Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union
Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union
While not widely available to anyone, Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union does have a solid product line, which should appeal to most potential customers. There is a variety of products with several options in each banking category. This makes it easier to choose the best saving, checking and CD for your financial requirements and circumstances.
Members can also access a large ATM network and accumulate MyPlus Rewards points, which can be redeemed for gift cards, reduced loan rates and other perks.
However, if you don’t have any connections to Minnesota, you will find it very difficult to become a member. Unlike some credit unions, which allow you to support a partner organization to become a member, this is not an option with Affinity Plus.
- Low or No Initial Minimums
- Fee Free ATM Access
- Rewards Program
- Competitive Rates
- Low Savings Rates
- Monthly Compound Interest
- No Free Overdraft Protection
What are the requirements to open an Affinity Plus account?
You need to meet the eligibility requirements, which includes some connection to Minnesota, detailed above, and open a Membership Savings account with at least $10.
Can I open an account with Affinity Plus online?
Yes, you can apply for Affinity Plus accounts online. The website is comprehensive and has options to apply online for most products.
How's Affinity Plus physical coverage?
Affinity Plus has physical branches throughout Minnesota, but the credit union provides access to an ATM network with over 60,000 machines nationwide.
Table Of Content
Money Market Account
Affinity Plus Savings
Affinity Plus has three types of savings account which each offer:
- No monthly maintenance fees
- 0.10% APY (much lower compared to the leading savings accounts)
- Easy transfers to and from savings accounts via the online banking platform or Affinity Plus app
- Early access to your paycheck up to two days early
- Potential to earn four MyPlus Rewards Points per money for every $1,000 in average daily savings.
However, there are some key differences between the Affinity Plus savings accounts.
This is the basic Affinity Plus member savings account. It is a simple savings account which represents a share in the credit union.
This is a requirement for every Affinity Plus member and you’ll need a minimum of $10 to act as your membership share.
Affinity Plus does not restrict how many Shares II accounts members may hold. There are no minimum balance requirements or term requirements.
This means that you can open up a Shares II account for each of your savings goals.
This is an incentivized account, with a draw for cash prizes. Each time that you increase your month over month balance by $25, you will receive a draw entry.
There are prize draws monthly, quarterly and annually. The account has a $5 minimum balance requirement and you are committed to a 12 month term with fees for early withdrawal.
Affinity Plus Certificates
Affinity Plus has three types of CDs or certificates offering a variety of terms, allowing you to lock in the rate for the entire certificate term. As with the Affinity Plus savings accounts, you can earn four MyPlus Rewards Points per money for every $1,000 average daily balance.
As the name suggests, this is the standard CD product with a $500 minimum balance requirement and no limits for the single deposit. There is a variety of terms between 3 months – 66 months with current rates of 0.30% – 5.25% APY. The higher rates are available for 13 month or longer terms.
However, if you need access to your funds before your certificate matures, an early withdrawal penalty will apply. This is calculated according to the original term of your certificate. For terms of less than 12 months, it is 90 days of interest, but this increases to 180 days for longer terms.
Overall, while Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union isn't listed on our top credit union CD rates, it offers competitive rates on various terms and can be a good option for those looking to ladder CD.
This certificate is only available with a 12-month term, but you can lock in a rate of 1.00% APY, which is quite high compared to other 12-month certificate rate.
Certificate Builder has a $100 minimum deposit, but unusually, you are not limited to one single deposit for a CD. In fact, there are no limits to the number or amounts of deposits you make into the account.
As with the standard certificates, the early withdrawal penalty will apply if you need to withdraw some or all of the funds before the 12 month maturity date.
The Wahoo Certificate has no minimum balance requirements and a 12 month term. You can make an unlimited number of deposits, but there is a maximum balance cap of $25,000. Wahoo Certificates offer a similar rate of 1.00%, but you can have one no penalty withdrawal during the term.
Affinity Plus Checking
Affinity Plus also has three types of checking/spending accounts. All three types of accounts offer
- Digital banking including mobile check deposit
- Debit card with card controls that allow you to set limits and alerts
- Access to an ATM network with 60,000 plus fee free machines
- Access to your paycheck or other direct deposit funds up to two days early
- MyPlus Reward points on debit card purchases.
This account offers a rate of 0.125% APY at this time if you have a minimum balance of $200.
Having $200 or more in the account will also mean that you can avoid the $6 monthly maintenance fee. The account has check writing abilities with up to four boxes of checks per year offered free of charge.
However, the interest is low compared to other high-interest checking accounts.
