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Is a Credit Union Right for Me? Find Out Whether You're Eligible for Credit Union Membership

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Credit unions are very popular in many parts of the country but in some areas people are less familiar with them and the benefits they offer, compared to banks or other financial institutions.

Because credit unions are not-for-profit, financial cooperatives they can often offer better rates on loans and deposits along with low to no fees. In addition, credit unions are interested in the financial well-being of their members and do their best to help them succeed. However, for the people that are unfamiliar with how credit unions work, they might not think they are eligible to join.

In truth, becoming a member of a credit union is a simple process that isn't much different than opening an account at a bank. So, don’t let the idea of eligibility scare you away from finding the best financial opportunities.

Instead of viewing credit union membership as a hurdle or barrier to entry, let’s take a look at how these organizations actually operate.

Is a credit union right for me? 

Credit unions provide members with all sorts of financial products and services that are often tailored to fit individual needs. As community-focused institutions, credit unions pride themselves on knowing you. They try to fit your situation with the right product and terms so you can achieve your financial goals.

Personal needs

You might need a checking account to deposit your first paycheck, or you may want to start planning for retirement. If you are starting a family and plan to buy a house or a car, you might need a loan. You might also want to start saving money and need a savings account. Maybe you are looking for a credit card with a low interest rate.

At a credit union, you get all the typical banking products and services.

Business needs

If you run a small business or are considering founding a startup, a credit union experience is especially valuable. You get a personal relationship and direct assistance, delivering value beyond loans or other resources you need to grow your business. You get access to financial education, advice and support from experts who take their time to understand your situation and help you succeed.

Whether you need personal, business or other services, a credit union is a great place to start a banking relationship. They offer various products and services to help you at different stages of your financial journey. Oftentimes, you can also find better rates and fewer fees at a credit union than at a bank.

Am I eligible for credit union membership?

There may be some requirements to become a member of a credit union. But, these usually revolve around a community or occupation you're likely already a part of, so it shouldn't be much of a barrier.

Credit unions usually provide memberships based on occupation, employer, geographical location, school, or even groups such as a church or an association. You may also be eligible for membership simply by being an immediate family member of an existing credit union member.

Also, much like a bank, the basic documentation you need to apply for credit union membership includes:
  • Social Security or Taxpayer Identification Number
  • A form of identification, such as a state-issued driver's license or ID, passport, military ID card, or an alien registration card
  • An explanation of your eligibility. For example, your parent may be a member, or you live in a certain area
Modern credit unions aren't closed clubs - they're more similar to community centers that focus on financial wellness and prosperity. Thus, credit unions welcome new members and encourage them to succeed. Plus, becoming a member of a credit union means you share ownership of the institution, so you have a say in how the organization can better serve you and your fellow community.

Your South Florida credit union 

Power Financial Credit Union has served the South Florida community since 1951. We are here to provide you with quick and direct responses to all your financial needs. As a member, you have convenient access to industry-leading services and technology with a personal touch.

Contact us online or at any of our locations - we would love to welcome you into our family!