7 Best Credit Unions for Small Business Owners

best credit union business account smb owners top credit unions

Give a man a gun, and he can rob a bank. Give a man a bank, and he can rob the world. 

This controversial statement is an exaggerated view of the criticism against banks. While banks aren’t all bad, they aren’t half as useful as working with a credit union.

Credit unions approach relationships with customers differently. Expect more perks for holding an account and at lower fees.

If you’re looking for a place to open a credit union business account, here are 7 of the best accounts for small businesses.

1. Navy Federal Credit Union

Are you or someone you’re related to in the armed forces? If so, you might be eligible to apply to become a member of one of the top credit unions for small businesses.

Navy Federal Credit Union is a top choice because it’s branches are plentiful and there’s a credit union business account worth drooling over. It takes only minutes to open up an account over the phone for people who are eligible.

You’ll need the access number or military ID of the person you know in the armed forces in order to get an account. Once you do, you’ll qualify for interest-bearing checking and savings accounts.

There are never any fees except for a one-time $5 charge for membership. Your free business checking account grants you access to many of the same online features like a brick and mortar bank.

There’s no waiting period to apply for small business loans which means you can instantly get the capital needed to grow your business. It’s the largest credit union in the nation which means you won’t have issues finding a branch or ATM when you travel. 

Navy Federal makes sure small businesses are covered by offering business insurance, merchant payment services, and business credit cards.

2. First Tech Credit Union

If you live in California and work for a First Tech sponsor company, you can apply for a small business account with First Tech. Apply for loans through the credit union or make payments to financial accounts using your phone.

There’s no minimum deposit or balance to keep your small business account open making it a great option for side hustles. As you grow your startup, your account waits for you fee-free.

There are limits on what you can do with your business account, however. You won’t find many loan options compared to Navy Federal or types of checking accounts.

But the accounts you have access to help you with basic business transactions that keep you grounded until you’re ready to launch your business full time. 

3. Sound Credit Union

Another one of the larger options for small businesses is Sound Credit Union. Your credit union business account is accessible from 29 locations in the Washington State area. 

It’s a favorite among Washington state residents because they make it easier for cannabis-based businesses to get the resources they need. They have rewards based loan programs for small businesses which are rare.

There are more than 5,000 Sound Credit Union branches around the U.S. If you’re outside of the branch area, choose from 30,000 ATMs nationwide. 

4. Self-Help Credit Union

Self-Help Credit Union is all about creating economic opportunity for everyone. They do this well through a small business loan program that offers loans up to $250,000.

This is impressive for a small credit union. They’re also committed to encouraging investment in low-income communities nationwide. They’ll give you a special loan if your business has a green initiative or you’re a victim of a major natural disaster like Hurricane Matthew.

5. Digital Federal Credit Union

One of the standout features of Digital Credit Union is its crowdsourcing options. You can raise money for your business using the credit union’s platform or invest in other small businesses in the Digital Federal Credit Union community. 

This is the kind of help from credit unions people think of when they think of going with a smaller financial institution. 

6. Alliant Credit Union

Alliant is all about commercial real estate. This is a major bonus if this happens to be the field your small business is focused on.

The credit union is based in Chicago where they have two branch locations. Still, it’s part of a larger co-op that grants you access to ATMs around the country. 

There aren’t many services specific to businesses making this one of the lesser options for entrepreneurs. But you’ll have access to a checking account with a higher than an average interest rate.

There are never any monthly service fees to content with or special stipulations on keeping your account free. Your checking account will likely come with interest-bearing savings account offering a competitive rate. 

7. America’s First Credit Union Business Account

This credit union is last on the list for several reasons. First, it’s not widely accessible.

To become a member, you have to meet certain geographic and work conditions. This makes it a chore for small business owners who meet the conditions then later move away. 

America’s First is located in Utah and has a business loan program that rivals conventional banks. These range from SBA secured to non-SBA secured financing.

You have the opportunity to apply for a business credit card which is rare among credit unions. The card comes with a rewards program that can be customized to your spending needs.

This is one of the main perks that set America’s First apart from other credit unions. Your small business can have four types of checking accounts and choose from three different savings accounts.

America’s First offers a Health Savings Account which is a great option for entrepreneurs since they don’t have access to traditional health benefits offered by an employer. 

Credit Unions That Offer Business Accounts

It’s almost tragic that you can’t get a credit union business account anywhere. With low fees and little hassle to open random financial products, credit unions make it easy to do business.

Take your time comparing business accounts from credit unions but know that you’ll probably get similar perks no matter where you go. For more information and tips on banking and credit unions, visit the Finance section of our blog.