Credit unions are financial institutions that are not-for-profit in nature and serve the communities. They offer financial products and services to their members, who are also partial co-owners and receive the profit in the form of lower fees and dividends on interest-bearing accounts.
If you’re looking for a financial partner that supports you and your community, a credit union can be a viable option. In this blog, we will explore the numerous ways a credit union supports its members and enhances their financial well-being.
Ways Credit Unions Support Their Members
- Payment and Fee Concessions
Credit unions offer fees & payment concessions to the members facing financial hardships. They are much more likely than any other financial institution to modify their products and services to cater to the needs of their members.
Credit unions have shown their willingness to go the extra mile for their members by running the “Skip A Pay” program and working with members in financial distress. A pivotal example are Fresno Credit unions, which have demonstrated unrelenting commitment to the local population and underserved segments of society.
Credit unions generally charge less and fewer fees from their members than traditional banks. They are also more likely to waive the fees in case of adverse situations than other financial institutions.
- Easy access to credit for small borrowers and businesses
Credit unions have provided better options for personal loans and small business loans. As a financial institution, it has been in the forefront of providing credit facilities for small businesses. Credit unions offer unsecured loans that do not have collateral requirements for these segments. When an individual applies to a credit union for a loan, they check the entire financial and job history of the person rather than just the credit score.
Credit unions are not-for-profit organizations with a strong focus on small businesses and small borrowers. Their loan processes are more lenient than other financial institutions, making them reliable and trustworthy among the business community.
- Educational Agenda of Credit Unions
Credit unions not only provide financial services to their members, but they also support their members’ financial well-being through imparting financial literacy to the population. It organizes money management seminars and financial education events on a wide array of topics to promote better financial decision-making.
- Promotes Diversity and Inclusion
Credit unions work to provide credit facilities to the underserved and underprivileged segments of the population. They focus on promoting diversity by representing communities and running targeted campaigns for their inclusion in the mainstream strata.
Credit unions serve around 34% of the minorities. On average, 17% of African Americans are served by credit unions, whereas the number is 12.8% for banks.
Credit unions have 6.3% of the branches in low-income areas compared with 5.3% of the bank branches and 70.9% in middle and moderate-income areas.
Credit unions have a long history of furthering the interest of underserved sections through participation in charitable causes and community-centric initiatives.
- Online Banking
Credit unions have adopted advanced technology to facilitate easier access to banking services by the population. The incorporation of big data and artificial intelligence in operations has led to user convenience and wider reach.
With around 132 million Americans as its members, credit unions have firmly established their presence across cities and towns. The member-centric financial services and community-based orientation have helped many over the years.
In times of financial difficulties, credit unions have provided unparalleled relief and assistance to their members. As formidable institutions of financial standing, credit unions have contributed to the upliftment of the underserved areas–serving its members in multiple ways.
Hopefully, this is helpful.