Joining a credit union is one of the easiest ways to save money.
- Joining a credit union means becoming a member-owner.
- You may pay less fees and get better interest rates on loans.
- You also get to vote for board members, or can run for a seat yourself.
There are about 5,200 credit unions in the U.S., according to research from IBIS World, and that number is growing. And there are plenty of good reasons for that growth. For many people, once they understand how a credit union works, it’s tough to imagine banking elsewhere.
If you currently keep your money in a bank or you’re just starting out and need a financial home, here are six reasons to consider a credit union.
1. You’re an owner
When you deal with a bank, you’re a customer. When you join a credit union, you’re a member. And as a member, you’re an owner of the credit union. No matter how little (or how much) money you have on deposit, you’re entitled to one vote when new board members are elected.
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And if you want to take a more active role in the credit union’s direction, you can even run for a board position. No one member is more important than another, and your voice counts.
2. Credit unions are not-for-profit
Unlike most businesses, credit unions operate as not-for-profit organizations. The goal of a credit union is not to make a profit but to provide members with the services and financial products they need. You’ll find that you’re not nickeled and dimed to death by a credit union because it’s not in the business of getting rich off fees.
Say you take out a loan from your credit union. You’ll still pay interest on the loan, but the interest rate will typically be lower than you would pay if you borrowed from another source. The interest members pay on loans goes back into the day-to-day running of the credit union, helping keep it afloat for all members.
3. You’re ‘someone’
As a member, you’re important to a credit union. You’re …….