2018 RANKING & REVIEWS
TOP RANKING ALBUQUERQUE BANKS AND CREDIT UNIONS
Top 6 Best Credit Unions & Best Banks in Albuquerque that Can Save You Money! (& 2 You Should Avoid)
Albuquerque sits near the middle of New Mexico and may be best known as the place where Bugs Bunny always says to take a left turn. But, if you’re traveling in the Southwest, you may want to stay a while in this bustling city, which is the largest in the state.
Banks and credit unions in Albuquerque serve a diverse population, both military and civilian. The city is home to Kirtland Air Force Base, Sandia National Laboratories, the University of New Mexico, and The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History.
Award Emblem: Top 6 Best Banks & Credit Unions in Albuquerque, NM
One thing everyone wants when looking for the best banks in Albuquerque is to save money. Whether it’s on loan rates, checking account perks, or healthy savings interest, more money is always a good thing!
For our 2018 ranking of the Top 6 Albuquerque Banks & Credit Unions, we focused on the ones that save you the most money. We’ll go through the deals you can get with each of these Albuquerque credit unions and banks, and the things that make them awesome.
We’ve also got two bonuses in this article for you. One is our FAQ with the top ways to save money at a bank or credit union in Albuquerque, and the other is a reveal of the two banks that we think you should avoid.
Top 6 Best Banks & Credit Unions in Albuquerque (+ 2 to Avoid) | Brief Comparison & Ranking
|Rated Albuquerque Banks & Credit Unions||2018 Ratings|
|New Mexico Bank & Trust||5|
|Rio Grande Credit Union||5|
|Sandia Area Federal Credit Union||5|
|Bank of Albuquerque||3|
|Bank of the West||3|
|Nusenda Credit Union||3|
|Bank of New Mexico||1|
Table: Top 6 Banks & Credit Unions in Albuquerque (& 2 to Avoid) | Above list is sorted by rating
Albuquerque, New Mexico Banks FAQ | Top Ways to Save Money at a Bank or Credit Union
Changing banks isn’t something people think about often. We tend to get stuck in our routine and safety zone rather than making a change. But there are some ways you can save m0ney with just a little homework on other banks.
For example, transferring a $3,000 debt with 17.07% APR to a card with a 0% balance transfer rate, can mean a savings of $238.49 in interest and getting out of debt faster. These tips can work at your current Albuquerque bank or credit union or a brand new one, if you decide to switch.
- Switch to an interest bearing checking account.
- Look for a points/rewards program that works for debit and credit cards.
- Instead of investing in one CD, divide your money into several at different terms to take advantage of the best rates.
- Compare loan rates before getting a loan, and don’t leave out credit unions (theirs often are better).
- Take advantage of interest discounts and perks you get through account bundling programs offered by the best banks in Albuquerque.
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AdvisoryHQ’s Selection Methodology
What methodology does AdvisoryHQ use in selecting and finalizing the credit cards, financial products, firms, services, and products that are ranked on its various top-rated lists?
Please click here “AdvisoryHQ’s Ranking Methodologies” for a detailed review of AdvisoryHQ’s selection methodologies for ranking top-rated credit cards, financial accounts, firms, products, and services.
Detailed Review – Top Ranking Best Las Vegas Credit Unions and Banks (& 1 to Avoid)
Below, please find a detailed review of each firm on our list of top Albuquerque bank or credit union. We have highlighted some of the factors that allowed each credit union or bank in Albuquerque to score so highly in our selection ranking
Click on any of the names below to go directly to the review section for that firm.
- New Mexico Bank & Trust
- Rio Grande Credit Union
- Sandia Area Federal Credit Union
- Bank of Albuquerque
- Bank of the West
- Nusenda Credit Union
- Bank of New Mexico
- Main Bank
New Mexico Bank & Trust Review
New Mexico Bank & Trust is fairly new on the scene compared to other Albuquerque banks, being founded in 1998. But they’re backed by parent company, Heartland Financial USA, Inc., which is a multi-billion dollar financial services company.
Below are the highlights that make New Mexico Bank & Trust stand out on AdvisoryHQ’s 2018 Ranking of the Best Credit Unions & Banks in Albuquerque.
Ways to Save at New Mexico Bank & Trust at a Glance:
- Get up to $200 when you open a new consumer checking account
- ATWORK program for businesses with free and discounted financial services for employees
- CDs from between 0.03% – 0.95% APY
- Auto loans starting at 3.65% APR
- 90-day free trial of GenGold® discounts program
Convenient Business Services
If you own or manage a business, then you’ll want to check out the multiple business banking services offered by New Mexico Bank & Trust. Besides their free employee banking program, they also make it easy to get growth financing, and are a leader in business card programs
We rated New Mexico Bank & Trust a 5 as one of the best banks in Albuquerque, NM. They get high praise from both their customers and the employees that work there. The friendly atmosphere is one of the reasons people enjoy banking here.
