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What is a Credit Union?

A credit union is a not-for-profit financial cooperative - owned by its members!

Members pool their assets, and this in turn provides funds for loans - for cars, homes and businesses for the membership. It's all about people helping people.

Credit Unions & Banks

While credit unions provide much the same products, there are some very important differences.

Credit Unions Banks
Not-for-profit Profit-oriented
Returns profits to members in the form of better rates, free or low cost services Returns profits to stockholders
Each person who deposits money is a member with a share of ownership Customers have no ownership in the corporation
Members elect a volunteer board of directors to represent their interests Controlled by stockholders and paid officials
Member-service driven Profit-driven
Federally insured by the National Credit Union Administration Federally insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
Can serve only those individuals within their field of membership Can serve anyone in the general public

This video by a young Canadian says it best.

Why Choose a Credit Union?

If you want to bank where "people helping people" is the driving philosophy, then a credit union is the place for you!

Credit Unions adhere to the seven cooperative principles:

  • Voluntary and open membership
  • Democratic member control
  • Member economic participation
  • Autonomy and independence
  • Education, training and information
  • Cooperation among cooperatives
  • Concern for community

Credit Union Leadership

The boards of directors of a credit union are volunteers
This isn't the case at banks, where board members are paid (often quite handsomely).

Credit Unions - Better for You and Your Wallet

  • Traditionally, credit unions have lower rates on loans and higher rates on savings; a lower loan rate or a higher investment rate means more money in your wallet.
  • All accounts are insured up to $250,000 by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), an agency of the federal government (OUCU accounts also have an additional $250,000 private insurance policy, providing you with two dependable policies and guaranteeing your money's protection).
  • Credit unions consistently outshine other financial institutions in consumer satisfaction.

Credit Unions are People Helping People

Credit unions exist to help people - not to make a profit. One of OUCU's primary goals is to serve all members well, including those of modest means, because every member counts.

Our members take comfort in knowing that OUCU will be there, in both good times and bad, for them and their families. This same "people-first" philosophy encourages us to become involved in community activities and charitable outreach, too - just ask us!