All You Need To Know About A Credit Union

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All You Need To Know About A Credit Union

By: Nakia Middleton

Banking! It’s a topic some of us are familiar with and others may not be.  It’s never too late to take a crash course on banking. So, let’s dive in!

Most would say that they do business with the “big banks.” I’m speaking of the cream of the crop banks such as JP Morgan Chase, PNC, Bank of America and many more.  These for profit institutions are great, but there are more options out there; they are called credit unions. Credit unions are a non-profit organization that are owned by their members! You read it right, if you are a member of a credit union, you own a share of that organization.

There are over 68,000 credit unions in 60 countries and the numbers continue to flourish. Why? Well, the credit unions are for the people. They are there to assist their members with everyday banking education and financial needs. Not all credit unions have a diverse financial portfolio, but that’s okay! You’ll find that credit unions come in all shapes and sizes. Some may be bigger than others, but that could be due to the eligibility and mission of that financial organization. You can always find the best credit union in your residential area by word-of-mouth or internet research.

Some think that credit unions do not possess the same type of products and services as banks, but I am here to inform you otherwise!  A diverse organization should offer consumer and business accounts, consumer loans, and mobile banking. Consumer accounts would be your general savings and checking accounts. It may also be a huge benefit to consider starting your business account at a credit union. Sure, the organization may be smaller than your average “big bank”, but it is imperative that you comprehend who and what you are investing in. Put your money where it counts!

Often times credit unions will do what others banking institutions will not. They offer low to no minimum balance or maintenance fees for the accounts, personal loans up to $50,000.00 (in most cases), or they may just smile and let you know that they appreciate your business.

Believe it or not, good customer service is hard to come by. This could be for many reasons (i.e. company culture, neglect of employees, etc.). I’ve found that almost all credit unions have a “for the member” mindset. You are assisted with genuine kindness and you are more than just a number, you are a member!

If you haven’t done so yet, check out your local credit union and ask questions. Awareness is key! You may find that all your financial and banking needs may be met at a community established credit union right in your backyard.