Changing to a Credit Union
December 20, 2012 8:28 PM   Subscribe

Recommendations for a credit union bank in Boston, Massachusetts.

Hoping to ditch my Bank of America account for a credit union. I was wondering if anyone knows of a credit union that is sprawled out over Boston, meaning more than 1 location. My issue is that while I want to support a credit union that is more customer friendly, ATMs are usually a trip and need to be planned out before, whereas with BOA it was on practically every corner. I know I won't find a credit union with as many ATMs as BOA, but something with more than 1 branch and sort of throughout the city.
posted by melizabeth to Work & Money (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Members Plus Credit Union is supposed to be good.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:54 PM on December 20, 2012 [1 favorite]

As far as I know, most credit unions have reciprocal arrangements where you can use each other's ATMs without fees. Not only that, through the ones in the CUS Service Center network, you can make deposits and withdrawals right at the counter as if you were in your own credit union. I just did that the other day and they even said I could get up to $500 cash back on a check deposit. When I checked my credit union account online the next day, the deposit was already posted.
posted by Dansaman at 8:58 PM on December 20, 2012 [2 favorites]

Metro Credit Union appears to have multiple locations in Boston, as well as a number in the rest of Massachusetts. I don't live in Massachusetts, so I've never been a customer, but as full disclosure, I worked with them a bit at a previous financial job- and everyone I talked to seemed very nice.

If you're concerned about a customer friendly environment, rather than the question of banks versus credit unions, Massachusetts also has a lot of small banks you might want to consider in your search- although I don't know off the top of my head which ones have a lot of branches or ATMs in the Boston area.

Here in Oregon, in addition to the reciprocal arrangements Dansaman mentions, many credit unions have a deal with certain types of convenience store ATMs, so you can, for example, do your banking at a 7-11 without fees. Maybe this is a nationwide thing?
posted by Secretariat at 10:22 PM on December 20, 2012

Is your only physical need an ATM? If so, see if you've got any connection you can use to open a USAA account. They reimburse you for all ATM fees (up to like $10 a month I think), and if you get one of their credit cards you can deposit your checks with your phone.

I've been 100% happy with USAA's customer service and not-evilness.
posted by olinerd at 12:38 AM on December 21, 2012

My personal checking account is through Metro Credit Union. It's not super convenient for me to get to any of their branches, BUT they refund all ATM fees.
posted by Metroid Baby at 4:00 AM on December 21, 2012

I'm a big fan of Direct Federal Credit Union. They have only one physical branch (in Needham), but you can use any ATM in the SUM network free of charge, and for things like check deposits they have a Bank By Mail service which is exactly what it sounds like - mail it in and they'll deposit it (for me it has always been next business day.) They do have some restrictions on who can sign up (think you have to live or work in only certain counties within MA), and a $5/month checking account fee. That aside, I couldn't be happier with them.
posted by Rewind at 4:14 AM on December 21, 2012

I'm with Cambridge Savings Bank, which is not a credit union but is a small bank, and I really like them.
posted by Aizkolari at 6:19 AM on December 21, 2012

I'm with Cambridge Savings Bank too, and they're not a credit union, but I love them. They also refund all ATM fees (international ones too). I've been extremely happy with their service.
posted by carmel at 6:46 AM on December 21, 2012

Oh, another good thing about Cambridge Savings Bank: a handful of their branches are open on Sundays. I don't have an account with them, but I've gone down there to get rolls of quarters, and they seemed pretty nice. Sunday hours are a surprisingly huge bonus!
posted by Metroid Baby at 7:18 AM on December 21, 2012

Workers Credit Union has a lot of locations, and is great. Tons of surcharge free ATMs in Boston:
posted by ellF at 7:33 AM on December 21, 2012

Another happy Cambridge Savings Bank customer here. On the SUM network, so their ATM cards work almost everywhere (I have never not been able to use mine, even in England). They refund the ATM fees *if* you open a "SuperSmart" checking account (has a small minimum balance and number-of-transactions minimum requirements). Branches in Arlington, Lexington, Burlington, Bedford, Belmont(? not sure). Definitely a nice alternative to the mega-banks which ate all the local banks here in the 90s.
posted by briank at 7:39 AM on December 21, 2012

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