Chartered in 1956 as the Lockheed Missile Employees Federal Credit Union, known today as Star One, this credit union serves the employees of the new Lockheed Missiles and Space division in Sunnyvale California.
Star One offers financial services to more than 108,000 members worldwide. With assets over $8 billion, Star One is ranked 15th in the USA based on total assets among nearly 5,700 credit unions nationally. They offer a variety of products and services including checking and savings accounts, CDs, IRAs, auto, home equity, and mortgage loans.
Becoming a member of Star One is relatively easy, you must live, attend school, or work in Santa Clara County, California. Membership is also open to employees, contractors, and retirees of Lockheed-Martin Corporation, Yahoo!, Cirrus Logic, their immediate families and more than 90 other Select Employer Groups.
Mission: “Improve each member’s life by delivering valuable financial services.”
Star One Credit Union focuses on providing long-term financial solutions to all of their members by delivering on money-saving benefits through their products and services.
Banking with Star One
Star One Credit Union’s Mission is to help members improve their lives by delivering valuable financial services without any hassle. That includes also a hassle-free way to becoming a member of Star One.
To become a member of Star One you simply need to meet one of the criteria’s listed below. Then you will need to open a savings account and maintain a $50 balance to keep your membership in an active state.
- Individuals who live, work, or attend school in Santa Clara County, California
- Employees of corporate sponsors (available list on website)
- Retirees of Lockheed Martin
- Immediate family members of current Star One members
- Star One Credit Union employees
Star One Credit Union offers two checking accounts for their members to choose the best option:
Free Checking: this account earns interest of 0.25% APY, low fees and provides nearly 30,000 ATMs.
- No monthly fees
- 20 free in-network ATM withdrawals
- Subsequent withdrawals $1
- 0$ overdraft fee
- First box of checks free
Rewards Checking: the rewards account is free and earns 1.75% APY designed to maximize returns.
- No monthly fees
- Refund up to $20 per month in ATM surcharge fees
- First box of checks free
What’s different about Star One, is that your free checking account can be upgraded to rewards checking by doing the following:
- Make 10 Star One debit or credit card transactions per month
- Enroll into eStatements and eNotices
- Have a minimum of $300 in monthly Direct Deposit or $5,000 in deposit or loan balances
At Star One, there are no basic savings accounts, only a Money Market Account (MMA) that pays excellent returns above market average.
- Minimum opening balance of $50
- Receive monthly statements electronically
- Earn 1.75% APY
- Opportunity to open multiple sub-savings accounts (with a nickname)
- Federally insured to at least $250,000
You can also acquire the Coverdell Education Savings Account (ESA) which is a fund set up for a child to pay for future educational expenses.
- Beneficiary must be under the age of 18 years old
- For a regular Savings Account a $100 minimum deposit is required or $25 with automated deposits
- For Certificate Accounts the same requirements apply and you must select a term ranging between 6-months, 1-year and 2-year terms
- Maximum contribution is $2,000 per beneficiary
- Earnings grow tax-deferred
- Tax-free on withdrawals toward qualified education expenses
- Funds must be distributed before the beneficiary turns 30
|ESA Accounts/Terms||APY %|
|6-month ESA Term||1.80|
|12-month ESA Term||1.85|
|24-month ESA Term||1.90|
Minor accounts are available at Star One but must be joint with a parent or legal guardian until the child comes of age.
- At the age of 13 years old, Star One offers teenagers a checking account and a Visa Debit
- Required valid ID
- Must be able to write their own name, in order to make withdrawals
For members who are students, Star One offers a few account perks and other banking products specifically tailored for them.
- Member must be under the age of 25
- Member must be a student with valid Student Identification
- Offers Free Checking account + $10 ATM surcharge refund per month
- Offers no annual fee Student Visa Card (Platinum Best Rate) with max credit limit of $100- $1,500
- Offers Student Financing as Loans or Refinancing Options:
- Lower interest rates
- Zero origination fees
- Deferment of principal AND interest while in school
- Flexible repayment terms
- Co-signers can be removed after consistent payments
- Graduated repayment to make monthly payments more manageable
- Refinance your private and federal student loans
Similar to a bank CD, Star One offers Certificates Accounts:
- $2,500 minimum deposit
- Terms range between 6-month and 2-years
- Certificate rates are fixed
- Dividends are paid monthly and at maturity
- Dividends can be added to your principal, transferred to your Star One checking or savings account or you may opt to receive them in the form of a check
- Earn on a 6-Month: 1.80% APY
- Earn on a 12-Month: 1.85% APY
- Earn on a 24- Month: 1.90% APY
At Star One Credit Union, they offer IRAs with multiple different options. For instance, their Traditional IRA is offered with a Contributory, Rollover, Conduit, or Spousal plan. They also have ROTH IRAs that offer greater tax incentives and withdrawal flexibility.
