- Credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives and answer only to their members. They do not have outside stockholders.
- Credit unions are safe. They have their own version of the FDIC, the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF). Just like the FDIC, it insures the money in your credit union account for up to $250,000.
- You’re part of something bigger: the cooperative movement. Co-ops are the ultimate democratic institutions, controlled by their members and always operating in their best interest.
- Credit unions typically charge fewer fees than banks, and the fees they do charge are far lower than what you’d pay at a bank. Also, they typically charge lower rates for loans and pay higher rates on savings.
- Credit unions promote financial literacy, with programs on money management for all ages.
- Credit unions are convenient, with a network of 30,000 ATMs across the U.S. – all surcharge-free. Can your bank say that?
- Credit unions live on Main Street, not Wall Street. As nonprofit organizations, they don’t make risky investments, and they don’t pressure their members to.
- Members, not outside stockholders, decide how their credit union is run and who runs it.
- Membership is forever. If you were eligible to join a credit union based on your job, for example, you can keep your membership even if you leave that job.
- One member, one vote. Whether you have $5 or $50,000 in your account, you have the same say as any other member in determining the direction of your credit union.
- Credit unions are for everyone – most people do not realize that they qualify for membership. There are still eligibility rules, but they’re not as strict as you might think.
- Unlike banks, no credit union has ever needed a government bailout.
- Credit unions are No. 1 in customer service, because their members are No. 1 with them.
- Credit unions foster a sense of community among their members.
- Credit unions are socially conscious and reflect the values we live by.
To learn more about cooperatives, visit
Cooperatives for a Better World.