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Take a Bow, Credit Unions

In case you missed it, credit unions recently got some very positive press in Consumer Reports. Its December issue featured a 'Bank & Credit Union Buying Guide” that brimmed with praise for credit unions. The 'Guide” was based on a survey of over 49,000 Consumer Reports subscribers, who provided over 70,000 bank and credit union ratings.

Here are a few excerpts:

On basic checking and savings accounts:
'Look for a credit union that is a member of a network, such as the CO-OP system of 30,000 fee-free ATMs and 5,000 shared branches. . . . Our survey found that credit union customers were among the most highly satisfied overall.”
 
On auto loans:
'Choose a credit union for a car loan, because those institutions often offer the lowest rates—another good reason to join one.”

On customer service:
'Credit unions are among the highest-rated services we’ve ever evaluated, with 93 percent of their customers highly satisfied, on average, vs. 69 percent for the four biggest national banks. That satisfaction is driven by good customer service.”

Each bank or credit union Consumer Reports readers reviewed got a score based on the respondents’ overall satisfaction with the institution. The lists of the highest rated institutions in four categories—mega banks, smaller traditional banks, primarily online banks and credit unions—were revealing. The credit union list’s lowest ratings were higher than the highest mega bank list ratings.

Those four banking behemoths—Bank of America, Chase, Citibank, and Wells Fargo—all landed in the bottom fifth of the overall rankings.

Consumer Reports readers have rated many different kinds of service providers over the magazine’s 80 years of existence, so for credit unions to be 'among the highest rated services” it’s ever evaluated . . . well, that’s saying something. Kind of makes you think credit unions must be doing something right—to put it mildly.

At Visions Ink., we‘ve been telling people about all the benefits of credit union membership since 1979. Alright, full disclosure: we get paid to do that—by credit unions, of course. But the truth is, we couldn’t believe more wholeheartedly in what we’re selling. Consumer Reports’s survey results certainly suggest that credit unions’ members are believers, too.      

Here’s a link to that article.