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  • America First CU logo

    America First Credit Union Membership

    • America First Credit Union is headquartered in Riverdale, Utah, offering banking services.
    • The largest credit union in Utah with assets totaling $13.4 Billion and serving over 1.13 million members.

    Membership: To become a member, you must meet eligibility such as living, working, worship, volunteering, or attending school in many areas in Utah, Nevada, Idaho, and Arizona.

  • BECU logo

    BECU Membership

    • BECU is a member-owned credit union offering financial services.
    • The largest credit union in Washington, with assets totaling $24.75 Billion and serving over 1.26 million members.

    Membership: All Washington state residents are eligible to join. 

  • CapEd Credit Union

    CapEd Federal Credit Union Membership

    • CapEd Federal Credit Union is headquartered in Meridian, Idaho, serving members since 1936.
    • 3rd largest credit union in Idaho, managing $1.56 Billion in assets and serving over 106,000 members.

    Membership: You are an employee of, a retiree from, a volunteer with, or a student of a public, private, or parochial school in a designated county in Idaho.

  • Clarity Credit Union

    Clarity Credit Union Membership

    • Clarity Credit Union headquarters is in Nampa, Idaho and has been serving members since 1948.
    • Manages $194 million in assets and serves 18,000 members.

    Membership: Live, work, worship, or attend school in specific Idaho counties.

  • Connections Credit Union

    Connections Credit Union Membership

    • Connections Credit Union headquarters is in Pocatello, Idaho has been serving members since 1937.
    • Manages $246 million in assets and serves 20,000 members.

    Membership: Live or work in specific Idaho counties.

  • Freedom Northwest Credit Union

    Freedom Northwest Credit Union Membership

    • Freedom Northwest Credit Union headquarters is in Kamiah, Idaho and has served members since 1963.
    • Manages over $613 million in assets and serves over 13,000 members.

    Membership: Open to communities served by the credit union.

  • Gesa CU logo

    Gesa Credit Union Membership

    • Gesa Credit Union is a community-chartered credit union that offers financial services in Washington, Oregon and Idaho.
    • It’s the 2nd largest credit union in Washington with assets totaling $4.11 Billion and serving more than 257,000 members.

    Membership: Live, work, worship, or attend school in the State of Washington, are a close relative of someone who qualifies as a member.

  • Horizon Credit Union

    Horizon Credit Union Membership

    • Horizon Credit Union is headquartered in Spokane Valley, Washington and has been serving members since 1948.
    • 12th largest credit union in the state of Washington, managing $2.11 Billion in assets and serving over 113,000 members.

    Membership: Eligibility extended to people living in eastern Washington, Idaho, western or central Montana or eastern Oregon.

  • Idaho Central CU logo

    Idaho Central Credit Union Membership

    • Idaho Central Credit Union is a member-owned financial cooperative providing banking services, including savings, loans, and other financial services.
    • The largest credit union in Idaho with assets totaling $6.04 Billion and serving over 406,000 members.

    Membership: Live or work in Idaho or Washington in certain counties and employees.

  • Latah Credit Union

    Latah Credit Union Membership

    • Latah Federal Credit Union headquarters is in Moscow, Idaho has been serving members since 1969.
    • Manages over $154 million in assets and serves over 8,000 members.

    Membership: Live, work, volunteer, worship, do business in, or go to school in specific Idaho Counties.

  • Lewis Clark Credit Union

    Lewis Clark Credit Union Membership

    • Lewis Clark Credit Union headquarters is in Lewiston, Idaho has been serving members since 1939.
    • Manages over $240 million in assets and serves over 20,000 members.

    Membership: Open to anyone who meets the credit union’s requirements.

  • Lookout Credit Union Membership

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    • Lookout Credit Union is headquartered in Pocatello, Idaho, serving members since 1952.
    • 9th largest credit union in the state of Idaho, manages $335.82 Million in assets and serves over 28,000 members.

    Membership: Open to everyone who works with partner employers or is a member of specific associations and groups.

  • Numerica Credit Union

    Numerica Credit Union Membership

    • Numerica Credit Union is headquartered in Spokane Valley, Washington and has been serving members since 1937.
    • 6th largest credit union in Washington, managing $3.89 Billion in assets and serving over 173,000 members.

    Membership: Eligibility includes whether you live, work, or worship within the North Idaho Panhandle or the State of Washington.

  • Rogue Credit Union

    Rogue Credit Union Membership

    • Rogue Credit Union is headquartered in Medford, Oregon and has been serving members since 1956.
    • 3rd largest credit union in Oregon, managing $3.33 Billion in assets and serving over 208,000 members.

    Membership: Live and work in specific counties in Oregon, California, and Idaho.

What is Banking?

Banking is a form of money management using products and services related to savings and loans.

Different Types of Financial Institutions

Banks

Banks are what we typically associate with banking. They come in different sizes: local, national, traditional and online-only. Federal or state agencies supervise banks. The FDIC insures deposits of participating banks.

Credit Unions

Credit unions are not-for-profit financial institutions. They offer products and services similar to banks with a focus on member service, not profit. The NCUA insures deposits from participating credit unions.

Alternative Financial Services

Many fintechs are non-chartered financial services companies that offer banking services. You might think of them as an app offering checking and savings accounts, debit cards, payments, etc. They are not banks but work with partner banks or credit unions to hold your deposits.

Types of Banking Accounts

Banking accounts help make financial transactions convenient.

Savings Account

A savings account helps you save your money. You’re storing your money for future use and hopefully earning a reasonable interest rate. Interest is the money you earn for letting the bank keep your money. Some financial institutions impose minimum deposits, withdrawal limits, and fees.

Checking Account

A checking account is a transactional account that allows you to make deposits and withdrawals of your money anytime. Checking accounts is not the best place to store your money, as the goal of the account is for use, not saving.

Most checking accounts do not pay interest, but some do. Be mindful of transaction limits, minimum balance requirements, and fees.

Debit Card

Checking accounts come with a debit card enabling you to spend your money conveniently. A debit card allows for making purchases at stores and online shopping. You can only spend the money that’s in your checking account. Additionally, you can use your debit card at ATMs to make deposits, withdrawals, check balances, and transfers between accounts.

Money Market Account

A money market account is a type of hybrid savings and checking account. It tends to have higher deposit requirements but often pays more interest than a savings account.

Certificate of Deposit (CD)

A certificate of deposit, also known as a CD, helps you save money with a set interest rate for a specific amount of time. Your cash is term-locked. In exchange, you get a higher interest rate compared to a traditional savings account. Certificate terms can start at 30 days and go to 5 or more years.

How to Choose the Best Banking Service

You have many choices on the type of account to use and the variety of financial institutions available. So, shop around. Ask the following questions to help you narrow down your choices:

  • What are the products and services offered?
  • What are the fees?
  • Are there minimum balance requirements?
  • Do I need a physical location (like a branch) or prefer better mobile app services?
  • Does local banking matter or is national big bank convenient?
  • Are deposits FDIC or NCUA insured?
  • How to access your money?
  • Debit card? ATM network?
  • Can I set auto-transfers, auto-payments, and alerts?

You want to determine how the banking provider aligns with your needs, the cost of services, safety, security, and overall convenience.

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