Posted by William Charles on August 18, 2016
Checking Accounts

Published on August 18th, 2016 | by William Charles

71

Blue Federal Credit Union 4.99% APY Account (Up To $1,000)

Keep in mind that they are ChexSystems sensitive.

Offer at a glance

  • Interest Rate: 5% APY
  • Minimum Balance: None, $25 initial deposit
  • Maximum Balance: $1,000
  • Availability: Nationwide, as far as we know.
  • Direct deposit required: Direct deposit or ACH required, no minimum specified but according to CSR it’s at least $5
  • Additional Requirements: None
  • Hard/soft pull: Soft
  • Credit card funding: Up to $3,000
  • Monthly fees: None
  • Insured: NCUA

The Offer

Direct link to offer

  • Receive an APY of 4.99% on Blue Federal Credit Unions Accelerated Savings account when you do the following:
    • Have a minimum daily balance of $25
    • Receive a monthly ACH transfer or deposit

accelerated savings

The Fine Print

  • $5 minimum deposit required ($25 for interest)
  • Rates subject to change
  • Required to pay taxes on interest as per usual
  • This account earns points towards their rewards for life program (this can give you an APY of up to 4% on balances up to $15,000 on their Extreme Checking Account)

Avoiding Fees

There are no monthly fees on this account. You are required to pay $10, $5 goes to the Blue Foundation as a donation and the other $5 is used to set up your membership. There is no early account termination fee according to their fee schedule.

Our Verdict

The maximum balance of $1,000 is kind of annoying, but pretty easy to get the 4.99% rate. I’d probably just set up an automatic $5 deposit every month and then withdraw that and your interest earned (~$4) monthly as well. Credit card funding is a nice option as well. Not really sure if it’s worth using a ChexSystems inquiry on this due to the relatively low maximum balance and the fact you could sign up for another account with a bonus instead. We’ve added this to our list of good savings accounts as well.

I’ve also asked for more information on their extreme checking account, although it seems like it will be difficult to qualify for the top 4% rate.

Big thanks to reader Mr. PTM for letting us know about this one



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James
James

You missed joining criteria: “Through a donation to the Blue Foundation
If you open an account and deposit $10, we’ll use $5 to set up your membership and the other $5 to help the Blue Foundation.”

Dave C
Dave C

Are these “dividends” taxed as dividends or interest? Does it even matter? Just wondering, the “dividend” wording caught my eye.

Mr. PTM
Bluecat
Bluecat

Too much bookeeping hassle for 50 bucks pretax.

Mr. PTM

Totally fair. Depends on much marginal utility you get from those pre-tax dollars.

I just let the interest accumulate, along with my $5 monthly ACH push, and ACH out quarterly when I’m doing the same for my Mango, Insight, and NetSpend accounts.

anthonyjh21
anthonyjh21

Even so, it’s more time and mental CPU to monitor it. Then there’s the extra 1099 forms you have to look for. For $50 pre-tax /year? Scratch that, it’s $40 (leave in 1% savings account).

Other than the cc funding I have a hard time seeing anyone do this purely for the 4.99%.

Depending on what your chexsystems looks like there’s a hit there too.

Comes down to how much you value your time at both financially and mentally.

NinjaX
NinjaX

I totally agree with you Anthony. Great comment. I always enjoy reading your insightful and helpful comments within the community. I can tell you are of high intelligence… +1 Repped. Liked.

Mr. PTM

Obviously, YMMV, but to me mental CPU is minimal. I’m already doing NetSpend like you, so marginal time is insignificant. Plus, this is a hobby – I derive utility from it (the reason I do this and my gf doesn’t).

ChexSystem inquiry seems to be negligible (at least with no other derogatory marks). I’ve been on a rampage lately with bank bonuses.

edy
edy

Can this be completely automated? Remove any mental CPU usage. I don’t have an account yet so I can’t tell.

Automate the $5 ACH In from external bank.
Then auto transfer the interest out monthly or quarterly to stay within the 1K.

Am I correct that we need to stay under or at 1K to receive full 5% interest? If you go over 1K it impacts the interest at a disadvantage?

Wondering myself if this is worth the hassle.

Green Dream
Green Dream

the 5% interest applies to the first $1K; any money above $1K get 0.10% interest.

Green Dream
Green Dream

On re-reading their description (in light of what others have posted) it could be the whole balance gets the 0.10% if you are above 1k, best to keep your balance below 1k to be safe.

anthonyjh21
anthonyjh21

Agree. I’d rather just open a Netspend account for the $1k at 5% and just push a few bucks into it every other month. No chexsystem inquiry either. If I’m not willing to do Netspend then I’m definitely not going after this one.

With that said, if the cc spend limit is decent then this might be worth it for that alone.

Penny
Penny

Now question is, does everyone start off as silver status in their rewards for life program? Since it is also 2% APY at silver for their extreme checking account, which is not bad with the recent shut down of high interest accounts

Green Dream
Green Dream

I know the question is a few years old but FYI for those reading this thread: From my read of the website, the answer is yes – every one starts at Silver. Silver level starts at 0 rewards points. Gold Starts at 6 and Sapphire starts at 9.

