What can a credit union do for me?

Discussion in 'Credit Talk' started by roni, May 4, 2001.

  1. roni

    roni Well-Known Member

    I have an opportunity to join a credit union at my new job. I just opened a new bank account and wonder if it is really worth my while to join the jobs credit union.

    I hear people say that credit unions are more lenient lenders etc. Can anyone scare their thoughts on credit unions. I really dont want another account if it is not terribly needed. Maybe I could store a little money in the credit union. My job allows me to divide my pay and direct deposit my check into up to 3 different banks. With that option having more than one account is a little easier for saving purposes.

    Once again, is it worth it to join a credit union in this day and age?

  2. DaveLV

    DaveLV Well-Known Member

    I can't give you a definitive answer, but joining the credit union I am eligible to join was the first thing I did when I got my Chex report clean last week.

    It's small enough that I was able to make an appointment with one of their loan officers for next week. I want to bring in a copy of my credit report so they don't have to pull one and discuss my options with him/her. One of the things that this credit union offers that I've seen discussed here is the ability to get a secured loan at 3% above the rate they pay on deposits. If I have to use this option to establish a payment history with them, I will.

    I'm still going to keep my TD Waterhouse account because of the free online bill pay service. My account with them is free because I have a brokerage account there as well. The credit union does give me a free checking account but they do not pay interest and they do not offer online bill payment even for a fee.

    I'm going to split my direct deposit with the bulk of my pay going to Waterhouse and the rest going into my new credit union account. What a relief it was to walk into a bank and not worry about Chex. BTW: They will open an account for people who have a record with Chex, but there is a $10 monthly fee for a year, or for six months if you complete a "How to use a checking account" course that they offer once a quarter.
  3. Ender

    Ender Well-Known Member

    I think the course and the fees also differ based on the credit unions you go to as well.
  4. Kate

    Kate Well-Known Member


    I belong to Navy Federal Credit Union. I switched from a conventional bank, Wachovia, to a credit union back in the fall. The switch was a no brainer for me. At Navy Federal they do not charge monthly maintenance fees. So, I do not have to keep $750 in my account at all times. I have a share checking account that pays a dividend on my account monthly, a share savings account that pays a dividend on my account quarterly, and a custom club account that pays a dividend on my account monthly.

    Navy Federal has a 12.5% APR Visa or MasterCard Credit Builder/Renewer Ideal for the individual with limited income or credit history as well as those with prior credit problems. Available with a credit line of $500 to $7500. Must be secured by an amount in the cardholder's share savings account equal to 100% of the credit line (funds continue to earn dividends). This is the same APR they charge on their regular Visa/MC. The Gold Visa/MC has a 11.5% APR. The Travel Visa which earns free miles carries a 11.5% APR.

    And if I need a share secured loan the rate is 5.25 to 6.25%

    They even have credit repair counselors to help try and clear up your credit.

    In essence, there are far to many perks to mention with belonging to Navy Federal but, I am enjoying this credit union immensely.

    Each credit union is distinctly different. I would advise looking at the credit union you are contemplating joining online and see if the benefits outweigh those accounts that you currently have.

    This is a broad answer to your question.
  5. mother2

    mother2 Well-Known Member

    NFCU, is my CU too!

    They have really helped me, in addition to this board.
  6. Newcomer

    Newcomer Well-Known Member


    My Credit Union helped me to get back on my feet. With my bad credit, I was only able to get finance company loans which kill your credit score, even if you pay on time. I went to my credit union to get a consolidation loan and to pay off some collection accounts so that I could lease an apartment. They gave me a signature loan, an overdraft line of credit, and a check card (which at the time, my credit was sooo bad, no other bank would grant one to me). Since then, I've gotten 2 more loans. The best thing is, credit unions are non-profit. One year, I got a percentage of the interest I paid back on my loans. Imagine how much it would have been if I'd had a car loan or a mortgage. Also, my CU has specials twice a year where you can finance a new or used car for 5.75 or 6.75 APR. They are small and more personal. They are also more inclined to help you repair your credit.