Whether you’re a business owner or opening personal accounts, they have a lot of perks to offer, including cash just for opening an account. They are definitely one of the banks and credit unions in Albuquerque trying to win your business, which can mean big savings for you.
Rio Grande Credit Union Review
Rio Grande Credit Union was started by employees of the City of Albuquerque in 1953. After mergers with two other credit unions over the years, they expanded their membership to anyone that lives, works, worships, volunteers, or attends school in Bernalillo or Sandoval counties.
Below are the highlights that make Rio Grande Credit Union stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best Banks & Credit Unions in Albuquerque.
Ways to Save at Rio Grande Credit Union at a Glance:
- Get a free $10 iTunes card when you open a NextGEN checking account
- Visa® cards starting at 8.99% APR
- Auto loans starting at 1.74% APR
- Share certificates from 0.55% – 2.05% APY
- Member discounts on vacations, phones, and more
Rock Bottom Loan Rates
Rio Grande Credit Union has some of the lowest rates we’ve seen of any Albuquerque bank or credit union. Their incredibly low 1.74% new auto loan rate includes a 0.50% discount when you have payroll direct deposit and automatic loan payment in place.
We gave Rio Grande Credit Union a perfect 5 score as one of the top credit unions in Albuquerque. They receive high marks from customers who note their convenient locations and excellent customer service.
All their rates are some of the best you’ll find at any other credit union or bank in Albuquerque. Whether you’re looking for a short term share certificate or a new vehicle loan, you’ll definitely save a bundle here.
Sandia Area Federal Credit Union Review
Sandia Area Federal Credit Union has been serving members in New Mexico since 1956. They have a generous membership range, and anyone that that lives, works, attends school, or worships in the city of Rio Rancho, or the counties of Bernalillo, Cibola, Torrance, or Valencia can become a member.
Below are the highlights that make Sandia Area Federal Credit Union stand out on our 2018 Ranking of the Best Credit Unions and Best Banks in Albuquerque.
Ways to Save at Sandia Area FCU at a Glance:
- Interest earning Dividend Checking at 0.05% APY
- Rewards Mastercard starting at 7.24% APR
- Auto loans starting at 1.99% APR
- 7-month share certificate with 1.10% APY
- Free budgeting & debt resources
High Interest Share Certificates
Are you tired of earning just 0.5% or less on a CD? Then you’ll definitely want to check out the share certificate rates at Sandia Area, because this is one of the Albuquerque credit unions with the most generous rates. Besides the 7-month special for 1.10% APY, just a 1-year term gets you a 0.95% APY, and 2-years earns 1.34% APY.
Saving money and excellent staff that works to do the best for their customers are two of the key reasons that members give Sandia Area Federal Credit Union high ratings. We rated them high as well, with a 5 for being one of the top credit unions in Albuquerque.
If you’re looking for the best place to make an investment, their share certificate rates are hard to beat. Couple that with interest earning checking and decent loan rates, and you can save big at this Albuquerque, NM credit union.
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Bank of Albuquerque Review
The Bank of Albuquerque is part of BOK Financial, which has regional banking divisions serving eight U.S. states. This is one of the banks in Albuquerque, NM that prides itself on being committed to their local community through support and reinvestment.
Below are the highlights that make Bank of Albuquerque stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best Banks & Credit Unions in Albuquerque.
Ways to Save at Bank of Albuquerque at a Glance:
- Interest-earning checking from 0.02% – 0.04% APY
- Visa® and American Express cash back credit cards
- Get an extra 10% CD rate increase with a Premiere Checking account
- New auto loans starting at 3.73% APR
- Free personal finance and wealth management resources
Making Communities Stronger
Looking for Albuquerque banks and credit unions that are more than just a business and give back to the community? Bank of Albuquerque invests in the local area in a number of ways. They fund community reinvestment, promote community service, and make charitable contributions and grants.
We rated Bank of Albuquerque a 3 on our ranking of the best banks in Albuquerque. They have a lot of customers that love them, and a few naysayers. The negative comments are in relation to difficulty securing loans and bank fees.
They’re a great choice for one of the Albuquerque, New Mexico banks that you know is on solid financial ground. Parent company, BOK has more than $30 billion in assets.
Bank of Albuquerque also offers quite a few ways to save money, through rewards card programs, bundling CDs with other accounts, and several interest bearing checking account options.
Bank of the West Review
If you like the convenience of using a bank in Albuquerque that has locations in 23 states, then you’ll want to take a look at Bank of the West in Albuquerque. This large regional bank has been around since gold rush times, being founded 1874.
Below are the highlights that make Bank of the West Albuquerque stand out onAdvisoryHQ’s 2018 Ranking of the Best Credit Unions & Banks in Albuquerque.
