Discussion in 'ROTC' started by philmont, May 21, 2013.
I have USAA for renter's insurance, car insurance, banking and my cadet loan. No real qualms so far but there are better places to do investments and what not. Their service is awesome!
It really is to me a personal choice like asking should you buy a Toyota or a Honda.
We have had USAA since 1987. Our DS now an AF O1 has USAA. Our car insurance, home owner insurance, credit cards are all with USAA. It makes everything easy to do when it is all with them. He can use his smart phone to deposit checks. He is able to get ATM fees back in cost. In our area of No VA, you can find more USAA ATMs than NFCU. Probably because they have a broader market base.
Plus, as long term members every yr you get a xmas present from them...a dividend check.
I also agree with Aglahad there are better places for investments. We also rarely use their auto loans or mtgs because, for new cars you usually can get a lower int rate with the dealership, and for mtgs USAA even with the best credit rating they typically are higher in fees/closing costs, etc compared to a national lender.
As a realtor, many use the USAA buying/selling service, which I support not only as a realtor, but a USAA buyer too. The reason why is due to the fact that brokers vie for the business, they must send weekly reports to USAA proving that they are working on your account.
OBTW take my opinion with a grain of salt because we are an AF family, hence NFCU was not a path for us.
I am not familiar with either (other that looking at their websites) just looking for opinions so I appreciate the feedback. Looking primarily for banking services at this time.
but hands down, Toyota!!
The career starter loan is run through USAA, at least it was my DS (AF) and Aglahad (Army). I don't know if Navy uses NFCU for the starter loan.
If you take the starter loan, make your life easy and set up a checking acct with the bank you have the loan. 5 yrs here, I don't know one poster that didn't take it with USAA.
Think about it. If there is a payment problem regarding automatic payments for the loan, renter's insurance, car insurance, etc. it is all in one wheelhouse...USAA. They have their bank account and all of their information.
Going NFCU, and using USAA for insurance, if something happens you will be working with 2 banks to rectify the problem. Rare? Yes, but it happens. You don't want to be deployed and trying to contact 2 banks to rectify the problem.
USAA also has an amazing buying program...they are connected with Pro Flowers, diamond dealers, jewelers, specialty gifts. All are competitively priced. Whether you use their banking option, you will get these benefits as a USAA member....i.e. car insurance, starter loan, etc.
The final reason IMPO, is from a Mom with kids. DS in the AF would have become a USAA member whether or not he went into the AF. Our 2 younger kids aren't going military, however they are USAA members because their Dad was one. DD just got her 1st car on her own. She is 21. She purchased a 2103 Ford Escape S. Her insurance per yr 350. We carry way above the state mins. The car is replacement value...so if G forbid she totals it in 2017, they will pay for a 2017.
DS AF O1. He is 23, his insurance for his 2012 Toyota Corolla SE, 480 a yr.
Since my son learned this bit of info the hard way (one person telling him one thing last summer only to learn this past april that it was NOT available).
Both USAA and NFCU offer career kick off (starter) loans
the basics are similiar - 5yr payback, can wait to start repay until after graduation (think it was 60 days - can do earlier if desired/able)- MUST have your direct deposit into checking acct at their institution
- differences are huge tho:
NFCU - $32,000 MAX - interest rate 1.50 range, MUST be taken out BEFORE commissioning. Can be taken anytime during junior and senior year -
ONLY AVAILABLE TO the FIVE FEDERAL ACADEMY CADETS/MIDN - NOT ROTC scholarships
USAA - $25,000 MAx - interest rate 2.99%, taken out within 1 yr of graduation EITHER SIDE. ROTC commissioning (my son was 4yr scholarship so for sure those) ARE ELIGIBLE - USAA only toooo willing to offer their products to these due to commission cadets/midn.
DS #1 is an enlisted Navy nuke and has had NFCU for his banking for 2 1/2 years and has been very happy with them. DS #2 just commissioned as an Army infantry officer in December and switched all of his banking to USAA. So far, he's been pleased with them. He also took out the loan they offered which really cam in handy with all of his out of pocket expenses for equipment purchases when he arrived at Fort Benning (several thousand dollars).
I use both
I have used NFCU for banking since 1986 and mortgage with them since 2005 and have been completely pleased with them. I've used USAA for all my insurance needs since 1996 and have been completely pleased with them as well. We had to use our homeowner's policy a couple years ago and they were EXCELLENT! I can't put into words how well they took care of everything. I know this probably doesn't help you choose between the two, but I think you can't go wrong with either.
Question for the OP?
Are you just a ROTC cadet currently, or entering this yr as a ROTC cadet.
The reason why I ask is USAA may not allow even a contracted cadet in ROTC as a member, thus this would be a moot point.
If the cadet is a child of a USAA member they will already have a USAA membership number. Our kids have had their own USAA number for yrs. We didn't request it, they automatically assigned it yrs ago. Our youngest turned 19 just a few days ago, and I know he had his member number since he was in HS.
If you don't know your number, just call their 800 number and they will tell you it. From there you can create a pin and open an account, etc.
Also, just for clarification regarding the starter loans. USAA offers 2 types depending on the commissioning source (ROTC or SA)
~~~ SA starter loan is like NFCU, except it is 35K, but at that same very low rate.
~~~ ROTC starter loan is 25K, and at the 2.75% rate.
USAA has a huge caveat regarding these loans. Leave prior to the initial commitment and it jumps to APR+ 9.99%. This is a big factor if you go rated. Not everyone completes UPT, and if you bust, the service can give you walking papers. That means the loan jumps.
For ROTC, at least AFROTC, when our DS commissioned, that exact same day right after graduation he had to get paperwork signed by the CoC which he submitted to USAA to start the loan. The loan is 180 days grace period, like a FAFSA loan.
Take heed on how much you take in that loan. Many car dealerships will give you 0% int loans, new grad rebate, and military rebate. Our DS took only 10K from USAA. His car loan (15K) was 0% int. with Toyota. 5k was placed into an IRA. 5K was placed into a money market savings account. He was happy he did that because as infantrymom stated there are a lot of out of pocket expenses in the beginning. For our DS it wasn't uniforms/equipment it was reporting to his first base.
~~~ Finance messed up on his pay. Reported Oct 1. 1st paycheck Nov 15th. Back pay paid Dec.1. Meanwhile he had to pay to travel to his station (3 days). Furnish his aptmt with pots, pans, dishes, linens. Pay his car and insurance payments. Buy food. That 5K in savings was touched because when he left home Sept 26th he had 3K in checking.
Dishes, linens, etc aren't cheap even when you buy them at Wal-Mart. That's before the 2 car pmts, and insurance plus gas which was 1K in total for those 2 months. Add in the cost to travel from VA to TX. Paying cable and food, plus 1 night out a week, and you are bleeding money until finance has it right.
I only say this because that 25K is very appealing, but if you use it all in one fell swoop with nothing put in savings for the rainy day, you can be in pain as an O1.
To your initial point, Pima, ROTC cadets are eligible to join. My DS did so as an MS I.
Yes they are.
Thanks for the input everyone! it sounds like either one (NFCU or USAA) will do the job.
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