    Even if you don't want to borrow any money or anything, the no fee policy would be good enough. (I'm assuming they have free checking)
  7. Donna

    Donna Well-Known Member


    Since your credit has improved in such dramatic fashion lately, you might not benefit from a credit union as much as I did. But my credit union gave me a loan, when I needed it, and I have free checking.

    Lately, our credit union has tightened up a lot on granting credit to those of us with challenges but I still think they're pretty receptive when it comes to helping. When I was first employed...many moons ago...and didn't have any credit whatsoever, they gave me a chance.

    What you might want to do is get some brochures and see what your credit union has to ffer or you could always call and get some info over the phone.

    Good luck.

  8. roni

    roni Well-Known Member

    Thanks to everyone for those wonderful responses. I was just thinking though. I am eligible for joining my jobs credit union and the army credit union. Reshod brought that to my attention as well.

    Does anyone have any experiences with the army credit union..I think it is called Andrews Federal Credit union and Philadelphia Credit union?

    I can use the good rates. And with my TU report being tainted for 7 more years with the tax lien, I may need other lines of credit.

    thanks again guys. those were great answers to my question.
  9. Kate

    Kate Well-Known Member


    Andrews Federal Credit Union is located in Maryland. My brother is a member there and they have some great rates. He is in the Air Force Reserves. I know they have a web site online if you want to check them out.

    Where do you drill? The next time you drill you may want to check out the credit union on the base. Just a thought.
  10. roni

    roni Well-Known Member

    I drill at a small reserve medical unit in Pennsylvania. No credit union there. When I was at Fort Dix on Saturday, I saw a credit union. That is closer than Maryland. I thought it was Andrews though. funny?
  11. Maer

    Maer Well-Known Member

    I had a terrible experience with my credit union. Shortly after opening it, I made a CASH deposit via the ATM. I then wrote checks against it. The checks went in 2 days later and they were all returned and I was charged NSF fees. I called thinking my cash deposit had been stolen or something. Little did I know, they have a 3 day wait on crediting deposits made through their ATM. Can you believe that!!!! I guess it was in the fine print but I never saw it. When I became upset at this ridiculous rule I was yelled at and told that they gave me all the disclosures when I signed up and I CHOSE not to read them.
    About a year later, I was 2 1/2 years out of b/k and went to them for a car loan. I have never been treated like such scum in my life. I think that meeting with them was more humiliating then going through the b/k proceedings. Obviously, I did not get the loan.
    I think I just belong to a really crappy credit union!!!
  12. judyputy

    judyputy Well-Known Member

    Now I love my credit union alot, but it's commonly known that if you file bankruptcy most credit unions will treat you like scum. They really take a hard line on filing. I have always seen warnings to people about severing their ties to the credit union BEFORE they file because if you wait until after the credit unions tie up your money. They really frown on their loans being added to the list of creditors.

    Other than that I love doing business there. The loans are great, the rates are good, etc.

  13. kim

    kim Well-Known Member

    I love my credit union. First Atlantic Fed at Fort Monmouth in NJ. I've had the account for 11 years. I haven't lived in NJ for 10 years, but kept the account. No checking fees, overdraft protection, no minimum balance, $2/mo for having a ATM card, nice rates on loans. It's much cheaper than having an account with Wachovia or Bank of America. I've never had any troubles with them.
  14. ShyGuy

    ShyGuy Well-Known Member

    My credit union gave me a secured installment loan after my BK. I told them about the Chapter 7, but they didn't pull a credit report. Also, they have the same policy -- no credit report -- for secured Visas. And they will open checking accounts for people on ChexSystems.

    Even if I loved my bank, I would still keep a credit union account for things like low-cost bankcards, good loan rates and the like.

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