This is the most basic Affinity Plus checking account, which is designed to help you to maintain control over your money. The account has no facility for overdrafting and there is no check writing abilities.
Unusually for a credit union, Affinity Plus also offers a variety of investing options. These include:
- Structured Certificates: These provide a return according to a specific index. You can purchase a structured certificate for a fixed price and the returns are dependent on the outcome of the index.
- Stocks: You can purchase stocks in publicly traded companies of your choice.
- Mutual Funds: These are professionally managed investment funds that are made up of a variety of assorted securities.
- Annuities: This is a personal pension plan, with annuities in a variety of options. You can receive payments until the end of your life with initial investments in the form of lump sums or rollovers from qualified retirement plans.
- Bonds: Bonds are essentially a loan to businesses or the government which is repaid at a later, specific date. You’ll receive dividends according to corporation profits.
Affinity Plus offers various lending products and options. These include:
- Personal Loans: Affinity Plus offers both unsecured and secured personal loans with flexible terms and no prepayment penalties. You can also earn MyPlus Rewards points with your loan.
- Auto Loans: You can get up to 100% financing for your new or used vehicle including fees and license. These auto loans are available with a term of up to 84 months with no prepayment penalties. You can also find out if you’re pre-approved within two business hours of submitting your online application.
- Home Loans: Affinity Plus offers home loans for purchase, refinance, construction and investment property purchases. There are also home equity loan options available.
- Credit Cards: Affinity Plus has two credit card options. The Visa Premier Classic is a starter credit card with a $500 minimum credit line. It does not earn rewards for purchases, but can help you to build your credit. The Visa Premier Select Rewards card has a minimum $5,000 credit line and a lower introductory rate for the first 12 months. You will also earn MyPlus Rewards points for every dollar spent.
Pros and Cons
As with any financial institution, there are both positives and negatives associated with Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union.
Low or No Initial Minimums
Low Savings Rates
Fee Free ATM Access
Monthly Compound Interest
No Free Overdraft Protection
The Affinity Plus accounts have low or even no initial minimum deposit requirements, which makes them easily accessible for most people.
You’ll earn MyPlus Rewards points for almost every Affinity Plus account including savings, checking, and lending products. You can then redeem your points for gift cards, cash back and loan rate reductions.
Affinity Plus provides its customers with access to an ATM network of over 60,000 machines across the country for fee free transactions.
Although the savings rates are a little on the low side, Affinity Plus offers decent rates on certificates and other deposit accounts. This makes Affinity Plus competitive, particularly when compared with other credit unions and banks CDs.
You must have an Affinity Plus Membership Savings account for membership to this credit union, but this account and other Affinity Plus savings accounts offer quite low APYs.
Affinity Plus compounds interest on deposit accounts monthly not daily, which does limit the return potential.
While there is the potential for a line of credit, Affinity Plus does not offer free overdraft protection on its accounts.
Affinity Plus Customer Service
Affinity Plus has a comprehensive help section on its website, but it also offers a toll free helpline if you have any queries or questions. In fact, Affinity Plus has a solid reputation for its customer service and products. It is an accredited company with the Better Business Bureau with an A+ rating. As of this time, Affinity Plus has no public controversies or serious infractions.
Affinity Plus also has a solid reputation on consumer review platforms including Trustpilot. The only complaints seem to be related to issues transferring portfolios over from other investing platforms.
How to Join Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union
Affinity Plus is not available to everyone, as it does have geographic restrictions. You can be eligible to join if you’re employed by the State of Minnesota or partner companies, if you’re a student or alum of any Minnesota State college or university, or you live or work in certain communities throughout the Minnesota area. You can also have eligibility through relatives if you have a family member or room mate who is a current member.
If you’re eligible, you will need to open a Membership Savings account with at least $10. Once this account is opened, you will be a member of the credit union and can access the other products and services offered.
About Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union
Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union is a member owned financial institution that has been around since the 1930s.
It was formed by a group of Minnesota state employees and it maintains its overall aim of honesty, care and concern for people. Before 1999, Affinity Plus was called State Capital Credit Union, but it has had such growth and acquisitions, it prompted rebranding and renaming to Affinity Plus.
Today, Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union offers an impressive selection of banking products, which we’ll explore in more detail here.
Affinity Plus Federal Credit Union does have a wide coverage with its ATMs and account options, but you do need to have a connection to Minnesota to become a member.
Affinity Plus does have NCUA coverage. This is federal insurance for up to $250,000 per member to reimburse your funds should the credit union fail.