UNIFY Financial Offers No-Penalty 19-Month CD, Up To 2.25% APY


Deal Summary: 19-month Liquid Share Certificate, 2.25% APY ($5k minimum, two penalty-free withdrawals), 2.00% APY ($500 minimum, one penalty-free withdrawal), new money, unlimited deposits.

Availability: Easy membership

California-based UNIFY Financial Credit Union (UNIFY) is offering a 19-month Liquid Share Certificate, which is a no-penalty and add-on CD with tiered APYs – 2.25% APY ($5k minimum, two penalty free withdrawals) and 2.00% APY ($500 minimum, one penalty free withdrawal). The penalty free withdrawals can be either partial or an early closure. In addition, unlimited deposits are allowed throughout the term, with new money required for the initial deposit. As stated in this promotions page, the offer is "subject to change without notice and may end at any time."

The APY established at account opening will remain in effect throughout the term, regardless of account balance. In other words, if you initially deposit $4,999 and then later deposit $1, you will still earn 2.00% APY, not 2.25% APY.

As stated in the Truth-in-Savings disclosure, if a withdrawal is made beyond the allowed number, the following Early Withdrawal Penalty applies.

For Share Certificate accounts, the amount of the early
withdrawal penalty for your account is up to 90 days’ dividends.

As stated in the offer’s small print, “unlimited subsequent deposits are permitted during certificate term.” Even though this seems clear, it’s important to remember that there have been past cases when other credit unions have changed add-on terms of existing add-on certificates. This issue recently came up in September. The fact that this UNIFY Financial Certificate has a fairly short term of 19 months reduces this risk.


Headquartered in Torrance, California, UNIFY Financial Credit Union’s field of membership (FOM) is varied, with residency, employment and organization membership serving as qualifying criteria.

Easy Membership: Individuals who join either the Surfrider Foundation or Friends of Hobbs qualify for credit union membership. According to UNIFY’s website, you can qualify "through a complimentary membership with a partnering nonprofit organization."

Employment: Hundreds of companies throughout the US offer membership in UNIFY as part of their employee benefits package, including Toyota and Northrop Grumman.

Residency: Individuals who live, work, worship or attend school in select areas of 13 states are also eligible for membership. UNIFY’s website used to have a "Search for your Zip Code" page to help determine eligibility, but that page no longer exists. UNIFY does, however, offer "Live Chat" on their website to assist in clarifying eligibility status.

Relationship: Immediate family members of current UNIFY members are automatically eligible for membership.

Joining UNIFY can be done online, or at any of 59 full-service branches located in Alabama, Arkansas (6), Arizona, California (26), Colorado, Florida, Georgia (2), Indiana, Kentucky (3), Michigan (2), Mississippi, New Jersey, Tennessee, Texas (5), Utah, Virginia (5), and West Virginia.

Note: Several of the branches have restricted access, as they are located on property owned by an SEG. For example, the Huntsville, Alabama branch is in a Toyota manufacturing facility, with access limited to Toyota employees.

The promo page states,

OPEN YOUR SHARE CERTIFICATE TODAY! Visit your nearest branch to get started.

I did a Live Chat in hopes of discovering some way to open the 19-month Liquid Share Certificate online or over the phone. Unfortunately, CSR confirmed it can only be opened in-branch.

As a condition of membership, a Regular Savings Account ($5 minimum) must be opened and maintained. A $200 minimum average daily balance is required to earn dividends. Should the monthly balance fall below $200, a $1 fee will assessed and all dividends will be forfeited.

In addition to participating in the CO-OP Shared Branch and ATM networks, members.

can find an ATM just about anywhere. Just look for the Alliance One,
Allpoint, CO-OP or CUHere logos, and you’re good to go … surcharge-free.

Credit Union Overview

UNIFY Financial Credit Union has an overall health grade of "B+" at DepositAccounts.com, with a Texas Ratio of 10.98% (excellent) based on September 30, 2019 data. In the past year, UNIFY has increased its total non-brokered deposits by $34.59 million, an above average annual growth rate of 1.46%. Please refer to our financial overview of UNIFY Financial Credit Union (NCUA Charter # 15732) for more details.

Established in the last 1940s as the Western Air Credit Union, UNIFY Financial Credit Union is currently the 17th largest credit union headquartered in California and the 84th largest credit union in the country. When Western Airlines merged into Delta Airline in the 1980s, the credit union became known as simply Western Credit Union and rebranded as UNIFY in 2016. As a result of several mergers (including TRW Systems FCU in 2003 and Toyota FCU in 2007) over the past 16 years, UNIFY has grown to more than 260,000 members and assets in excess of $3 billion.

