no minimum requirements or fees. CCU’s Free Check is not an interest-bearing account, and Rewards Check has direct deposit and purchase requirements – even though CCU has a higher APY, Alliant’s Checking Account is attractive for its simplicity .

Eastman Credit Union

Eastman Credit Union offers a 0% APY on their savings account for an account balance over $5 and has no other minimum requirements. Although CCU offers a higher APY for its Smart Saver account, minimum requirements must be met, otherwise account holders earn a much lower APY. CCU’s member share savings account pays out only one %APY.

Ascend Credit Union

Ascend Credit Union offers certificate rates up to %APY, with minimum deposits starting at $500 and some requiring $1,000. A CCU certificate can be opened with a minimum deposit of $250, but its highest rate is only a 0% APY.

Final take

Those who can meet the minimum requirements for a Consumers Credit Union Rewards Checking Account or Smart Saver Account can earn high returns on their money. However, account holders should only respect the balance limits of these accounts, as any funds exceeding the balance limits do not earn the highest APY.

Those who cannot meet the minimum requirements might benefit more from opening accounts at other credit unions that offer above-average APYs with no minimum requirements.

FAQs

Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about credit unions.
  • Is Consumers Credit Union a real bank?
    • Consumers Credit Union is a financial institution that offers the same services as a bank. It has been around since 1930 and has over 178,000 members and over $2.8 billion in assets. It is insured at the federal level by the National Credit Union Association.
  • What is the most popular credit union?
    • When it comes to lists of the best credit unions, Navy Federal Credit Union is often at the top. However, its membership is not open to everyone. Alliant Credit Union also often makes “best of” lists, and membership is open to anyone who donates $5 to a qualifying nonprofit.
  • Is Consumers Credit Union federally insured?
    • Consumers Credit Union is federally insured by the National Credit Union Association. The NCUA is an independent US government agency that regulates, charters and oversees federal credit unions. The National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund insures the accounts of all federal credit unions and most state-chartered credit unions.
  • Does the consumer have a say in the management of credit unions?
    • Credit union members generally have no say in how a credit union is run. Depending on the credit union, members can vote and elect board appointees, who make decisions on behalf of members.

Rates are subject to change; unless otherwise specified, prices are updated periodically. All other account information is accurate as of July 7, 2022.

Editorial Note: This content is not provided by Consumers Credit Union. Any opinions, analyses, criticisms, ratings, or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author alone and have not been reviewed, endorsed, or otherwise endorsed by Consumers Credit Union.

Our in-house research team and on-site financial experts work together to create accurate, unbiased and up-to-date content. We verify every statistic, quote and fact using trusted primary resources to ensure that the information we provide is correct. You can read more about GOBankingRates processes and standards in our Editorial Policy.

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About the Author

Andrea Norris has worked in the web publishing industry for 15 years, both as a content contributor and editor specializing in topics related to personal finance, frugal living, home and automotive . She writes short and long content and is well trained in SEO keyword research and writing.

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