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Credit Unions: Any disadvantages?
Old 07-28-2010, 10:19 PM   #1
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Credit Unions: Any disadvantages?

Are there any disadvantages to putting all your cash in a credit union(s) vs. a bank? I know there are many financial types on this board, and am hoping someone has some wonderful insight to any disadvantage I might encounter.
I have been using a credit union for quite awhile now, plus, a bank, but am thinking of just chucking the banks totally from now and and go credit union all the way, baby!

***By the way, for those that don't know how to check the rating of their credit union or bank put in your search bar on the computer: bauer financial (why bother capping it?).
These are updated quarterly and I've had some ugly surprises and good laughs, too, when I looked at the bank ratings vs. what I was told by the banking people in it. They really have no clue at all usually what the state of their "own" bank is.
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Old 07-28-2010, 10:25 PM   #2
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Are there any disadvantages to putting all your cash in a credit union(s) vs. a bank?
No disadvantages and potentially many advantages (lower fees, better rates, etc.). CU's have NCUA insurance coverage of $250,000 - similar to FDIC insurance at banks.
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Old 07-28-2010, 10:34 PM   #3
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Ditch your bank for a credit union - MSN Money
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Old 07-28-2010, 10:53 PM   #4
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Our credit union is great, but not as convenient for some things. So we keep some token accounts in a local bank, which sometimes helps for some things. I'm not sure our CU has safety deposit boxes, for example, and they are a bit of a drive compared to the bank.

If you have a local full featured CU, I can't see any reason to keep a bank account though.

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Old 07-29-2010, 07:04 AM   #5
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Pen Fed is not local to me so I keep a no fee deposit account at a local bank witha few hundred bucks in it. But mostly I use Pen Fed and Schwab Bank. Both have been excellent.
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Old 07-29-2010, 07:31 AM   #6
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I've been a credit union member for 20 years. It's the only bank I have. The only disadvantage I have is my is 600 miles away. I have never been in the lobby of the place. This made cashing checks bothersome because I would have to wait for the US Mail. Luckily my credit union will now deposit a check into my checking account (<$2,000) before they actually recieve the money in the mail. The advantages are too many to count!
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Old 07-29-2010, 07:45 AM   #7
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biggest hassle for me is that my local branch is in the building next door. of course, they have two ATM's where I can make deposits in the other two buildings and I walk by both daily. they are also in some credit union ATM network...but I haven't tried that out in the 5 years I have been a member.

opposed to when we were with a "bank," i could get DW to run and do the dirty banking work. marriage is all about sacrifice...
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Old 07-29-2010, 09:24 AM   #8
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Pen Fed is not local to me so I keep a no fee deposit account at a local bank witha few hundred bucks in it. But mostly I use Pen Fed and Schwab Bank. Both have been excellent.
Brewer12345, you are doing this all on line then? I am going to take your suggestion and run with it to see what they offer. I have a feeling you would pick some good ones..so thanks for the suggestions!
The only question I have then is how do you get cash when you need it? The bank nearby?
I looked a their website, and gather you can join it you have a family member who was in the military? I could even use my dead Grandpa looks like. This is like the USAA credit card I have.
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Old 07-29-2010, 10:09 AM   #9
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I have been a member of Navy Federal Credit Union (NFCU) for 40+ years. About 25 years ago I decided it made no sense to change banks every time I got transferred in the Navy, so I started using NFCU as my primary financial institution. I have had several mortgages from them, buy CDs (when their rates are competitive which they normally are), keep a checking, savings and Money Market savings account with them.

As I live in VT and NFCU is headquartered in VA, I keep a local savings account with $2K in it and have a safe deposit box with that same bank. Having that savings account, I can easily cash NFCU checks with no hassle. And, if I need cash in a hurry when the bank is closed, I can use their ATM to access my savings account. (NFCU has a deal with a local bank chain (not the same one where I have the savings account) where you get free use of their ATM although it's not quite as convenient as the other bank.

I am absolutely sold on credit unions!

