When one of my coworkers bought a Nissan Altima through USAA, I got curious about the bank. I latter realized that I being a non-military person can never open one account there. I inquired other who use USAA for their banking needs. Here’s my finding, enjoy the post.
USAA provides many competitive financial products and services for its clients, most of who come from the military community. USAA stands for the United States Automobile Association. It was started early in the 20th century by army officers and it has grown to become one of the best financial service provider for army offices.
To become a member, you must be an army officer although this privilege can also be enjoyed by those who have retired from the military. Adult children whose parents are in the military and who are party of USAA can also enjoy this privilege and so can widows and widowers of former members of the USAA who have had insurance policies with the USAA.
There are tens of products that are provided by the USAA; these include life insurance policies, banking products, credit cards, financial planning and so forth. USAA is one of the highly rated financial institutions in the United States. Perhaps the fact that it is not a publicly traded company is one of the reasons it has maintained its financial stability over the years. USAA is one of the companies with the highest ratings in the United States.
Some of the benefits you will get from banking with USAA include;
- Depositing checks from your Smartphone or a scanner with Deposit@Home or Deposit@Mobile, or directly at selected locations
- Direct deposits are free
- Instant money access through ATM (consumers can use any ATM without the fear of penalty-any penalty fees will be borne by USAA)
- Mobile banking- you can find out your balance and get access to your money through your mobile phone from wherever you are in the country.
- You can make transfers from any bank in the United States and there is no limit as to the amount you may transfer from any of these banks.
- Online money management-thanks to USAA® Money Manager, you will be able to keep tabs on your spending. In essence, you will have a lot more money in your pockets as you will be assisted to spend less and save more.
- Thanks to USAA Web BillPay; you will be able to pay your bills from the comfort of your home. In case you want alerts for accounts that are almost overdue, you can get them with this application.
- The fact that it is an online bank with no physical location means you can access its services from anywhere in the United States. Physical locations tend to limit banking services; something that hasn’t been an issue for the USAA
- The site for the USAA is very easy to use; obviously because it is the only means by which you can access the bank. The USAA has invested a lot in web design and social tools for the marketing of its financial services. Still, it manages to maintain simplicity, which allows every possible user to access its services with ease. You will not have to hassle your way around to find a feature in the site, and this makes it very user-friendly, especially for those who do not know how to use the internet.
- Users will get free checks for as long as they are using USAA. (related – Business checks from Tech Checks)
- There are tens of banking options with the USAA and you can have all of them hosted by this bank. You can have your life insurance, home insurance, auto insurance, personal bank account, crediting account in USAA.
- You will earn 1 point for every $2 spent with your debit card and for this you can redeem for rewards like gift cards and so forth.
- Consume care services offered by the USAA are top-notch, and you can be assured that any banking issue you may have will be taken care of immediately.
The cons of USAA include the following;
- You have to be in the military, or your parents have to be in the military. This is a banking option that is open to military personnel or former military personnel and their immediate families only. When you think about the percentage of the USA population that is in the military, it means most people cannot access the services of the USAA. You can only smile and appreciate it from the outside if you are not in the military.
- Any overdraft will be drawn from your savings account. If you use your credit card, it means you will only draw in increments of $100. No matter how much you overdraft by, $100 will be deposited to your account. This means if you are not careful with your spending you will end up owing the bank a lot more money than you expected.
- The USAA has very few mutual find options, which means you will have very few investment options with it. The USAA has only four index funds, which means you are limited.
The verdict on USAA
If you have a military connection, you’ll feel at home with USAA, the bank servers people like you. But if you are a rate chaser, like me, you may fund better rates else where. We reviewed Ally, TIAA Direct and EverBank which pays better than USAA.
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