MoneyTalksNews: How to pick the best CU for you

July 7, 2015

NEW YORK (7/7/15)--Personal finance website MoneyTalksNews recently examined the growing preference by consumers for credit unions over banks in a recent article and video, and discussed how to determine which credit union best fits a consumer’s needs.

The video also highlights CUNA’s, which points prospective members in the direction of the credit unions nearest to them.

“Lots of people like credit unions better than banks. Who can blame them?” said Stacy Johnson, MoneyTalks CEO. “Because they’re not-for-profit, credit unions often have lower rates on loans and credit cards, higher rates on savings and fewer fees for things like checking.”

Consumers also enjoy the friendlier service, Johnson said.

“I enjoy the small personal touch that they give,” credit union member Ron Lau told Money Talks. “They’re a lot easier to manage than the big banks, because (with banks) you don’t know where your fees are coming from. You’re just a number to them.”

When picking a credit union to join, Johnson says consumers should ask themselves several questions, including:

  • Can I join? Anyone can join a credit union, but not necessarily every credit union. It depends on the credit union’s field of membership, which is often tied to places of employment or residence;
  • Does it offer the services I need? “See if the credit union offers mobile apps to view your account balances, pay bills, deposit checks and send money online,” Johnson said. More than half of credit unions with more than $2 million in assets offer mobile banking, according to CUNA numbers; and
  • Which is most conveniently located? Try and ask if the credit union is part of a shared branching network.