Where do I move my money in Los Angeles?
October 16, 2011 10:08 AM   Subscribe

So I think I've had enough and I'm going to close out my BofA account tomorrow. Any good credit union/co-op recommendations for Los Angeles?

I've used the USC Credit Union before so I might go back to them, but if anyone knows any other good credit unions in LA, preferably with ATMs in Los Feliz/Silverlake area that would be really great.

Or if there are any other suggestions on where I should store my money, that's also appreciated.
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth to Work & Money (13 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
We've had good experiences with First Entertainment Credit Union. You can see if you qualify for membership -- it used to be limited to industry people but it's broader now. They have no-surcharge agreements with several other banks, and you can check out ATM locations at that same website.
posted by BlahLaLa at 10:13 AM on October 16, 2011

The 7-11 on santa monica and virgil has a full service coop atm- I can deposit & withdraw from my CU (ucla cu) and my boyfriend can do likewise for his CU in Michigan. So no matter what CU you pick, if they are in the coop network, there's that ATM nearby. I know USC is a coop member, but can't offer suggestions otherwise. I am happy with ucla but you have to be a student or staff there to join.
posted by holyrood at 10:48 AM on October 16, 2011

I'm happy with WESCOM.
posted by mdonley at 10:54 AM on October 16, 2011

USAA bank is not in Los Angeles but I have used them for 7 years with no problem whatsoever. They have no fees - zero fees - for your checking account. You actually can use their services very conveniently over the internet and/or at other ATMs. They have the best customer service that I have seen in 15 years from any bank and I can say that without exaggeration. Anyone can join - you do not have to be in the military. It's worth your while to check them out.

Here is why they are great:

- NO checking account fees or debit card fees
- free checks
- reimbursement of up to 7 or 8 bucks a month for using other ATMs
- you can deposit checks using your iphone or android phone to snap a pic of it with their app
- you can deposit checks using any UPS Store (they scan your check and transmit it over right there)
- you can deposit your check by sending it to them in free mailers they give you
- LOW credit card rates and yearly fees
-outstanding internet banking integration plus super iphone and android apps as well
- BEST customer service evah !! (call them and see!)

They really are a great bank and worth using.
posted by Poet_Lariat at 11:11 AM on October 16, 2011 [1 favorite]

One caveat on USAA, you can only deposit checks via phone or scanner if you have or qualify for certain insurance or credit products that they offer. Unfortunately, those products are only available to individuals with ties to the military or to other USAA members.

That said, they're absolutely fantastic. I've had the occasion to deal with their customer support a few times each year, and literally every. single. time. I hang up the phone with a smile on my face. It's unbelievable. You actually talk to real humans who understand your issue, concern, or question, who are actually able to use their own critical reasoning to better resolve your call, and who don't try to up-sell you during the call. They're genuinely helpful.

For example, I recently called to set up a travel notice for a trip to Iceland. The representative offered to walk me through doing it myself on their website, or he could take care of it on the phone. No pressure either way, just a jovial "By the way, you can actually do this yourself on our website. While I'm on the line, would you like me to walk you through that?"
posted by SemiSophos at 11:54 AM on October 16, 2011

can you deposit cash at these Co-op ATMs? That's what has been holding me back from going w/ the CU... I need to make almost-daily cash deposits and usually do so after business hours.
posted by raihan_ at 12:16 PM on October 16, 2011

I've been really happy with DPW's Water and Power Credit Union. The branches are downtown, but you can use the ATM at any 7-Eleven.

Free change counting if you go to the branch in the DPW building. And the building security guys always have a contest to guess how much change you're bringing in.
posted by hwyengr at 12:18 PM on October 16, 2011

Check that. DWP, not DPW.
posted by hwyengr at 12:24 PM on October 16, 2011

First Entertainment isn't incredibly convenient, unless you're on the Paramount or Warner lots, but it's fairly painless. Validated parking at the Mid-Wilshire location. You have to put $500 in savings to have a checking account, with not great interest. I use Perk St. for most day to day transactions.
posted by Ideefixe at 1:10 PM on October 16, 2011

I work at First Entertainment and would like to add to the info in this thread. First Entertainment, like many credit unions, is a member of the CO OP Network which means our members have access to 28,000 surcharge free ATMs nationwide. Plus, there are 5,500 surcharge free CO OP ATMs at 7-Elevens and many of those take deposits too. Add to that the convenience of being able to get cash back at virtually all supermarkets and I don't get how we are not convenient. And did I mention our members enjoy 24/7 free online banking and unlimited online bill pay services? BTW, BofA has just 16,000 ATMs.

Finally, unfortunately, one poster here was given inaccurate info: you DO NOT have to have $500 in your savings to open a checking account. Our basic savings account is called First500, but that's just the name not the balance requirement. For more information about our services please visit www.firstent.org.
posted by First Entertainment at 4:56 PM on October 16, 2011

I have experience with First Entertainment and Lockheed Federal; my only complaints are that FECU has been overzealous about my debit card security (very low daily limits that made my kitchen remodek purchases difficult, and calls from fraud folks every time I travelled to another major city in california unless i called first) and the people at LFCU are so face-to-face friendly that I sometimes think they're taking the piss.

However, compared to any bank I have ever used ever, they are both fantastic, and I can recommend them both highly (they each have some of my money right now, in fact.)
posted by davejay at 9:17 PM on October 16, 2011

Response by poster: I don't have a lot of money and my checking account dips down below 200 often... Will USAA penalize me for this? Are there CUs that won't penalize me for having much money?
posted by PostIronyIsNotaMyth at 9:19 PM on October 16, 2011

USAA doesn't charge fees on their checking accounts, regardless of balance. You can read more about the checking accounts on their website.

But this is a great chance to experience the awesomeness of USAA's customer service! Give them a call at 1-800-531-USAA and ask.

Or go to the link above and click "Reach a Representative" to have them call you.
posted by SemiSophos at 2:45 PM on October 17, 2011

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