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Give me a reason to join a credit union


credit_junkie87
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I want to join a credit union so that my money can help the average Joe rather than being in the hands of a big, greedy corporation. However, I don't see any advantages that credit union in my area offer me over commerical banks.

Banks have:

1) Higher yield money market accounts

2) Better credit card rewards programs

3) Better websites to manage your account

4) Larger ATM networks

Credit Unions however offer higher yield CDs...

If I'm ever in need of a loan, I can open a savings account with $25 or so and qualify for the same rates as a member who has averaged 100k in deposits for the past 10 years!

I hope someone comes up with a compelling reply for me to join.

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Credit unions aren't bad, especially if you have mediocre to poor credit. They are much more forgiving. Received my first platinum card 9 months after BK7 from a credit union. The card has a 1% rebate and no fees. I couldnt get a gas card at the time. I also use credit unions to build tradelines by opening up secured loans.

Fees are usually low or non-existent on loans / credit cards and they do offer special lending deals sometimes.

However, if you have money to deposit, I wouldn't leave it in a brick and mortar bank or a credit union. At the least, use ING Direct, HSBC, PayPal money market, or another online savings account. My current Paypal money market pays 5.12% no minimums and no fees. That blows away any bank and you can withdrawal at any time.

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I joined my local credit union because I was ready to receive more personal service. If there is a problem with my account - it is looked into immediately. I'm not given the standard line of "that is how we do things".

I also get discount movie tickets, discounted tickets to local amusement parks, lower rates on credit cards, and great CD rates.

My savings account is with HSBC -- no bricks and mortar place can beat their rates.

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How do credit unions get deposit if their customers join only because they find it difficult to obtain credit? SOMEBODY has to make deposits too for them to be able to lend money.

That may be true, but there is plenty of liquidity to go around. If they want more deposits, then they need to up their yields. There are market forces at work. The fact that they have not increased their yields is the strongest indicator that they have plenty of funds.

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The Paypal money market scares me because of this at the bottom of their page:

*7 day average yield as of 10/25/2006. Yield varies over time. Money market funds are neither insured nor guaranteed by the FDIC or any other government agency. Although the Fund seeks to preserve the value of your investment at $1.00 USD per share, it is possible to lose money by investing in the Fund. Learn more about the Fund in the prospectus. The PayPal Money Market Fund is designed primarily as an automatic sweep investment for uninvested cash balances in PayPal customer accounts. Distributed by Funds Distributor, Inc. PayPal is not affiliated with Funds Distributor, Inc. or with Barclays Global Investors

Also, it seems like everybody and his brother is always trying to get into my darn account. Spoof emails daily.

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Credit unions are a really good thing, even for those with good credit.

1. Relaxed credit standards for credit cards and loans - they base some of their lending decisions on your personal relationship with the credit union.

2. Easy access to signature loans (up to $10000) unsecured

3. They often have special deals on auto loans and insurance.

4. Second mortgages at decent rates.

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The Paypal money market scares me because of this at the bottom of their page:

*7 day average yield as of 10/25/2006. Yield varies over time. Money market funds are neither insured nor guaranteed by the FDIC or any other government agency.

I think there is virtually no risk....they are a billion dollar company. If you feel more comfortable with insured funds in this post-Enron world, then I suggest ING Direct. Easy to use and decent yields- about 4.5%. HSBC online is great too.

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Yep, my funds sit in an HSBC account.

Paypal also will freeze your funds at anytime they feel like it. A friend of mine had over $5,000 in there that she could not get to for over 6 months. Paypal has strict usage guidelines.

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I want to join a credit union so that my money can help the average Joe rather than being in the hands of a big, greedy corporation. However, I don't see any advantages that credit union in my area offer me over commerical banks.

Banks have:

1) Higher yield money market accounts (FDIC accounts or non-FDIC funds?)

2) Better credit card rewards programs (Granted)

3) Better websites to manage your account (Generally, but not all of them)

4) Larger ATM networks (See link below)

Credit Unions however offer higher yield CDs...

If I'm ever in need of a loan, I can open a savings account with $25 or so and qualify for the same rates as a member who has averaged 100k in deposits for the past 10 years!

I hope someone comes up with a compelling reply for me to join.

Banks do NOT have a 25,000 ATM network nationwide. The next largest ATM network is by BofA with over 13,000 ATMs. Chances are, there are credit union ATMs in your area.

http://www.co-opnetwork.org/public/locators/ATMlocator/index.cfm

I don't know your area. I do know that you can join DCU and they have a few things that you might be looking for:

1) "Shared branch access" via other credit unions

http://www.co-opnetwork.org/public/locators/sblocator/index.cfm

2) Access to 25,000 ATMs via co-op network

3) Well, instead of telling you... why don't you just check them out for yourself? www.dcu.org

(And yes, they have a nice sophisticated website for you to manage your finances.)

Keep in mind that I work FOR a credit union and there is ONE HUGE GIGANTIC difference between them and banks.

When I walk into a bank... I'm always gearing up for an argument when something can go wrong. I'm waiting for one punk of a "manager" to tell me why they can't do something that I KNOW they can and SHOULD do for me when I ask for it. (Remember, I used to be a MANAGER at Wells Fargo and I know banking better than most people do.)

Not so with a credit union. When I walk into a credit union, the service is friendlier and simplier. I would rather wait in a credit union line TWICE as long as wait in a bank line.

BTW, did you read this thread to see the different ADVANTAGES and DISADVANTAGES of different credit unions? Well worth reading!

http://www.debt-consolidation-credit-repair-service.com/forums/showthread.php?t=224944

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