2018 RANKING & REVIEWS
TOP RANKING BEST DC BANK OR CREDIT UNION


Best & Most Trustworthy Credit Unions & Banks in Washington, DC (+ 1 to Avoid)

The nation’s capital is known by many names, such as “DC”, “the District”, and simply “Washington.” While it has a population of over 693,000, if you count the commuters coming daily to work there, it’s well over a million. That’s a lot of people looking for a good bank or credit union in DC to bank with.

When looking for the best banks in Washington, DC you’ll find a mixture of smaller local financial institutions as well as some larger regional banks. As with any city, the main things people look for in great DC credit unions and banks is someone they can trust and that makes managing their money easy.

Best Banks & Credit Unions in Washington, DC

Award Emblem: Top 6 Best Banks & Credit Unions in Washington, DC

We’ve researched multiple banks and credit unions in DC to get to the list of the top 6. These are the DC banks that offer great rates, have excellent customer service and that people enjoy working with for their business and personal banking.

Read on to find out what makes each best bank and best credit union in DC special and worth taking a look at for any loan or day-to-day banking needs. We’ll also let you in on a secret… the one financial institution we found that you may want to avoid.



Top 6 Best DC Bank or Credit Union (and 1 to Avoid) | Brief Comparison & Ranking

Top DC Credit Union or Bank2018 Ratings
Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union5
DC Credit Union5
Signal Financial Federal Credit Union5
TD Bank5
Bank-Fund Staff Federal Credit Union3
National Capital Bank3
Industrial Bank1

Table: Top 6 Best Bank or Best Credit Union in DC (& 1 to Avoid) | Above list is sorted by rating



DC Credit Unions & Banks FAQ | What’s the Difference Between APR and APY?

Whether you’re looking over interest rates at a Washington, DC bank for a loan, credit card, or Certificate of Deposit, you’re going to run across the terms APR and APY.

Both are used when giving the interest rate that you’ll either pay or earn from a credit union or bank in Washington, DC. Many assume they’re the same thing, but there is a distinct difference between annual percentage rate (APR) and annual percentage yield (APY) that you need to know.

The APR is the rate of interest paid on a balance without taking into account the compounding of interest within that year. The APY does take into account the frequency with which interest is compounded within a year. So, the more frequently that interest is compounded, the larger the difference between them.

You’ll find that a DC credit union or bank will often use the APY when advertising a particular interest rate because it looks the most attractive.



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 Credit Unions & Best Banks in Washington, DC (Plus 1 to Avoid)

Below, please find a detailed review of each firm on our list of best DC bank or credit union. We have highlighted some of the factors that allowed each Washington, DC bank or credit union 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.



Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union Review


You don’t have to work for the government to join the Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union. It’s open to anyone that lives, works, worships, or attends school in Washington, DC. This is one of the older DC credit unions, serving members since 1932.

Below are the highlights that make Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best DC Banks and Credit Unions.

Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union at a Glance:

  • 3 branch locations in Washington, DC & surrounding areas
  • Part of the CO-OP network of more than 5,000 shared branches
  • Balance financial fitness program
  • Checking that earns 2.86% APY on balances
  • Better Business Bureau not rated

Relationship Rewards

Do you love to earn extras just for banking as usual? Then this is one of the DC credit unions, you’ll want to look into. Their Relationship Rewards program gives you points for using things like online banking, bill pay, and e-statements. You can use them for multiple free money-saving benefits.

Rating Summary

We rated Department of Commerce Federal Credit Union a 5 on our list as one of the top credit unions in DC. They have easy to qualify for membership requirements and offer several perks to their members.

Their interest-earning checking is a nice way to get ahead financially on the account most of us use the most. They also have very attractive auto, home, and personal loan rates that make them one of the DC credit unions you’ll want to consider for any type of borrowing.

See Also: San Francisco’s Best Banks & Credit Unions (& Banks to Avoid) | Ranking



DC Credit Union Review


Billing themselves as “DC’s Credit Union” is the next of the banks or credit unions in DC on our list. DC Credit Union, formerly known as DGE Federal Credit Union (DGEFCU), was started in the 1950’s, and anyone that lives, works, or worships in Adams Morgan, Mount Pleasant, and Columbia Heights can join, in addition to employees of multiple government and private organizations.

Below are the highlights that make DC Credit Union stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best DC Banks & Credit Unions.

