Premier America Credit Union has a special 4.00% APY 7-month certificate. The minimum deposit is $10,000, and it has no maximum deposit.
I'm noting the lack of a maximum deposit since many previous CD promotions from this credit union had limited the deposits to $5,000 or $7,000. Another positive feature of this current promotion is that there doesn't seem to be a checking account requirement. They do advertise their free checking account in the promotion page, but this doesn't seem to be a requirement.
There's an online account application, but this special CD doesn't seem to be listed as an option. For a previous special CD, I was told by the credit union that the special CD could not be opened online. If you don't live near a branch, I was told that after you have joined, you should be able to mail a check with instructions to open the special CD. A reader mentioned that he was able to deposit money into his Premier America savings account via a nearby shared branch and then called the credit union to open the CD. Please contact the credit union for specific instructions.
One nice aspect of this credit union is their Smart Savings Account. If you select eStatements, the Smart Savings Account pays 5% APY on your first $500. Over $500, the yield is 1%. With a small cap, it's not worth to join just for this savings account. But if you do join to open the CD, you have to open the savings account to become a member. So you might want to take advantage of this 5% for the first $500.
Hard Credit Pull
Readers in previous posts have mentioned that Premier does a hard credit inquiry in addition to a ChexSystem verification as part of the account opening process. The hard pull can slightly ding your credit score.
Qualifying For Membership and Joining
Field of membership includes members of the Alliance for the Advancement of Arts & Education (AAAE). Anyone can join this organization. According to the membership page:
When you apply for membership, be sure to select "AAAE" on the company listing. Then complete the AAAE application that will be provided during online account opening.
I was able to select AAAE in the credit union's online application when I selected the radio button for "I am a member of an eligible company or organization". A link to an AAAE pdf document was listed. This document stated:
AAAE's one-time membership fee is $25. Premier America Credit Union will grant this fee on your behalf when you join AAAE to become a qualifying member with Premier America Credit Union. The funds will be sent to the AAAE office, and will be used to support arts and education mission.
You can qualify to join Premier without joining AAAE if you live, work, worship or attend school in parts of California or within 10 miles of our Westchase branch in Houston, Texas. In addition, you can be eligible if you're an employee or member of a long list of companies and organizations.
Membership requires a one-time fee of $5 and a minimum deposit of $5 into the savings account.
Turned Down in the Application?
Some readers have reported their applications were turned down without explanation. If this happens to you, I recommend calling. Online applications often have issues.
Branches are located in the California cities of Chatsworth, Santa Monica, Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Woodland Hills and in Houston, Texas. The credit union is federally insured by the NCUA (Charter # 68428). It has $1.44 billion in assets and 67,602 members. BauerFinancial gives the credit union a rating of 5 stars (superior) based on 3/31/08 data.
Thanks to the reader who emailed me info on this special.