Traditional and ROTH IRAAccount:
- No IRA setup, administration or annual maintenance fee
- For an IRA Investment Savings account a $100 minimum deposit is required or $25 with automated deposits
- For an IRA Certificate the same apply and you must select a term ranging between 6-month sand 2 years
- Convenience of payroll allocations and automated deposits
- Automatic IRA distributions available
- 10-business-day grace period and automatic renewal on Certificate Accounts
- Roth IRA contributions are not tax-deductible, contributions and earnings can be withdrawn tax-free on qualified distributions
- Roth IRA Accounts also have no mandatory annual distribution requirements and you can contribute beyond age 70½
- Competitive IRA interest rates
- Monthly statement
|IRA Accounts/Terms||APY %|
|IRA Savings Investment||1.75|
|6-month IRA Term||1.80|
|12-month IRA Term||1.85|
|24-month IRA Term||1.90|
Star One has several loan options for members to choose from. Depending on their individual needs, there is a type of loan that should fall in line at this credit union.
You can borrow from Star One for the below specific categories:
- Mortgage and Home Equity Loans
- Car Loans
- Motorcycle, RV & Boat Loans
- Investment Property Loans
- Personal Loans and Lines of Credit
- Student Loans
- Savings Secured Loans
- Disaster Loans
This Credit Union only offers Low-interest Visa cards all with the following features and benefits:
- No annual fee, no balance-transfer fees, no cash-advance fees, and no foreign-transaction fees
- End-of-year electronic summary statement
- Concierge Service, Roadside Dispatch, Warranty Manager and more
- Redeem Star One Visa Rewards points for cash and more
- Real-time transaction alerts
- Low cash advance rates
- Low late fee and no interest-rate increase if a payment is missed
Star One Visa Signature Rewards:
- Interest 8.75% APR
- Earn 1.5 points on every dollar spent
- Minimum credit limit of $5,000
- Get a five-year membership to TSA Pre✔® for each card holder
- Trip Cancellation/Interruption Protection
Star One Visa Platinum Rewards:
- Interest 8.75% – 12.75% APR
- Earn 1 point on every dollar spent
- Redeem Rewards via Star One Visa Rewards Centre
Star One Visa Best Rate:
- Interest 7.75% – 13.75% APR
- Available for members under the age of 25
- No rewards system
- Coin Redemption: Each Star One branch features a brand-new coin-counting machine that can deposit the value of your coins directly into your Star One account at no charge.
- Notary Services: Notary Service is available at all branches with an appointment. Star One branches will notarize one document per day at no charge. The second and subsequent documents are $15.00 each.
- Voice Banking: With the new Star One Skill you can bank using Alexa and voice recognition. Voice Banking provides hands-free access to your account balances and transactions and even ask Alexa to make transfers.
- Refer a Friend: Get a referral bonus when you refer your friends and family. Star One will give you $60 for each new member who opens a Checking and Savings account. Plus, your friends and family will receive a $120 bonus when they open the account.
About Star One
Star One Credit Union is the 4th largest credit union in the state of California. It was chartered in 1956 as the Lockheed Missile Employees Federal Credit Union, to serve the employees of the new Lockheed Missiles and Space division in Sunnyvale California. Membership is open to those who live, attend school, or work in Santa Clara County, California and to employees, contractors, and retirees of Lockheed-Martin Corporation, Yahoo!, Cirrus Logic, and more than 90 other Select Employer Groups. Star One Credit Union offers a variety of products and services including checking and savings accounts, CDs, IRAs, auto, home equity, and mortgage loans.
The Bottom Line
Star One comes highly recommended on the list for credit unions. Their starting rates for just their basic checking and savings accounts are higher than most credit unions. They also have impressive customer service which goes along away.
Otherwise, they do not offer a lot of lending options so if that is your primary banking need then vetting another credit union may be your best option.