In recent years, countless Americans have lost faith in the financial system due to scandals, rising fees and corruption. The banking system has primarily been in the spotlight for these very reasons. As a result, Americans are actively seeking an alternative for their financial needs.
Credit unions have seen a substantial growth in membership thanks in part to the services they offer and the trust they’ve earned. According to the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), there are over 7,000 credit unions in the United States, each differing in size and services offered. One thing that all share, however, is wanting to make members feel that they’ve chosen the best for their financial well-being.
A Member-First Mentality
Credit unions operate as cooperatives where, instead of having customers like banks, they have “members” that each owns a share of the institution. As such, members are offered much better financial services. A survey by Prime Performance Bank and Credit Union Customer Satisfaction found that credit unions far surpassed banks in all categories of customer satisfaction. Many who took the survey rated their satisfaction at 89%, seven points higher than the industry average.
Lower Interest Rates
Low interest rates in the financial industry are rare, but not at credit unions. These institutions often pass on the savings garnered from their not-for-profit status in exchange for higher rates on savings accounts and lower rates on credit cards and loans.
More Lenient Minimum Balance Rules
Banks typically stipulate for customers to offer a minimum balance in order to open an account. At credit unions, minimum balances are usually very low and affordable or non-existent. A 2012 Bankrate Credit Union Checking Survey found that 72% of credit unions had no minimum balance requirements.
Lower Fees than Banks
Credit unions do their best to keep costs low in order to keep members happy. In fact, rather than add fees for customers, many credit unions would rather opt to eliminate products or services to cut costs instead of raise prices. This adds a lot of flexibility for members and saves money in the long run.
Easy Cash Access
Most banks have their own ATMs available only to their customers. Many credit unions, on the other hand, operate on a shared ATM network that allows people from different unions to use the same machines. This allows members to see that their branch is going out of its way to offer needed services without sacrificing convenience.
Become a Member
VFCU, like many other credit unions, puts the member before profits. We understand that in order to keep you as a trusted member of our family, you should be treated like family. Get in contact with us in Brownsville to open an account or explore what we have to offer.