BTW, I also am a PenFed member. Lately, their CDs have had slightly better rates than NFCU so I have bought there. If you want to join PenFed all you have to do is join an organization called something like the Military Families Association for $25 and you become eligible for membership.
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Old 07-29-2010, 10:10 AM   #10
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Brewer12345, you are doing this all on line then? I am going to take your suggestion and run with it to see what they offer. I have a feeling you would pick some good ones..so thanks for the suggestions!
The only question I have then is how do you get cash when you need it? The bank nearby?
I looked a their website, and gather you can join it you have a family member who was in the military? I could even use my dead Grandpa looks like. This is like the USAA credit card I have.
Generally, I use Pen Fed for borrowing, CC and CDs, and I use Schwab Bank for bill-pay, checking and ATM/cash access. Schwab reimburses ATM fees anywhere in the world so I don't care in the slightest where I get cash from or what fees I pay. I also have all my investement accounts with Schwab so it is easy to move things around.

I think with Pen Fed you could easily deal with paper checks via scanned check deposits. Not sure how to get around the cash at ATMs issue since I never bothered to find out.
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Old 07-29-2010, 06:11 PM   #11
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Fun thing is my credit union is open more hours than the local banks so no disadvantages.
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Old 07-29-2010, 06:18 PM   #12
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The only disadvantage I have ever seen is with a lack of ATMs and brick and mortar branches. I was with the WTFCU for a long time. I know they merged services with a bunch of other CUs to have fewer owned branches, and you could use any ATM in the network fee free. But even so it was a little difficult. Things may have changed in the 4-5 years since I closed my accounts.
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Old 07-29-2010, 06:54 PM   #13
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The ONLY problem I ever had with my credit union here is that they did not notarize anything. Banks have notaries, but the credit union doesn't. Don't know if this is standard that credit unions don't have notaries, but if it comes up you have to find one somewhere. Luckily, I also had a bank account at the time.
Does anyone know if it's standard that credit unions do NOT have notaries?
I "think" I remember them telling me it is standard for credit unions not to have them (notaries).
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Old 07-29-2010, 07:13 PM   #14
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My credit union has notaries, so I think it is the choice of the Credit union.
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Old 07-29-2010, 11:06 PM   #15
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Another vote for Schwab banking. I also like that that in addition to no fees they don't have daily limits for ATM withdrawals, quite helpful when you are in the middle of Turkey and the carpet salesman offers you a 10% cash discount and you aren't caring millions of Turkish Lira to buy for the rug. .

Also Schwab Bank is currently pay .5% interest on their checking account, which will nothing is much better than money market fund. The Schwab Visa has a 2% rebate which gets applied automatically to your brokerage account.

I have also used the free wire transfer on many occasions, although that maybe a function of account size.
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Old 07-30-2010, 12:07 AM   #16
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We have used credit unions (almost exclusiveliy + ) for the last 20 years. . We have never paid any fee of any kind.
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Old 07-30-2010, 08:51 AM   #17
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I have been a member of a credit union since before I could remember. The DW is a manager at a bank and the only reason she has her account at the bank is so when she is visiting subordinates and she takes them to lunch. She thinks it would show bad to pull out the credit union card to pay instead of her bank's card. The few times we've had problems with the bank account it esentially boiled down to the bank saying, sorry it's not our problem. It is not the same with the credit unions where we have been members.
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Old 07-30-2010, 10:46 AM   #18
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Fed you could easily deal with paper checks via scanned check deposits. Not sure how to get around the cash at ATMs issue since I never bothered to find out.
Credit unions belong to an ATM network where there is no charge for members to use the ATM. Check out your Credit Union's web site for a list of ATMs near you where you can go to get cash without an ATM fee.

Or, get extra cash out when you use your debit card to pay for groceries. Also, no fee!

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Old 07-30-2010, 10:48 AM   #19
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The ONLY problem I ever had with my credit union here is that they did not notarize anything. Banks have notaries, but the credit union doesn't. Don't know if this is standard that credit unions don't have notaries, but if it comes up you have to find one somewhere. Luckily, I also had a bank account at the time.
Does anyone know if it's standard that credit unions do NOT have notaries?
I "think" I remember them telling me it is standard for credit unions not to have them (notaries).
My credit union has notaries. It's a business decision that the CU makes about whether it wants to encourage one of its employees to get the notary designation. They aren't hard to get, but I know of no company, other than escrow companies, that makes having a notary part of the job requirements.

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Old 07-30-2010, 11:19 AM   #20
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They aren't hard to get, but I know of no company, other than escrow companies, that makes having a notary part of the job requirements.
Where I w*rked, when you got promoted, they had you fill out the paperwork for your notary.
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