Banks and credit unions are financial institutions. Both offer many of the same products and services like savings accounts, checking accounts, auto loans, credit cards, ATM/debit cards, and mortgage and home equity loans.
Both have deposit insurance so your money stays safe (your credit union has insurance through the National Credit Union Administration, a government agency similar to the FDIC).
So, what makes your credit union so great? We’re a less-expensive way for you to do your banking.
For one thing, your credit union only accepts people (like you) who fit into the field of membership. For this reason, we don’t have expensive branch offices scattered over a large area. This keeps costs down.
Another is that your credit union is owned by you and your fellow members, in something called a financial cooperative, where the resources are the resources of the members only and decisions are made with members’ best interests in mind. There are no outside investors looking for capital gains or dividend payments. This keeps costs down, too.
But maybe the biggest reason of all is that credit unions are not-for-profit businesses; so, all of the proceeds like loan interest are put back into the institution as better rates, fewer and lower fees, new products and services, and bonus dividends to members.
All of this means your credit union can offer you all of the same products and high-level of service that a bank can but at a lower cost to you.