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GTE Financial Review 2022

Published January 2022 by Libby Wells

AT A GLANCE
3.3

Bankrate Score

bank-logo

Low Fees

GTE Financial, is a Florida-based not-for-profit financial cooperative that offers a mix of digital and brick-and-mortar banking with fairly low fees that are usually easy to avoid. It’s best suited for those living in the Tampa Bay area.

  • CDs
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    2.8
  • Checking
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    3.6
  • MMAs
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    2.4
  • Savings
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    2.7
  • MORE HIGH-YIELD OPTIONS
    MORE HIGH-YIELD OPTIONS
    LendingClub

    Member FDIC

    Savings account

    2.65 % APY

    $ 0

    Min. balance for APY

    Citizens Access

    Member FDIC

    Savings account

    2.35 % APY

    $ 5,000

    Min. balance for APY

    Capital One

    Member FDIC

    Savings account

    2.15 % APY

    $ 0

    Min. balance for APY

    Overall

    3.3

    Bankrate Score

    GTE is a full-service credit union offering checking, savings and money market accounts, CDs, IRAs and a host of other products and services. It offers a highly rated mobile app and bill pay to members, along with more than 20 branch locations and an extensive ATM network.

    What we like

    • Most accounts have low minimum deposit requirements.

    • Account holders have access to more than 30,000 fee-free ATMs.

    • Numerous banking products are offered, especially when it comes to checking account choices.

    • GTE Financial offers solid digital features, including a highly rated mobile app.

    What we don't

    • The nonsufficient funds fee is $35, higher than the national average.

    • Yields at other top credit unions tend to be higher.

    CD rates

    2.8

    Bankrate Score

    OTHER CD OFFERS YOU MAY LIKE
    Capital One

    Member FDIC

    CD

    3.25 % APY

    1yr

    Term

    $ 0

    Min. deposit

    GTE's CDs, called "share certificates," come in nine terms ranging from six months to five years. They can also be issued as traditional IRA or Roth IRA certificates, Coverdell ESA certificates and SEP certificates. Dividends are compounded on a monthly basis.

    What we like

    • A wide variety of term lengths are available.

    • The minimum deposit is only $500 to open an account.

    What we don't

    • Rates are slightly below the national average.

    • Withdrawals cannot be made within the first 60 days of the account being opened.

    Checking accounts

    3.6

    Bankrate Score

    OTHER CHECKING OFFERS YOU MAY LIKE
    Upgrade

    Member FDIC

    Checking account

    0.00 % APY

    $ 0

    To open

    $ 0

    To avoid fees

    GTE Financial offers four different checking accounts. Go Full Access Checking, the account evaluated for this review, offers online, mobile and telephone banking, person-to-person payments using Zelle and Friends & Family transfers, as well as balance alerts. Go Full Access Checking has a $4.95 monthly fee, but it can be avoided by enrolling in electronic statements and making $500 in deposits or making 15 credit/debit card transactions during the monthly statement period. The account can be opened with just $5.

    There is also Go Student Checking for students 12-24 years old. Go Premium With GTE Secure is an interest-bearing account that pays a solid rate on the first $3,000 in deposits. It also comes with credit-monitoring, ID theft coverage and other perks.  

    GTE’s 23 branch locations and network of 30,000 ATMs enable easy access to your money, especially for those who live in the Tampa Bay area. There is a $3 fee for using an out-of-network ATM.

    What we like

    • GTE offers a selection of checking accounts to meet different needs.

    • Go Full Access Checking requires just $5 to open.

    • Go Full Access comes with online, mobile and telephone banking, as well as branch banking for those in the Tampa Bay area.

    • The Go Premium with GTE Secure account pays a solid dividend rate on the first $3,000 in deposits.

    What we don't

    • Overdraft fees are a steep $35 each.

    • There is a $4.95 monthly fee on Go Full Access Checking unless certain requirements are met.

    • A $3 fee applies for using an out-of-network ATM.

    Money market accounts

    2.4

    Bankrate Score

    A GTE Financial money market account earns less than the national average for savings accounts and a $10,000 minimum balance is required to earn any interest. Like all deposits at the credit union, the money market account is federally insured up to $250,000. The basic money market account allows writing up to six checks a month.There is also a business money market account available.

    What we like

    • Up to six checks a month can be written on the money market account.

    • There’s an option to open a business money market account.

    What we don't

    • Balances of less than $10,000 don’t pay any dividends.

    • Other banks and credit unions offer better yields on money market accounts.

    Savings accounts

    2.7

    Bankrate Score

    OTHER SAVINGS OFFERS YOU MAY LIKE
    LendingClub

    Member FDIC

    Savings account

    2.65 % APY

    $ 0

    Min. balance for APY

    It takes just $5 to become a member of GTE Financial. Savings accounts start earning dividends on balances of $100 or more. There’s a $7 monthly service fee unless a "relationship" balance across GTE accounts of $500 is maintained. The fee is waived for customers under age 22 or over 65.

    GTE Financial has a special Early Savers account for kids under age 17 with no balance requirements or monthly fees.

    What we like

    • Just $5 is needed to open an account.

    • The Early Savers account has no monthly fees or balance requirements.

    What we don't

    • The monthly fee of $7 is a drawback, but it can be waived by meeting certain criteria.

    • The APY for savings accounts is below the national average.

    Bank experience

    With 23 branches, GTE Financial is a worthwhile choice for consumers in the Tampa Bay area. There’s also access to 30,000 ATMs nationwide. Customer service can reached by phone seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern time. Live chat is also available on the credit union’s website.

    The mobile app gets glowing reviews from Google Play and the Apple App stores. Applications to open a new account can be done online, but it can be difficult to find all the details on the GTE website, so a call to customer service may be necessary to get all your questions answered.

    About GTE Financial

    GTE Federal Credit Union, doing business as GTE Financial, is a well-established, full-service credit union serving individual members and businesses in Florida’s Tampa Bay area. It was founded in 1935 during the Great Depression.

    It offers a choice of checking and savings accounts, including options for children and students. Deposits at GTE are insured by the  National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).

    Libby Wells Twitter Created with Sketch. @

    Libby Wells Twitter Created with Sketch. @

    Libby Wells is a part-time editor at Bankrate. Previously, she was Bankrate's chief copy editor and a credit card reporter. Libby spent most of her career as a newspaper journalist and has more than 30 years of experience as a writer and editor.