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      Credit Unions vs. Banks

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      What is a Credit Union?

      Although they offer many of the same accounts and conveniences that banks do, a Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial institution. This means that rather than making profits to pay stockholders, like banks do, credit unions return earnings directly back to their members.

      So that's it? That's the main difference between a Credit Union and a bank? There are many big differencesbetween Banks and Credit Unions.

      Who is a member?

      Credit Unions are Not-for-Profit and Member-Owned.

      Credit Unions exist to server their members, not to make a profit. We are a true economic democracy, where each member of a Credit Union is also an ownerof the organization. So when you become a member, you're much more than just an account number.

      We often hear that Credit Unions offer Better Rates and Fewer Fees. How's that?

      Since Credit Unions don't have to pay stockholders, they can offer lower loan rates, higher savings rates and fewer fees than the for-profit banks. You could check with them before making any financial decisions and compare to make sure you're getting the best deal. So when you become a member, you're much more than just an account number.

      Should I check around and compare?

      YES! At Credit Unions, we have a commitment to helping people make the best financial choices for themselves and their budget. In addition to receiving personal attention, Credit Unions also offer many classes, counselling sessions and online resources to help people better manager their money.

      So with Credit Unions it's not so much about how much money you have?

      Right, we treat everyone the same.

      You see, Credit Unions were originally formed to help consumers, especially those of modest means, to have access to affordable financial services? We still stand behind this today, and are dedicated to helping all members to have a better financial future regardless of how much money they have.

      So what's the bottom-line, when it comes to the differences between Credit Unions and Banks?

      The bottom-line is not only do Credit Unions offer better rates and lower fees. Overall they have powerful appeal in today's environment where so many people are put off by big banks.

      In fact, in the entire history of U.S. Credit Unions, taxpayer funds have never been used to bail out a Credit Union. The same can't be said for the largest banks.

      Credit Unions, as cooperatives owned by the people they server, embody the traits consumers are seeking these days, and they are flocking to Credit Unions in huge numbers.

      MoneyWACH is a partnership between Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union and WACH FOX focused on financial education in the Midlands. Over the course of the year we'll cover financial and economic topics that matter to you. The segment airs the first Monday of every month on Good Day Columbia and will also be archived here for your convenience. Achieve your potential with Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union and WACH FOX.