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California First National Bank VS CommunityWide FCU

Which bank is better for you?

  • Financial Rates: 1.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 3.5 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 2.5 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 3.0 Star Icon
No Rate Information
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Pros:

  • Reimbursement of ATM fees
  • Competitive interest rates on accounts
  • Interest rates are not tiered
  • Free first order of checks with checking

Cons:

  • Not a wide variety of accounts
  • High opening required amounts
  • Accounts have monthly fees
  • Not all CDs offer competitive rates
  • Financial Rates: 4.0 Star Icon
  • Customer Service: 4.5 Star Icon
  • Website Experience: 4.0 Star Icon
  • Bank Fees: 5.0 Star Icon
No Rate Information
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Pros:

  • Accounts offer competitive rates
  • Low opening amounts and no monthly fees
  • Variety of savings accounts offered
  • Funds savings account

Cons:

  • Must join the credit union first
  • No ATM fee reimbursement
  • Only one checking account offered
  • CD early withdrawal penalty can be high
California First National Bank Review

You can withdraw money from any ATMs with the specific “Plus” logo. If you withdraw money from another ATM, you are reimbursed for the fees charged. CalFirst will reimburse up to $6.00 each statement cycle in ATM fees.

Most CalFirst accounts offer competitive interest rates. The interest rates are not tiered, so you earn the highest rates offered on any balance in the account. Interest is paid monthly on the actual daily balance.

The interest rates for CalFirst accounts are not tiered. Any amount you have in their accounts earns the competitive interest rates. You do not have to have a certain amount in the account to earn the most competitive rates.

The first order of checks is free when you open an interest checking account. You get an ATM card when you open an interest checking account. Free online bill pay comes with each CalFirst checking account opened.

CalFirst does not have a wide variety of accounts. No business accounts are available, only personal deposit accounts. One money market account and savings account are available. There is an interest checking and one regular checking account. CalFirst only offers five different CD terms.

CalFirst accounts have high opening amounts. The money market account and CDs require $5,000 to open. The interest checking account requires $2,500 to open. The savings account and regular checking account both require $1,000 to open.

The accounts at CalFirst all have a monthly fee. The fees range from $10 to $20 a month, depending on the account you open. Waive the fee by keeping a set amount in CalFirst accounts. You can also have a combined balance between a variety of CalFirst accounts.

Not all the CD terms offer competitive rates. The most competitive rates are the three-month, six-month, and the one-year terms. The two-year and three-year terms have interest rates much lower than the other terms. Regular CDs require $5,000 to open. The IRA CDs require $2,000 to open. The only fees are if you withdraw the money before the maturity date.

Read the full California First National Bank review.

CommunityWide FCU Review

Accounts at CommunityWide FCU offer competitive interest rates. The rates are competitive with other online accounts. CommunityWide rates are much higher than typical bank rates. Their rates are not tiered. Any balance above the required amount earns competitive interest rates.

CommunityWide accounts have low opening required amounts. The savings accounts require $5 to open. The checking account requires $15 to open. The CD terms each require $1,000 to open. The CommunityWide FCU checking and savings accounts do not have a monthly fee. If you only open a savings account and the account does not have any activity, there is a $5 dormant account fee. That fee applies for each month with no activity.

CommunityWide offers a wide variety of savings accounts. The accounts offered include:

  • Personal savings account
  • High-yield savings account
  • Funds savings account
  • CD terms from six months to five years
  • IRA accounts

A Funds savings account is available through CommunityWide FCU. This account acts as a savings account but earns a higher interest rate. Members can only withdraw money deposited in the account at specific times. You can choose whether to withdraw the money monthly or quarterly. Money can be deposited into the Funds savings account anytime.

Before you can open an account with CommunityWide, you must become a member of the credit union. To be eligible to join, you must have worked for a certain company or be a spouse of someone who has. Members of certain organizations are eligible. Immediate family members of CommunityWide members qualify to open an account. Once you qualify, you must show a valid government-issued ID and your Social Security Number.

CommunityWide Federal Credit Union does not offer ATM fee reimbursements. They offer over 30,000 ATMs free for members to use. If you make a transaction with another ATM, not in their network, you may be charged a fee. CommunityWide will not reimburse you for those fees.

CommunityWide FCU offers many accounts, but only one checking account. The checking account earns interest for balances over $1 and requires $15 to open. It is the only checking account available through CommunityWide FCU.

The early withdrawal fee for CommunityWide FCU CDs can be higher than other CD fees. CommunityWide FCU uses a specific formula to determine the penalty. First, they take the withdrawn amount times the remaining days at twice the current APR. They then divide the amount by 365. There is not a set penalty based on term length.

Read the full CommunityWide FCU review.

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