DC Credit Union at a Glance:

  • 3 branch locations in Washington, DC
  • Over 800 shared credit union branches across the US & over 900,000 Co-op ATM locations worldwide
  • AnyTime Banking with a 24-hour automated connection
  • Honored in the National Community Service Awards by Independent Community Bankers of America
  • Wealth management services
  • Better Business Bureau not rated

Life Tools You Can Use

DC Credit Union is one of the top DC banks or credit unions to bank with if you like having guidance for just about every financial event in life. The Life Tools section of their website provides multiple money management tips and tools for every twist and turn in life.

Rating Summary

DC Credit Union scored a 5 on our list of the best credit unions and best banks in Washington, DC. They offer a lot of financial tools to their members, in addition to scoring high marks from reviewers for friendly service and Acceso branch that stays open until 7:00 p.m on weekdays and 2:00 p.m on Saturdays.

Their membership eligibility requirements are easy to qualify for if you live or work in the DC area. They are also one of the credit unions where you’ll want to bank in Washington, DC for free checking and other membership bonuses.

Don’t Miss: Best San Jose Banks & Credit Unions (& Banks to Avoid) | Ranking



Signal Financial Federal Credit Union Review


Signal Financial Federal Credit Union was started by a group of Washington Telephone Company workers in 1947. Today, anyone that lives works, worships, or attends school in the District of Columbia or Prince George’s County, MD qualifies for membership with this DC credit union.

Below are the highlights that make Signal Financial Federal Credit Union stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best DC Credit Unions & Banks.

Signal Financial Federal Credit Union at a Glance:

  • 4 branch locations in Washington, DC & surrounding areas
  • Part of the CO-OP network of more than 5,000 shared branches
  • Free financial events and seminars
  • HomeAdvantage™ is a free service for members
  • Better Business Bureau A rating

Product Bundles

Signal Financial offers additional savings and benefits if you choose to bundle several banking services together. It’s an option that you won’t typically find at a Washington, DC bank or credit union. For example, if you’re choosing a bundle that includes savings, checking and a vehicle loan, you could get a discount of .50% APR on your loan.

Rating Summary

We rated Signal Financial Federal Credit Union a 5 on our list of the top DC credit unions and banks. They’re known for their low interest loans as well as 0% balance transfer offers on credit cards, both of which save you money.

Their free financial seminars for members show that this is one of the DC credit unions that really wants you to do well and get the guidance you need. Getting free access to home selling and buying tools from HomeAvantage™ is also a really nice perk of being a member of this DC credit union.

Related: Capital One vs. Chase vs. Citibank | Ranking & Comparison



TD Bank Review


For those of you that prefer large to quaint and historic in your Washington, DC bank, TD Bank in DC is a perfect match. They’re a large eastern regional bank with more than 1,200 locations from Maine to Florida.

Below are the highlights that make TD Bank DC stand out on our 2018 Ranking of the Best Banks in Washington,.

TD Bank at a Glance:

  • 25 branch locations in Washington, DC & surrounding areas
  • One of the 10 largest banks in the U.S.
  • Named one of the Big Five Banks in Customer Service Excellence by Ipsos Reid
  • Awarded Best Corporate Sustainability Report in the Finance-Bank Secor by IFD-FSI
  • Better Business Bureau A+ rating

Regional and Cross-Border Banking

If you want to see a location of your bank in Washington, DC in other cities throughout the Southeast and even Canada, then TD Bank DC will be a top choice for you. With 26 locations, just in the DC area alone, plus cross-border (to Canada) banking, and over 1,200 branches, convenience their middle name.

Rating Summary

TD Bank DC scores a top 5 in our listing of the best DC credit unions and banks. It’s a large bank that has managed to keep a reputation for excellent customer service as well as convenience.

They’ve got so many awards in various areas, such as sustainability, community support, and diversity, that it’s difficult to put them all on one page. TD Bank is definitely one of the top DC banks and SE regional banks to consider for all your financial management needs.

Popular Article: HomeStreet Bank Ranking & Review



Bank-Fund Staff Federal Credit Union Review


Since 1947, Bank-Fund Staff Federal Credit Union has been serving employees of the World Bank Group and International Monetary Fund and their families. In addition to those organizations, anyone that works or retired from the World Bank Children’s Center, Bretton Woods Recreation Center, or consultants for them can qualify.

