How to Open a Roth IRA at a Credit Union

A credit union is a not-for-profit institution that offers savings vehicles but no debt or equity instruments. Consequently, opening a Roth IRA at a credit union means putting savings security before growth. That credit union accounts are insured via the National Credit Union Association only offers a greater feeling of security. Many credit unions charge lower opening and service fees than banks and brokerages. In general, opening deposit requirements are quite low.

Step 1

Shop around for the Roth features you desire. Typically, when you open a credit union Roth IRA, you can put your money in a fixed-interest account or in a certificate of deposit. The interest rates are likely to be quite low, but they could rise or drop over time. Credit union fees for opening, closing and maintaining a Roth IRA are typically low or non-existent. Generally, you can set up regular transfers to the Roth from another account. You might be able to open a credit union Roth with as little as $25.

Step 2

Fill out the account opening paperwork in print or online. You'll need to provide your name, address, phone number and Social Security number, as well as your birth date. You'll also need to enter the name, Social Security number and birth date of any beneficiaries you want to designate.

Step 3

Sign and date the paperwork and submit it to the credit union, along with your opening deposit.

Tip

  • One strategy is to open a Roth IRA at a credit union in your 20s or 30s and allocate only a portion of the yearly IRA contribution limit to that account. Put the remainder of the contribution allotment into stocks, bonds or funds that offer greater growth potential. As you approach retirement, when your risk tolerance tends to abate, allocate a gradually larger share of the yearly contribution limit to your credit union Roth.

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