Credit union business account — Your top 7 choices

Panna Kemenes

Credit unions have over 100 million members in the US. They provide businesses with many of the same financial products as traditional banks.

You can get a credit union business account, business loans, and business services such as advice on how to grow your company. However, credit unions are not the same as banks.

This article covers the top options to consider and all you need to know about credit union business accounts.

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Best credit unions for business accounts

Many credit unions operate in the US. But are credit unions good for business? Not all credit unions offer business products and services. It’s worth checking out the local credit unions in your area to see what they promote.

To help you get started, here are a few credit unions that offer business products to their members:

Credit unionGreat for
Navy Federal Credit UnionMembers of the armed services
Consumer's Credit UnionGetting returns on money invested
DCU — Digital Federal Credit UnionSmall businesses looking for simplicity
America First Credit UnionBusinesses looking for a wider range of products
BECU — Boeing Employee's Credit UnionSmall businesses looking for free business checking and access to tax software
Suncoast Credit UnionFee-free ATM access
Delta Community Credit UnionOnline and mobile banking

1. Navy Federal Credit Union

Navy Federal is the largest credit union in the country, with eligibility open to servicemembers of all branches of the armed forces. This includes veterans, retirees, Department of Defense civilian employees. Membership is also extended to family and household members.¹

Business services available include savings and checking accounts. You can also bank online and use an app for convenience.

There are three business checking accounts available. Each account earns dividends, comes with a debit card and access to digital banking. The business checking account is best for small businesses. This account comes with no monthly service fee.

The Business Plus and Business Premium accounts are more suited to medium and large businesses. These accounts come with monthly service fees between $0 to $20 for the Premium account.² The monthly service fee can be waived if the average daily balance is $5,000 or more. Otherwise, a $20 monthly service fee will apply.²

🔍 Read the full Navy Federal business account review to learn more.

2. Consumer's Credit Union

To join this credit union, you’ll need to become a member of the Consumer's Cooperative Association, which you can do by paying a $5 membership charge, which CCU will reimburse.⁴

There are business checking and savings accounts on offer. These include a Business Money Market account which offers returns on any money invested. You’ll also be able to apply for extra services such as a business visa card or loan.

To open a CCU business account, you must be doing business in Illinois or Wisconsin. You will also have to open the account in person at a local branch.³


3. DCU — Digital Federal Credit Union

The DCU field of membership covers some towns in Massachusetts and Georgia. It also covers a large list of employers, organizations, and homeowners associations. If you live, work, worship, or study in the towns highlighted, have or had a job with one of the eligible employers, you can join. Membership is also extended to family members.⁵

DCU offers a business checking and a business savings account. Even with the business checking account, you can earn up to 0.10% APY, and there is no monthly fee and a minimum balance requirement of $0.01.⁶

As DCU offers a free business checking account, and free access to a large network of ATMs, it can be one of the best credit unions for small business owners.


4. America First Credit Union

America First is a federally insured credit union. It offers a range of business checking accounts, and business services such as loans and credit cards. America First has over 120 branches and 810,000 members across Utah and Nevada.⁷

This credit union can be a good choice for organizations, associations, and non-profits. There is a non-profit business account available.

Although the field of membership is somewhat narrow, America First is an interesting option for those eligible. This is due to the sheer range of product options, as well as a decent online banking system.


5. BECU — Boeing Employee's Credit Union

Although the name sounds like few people will be eligible, BECU offers membership to any resident of Washington state, and some counties in Oregon and Idaho.

If you or a family member live, work, study, or worship in these areas, you may be eligible. The field of membership also covers employees of Boeing, other credit unions and their family members.⁸

Once you join, you can get a business checking account, cash back visa card, and more. The business checking account is free, with no monthly maintenance fees or minimum balance. You can also benefit from helpful tax advice through the BECU tax center.

Read the full BECU Business account review

6. Suncoast Credit Union

Listed as the 12th largest credit union by value, Suncoast is based in Florida and has 500,000 members. You can become a member if you live in certain areas of Florida, or went to school there — or if a family member is already a Suncoast member themselves.

You’ll be able to get a business bank account, loan, or other useful products. Account holders can also access tens of thousands of ATMs on a fee-free network.⁹


7. Delta Community Credit Union

The Delta Community Credit Union covers areas of Georgia. Business products include checking accounts, savings accounts, and a money market account. There are also extra services such as online and mobile banking and statements.

The Value Checking account requires a $500 minimum balance to avoid the monthly service fee. It offers online banking access, a rewards points program, and access to a fee-free ATM network.¹⁰

The Business Checking account has no monthly service fee, as long as you maintain a minimum balance of $750. On top of the features of the Value account, it is also interest-bearing. Account holders with an average daily balance of $1000 or more can earn 0.20% APY.¹¹

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What to consider when choosing a credit union business account

Getting a business account through a credit union can offer some advantages, such as a personal service and lower transaction fees. However, there are also some disadvantages to consider.

