During the past few years, Hanscom Federal Credit Union has earned kudos from several consumer finance websites for its automatic savings program known as CU Thrive, which offers significantly better rates than most savings accounts.
Recently the $1 billion, 50,000-member institution headquartered at Hanscom Air Force Base, Mass., received recognition by GoBankingRates.com for offering one of the best savings rates in the country.
“In a recent study examining the top deposit rates available today, we found the ‘CU Thrive’ account from Hanscom Federal Credit Union to be a highly unique savings product, which offered double the rate of the highest-yield one-year certificate of deposit at other FIs in the U.S., ” said Casey Bond, managing editor of the El Segundo, Calif.-based GoBankingRates.com.
“Not only does Hanscom FCU’s CU Thrive account offer a built-in automatic savings plan, it currently provides one of the highest rates available in the country,” Bond added. “CU Thrive’s current rate is 3.00% APY - compared to the national average savings account rate of only .11% APY, according to our database.”
Members can open a CU Thrive account with as little as $5 by transferring money from their Hanscom FCU checking account on a monthly, bimonthly, biweekly or weekly schedule. The amount of each transfer is flexible and can vary, along with the frequency, as long as members transfer a total of $5 to $500 per month, the credit union said.
One year from the time of opening the account, money saved and interest earned is rolled into the member's savings account, said Hanscom FCU officials.
“The idea is to encourage members to save on a regular schedule,” said Paul Marotta, chairman of the board for Hanscom FCU. “We call it the autopilot savings plan. Some members are using it like a super-charged club account. It’s great for young people, too.”
The product is an ideal companion to free checking, he said.
“Members can pay themselves first with this “set it and forget it” program. It’s part of the “People Helping People” philosophy we are known for and take very seriously,” Marotta added. “We have aligned with programs through America Saves when promoting CU Thrive and it’s a great fit.”
Hanscom FCU’s CU Thrive has received attention from other organizations devoted to highlighting deals for depositors, including FatWallet.com and DepositAccounts.com.
“Once someone benefits from CU Thrive, they like to share the good news,” said Marotta. “It’s nice to be thought of as a friend among those devoted to thrift. I feel like we are fulfilling our mission.”