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Why join a credit union?

Deb Adler, public relations coordinator of the New York State Credit Union League, says that there are at least 10 reasons why people of modest means should consider belonging to a credit union.

10 reasons to be in a credit union

1. Credit unions are focused on people, not profits. The credit union slogan is: "America's Credit Unions: Where people are worth more than money." Unlike banks, credit unions do not have to show a profit for people investing in them.

2. It is the express and recorded mission of credit unions to serve people of modest means.
3. Numerous surveys have indicated that credit union fees are significantly lower than fees at other financial institutions.
4. As not-for-profit institutions, credit unions often pay higher rates on savings accounts and offer better deals on loans than other financial institutions.
5. Credit unions try to be convenient to their members. They often try to be open hours that their members need. Some church credit unions, for instance, have Sunday hours following church services. Some businesses have credit unions right on the premises.
6. Credit unions specialize in helping educate their members for a better financial future. Many help youngsters understand how to begin saving for their dreams. Many offer seminars, classes and one-on-one help in financial education.
7. Credit unions frequently are available in places where banks aren't, such as community development neighborhoods.
8. Many credit unions offer no-surcharge ATMs that any credit union member can use.
9. As a member of a credit union, regardless of how much you have on deposit, you have an equal voice in how your credit union is run.
10. There are credit unions available that only offer the services you need. If you don't need a sophisticated Web site or 24-hour loan services, you may be eligible to join a credit union that offers just the services you use most.
Source: New York State Credit Union League

 

Robbie Woliver is a freelance writer based in New York
To comment on this story, please e-mail the Bankrate.com editors

 

-- Posted: March 1, 2000

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