Blue Federal Credit Union Term Share/CD Review 2023
Are you curious about a term share from Blue Federal Credit Union? And what is a term share, anyway?
A term share is essentially the same thing as a certificate of deposit. At a credit union, however, it’s called by a different name.
Learn more about Blue Federal Credit Union CDs, including interest rates, flexibility, how to sign up, and more.
Blue Federal Credit Union Term Share At-a-Glance
Here are the essential points to ponder about Blue Federal Credit Union term shares:
- Membership is easy; you can make it happen with as little as $5
- Thousands of co-op branches allow for easy banking no matter where you are
- Numerous share options to choose from
- The opportunity to add more money to certain CDs during the term period
- Higher-than-average interest rates
- A difficult-to-understand tier “points” system (based on rewards for specific actions)
- Penalties for early withdrawal on a par with that of other banking institutions
- Interest is compounded monthly, not daily
- The mobile app has overwhelmingly negative reviews, so best to stick to online management
Which Banks Have the Best CD Rates?
Many banks offer CDs, and many credit unions offer shares. Use our MoneyRates CD rate-finder tool below to sort through the list to find a CD that fits your financial goals.
The term share plans range from six months to five years, with reasonable early withdrawal fees plus the opportunity to add more money to some of them.
Becoming a member is easy, but understanding the tiered interest rates is challenging.
Pros and Cons
Deciding where to keep your money is a critical choice. It’s essential to weigh the pros and cons of any particular credit union or bank to determine if they’re the right place for you.
Let’s take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of the Blue Federal Credit Union CD.
Pros of Blue Federal Credit Union CD
- Membership is easy to obtain
- Bank your way: Online, through branches in Colorado and Wyoming, or visit shared branches across the U.S.
- Some interest rates can be quite competitive
- Rewards program offers plenty of perks
- No monthly service fees
Cons of Blue Federal Credit Union CD
- You must meet specific criteria to get the highest interest rates
- The mobile app isn’t easy to use
- Tiered rewards can be confusing
- Interest compounds monthly, so you make less than with daily compounding
Compare to CDs from Other Institutions
How does Blue Federal Credit Union’s term share stack up against CDs from other financial institutions?
When you choose to bank with Bread™, you can enjoy CD terms of up to five years and a higher-than-usual interest rate.
- The mobile app is robust, and the customer service agents are helpful.
- However, there are no branches, so you must be comfortable with banking entirely online.
- There are also no options to add money to any CD once you’ve opened it.
Marcus by Goldman Sachs
Another competitor is Marcus by Goldman Sachs, which offers impressive interest rates and a low opening deposit of $500 on their CDs of up to five years.
You can’t get longer terms with this CD, nor can you get branch or ATM access; however, you can opt for a CD that has no penalty for early withdrawal.
Ally Bank is known for somewhat unconventional banking, proving that yet again with its CD options.
There are no branch locations and no ability for cash deposits, but the bank does offer no minimum balance requirements and very flexible CD options.
In some cases, you can withdraw early with no penalty.
Finally, Ponce Bank is an option that might compete with Blue Federal.
Ponce has branches only in New York but offers robust options for those in other states. It allows you to add to your CD over time, so you can start with a lower deposit amount.
The rates tend to be much higher than the national average.
How Blue Federal Credit Union CD Works
Usually, a term share works as a place to hold your money for a specific term, such as one year. During that time, you earn the stated interest rate if you don’t pull the money out of the share.
A unique point about the Blue Federal Credit Union CD is that you can add money during the term – a rarity among banks or credit unions. This “bump up” can allow you to earn higher interest rates.
Who Is the Blue Federal Credit Union CD For?
Blue Federal Credit Union is for those strongly affiliated with the military or Frances E. Warren Air Force Base. Those are also the people who might benefit most from the term share – those who have a good amount of money to invest but want to do it safely in a way that allows them to control their interest rate on a more granular level than what other credit unions might offer. This option could work well for you if you have at least $1,000 to tuck away and not touch for several years.
Rating the Features
When deciding if this credit union and term share products are right for you, listen to what others say about their experience.
Here is how we rated the features of Blue Federal Credit Union.
Signing up and starting your CD is easy, but understanding how the interest rates work can be difficult.
The interest is compounded and paid monthly rather than daily; this means you earn less than you would with daily compounding, which can put a damper on your bottom line.
Making additional deposits into the term share is an excellent advantage.
Unfortunately, the Blue Federal Credit Union app has relatively poor reviews and seems difficult to use.
There are no fees to open up or maintain the term share account.
There is a fee if you pull the money out before the share term is up, but these fees are on par with other banks and credit unions, so it should be no surprise.
There might be maintenance fees if you have an IRA as part of your term share.
Blue Federal Credit Union offers competitive rates for term shares.
They are on a tiered system, which means you must do certain things to get “rewards” that then level up your tier.
These can be confusing, so be sure to ask a representative precisely what to expect, interest-wise, for investing a certain amount.
The minimum deposit is $1,000 for any term share.
While this might be manageable for some, others who want to deposit lower amounts won’t have the opportunity to do so with the CD plans.
In a savings account, however, they might earn some interest on lower amounts.
The tiers of interest you can receive through the term shares depending upon your membership status.
You earn points for various actions, including opening accounts, applying for loans, or using credit cards branded by Blue Federal Credit Union.
The more points you rack up, the higher your tier and interest rate.
Customer service is available via phone or branch during regular business hours.
Chatting live online is possible Monday through Friday, and there is a 24/7 service line for existing customers.
The app has yet to receive the best reviews and seems difficult to use, so don’t count on that to manage your account.
Branches are available in Wyoming and Colorado, and you can also access your accounts online.
Withdrawing money from your term share is best done by consulting a banker.
Safety and Security
Blue Federal Credit Union offers robust security measures, including those you can use to educate yourself on fraud.
You can download pamphlets, report suspicious links, and set up alerts to let you know immediately if anything in your financial life has been compromised.
Unlike many other credit unions with stringent membership guidelines, you can become a Blue Federal Credit Union member by donating to the Blue Foundation.
Opening a share savings account is required for membership; by opening this account with as little as $10, the credit union will donate $5 to the foundation in your name, and you’re in. It’s that simple.
You can also become a member if you meet any of the following guidelines:
- You work for a “Select Employee Group” in Colorado or Wyoming
- You work in some capacity at the Francis E. Warren Air Force Base
- You are a member of the Wyoming Army National Guard, Air National Guard, or United States Naval Reserve (stationed in Wyoming)
- You are an active or retired member of the U.S. Armed Forces
- You are a survivor of a member of the U.S. Armed Forces and formally eligible for benefits
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Blue Federal Credit Union offers many options on their term shares. Many shares can be used with traditional, Roth, or SEP IRAs. There is also the regular share and the bump-up share. Your choice depends on the amount you want to deposit, the term you desire, and the interest rate you want. A banker can understand the nuances of which might be best for you.
The National Credit Union Administration is the government-backed insurer for credit unions in the United States. It’s similar to the FDIC and carries the same insurance limits, such as $250,000 per account per depositor.
The mobile app for Blue Federal has been a big sticking point in using the credit union. To remedy this, visit your account online on your laptop, desktop, or tablet. This will allow you to use all the features; you might not have that same “on the go” feel that you get with an app.