You’ll need to think carefully about how you expect to use your account and whether the credit union can provide everything you need.

By spending some time on research, and looking at a broad range of accounts from banks, credit unions, and alternative providers — like the Wise Business account, you’ll find the account which suits you.

Here are some of the most important things you need to know about credit unions:

Is a credit union a bank?

Let’s start with the basics — and one of the most common misconceptions about credit unions.

A credit union is not a bank.

Although credit unions offer many of the same services that banks do, there are significant differences in how they’re run. The main factors are which customers are eligible to use them, and how products, fees, and penalties are set.¹²

Credit Unions accept eligible members

To get a bank account, you’ll need to demonstrate your eligibility. This usually involves providing ID and address documents, and completing some paperwork.

However, credit unions have members — not customers. To become a member, you’ll need to fulfill a different set of eligibility requirements.

Credit unions select members based on their ‘field of membership’. That means there’s a common bond between all the members — this could be any of the following:

  • Members work for the same employer, or in the same field of work

  • Members are all part of the same community group, such as a church, alumni association, labor union, or homeowners association

  • Members are all part of a specific charity or advocacy group

  • Members all live in the same town or region

  • Members share family bonds

Credit unions are owned by members

In basic terms, credit unions exist to serve their members. Banks are typically run by a board of directors looking to produce profit and increase the share price and dividend payments. Credit unions are owned by their members, and a board of volunteers acts as the union’s directors.

These volunteer directors are voted for by members — often with a one-member-one-vote system. This means you have an equal say in how the credit union is run, regardless of how much money you hold with it.

This member first policy also extends to other services. Credit unions are often involved in local charities and offer financial management education.

Credit Unions are not-for-profit

Credit unions are set up with a different philosophy compared to banks. One major point of note is that they’re not-for-profit organizations. This can translate into lower fees and better terms if you want to take a loan or open an account.

Credit Unions can be either federally insured or not

You may know that banks in the US are typically insured by the FDIC Deposit Insurance Fund.

Credit unions have a different system. All federal credit unions and most state-banked credit unions have insurance through the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund. This means your money will be protected in the event the credit union runs into difficulties or fails. Up to $250,000 per member is covered.¹³

However, it’s not mandatory for credit unions to have this insurance, so you’ll need to check the details for your chosen credit union before you sign up.

Best credit unions for business accounts

Key differences between credit unions and banks

If you’re wondering ‘should I open a business account with a credit union?’, you’ll want to think carefully about the pros and cons. Here are a few points to consider:

  • You’ll need to check your eligibility for credit unions carefully, and may be limited to those which cover your geographic area or line of work

  • Products available through a credit union may come with lower fees than banks

  • Credit unions are typically smaller and more local than banks — this may mean a more personal service, but fewer branches and a smaller ATM network

  • Check out the online banking options available through your chosen credit union, as the services may differ from traditional banks

  • Large banks might have a broader range of tech solutions for businesses, such as integration with online accounting products

How to find the best Credit Union for your business

The right credit union business account will depend a lot on your personal preferences and circumstances.

You’ll first need to check which credit unions you may be eligible to join. Credit unions often serve a specific population, this may mean the branch locations are limited. It’s worth checking out where your local credit union office will be if you’ll need to use physical services such as depositing cash into your business account.

Once you have a shortlist of credit unions based on your eligibility and location, it’s time to look at the fees and features. The best bank or credit union for small business owners will likely be one that offers a business checking account with no minimum balance or monthly service fee.

You’ll also want to check out the transaction costs, thinking carefully about the type of regular transactions you’ll need to carry out.

Finally, it’s worth thinking about the other services you may need, either now or as your business grows and develops.

Can you take a loan to invest in your business or increase your working capital, for example? Can you send and receive international payments easily? This will become important if you start to work with international customers or suppliers.

By thinking through questions like these, you’ll be able to find a business credit union account that works for you now, and will continue to serve your needs in the future.

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Finding the right bank or credit union business account can be even trickier when you have an international business. Banks and money transfer providers often make extra profits from the exchange rate they give you.

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Sources:

  1. Navy Federal business eligibility
  2. Navy Federal fees
  3. CCU - Business bank accounts
  4. CCU - How to join
  5. DCU Eligibility page
  6. DCU Business Checking and Savings Accounts
  7. America First Credit Union - Federal deposit insurance
  8. BECU Membership Eligibility
  9. Suncoast Credit Union - Business page
  10. Value Checking Account - Delta Community Credit Union
  11. Delta Community Credit Union - Business checking account
  12. MyCreditUnion.gov - How is a credit union different from a bank
  13. MyCreditUnion.gov - NCUA

Sources checked February 2024.


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This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.

We make no representations, warranties or guarantees, whether expressed or implied, that the content in the publication is accurate, complete or up to date.

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