Banking-- Where to go?

Discussion in 'Military Academy - USMA' started by Dave92390, Apr 5, 2009.

  1. Dave92390

    Dave92390 Member

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    I've heard good and bad stories about USAA and Pentagon Fed Credit Union. Do those have benefits above other civilian banks? Which seem to have the easiest access in terms of being a cadet?

    Also for one that wants a little more flexibility and oversight of finances (eg. strong money market, CD's, competitive interest rate, low atm fees) is it simply better to go to national civilian banks?
     
  2. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    bad stories about USAA? wow. do tell.
    I have never heard one bad one. I have used them for years and my kids have too.
    You can't beat their ATM refund fee deal. Deposits are easy to mail in a postage free envelope, the online system is extremely user friendly and their interest rates are great.

    For anyone in the military I would suggest either of these banks.
    For one thing - as they progress in their military career and get posted around the world they are fabulous for address changes and deployment help.
     
  3. Maximus

    Maximus Member

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    I assume it's easy for a parent to deposit money into the account with a credit card? Say you wanted to give a gift or buy something like a sword or books?
     
  4. America's Finest

    America's Finest USMA Cadet

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    I use USAA as well as my parents. No problems there.
     
  5. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    I'm a fan of USAA's too...

    Banking
    Investments
    Auto Loan
    Renters insurance
    Personal Property insurance
    Auto insurance...


    I haven't had a problem, and they are great on the phone.
     
  6. Just_A_Mom

    Just_A_Mom Member

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    Maximus - I have joint accounts with my kids. I transfer money with a couple of clicks on my computer. I even can transfer money from my local bank into USAA and vice versa.
    USAA also will send you deposit envelopes. You can fill these out, enclose a check made out to your child and mail it off. 2-3 days later it will be deposited.

    All of what LITS said.

    These are the current eligibility requirements for USAA:

    • Active-duty officers and enlisted personnel.
    • Children whose eligible parents have or had a USAA auto or property insurance product.1
    • National Guard and Selected Reserve officers and enlisted personnel.
    • Officer candidates in commissioning programs (Academy, ROTC, OCS/OTS).
    • Former military personnel:
      • Retired officers and enlisted personnel.
      • Former officers and enlisted personnel who separated from the military on or after January 1, 1996.
     
  7. bruno

    bruno Retired Staff Member

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    Ditto- I have used USAA as an insurance company and a bank for 35 years and have never had anything but phenomenal service from them. My father can say the same thing but going back to 1956. No matter where you are, or how fast you need to get dinero- they will support you. They ought to be the national poster children for customer service awards! Not only can you deposit by mail easily but now you can scan in checks and deposit electronically with almost zero effort. I have a small account with Navy Federal Credit Union as well- they are pretty good but not going to win the stanley cup when they compete in the finals with USAA. I can't imagine at this point doing the bulk of my banking or Car and House insurance with anyone else.
    This by the way was not a paid endorsement!:thumb:
     
  8. SubSquid

    SubSquid Member

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    Ditto-Ditto-My Dad switched to USAA just before he retired reserve in '73. Been my own member since '80. Nothing but supberb relations with them. Home and cars are insured by them and did a refi on the home with them a few year's back. Son has an account and loves the check scanning feature. He is cashless and uses the Debit card for everything. Great company that is very much in touch with the special needs of Service Members. I have my 25 year member sticker, under my dolphins, on my truck tailgate:biggrin:
     
  9. aprouddad

    aprouddad Parent

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    I just want to add one more plug for USAA. I've been a member since about 1982. I've used them for insurance (auto, boat, home, life), auto loans, home mortgages (3 homes + 2 refis over the years), investment accounts, and banking. Because they have always served members all over the world, they have remote service down to a science.

    They have always been YEARS ahead of similar institutions when it comes to technology. They have great phone support. The people that answer their phones are extremely competent and helpful. I just had a very informative conversation with USAA about auto insurance options once son leaves (he will be USMA class of 2013). These days, what you can do on their web site just amazes me (and I'm in the web business).