How the Liquid Share Certificate Compares

As I have mentioned in previous blog posts, no-penalty CDs are not that common, and the longer the term, the more competitive the CD. When compared to other nationally available no-penalty CDs, UNIFY Financial Credit Union's 19-month Liquid Share Certificate currently offers the highest APYs and the longest term length, with modest minimum deposit requirements.

To look for the best CD rates, both nationwide and state specific, please refer to our CD Rates Table page.

The above rates are accurate as of 12/23/2019.

Related Pages: 1-year CD rates, nationwide deals

  |     |   Comment #1
In my opinion an account that has to be opened in person is not an example of "easy membership".
Predatory Depositor
  |     |   Comment #2
If true, I would tend to agree. :)
  |     |   Comment #3
According to their website, this offer began back in July? I assume it's the same promorion.
*Promotion begins and rates effective as of July 1, 2019.*

When trying to join online, a page comes up asking you to select one of two checking accounts. I'm willing to do savings, but not checking. I'll try going to one of their branches for better information. I don't mind joining the "surfriding association". It doesn't say the cost.
Predatory Depositor
  |     |   Comment #4
If you can hang 10 30 times per month, you get an extra quarter percent.
  |     |   Comment #5
I called their customer service in Calif. She said you can join online without opening a checking acct, but I can't find a way around that question/requirement. She also said you can open the promotional CD online, but didn't sound too sure of herself. Her final suggestion was to just go to a branch and do everything in person. They are in several states. Bring your driver's license, utility bill, and SS number.

I like the add-on feature, no penalty withdrawl, and 19 months is fine as I like to keep things on the shorter side. I got 2 CDs maturing in Jan and need to park it somewhere. On another note, NASA has a regular 15-month paying 2.50%. Check out Ken's drop-down list.
  |     |   Comment #6
#5 The rate my change without notice so it may not be around in January. Why not go with NASA if their higher rate is available in January.
  |     |   Comment #7
I just opened a CD at Unify in their only NJ branch in a large ADP building in Roseland. Someone has to come up to walk you to their office space. I had to open a Savings account & I chose to open a Checking account so that I could easily transfer money to a local bank without ACH if I chose not to renew.
The unlimited deposits could be important if terms are not changed by Unify but the early withdrawal terms are limited. Here's the info given me if anyone is interested.

The 19M 2.25 CD only available at branch.
I wasn't asked to join Surfrider Foundation or Friends of Hobbs. I was told that they would make the contribution.
I set up to have my CD balance deposited into my savings at maturity (hope it works). I would then do an internal transfer to my checking at that time. I will set up an ACH with another bank to transfer the balance or as I said, just write a check.

The following is from there Truth in Savings statement for my 19M CD ..
6. TRANSACTION LIMITATIONS -After your account is
opened, you may make unlimited additional deposits into the
account until the maturity date. You may take a total of two (2)
partial withdrawals without incurring an early withdrawal penalty,
subject to the following conditions:
a. Withdrawal not permitted within first six (6) months of
account opening,
b. Second withdrawal not permitted within six (6) months of
previous withdrawal,
c. Withdrawal amount cannot exceed 50% of the account
balance at the time of the withdrawal,
d. Withdrawal amount cannot reduce account balance below
the stated minimum balance requirement of $5,000.
penalty if you withdraw funds from your account before the
maturity date if you do not meet the conditions above.
Withdrawals of dividends are not subject to penalty.

a. Amount of Penalty. The amount of the early withdrawal
penalty for your account is up to 90 days' dividends.
b. How the Penalty Works. The penalty is calculated as a forfeiture
of the dividends that have been earned on the account for up to 90
days. In other words, if the account has been open for more than 90
days, you will forfeit 90 days of dividends. If the account has been
opened 90 days or less, you would forfeit any dividends earned since
account opening. Penalty will not reduce your principal.
c. Exceptions to Early Withdrawal Penalties. At our option,
we may pay the account before maturity without imposing an
early withdrawal penalty under the following circumstances:
i. When an account owner dies or is determined legally
incompetent by a court or other body of competent
Re: MikeG
  |     |   Comment #8
Thanks MikeG for the excellent post. Those restrictions you listed are too much for my personal situation so I will pass. The branch I went to in CA (closed at the time) is just the opposite of yours. This one is about the size of my kitchen, near a burger joint and sandwich shop. (Very small, one counter, looks like it was also a food place in the past. ) Good luck to all.
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