When you compare accounts at traditional banking establishments with credit union bank accounts, you will find that they offer similar products and solutions. Your money is safe and protected, insured by the federal government, at both institutions. If you want to open a savings account at a Massachusetts credit union, you will go through the same steps that you would go through at a bank. However, when it comes to figuring out what the benefits are to joining a credit union as opposed to becoming a customer at a bank, the advantages aren’t in how they are alike, but how they are different.
What is the Same?
Searching for the best New Bedford banking solutions can be overwhelming; after all, there are lots of great choices. St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford has been around for over 100 years, providing quality services and unmatched opportunities to our members since 1911. There’s something to be said for a financial organization that has been around that long. Both banks and credit unions offer checking and savings accounts. They will both offer loans, business accounts, investment options, and other essential services to help you save, grow, and use your money to your advantage. Online banking, local and national ATM access to funds, and other opportunities are also similar between a traditional bank and credit union bank accounts and savings.
What is Different?
Here’s where the real advantages lie when it comes down to choosing between a bank and a credit union in New Bedford. A credit union is a member-owned institution. A non-profit organization that typically offers better deals to their members because they don’t have any outside investors trying to maximize their profit from each account. In fact, any profits that are made throughout the year are passed on to the members in the way of reduced or eliminated fees and better interest rates for member accounts.
A bank is a for-profit business that makes its money by charging high fees and rates to its customers. Because the goal is to make a profit for shareholders, banks are all about the numbers. In fact, many of the people who use traditional banking often complain that they feel as though they are treated “like a number” or that they feel like they would get better service if their balance were higher. At a credit union, the members are the shareholders who profit from smart decisions made by the board. Each member gets a vote and a voice, a say in how things are run.
Not All Credit Unions Are Created Equal
In order to pass down these savings to members, there are certain requirements for joining a credit union. In order to retain a tax-favored status as a non-profit financial institution, credit unions are required by the government to limit their customer base or field of membership. A common bond is established that binds all of the members together, such as working in the same industry, attending the same school, belonging to the same religious organization, membership in the same organization, or even the geographic area where you work or live. St Anne Credit Union in New Bedford is open to all people who live or work in either Plymouth or Bristol counties, making it very easy to join.
It is important to choose a Massachusetts credit union that has a solid reputation for providing its members with the most benefits and services. Credit union bank accounts, such as a standard checking and savings, as well as money market accounts and certificates of deposit, should also be offered to provide you with the most opportunities. Other New Bedford banking solutions, such as auto and home loans, personal loans, and even motorcycle loans, should all be available to members of any credit union that you join. The best way to find out what you get as a member of a new credit union in New Bedford is to speak with a customer service representative. You can contact St Anne Credit Union by calling our office at 508-993-0011 or by stopping by our branch on Union Street in New Bedford, MA. We can answer any questions that you might have about membership and can help you take the necessary steps to join our local credit union.