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In the media CU perks for the little guy
MADISON, Wis. (4/21/11)--Credit unions offer five perks for “the little guy,” according to a recent article on Bankrate.com, which also appeared in Yahoo! Finance. The article, titled “5 perks for the little guy,” begins by asking, “Are credit unions better than banks?” then explains how credit unions differ from banks in their ownership structure--and how credit union members benefit from that difference. “Since credit unions are not-for-profits owned by their members, they return savings to their membership,” the article says. “For example auto loan rates are usually 2% lower than they are at banks, says Anne Legg, chair of Credit Union National Association’s [CUNA] Marketing and Business Development Council.” Among the perks cited in the article:
* Attend free financial workshops. Most credit unions take financial literacy very seriously. The article cites Landmark CU, New Berlin, Wis., as an example of a credit union that offers free seminars on budgeting and home buying. * Renegotiate loans. They offer lower rates, but truly personalized service has long been a hallmark of credit unions. Legg says most credit unions will discuss loan modifications over the phone. * Find discounts on services, entertainment. Credit unions with large, local memberships often offer discounts on sporting events and entertainment. “We keep offering more every year,” said Todd Pietzsch, spokesman at BECU, Tukwila, Wash. * Take advantage of rewards programs. Many retailers offer rewards programs today, and credit unions are not exception. For example, OMNI Community CU, Battle Creek, Mich., offers cash back rebates on checking, saving and car loans. * Share membership benefits with your family members. Credit unions are typically family oriented, and most offer accounts for every stage of life, from kids accounts to retirement products. Affinity FCU, Basking Ridge, N.J., has a college planning center with advisers to help families with their college savings plans.
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