Democracy Federal Credit Union (Democracy FCU) added Kasasa brand accounts to its product line more than two years ago. The Kasasa Cash’s initial 3.00% APY on qualifying balances up to $10k is still in effect. Qualifying balances over $10k currently earn 0.20% APY, with non-qualifying balances earning 0.01% APY.
|3.00*%||-||$10k||Democracy Federal Credit Union||Kasasa Cash|
|OTHER TIERS: 0.20% → $10k+|
The Kasasa Cash monthly qualification requirements are easily met and do not include a direct deposit or ACH transaction.
- At least 12 debit card purchases
- Be enrolled in and receive e-Statements
- Be enrolled in and log into Online Banking at least once a month
The Kasasa Cash account has no minimum balance requirement, no monthly service fee, and no minimum opening deposit requirement. If qualifications are met, nationwide ATM fees will be reimbursed up to $25 per month. There is a limit of one Kasasa Cash account per Democracy FCU membership. Kasasa Cash and Kasasa Cash Back accounts are required to have a linked Kasasa Saver account.
The Kasasa Saver earns 1.00% APY on qualifying balances up to $50k; qualifying balances over $50k earn 0.20% APY, with non-qualifying balances earning 0.01% APY.
|1.00*%||-||$50k||Democracy Federal Credit Union||Kasasa Saver|
|OTHER TIERS: 0.20% → $50k+|
Earned rewards from a Kasasa Cash/Kasasa Cash Back account are automatically transferred to the Kasasa Saver each month. The Kasasa Saver has no monthly maintenance fee, no minimum balance requirement, and no minimum opening deposit requirement. There is a limit of one Kasasa Saver account per Democracy FCU membership.
Annual Earnings of Combined Kasasa Cash/Kasasa Saver Accounts
The potential combined annual earnings of the Kasasa Cash (3.00% APY/$10k) and the Kasasa Saver (1.00% APY/$50k) is approximately $800 (1.33% APY/$60k).
Kasasa Cash Back
Democracy FCU’s Kasasa Cash Back account earns 2.50% cash back on debit card purchases, limited to the first $300 of monthly purchases. If you are planning on maintaining a balance under $3,000, the Kasasa Cash Back account would probably be a better deal than the Kasasa Cash account; the maximum annual earnings for the Kasasa Cash Back account is $90 ($7.50 per month).
The following quote appears three times in Kasasa Truth-in-Savings disclosure – once for the Kasasa Cash, Kasasa Cash Back, and Kasasa Saver account.
We reserve the right to at any time to require not less than 7 days’ notice in writing before any withdrawal. A $5 fee is imposed if account is close within the first 3 months.
It makes no sense to require “not less than 7 days’ notice in writing” before using the debit card to fulfill the qualifying requirements. According to CSR, the seven day notice applies only to the Kasasa Saver account, but the $5 early closure fee does apply to all three Kasasa brand accounts.
The Kasasa Brand
Kasasa: the free checking account that rewards each month for doing things you already do.
By performing certain actions valuable to your bank or credit union, like using your debit card or online banking, your institution makes more money, which they share with you in the form of rewards.
In case you were wondering, “Kasasa” is just a made-up word.
In a world where real-life people are too often taken for granted as account numbers,
we didn’t want to be the next [INSERT GENERIC NAME] checking account.
Headquartered in Alexandria, Virginia, Democracy Federal Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) is primarily residency-based, with individuals who live, work, worship, attend school, or regularly conduct business in the following locations eligible to join.
Washington, D.C. – all areas of the city.
Maryland – most areas of Prince George’s County and Montgomery County.
Virginia – most areas of the City of Alexandria, Arlington County and Fairfax County.
Individuals who live in the D.C. metro area or Philadelphia and work for any of the following governmental agencies also qualify for membership: Department of Health & Human Services, Department of Education, Social Security Administration, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, and Food & Drug Administration.
Faculty, employees, and registered students enrolled in a program leading to a degree or certificate at Gallaudet University are eligible for membership.
Individuals who “are related to a current Democracy Federal Credit Union member” are welcome to apply. There is no definition of “are related to” provided on Democracy FCU’s website.
Joining Democracy FCU and/or opening a Kasasa brand product can be done online. Democracy FCU’s Membership Application is also available as a PFD that can be returned by snail-mail, fax, or in person. According to the COVID-19 Resource Center page only two of five branches are open: the Alexandria (VA) branch lobby is open to walk-in traffic (appointments available), with the District Heights (MD) branch lobby open by appointment only.
A minimum deposit of $5 along with a one-time $10 membership fee is required to open a new account.
Democracy FCU participates in both the CO-OP Shared Branch and ATM networks.
Credit Union Overview
Democracy Federal Credit Union has an overall health grade of "A" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 1.30% (excellent) based on September 30, 2020 data. In the past year, Democracy FCU has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $15.52 million, an excellent annual growth rate of 11.92%. Please refer to our financial overview of Democracy Federal Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 1407) for more details.
Chartered in 1936 as the Social Security Employees Federal Credit Union, Democracy Federal Credit Union has rebranded four times, with the Democracy name debuting in 2015. Through most of the credit union’s 85-year history, the FOM was exclusive to the employees of several federal governmental agencies. About 15 years ago, the FOM began to expand, including the residents of the Washington D.C. metro area. Democracy Federal Credit Union is currently the 38th largest credit union headquartered in Virginia, with nearly 14,000 members and assets in excess of $170 million.
How the Kasasa Cash Compares
When compared to the High Yield Rewards Checking Accounts tracked by DepositAccounts.com that are available within the FOM and have maximum qualifying balances of at least $10k, Democracy FCU’s Kasasa Cash APY currently ranks fourth.
|Interest Rate||Account Name||Credit Union/Bank|
|4.09% APY||Rewards Checking Tier A ($10k max)||Consumers Credit Union (IL)|
|3.30% APY||Vertical Checking ($20k max)||First Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union|
|3.01% APY||VIP Checking Platinum Tier ($15k max)||Market USA Federal Credit Union|
|3.00% APY||Kasasa Cash ($10k max)||Democracy Federal Credit Union|
The above rates are accurate as of 1/13/2021.
To look for the best Reward Checking Account rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our High Yield Reward Checking Account Rates Table page.