WHERE YOU PUT YOUR MONEY MATTERS.
Is your money supporting your values? At Clean Energy Credit Union, when you open a savings account, your federally insured deposits are used to help other members afford to use clean energy. This, in turn, will help to protect our environment and improve our economy. No other financial institution puts your money to work quite like that.
At credit unions, which are member-owned cooperatives, savings accounts are also referred to as “share accounts” because they also serve as your ownership share in the credit union. You’ll be able to easily transfer funds between your accounts at Clean Energy Credit Union and other financial institutions via free ACH transfers on your computer or mobile device.
Terms and Features
- $5 minimum balance
- No monthly maintenance fees
- Higher interest earned for higher balances
- Up to six transactions per month (as per federal regulatory requirements)
- Free online/mobile banking access
- Free ACH transfers to/from your accounts at other financial institutions
- Free e-statements available via online banking
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
First, you need to ensure that you’re eligible to join Clean Energy Credit Union by being in its “field of membership,” which currently includes being one of the following:
- A member of one of the following organizations:
- African-American Credit Union Coalition
- American Solar Energy Society
- Association of Energy Service Professionals
- Colorado Renewable Energy Society
- Electric Auto Association
- Engineers for a Sustainable World
- Georgia Solar Energy Association
- Green America
- GreenHome Institute
- Illinois Solar Energy Association
- Midwest Renewable Energy Association
- Northeast Sustainable Energy Association
- RENEW Wisconsin
- Renewable Energy Owners Coalition of America
- Solar United Neighbors
- Texas Solar Energy Society
- Women of Renewable Industries and Sustainable Energy
- An employee or volunteer of one of the following organizations:
- A member of the immediate family or household of someone who is eligible via one of the above options or of someone who is already a member of Clean Energy Credit Union
If you’re not already eligible to join Clean Energy Credit Union, you can consider joining one of the above organizations. An individual membership in American Solar Energy Society, for example, currently costs as little as $10 (NOTE: you must enter the discount code and select a Digital-Only Basic membership). Click here to learn more about the field of membership partner organizations listed above.
After confirming your eligibility, you would then open a "share account" (i.e. savings account) with a $5 minimum deposit which would serve as your ownership share in Clean Energy Credit Union. Once someone becomes a member of the Credit Union, they are a member for life. Click here to join Clean Energy Credit Union.
In case it helps, here’s some background on what a credit union “field of membership” is: although credit unions provide similar services as banks, they are different from banks in many ways. For example, a credit union is a not-for-profit, financial services cooperative that exists solely to serve its members and to fulfill its mission, whereas a bank exists to maximize financial returns for its stockholders. Another difference is that a bank can serve the general public whereas a credit union can only serve its “field of membership,” which is defined by regulators as the people and entities that are legally eligible to join the credit union. Ultimately, a credit union’s field of membership is comprised of one or more groups of people and entities that all have something in common that binds them together in some way. Many credit unions have a field of membership that includes people who work for a certain employer, or who live in a certain geographic area, or who are members of the same professional association or religious organization.
Are my deposits federally insured?
Because we are a federally chartered credit union, all deposits will be federally insured up to the allowable limits (e.g. up to $250k per person or per organization). This makes opening a deposit account or buying a "clean energy CD" far less risky than any other kind of investment in the clean energy sector. Furthermore, with low minimum investment thresholds, regular people—not just big financiers—will be able to leverage their dollars to support clean energy through safe, sound investments.
All deposits in Clean Energy Credit Union are insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF). According to Wikipedia: “[The NCUSIF] is administered by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) for the purpose of providing deposit insurance to protect deposits of credit union members at insured institutions in the United States. It was created in 1970 shortly after the creation of the NCUA as an independent regulator of credit unions. The NCUSIF is funded completely by participating credit unions, and no taxpayer dollars have ever been used to bail out a credit union. The NCUSIF is backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government.”
Am I required to maintain a minimum balance in my account?
Savings accounts require a $5 minimum balance to maintain the account (and to maintain your membership in the Credit Union). Checking accounts require a $25 minimum deposit to open the account, but no ongoing minimum monthly balance is required. Money market accounts require a $2,500 minimum balance to maintain the account.
What is an ACH transfer?
An ACH transfer refers to any electronic movement of money between different financial institutions that goes through the Automated Clearing House (ACH) network, one of the biggest U.S. payment systems that has been around for almost 40 years. ACH transfers are commonly used for online bill pay, and direct deposit, and transferring funds between financial institutions. For example, PayPal and Venmo, both use the ACH network. ACH transfers are more convenient and less expensive than wire transfers, which typically incur fees both the sending and receiving financial institutions.
Since Clean Energy Credit Union isn’t initially offering checking accounts, we’re hoping that you’ll move your savings account to Clean Energy Credit Union while retaining your current checking account. You would then be able to easily transfer funds between your accounts in Clean Energy Credit Union and your other financial institution via a free ACH transfer on your computer or mobile device.
Is there a cost and/or a time delay when conducting an ACH transfer?
At Clean Energy Credit Union, ACH transfers are free for members. They are also typically free for at other financial institutions. However, it can take 1-3 days for transferred funds to be received and available for withdrawal.
Do you offer an app for my mobile device?
Yes, you can access your accounts from any computer or mobile device. You can search for the app, “Clean Energy Credit Union,” on your app store.
How often are account statements sent out?
If you only have a savings account, money market account, or Clean Energy CD, account statements are sent out at the beginning of each quarter. If you also have a checking account, any loan activity, or a CD that is maturing, statements will be sent out at the beginning of each month.
What is the Credit Union’s policy for paper vs electronic account statements?
We strongly discourage paper account statements for two reasons: (1) protecting the environment is an important part of our mission, so wherever possible we try to reduce the use of paper as well as the need for shipping and transportation; and (2) Clean Energy Credit Union emphasizes a lean business model so that we can pass through the savings to our members in the form of better interest rates.
That being said, if you absolutely must have paper account statements, you can still sign up for them at the cost of $7 per statement.
If I need help with my accounts, can I get in touch with a real, live person?
Yes, you can either click on the “Chat” bottom at the top and bottom of each page on our website, or you can call us at 720-479-7900.
How are online/mobile banking transactions kept secure?
Our vendors and software for online/mobile banking functionality are among the best in the credit union industry, and they work with hundreds of credit unions throughout the U.S. In addition to providing us with secure software platform, they also host our servers and keep them secure. In addition, regardless of which vendors and software we use for our online/mobile banking activities, all deposits in Clean Energy Credit Union are federally insured up to $250k per person and per organization.
How do I increase my electronic funds transfer limits or mobile check deposit limits?
Sometimes the size of an electronic transfer or mobile check deposit will exceed our standard limits. To request an increase to your transfer or deposit limits, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or 720.479.7900.