You get 1 reward point for 0-5 years with the Credit Union and 1 reward point for each account type you have. savings account(s) (you’ll have two: a member savings that your opening deposit of $5 goes into and your 5% accelerated savings account) and checking account (the Extreme checking one) means 2 account types for 2 points for accounts – putting you 3 points away from gold (gold gives you 3% on the extreme checking). Having a total balance above $5K ($1K in savings and $4K in checking) will get you another point.

full details here:
https://www.bluefcu.com/rewards-for-life

S Nack
S Nack

Additional Requirements: 12 debit transactions – copy and paste error?

Eric
Eric

Yeah debit transactions always annoy me. I’m doing 10 debit transactions to keep a Wells checking account fee free. Add an account for spouse, and 20 Amazon debits gets to be a pain.

Penny
Penny

I don’t see the 12 debit transaction anywhere.. I see 10 debit for the extreme checking .

it doesn’t make sense to have debit transactions for savings account, since you are limited to 6 withdrawals a month

Eric
Eric

It’s odd, that’s why we’re taking about it.

“least $5
Additional Requirements: 12 debit transactions
Hard/soft pull: Soft”

Mr. PTM

Most likely – no debit card transactions are required.

David M
David M

Super curious what gets you 4% for up to 15,000. Hope you’ll update and re-publish when you find out the answer!

Penny
Penny

see: https://www.bluefcu.com/why-blue/rewards-for-life

There is a list on what earns you points

David M
David M

Thanks. I had read that but it’s not clear how many points are awarded.

Penny
Penny

Take a look at the Rewards Points Structure tab in the table on that page.

So have a checking account is 1 point… a money market is another point etc.

Then length of relationship is: 1 pt for 0-5 yrs.. up to 3 pts at 15+ years

and combined balance, if you have over75k its 3 pts..

David M
David M

Oh wow, thanks for the heads up!

beatgammit
beatgammit

Any idea on what CCs are accepted? If it supports Amex funding, this could be valuable in meeting min spend.

James
James

I don’t know if anyone else is having this problem, but the system isn’t set up to accept an ID that expires after 8/18/2021. I had to call them multiple times today and they finally sent me forms to get notarized to prove my identity. They said they’ve contacted their web programmer to fix the issue.

Jack
Jack

I messaged them. It’s a $1500 limit for CC funding.

cm

It’s funny, but when I called them a few days ago, I think I got the exact same 1.5k, too!

I guess they’re just being conservative. 🙂

Lucy
Lucy

Agree with others that $50/year isn’t worth the hassle, but still appreciate the post! Best blog out there for me.

Ben
Ben

Any data points on CC funding would be great in terms of CA

Logan
Logan

Wasn’t sure if I should post this here since its a double post from the extreme checking post, but relevant to this account as well.

DP: I funded $1500 for the extreme checking, $1500 for accelerated savings and $10 for standard savings account with $5 of that going as a donation to qualify.

Totaling $3010 funding on my Chase Southwest Premier card.

Joe
Joe

VISA/Mastercard fund only or AMEX is also accepted?
Thanks.

Logan
Logan

No dp to point to amex. I’d be weary and assume it codes as CA for amex and citi.

Penny
Penny

Can you confirm that it posted as a regular charge and not cash advance?

Logan
Logan

Penny, it’s a pending purchase.

Penny
Penny

I am hoping you can report back once it posted 🙂

Logan
Logan

I can confirm that it posted as a purchase today.

James
James

Funded $1500 for accelerated savings and $10 for donation with $5 in standard savings account.

Totaling $1510 funding on my Citi Prestige card. Cash advance limit of my Prestige card is $1500. Category of purchase is MORTGAGE COMPANIES-FINANCIAL INSTITUTION.

Alfred
Alfred

not to thread crap. but i don’t see this business BBB registered. http://www.bbb.org/wyoming-and-northern-colorado/business-reviews/credit-unions/blue-federal-credit-union-in-cheyenne-wy-17000406

i still believe it should be fine as it is backed by NCUA right?

Penny
Penny

No business is required to register or be accredited by BBB..

see their disclaimer on the link you posted:
“Businesses are under no obligation to seek BBB accreditation, and some businesses are not accredited because they have not sought BBB accreditation.”

Blue Federal is FDIC insured, which is the main thing you want for savings/checking account

Alfred
Alfred

yes, true, i think NCUA instead of FDIC?

Funded with ATT Access card and posted as a purchase. Had set CA to 0 though.

Logan
Logan

Surprised nobody has posted about this, but I noticed for the first 3 months of this I only earned $0.96, $3.49 and $2.18 interest. I did met the full requirements and has $1000 on average the last 2 months. The first month it was loaded mid month so it makes sense for that month why I earned less, the most recent 2 do not make sense to me. I emailed their support and waiting to hear back why I earned less than 4.99% interest.

Anyone else have a similar experience so far?

Michael
Michael

I just noticed the same thing happening to me. Did you get any response?

Logan
Logan

Honestly not a great explanation. But if you go over $1000 you get 0 interest for those days. This can happen easily if you leave exactly $1000 in there and interest posts. Also, have to transfer minimum of $5 from checking to savings once monthly or 0 interest.

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