Below are the highlights that make Bank-Fund Staff Federal Credit Union stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best DC Banks and Credit Unions.

Bank-Fund Staff Federal Credit Union at a Glance:

  • 3 branch locations in Washington, DC & surrounding areas
  • Dedicated lending center, separate from branches
  • Free financial seminars
  • Insurance through TruStage
  • Better Business Bureau A+ rating

Attractive Loan Interest Rates

One thing that reviewers mention as a plus about this DC credit union is their low interest rates for loans. They offer home equity loans with no application fee and rates as low as 2.49% APR. Their auto loans are as low as 1.49% APR.

Rating Summary

Bank-Fund Staff Federal Credit Unions earns high praise from its members. We rated this best credit union in DC a 3 in our ranking. The only thing that held them back from a higher score was limited membership eligibility.

Some other perks that this top DC credit union provides members is an online Financial Education Center with graduation certificate, the ability to chat with a real estate expert, and a cash rewards program through HomeAdvantage™.

Read More: Houston Texas Fire Fighters Federal Credit Union | Ranking & Review


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National Capital Bank Review


National Capital Bank is the oldest Washington, DC Bank, serving the district since 1889. Their National Capital Bank of Washington Foundation was started to support the community in the areas of youth, education, and social services.

Below are the highlights that make National Capital Bank stand out on this 2018 Ranking of the Best Banks in Washington, DC.

National Capital Bank at a Glance:

  • 3 branch locations in Washington, DC & surrounding areas
  • Member of the CO-OP network of more than 5,000 shared branches
  • Participates in community activities
  • Private student loan programs
  • Better Business Bureau A+ rating

Commercial Loans & Lines of Credit

If you’re looking to grow a business, then this is one of the DC banks you’ll want to consider for a commercial loan. In addition to the typical term business loans, they offer construction financing, equipment financing and leasing, and loans for non-profit organizations. All with personalized and competitive rates and terms.

Rating Summary

You can’t beat the prestige of being the first bank in Washington DC. And their excellent reputation may be the reason they only have two branch locations. Although they do offer convenient 24/7 automated banking.

Due to the smaller amount of locations where people can bank in person, we rated National Capital Bank a high 3 on our list of the best banks in Washington DC. They offer a full suite of personal and business banking and wealth management products and have a stellar reputation for community support.

Related: MidCountry Bank Ranking & Review


Industrial Bank Review


Now it’s time to let you in on the one Washington, DC bank that we suggest you avoid until they make a few improvements. Industrial Bank suffers from multiple bad reviews online for things like mobile banking that doesn’t work correctly and poor customer service.

Below are some of the improvements we feel would help Industrial Bank improve their reputation and in the future earn a spot on a best banks in Washington, DC listing.

Fix Mobile and Online Banking Issues

Many reviewers noted things like mobile deposit not working correctly and not being able to open an account as easily online as promised. Any best DC bank or credit union these days knows that mobile banking is only getting bigger, so attention to these issues would help them greatly.

Improve Customer Service Response Time

When it comes to customer service, the biggest complaint people have with Industrial Bank is the time it takes to reach someone who can help. If they improved response times, it could help their reputation among other DC credit unions and banks.

Rating Summary

Industrial Bank was rated a 1 in our ranking of DC banks and credit unions, since we suggest you avoid them until they improve their reputation. Their mediocre C rating at the Better Business Bureau also doesn’t help their case.

On a positive note, they do have an attractive website and online presence. With some attention paid both on the technical side for online and mobile banking and the personal side in the customer service department, we can see revisiting their score on a future best banks in Washington DC listing.

Don’t Miss: Minnwest Bank Ranking & Review


Conclusion – Top 6 Best Bank and Best Credit Union in DC (& the 1 to avoid)

There is definitely a lot of history when it comes to the District of Columbia. Presidents may have come and gone over the years, but the best DC credit unions and banks have endured.

Those that live and work in DC and the beltway have no problem when it comes to excellent banking choices. We suggest considering what’s most important to you when choosing your best DC bank or credit union. Things like great loan rates, convenient banking apps that work, or a large number of locations.

No matter what your preference, one of these top-rated DC credit unions or banks can surely meet your needs.

Popular Article: People’s Trust Federal Credit Union (Ranking & Review)


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