Members 1st Credit Union is a full service financial institution providing checking, savings, debit cards, credit cards, auto loans, personal loans, HELOCs, and debt consolidation loans. In addition, Members 1st provides many free services such as Online Banking, Mobile Banking, Telephone Banking, Bill Pay, eStatements, and eAlerts. Plus, members can perform unlimited transactions in any Members 1st branch or ATM at no charge.
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What makes credit unions different from banks?
Credit unions and banks offer many similar products and services, but there are several differences that can have a big impact on you as a consumer.
Credit unions are not-for-profit organizations. We are organized as a corporation owned by you, our members. Credit unions are operated by a paid, professional staff and led by a volunteer group of Directors that receive no compensation for their time and efforts. These Directors are also members. Credit union profits are returned to you, the member-owners, in the form of higher savings rates, lower loan rates, fewer and reduced fees.
Banks are for-profit corporations and may be publicly held organizations. They are owned by investors (stockholders), and led by paid Directors who may not be depositors in the bank. Rather than only paying the depositors, running the organization, and growing capital, banks must pay dividends to stockholders and compensate Directors resulting in higher expenses.
Credit unions can only grow their capital through earnings. We cannot sell stock or issue bonds to support growth. We are proud to report Members 1st has very strong capital at over 10% and has never needed or used taxpayer money from government bailouts in our 75-year history.
Banks can grow capital by selling stock or issuing bonds. There are a fair amount of banks with strong capital; however, a large number of banks have needed and used taxpayer money from government bailouts.
Credit unions are insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) for depositors up to $250,000.
Banks are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) for depositors up to $250,000.
Credit unions are normally locally operated and serve relatively medium size geographic areas. Many credit unions originated to serve a specific employer group, however, many have changed to community charters to serve all members in their county. This rich history serving smaller employer groups has provided the foundation for the exceptional member service that is found at all credit unions nation wide where we are known for providing a more personal touch and the ability to tailor our services to suit the needs of our members.
Banks normally serve a large geographic area and are operated from one large central corporate location. This can sometimes result in a less desirable banking experience for their customers.
Credit unions regularly invest back into the communities they operate in through local sponsorships, giving opportunities, and by participating in local events.
Banks tend to focus giving efforts in larger cities around national organizations, however, some community banks focus their efforts around the local communities they serve.
We hope this helps you understand a little of what makes credit union's different. If you have any questions about Members 1st please feel free to contact us at (530)-222-6060. We look forward to serving your financial needs.