Posted by William Charles on August 18, 2016
Checking Accounts

Published on August 18th, 2016 | by William Charles


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

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

  1. James says:

    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.”

  2. Dave C says:

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

  3. Bluecat says:

    Too much bookeeping hassle for 50 bucks pretax.

    • Mr. PTM says:

      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 says:

        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 says:

          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 says:

          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.

    • anthonyjh21 says:

      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.

  4. Penny says:

    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

  5. S Nack says:

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

  6. David M says:

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

  7. beatgammit says:

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

  8. James says:

    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.

  9. Jack says:

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

  10. Lucy says:

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

  11. Ben says:

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

  12. Logan says:

    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.

  13. James says:

    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.

  14. Alfred says:

    not to thread crap. but i don’t see this business BBB registered.

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

    • Penny says:

      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 says:

        yes, true, i think NCUA instead of FDIC?

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

  15. Logan says:

    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 says:

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

      • Logan says:

        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.

  16. Connie says:

    Able to fund 5k with Southwest card, posted as purchase 4 days later. Please note, the maximum daily transfer limit to an external bank is 2k and the maximum MONTHLY limit is 5k. Please keep this in mind if you are planning on funding more than 5k

  17. Dan says:

    I applied for and received this error message during the verification.

    “Blue runs all member applications through ChexSystems. Based on the personal information you provided, we are unable to process your account online at this time. If you wish to continue your membership and account opening process, please call us at 1-800-368-9328…”

    I have not encountered this problem before. I have opened three checking/savings accounts on-line past weeks. Does anyone think that is the reason. I cannot remember bouncing a check or anyway mishandling my banking accounts.

    • How many have you had in the last 12 months

      • Dan says:

        I have those three plus 5 more accounts at 3 banks/credit union. Those 5 accounts were opened over 1 year ago. Actually, I guess I have more because I have the savings accounts associated with the Netspend & Mango accounts (again opened more than 1 year ago). All told, I have 15 checking/savings accounts.

        • Dan says:

          Blue told me 3 Chex inquires in one week was too much. I didn’t question any further because I read on this site that 3 Chex inquires in 6 months was too much for them. I’ll try again in a few months.

  18. DoCReader says:

    DP – successfully funded with Freedom Unlimited as a purchase.

    • Logan says:

      What amount were you able to fund with? Saw a report saying $500 max. What was your experience?

      • DoCReader says:

        1000. Didn’t attempt more since 1000 is the max for the 5% APY
        I kept getting errors at first (I attribute those to my card being used from a new laptop). Next day tried again after accessing my account a few times and worked like a charm.

  19. cm says:

    I don’t understand whether or not ACH is required. It seems like, based on DoCs screenshot, it used to be required in the past, but right now the page simply says “Requires a monthly deposit of a minimum $5.00”, which makes little sense, because, supposedly, the account would not earn ANY interest if balance goes above 1k, e.g., you must probably WITHDRAW 5$ monthly to allow enough room for interest, not deposit.

    Anyone able to get any sort of clarification?

    I somehow recall that it required an automated transfer, e.g., into a subaccount, but can’t find any definitive confirmation now.

  20. gm says:

    Denied due to 6 Chexsystems in the past year. Representative said they only allow 3 per year.

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