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HuffPo Columnist Talks Up Benefits of CUs
Wednesday, September 9, 2015 6:35 AM

Huffington Post columnist Rachel Pross recently published an eight-reason list of why consumers should ditch their banks and become credit union members. In her article, “Credit Union 101: What’s the Difference, and Why You Should Make the Switch!” Pross said that, above all, credit unions can maximize value for consumers, their families and their communities.

“Simply put, credit unions are your not-for-profit alternative to the big banks, and they can save you big bucks,” she wrote.

The eight highlights of the credit union difference—which include a reference to CUNA’s credit union locator resource, aSmarterChoice.org--according to Pross:

  • Credit unions are not-for-profit cooperatives owned by their members. They use earnings to provide members better rates on loans and deposits;
     
  • Credit union members save roughly $7 billion every year by picking a credit union over a for-profit bank. Even bank customers save money--a whopping $2 billion--because credit unions force banks to offer consumers more competitive rates;
     
  • Credit unions focus on service--not on earning profit--while they also provide all the same products and services banks can;
     
  • Credit unions are operated by democratically elected volunteer boards of directors, and all members have only one vote no matter how much money they have deposited at the credit union;
     
  • Credit union deposits are insured by the National Credit Union Administration, just as the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. insures deposits at banks;
     
  • Credit unions take their cooperative structure seriously. They also cooperate with one another through shared ATM networks and shared branching, a service that allows members to access their accounts at multiple credit unions;
     
  • Credit unions take pride in serving and engaging the communities they serve through outreach efforts ranging from school supply drives to supporting local children’s hospitals; and

Just about anyone can join a credit union, and there are a number of resources that consumers can access to find the most convenient institution.