Ways to Save at Bank of the West in Albuquerque at a Glance:
- Interest-earning checking from 0.01% – 0.02% APY
- Mastercard® with 0% introductory APR for 6 months
- Flexible-Term CD with 0.03% – 0.70% APY
- Get a 0.25% rate discount on auto loan interest when you set up auto payment from your checking account
- Free “Build a Budget” and “Reduce Your Debt” tools
Award Winning Service
If you’re looking for Albuquerque, New Mexico banks with lots of industry accolades, then Bank of the West Albuquerque may be a perfect match for you. They’ve won multiple industry awards for excellence in banking, including Best Regional Bank in the West by Kiplinger’s and Best Client Service by Private Asset Management Magazine.
Bank of the West Albuquerque scored a high 3 on our ranking of the best Albuquerque banks. The only thing holding them back from a higher score was mixed reviews about excess fees and unresponsiveness at branches that were mainly in other states.
They offer many money saving options for people looking for great credit unions and banks in Albuquerque, NM. Free checking, great loan rates, and rate discount offers are some of the reasons savvy people choose Bank of the West in Albuquerque.
Nusenda Credit Union Review
First started by Albuquerque teachers in 1936, this is one of the Albuquerque credit unions that’s been serving the community for almost a century. Today, Nusenda Credit Union offers over 500 different ways that you can qualify for membership.
Below are the highlights that make Nusenda Credit Union stand out onAdvisoryHQ’s 2018 Ranking of the Best Credit Unions & Banks in Albuquerque.
Ways to Save at Nusenda Credit Union at a Glance:
- Interest earning checking with ATM fee refunds and free gift cards
- Visa® card earning up to 5% cash back on purchases and a 5% APR introductory rate for 18 months
- Auto loans starting at 2.54% APR
- Mortgage loans as low as 4.450% APR
- Earn cash back when you bundle accounts
$251 per Household in Financial Benefits
Looking for the most savings you can get from Albuquerque credit unions and banks? Nusenda Credit Union was recognized by the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) as providing $21,463,386 in direct financial benefits to their members in a 12 month period. That equates to approximately $251 per member household per year.
We rated Nusenda Credit Union a high 3 on our ranking of the best banks and credit unions in Albuquerque. They get stellar reviews from many long-time customers, even those that have moved out of state but still bank with them. Reviews about customer service are mixed, however, with newer customers not being quite as happy.
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Bank of New Mexico Review
The first bank to reveal of the two that we recommend you avoid is Bank of New Mexico. They were formerly known as Grants State Bank and have been in the community since 1947. Unfortunately, you wouldn’t know that from the number of Albuquerque, New Mexico locations, which is just one.
Below are some of the improvements we feel would help Bank of New Mexico get a chance at a better ranking on a future best Albuquerque bank list.
Bank of New Mexico has a severe lack of reviews, and the less than a handful we could find don’t have good things to say about the convenience of banking with them. If they started promoting customer reviews on sites like Yelp, it could help their reputation.
As an Albuquerque bank that we recommend avoiding for now, Bank of New Mexico scored a 1 on our ranking. Their lack of positive reviews online doesn’t say a lot for their customer service. Adding a few positive ones in the mix would help them a lot.
With Albuquerque being the most populous city in New Mexico, any Albuquerque bank wanting to be considered among the best, really should have more local branches. We recommend adding a few to boost visibility and convenience.
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Main Bank Review
Another bank that has a severe lack of reviews and convenience is Main Bank, which is based in Albuquerque. They have only one location and not a whole lot to say about themselves on their “About Us” page.
Below are some of the improvements we feel would help Main Bank get a chance at a better ranking on a future best Albuquerque bank list.
Revamp Their Website
You’re not inspired with much confidence about this Albuquerque, New Mexico bank when you visit their website. The design is very outdated, and when you try to learn more about them, there’s not much to find. A website revamp would go a long way toward improving their reputation.
Main Bank was given a 1 as another Albuquerque bank that we recommend avoiding until they make some improvements. With just a single location, that explains why there are a lack of positive reviews online, because they may not have many customers.
It’s possible they just want to stay one of the smaller banks in Albuquerque, NM, with no goal to grow larger. But if they made a few improvements as noted above, they could still attract more customers and have a chance at being considered among top Albuquerque banks in the future.
Conclusion – Top 6 Best Banks & Credit Unions in Albuquerque (& 2 to avoid)
Albuquerque, New Mexico is a unique city with a lot going on. And the banks and credit unions in Albuquerque cater to the residents here with plenty of convenient locations, whether they live on Kirtland Air Force Base or work at Sandia National Lab.
One thing is for certain, whether you choose an Albuquerque bank or credit union, there are savings to be had through cheaper loan rates and higher savings rates. Take the time to shop around and compare all the discounts, perks, and rewards programs, and you could end up saving hundreds of dollars per year.
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