    Both my kids have had USAA 'teen checking' accounts (w/debit cards) for several years. They have web access to their accounts but they rarely use that because they can check their balance by texting 'bal' to MYUSAA on their cell phone (their accounts are linked to their individual cell numbers).

    As someone else mentioned, I can transfer money quickly and easily by phone, web, or web on my cell phone. It's almost too easy! The kids call me from the checkout line because they know I can transfer the money from anywhere and it will be in their account instantly.

    USAA has already sent the form 1199 USMA wants for direct deposit of son's money. As soon as he turns 18, his account automatically converts to a regular account under his name.

    One more example of how well their technology works... Back when we were shopping for a vehicle for my son, we found a car that looked promising. I called USAA from my cell phone to get a basic idea of what insurance would cost for that particular vehicle. I gave the representative the VIN and some other details. A week or so later, we bought the car. When we got home I went online to check on adding the car to my insurance. I clicked "add a vehicle". The next page said "Is this the vehicle you want to insure?" and offered all the details already provided in the earlier phone call. Because all the info was already there, I had that car on my policy in less than 5 minutes without even making another phone call.
     
  10. RaptorDad2013

    RaptorDad2013 Member

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    And remember, aprouddad -- when you drove that car off the lot, you were already insured -- even if you hadn't called them! That's all automatic. (USAA member since 1968!)
     
  11. Maximus

    Maximus Member

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    OK, I guess we're sold, USAA it is!
     
  12. J Collins

    J Collins Founding Member

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    Hey I have USAA.. and have been insured with them since 1980 (over 1/4 of a century member now) :shake:

    I don't bank with them, except for my USAA Mastercard..
    but would never have another car insurance.
     
  13. qwerty52

    qwerty52 Member

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    I believe that the USAA representative told me when I called that you don't even have to mail in the check for a deposit; if you have a scanner, you can scan the check and send the image to USAA- they will do the rest. Aside from having to send the WP form to them to sign, USAA seems like the way to go. They are all about service, and have everything that your child will need down the road.

    I have been using the USAA prepaid debit cards for my teenagers and it has been great; my daughter can be standing in an airport in Europe without a Euro to her name and I can instantly load money onto her card from any bank account that I have. It's great.
     
  14. Momof2cadets

    Momof2cadets Founding Member

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    The "deposit from home" feature using a scanner is fantastic!! The really nice thing is that except for very large deposits they $$ is instantly available, unlike a lot of banks today. :thumb:
     
  15. aprouddad

    aprouddad Parent

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    qwerty52,

    You don't need to send the form to them. Call USAA, tell them you need an 1199 form, give them the details. They will fill out the form, sign it and mail it to you. Took about two days to get here when I did it for my son.

    BTW, best news yet... In that same phone call, they told me that once son is 18 and at West Point, he can go off my insurance and get his own "non-owner" policy. My insurance goes WAY down and his policy (as an occasional driver, non-owner) will be quite reasonable.
     
  16. luv2swim

    luv2swim Member

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    fyi for non-military families

    I just called USAA - we are not military so I was afraid DS would not be eligible to sign up for a USAA account before reporting. For others in this situation, here's what I learned:

    DS can call and set up a "non-military" checking account available to anyone. After reporting this can be converted to military and then he will be eligible for all the insurance discounts, etc.
     
  17. mom3boys

    mom3boys Parent

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    luvs2swim: you were misinformed...we went through this last year. You need to call back and get a manager. Tell them your child is a cadet candidate and you wish to set up the account now. You will be able to do so...we had to jump through some extra hoops...but it worked out. You should not have to convert to anything; you should get what you need from day 1.
     
  18. Maximus

    Maximus Member

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    Cadet Candidates at USMAPS too?
     
  19. Maximus

    Maximus Member

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    I'll answer my own question, yes it counts for cadet candidates and it's as simple as a phone call. What great phone reps USAA has!
     
  20. Zaphod

    Zaphod Founding Member

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    Excellent choice.

    I've been insured by them since 1996 (and I kick myself for not having started sooner), and banking with them since 2004.

    Never once had a problem. :smile:
     

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