A credit union is a non-for-profit, member-owned, financial cooperative. Unlike profit-driven banks, they return their excess earnings to their members in the form of better service, higher yield savings, lower interest loans, and no or low fee accounts and money management services.
In addition to being a not-for-profit, financial cooperative, a credit union is democratically controlled by its members. There are no stockholders. Members elect a volunteer Board of Directors from their membership. The Board is responsible for setting credit union policy and interest rates. Daily operations are handled by paid professionals, or in the case of some smaller credit unions, by volunteers.
While a credit union needs income to provide member services and benefits, its primary purpose is to help its members make their financial lives easier and more affordable based on the credit union philosophy of “People Helping People” and “service first”.
Not everyone can join a credit union. Credit unions serve a specific field of membership as defined by their federal or state charter. Anyone who falls within this common bond can join. A common bond is defined as the employees of a company, members of a civic or church group organization, or residents of a community. Generally, persons within a member’s immediate family, by blood or marriage, may also become members.
Hudson River Financial FCU serves more than 50 school districts, municipalities, select companies, organizations and partners in the Hudson Valley area. Click to Check Your Eligibility. Once you join, your immediate family can also become members.
A credit union receives its authority to operate by obtaining a federal or state charter. Annual examinations and oversight are conducted by the supervisory agencies ‒ the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) for federal credit unions ‒ and the New York Department of Banking for credit unions. A credit union is also governed by its member-elected Board of Directors.
Member deposit accounts are federally insured for a combined total of up to $250,000, and Individual Retirement Accounts are separately insured for up to $250,000, for a combined total up to $500,000. The National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCSIF)is administered by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). The fund is backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government. No taxpayer funds are used to support the NCUA or the credit union insurance fund. There are also steps you can take to insure higher account balances. Contact the credit union for the details.
Credit unions provide savings and checking accounts for people who have faced financial challenges in the past and need a fresh start. They also offer lending products for people with less than great credit. Call or stop by Hudson River Financial FCU for the details.
Studies show credit union members could save from $100 to $300 a year with only basic credit union accounts and services. When a member takes advantage of loans and refinancing of higher interest loans they have elsewhere, they can save even more. The more products and services members use, the more they save.