Hanscom Federal Credit Union (HFCU) has hiked back up the rate on their
This product is not meant for big balances. Instead, it is meant to encourage the creation AND maintenance of a modest savings habit. 5.00% APY is more than 10 times what the
How much interest can I earn? At 5% APY, if you maxed out this account and set aside the full $500 a month for 12 months, at the end you’d have put in $6,000 and earned about $150 in interest by the end of the year (~$162 if you made every transfer on the 1st of the each month by my quick calculations). $6,000 also happens to be just about the same amount as a full Roth IRA contribution (hint hint) or the foundation of a solid emergency fund.
At the end of the 12 months, all accrued savings plus earned dividends will be transferred into your primary savings account. It will NOT automatically renew at maturity. Each member can only have one CU Thrive account open at one time, but after one 12-month period ends you can open up another one to keep up the savings habit (assuming it is still offered).
Eligibility details. To open a CU Thrive account, you must first open an HFCU checking account in addition to the savings account required for all members. HFCU offers a free checking account with no direct deposit and no minimum balance requirement. HFCU membership is open to active duty or retired military along with many other groups (see application), but anyone can also join the
New refer-a-friend program. HFCU has a referral program which offers an additional $30 cash bonus after your new savings and checking accounts are open and in good standing for 90 days. The referring member gets $30 as well. If you would like a referral from me, please me send your full name, e-mail address, the text “HFCU referral” via
Account opening process (from a few years ago). I started the online application and had to provide the usual personal information and then answer questions based on my credit report to verify my identity. Based on my
My 1-year experience. I had set the maximum $500 to be transferred every month to my CU Thrive account from my HFCU Checking account. I made 11 transfers but missed one because my checking balance was too low on the date of automatic transfer. My fault. When that happens, the account basically just skips the transfer. There is no penalty, you just don’t get to add that money to the account. I called them but they said there was no way to replace that transfer, even if I moved more money into the checking account a day later. Other than that, everything went very smoothly and I was paid my interest as promised. At the 1-year maturity date, the funds were automatically transferred to my HFCU savings account and the CU Thrive no longer shows up on my online account page. I can now open up another CU Thrive account, if I wish.
I also discovered that Hanscom Federal has paid a
In addition to the CU Thrive and free checking options, HFCU also has a
Bottom line. The CU Thrive account is a good option for people looking to build up a savings habit, with 5.00% APY for 12 months. However, the system really works best if you use HFCU’s free checking as your primary checking account. (You may also consider their Kasasa Cash checking account with higher interest but debit card activity requirements.) Juggling it as an external savings account is perfectly possible, but you have to keep on top of your transfers to avoid idle cash earning zero interest. I received all of the interest promised, the customer service was nice and polite when contacted, and any errors were my own.
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