I wanted to know whether everyone’s opinions differ on Credit unions as on big banks. I personally have a checking account with a “big bank” (TD Bank), but i never keep more than a few hundred dollars in there at a time.
Recently i was considering opening an account with my local credit union. Over the years i have always heard good things about them however im not too familiar with them and i wasn’t sure if credit unions are all tied up in the same hustle and bustle “schemes” as the big banks..??
Does anyone have an account with a credit union, and if so, what makes you feel safer with them as opposed to other banks?? Thanks in advance for all your answers and thoughts.
I’ve been using credit unions almost exclusively my entire life. (30+ years) I have a bank account with US Bank simply because they supposedly shave o.5% off my mortgage loan. I keep only a couple of hundred dollars there.
Credit unions seem to be local, much more involved with the community and generally not for profit. They do turn a small profit to support community activities but but the member elected board is not enriching themselves on the backs of their account holders. One of the local CU’s I belong to pays 5.09%APY on the first $500 in their savings accounts. The other CU I belong to pays 2.o3%APY on deposits up the first $10,000 in their checking account. Many credit unions have a feature called shared branching where you can go into any credit union, member or not, and conduct many transactions no charge. There are also no ATM fees even if using a CU you are not a member of.
Sadly, credit unions will be closed right along with banks if a system wide bank holiday were declared so there is no real advantage there. At the end of the day though, a credit union might just add a layer of protection between your funds and re-hypothecation.
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They’re the best. But if you plan on keeping money in a banking institution, I’d find the nearest one to where you live with a 24hour ATM. That’s if you want to gamble on that. Other wise keep minimum balance and deposit cash when you need to write a check. You be the banker/ATM, in this final stage of Monopoly.
I like credit unions as long as they give me the same features when it comes to online banking and billpay. Anybody have any good recommendations on where I can find research on local banks and credit unions as it relates to their capital/debt position?
In my career I have worked with every type of credit union there is. They are the most trustworthy financial organization there is. They are owned by the membership, usually very conservative on their investments, actually lend money to small business and people and actually treat their members with respect and decency. Using a credit union or a small community bank is the best way to go for handling bill pay and holding a small amount of greenbacks to conduct monthly business.
I would avoid very large credit unions as sometimes they are just like a large regional bank and could get themselves into bigger problems. Always ask to see their annual report to make sure they are financially healthy. Look closely at the large investments they have and always ask questions of the manager about anything on the report you don’t understand. Get to know the local staff and you most likely will be treated like family when you visit. I have a lot of respect for how they approach customer service.
But also remember that in the end you are still the one with skin in the game so always be careful. I would much rather put some fiat in a credit union vs a larger regional or super, stockholder bank anytime. One exception is USAA — they are large but still owned by their customers. They focus on military service members as their primary source of customers. The nice thing is you can use an ATM anywhere in the world and they will reimburse the fees up to about $15 a month. So if you or any family are former military check them out. The main office is in San Antonio, TX. I have had an account with them for 25 years and have never, ever, had a problem. They are full service and also insure property, cars, etc.
I have belonged to the same Credit Union since 1974. They are terrific. I have had 2 car loans, plus a home equity line of credit loan, which is like a 2nd mortgage where you can deduct interest fron your income taxes. They are also very locally oriented, friendly, and concerned about their customer’s financial welfare. I dropped all big banks many years ago. The final straw was when they charged me a $3.00 monthly maintenance fee on my SAVINGS ACCOUNT!! I do not however recommend storing your valuables (i.e. silver) in a safe deposit box even in a credit union. Somehow I think the feds could still impound it.
So long as it’s not FDIC insured, they’re by far superior to typical banks. The money lent is virtually exclusively to help your immediate community, they don’t participate in the racket that is fractional reserve lending, and they’re yet another arm’s length away from bank holiday seizures.
Still, keep paper money at your own cost. As a stacker, I quite literally use precious metals as my bank account. Sure, keep some money on hand in your local CU for emergency purposes and immediate transactions, but acknowledge that money as potentially lost or, at the very least, may one day have a purchasing power so low as to be useless.
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