Credit Unions

WalletHub has collected information, ratings, and reviews for 7,117 credit unions across the country. Credit unions are financial institutions that have been established to serve particular communities based on criteria such as location and professional, church, or military affiliation. For that reason, it’s often difficult for consumers to determine which credit unions they might qualify for.

To help you identify the credit unions that serve your community, we’ve designed a tool that compares all of the institutions in our database more
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Arrowpointe Federal Credit Union
  • Description Arrowpointe Federal Credit Union is a Federal Credit Union with 4 branches , assets of 115156948 and headquarters in Catawba, SC. Membership is open to anyone who lives, works, worships, or attends … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
  • Telephone 803-324-1124
Navy Federal Credit Union
  • Description Navy Federal Credit Union is a Federal Credit Union with 191 branches, assets of $48,021,742,375 that is headquartered in Vienna, VA. Since 1933, Navy Federal has grown from seven members to over … more
  • Products Business Services, Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs
State Employees' Credit Union
  • Description State Employees' Credit Union is a Federally Insured State Chartered Credit Union with 241 branches, assets of $24,776,228,627 that is headquartered in Raleigh, NC. The State Employees' Credit Union motto is People … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
Boeing Employees Credit Union
  • Description Boeing Employees Credit Union is a Federally Insured State Chartered Credit Union with 42 branches, assets of $10,574,070,150 and is headquartered in Tukwila, WA. BECU is a member-owned, not-for-profit credit union; … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
Suncoast Credit Union
  • Description As the largest credit union in Florida, we take banking seriously and work hard to deliver the best value for every member. … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
UW Credit Union
  • Description UW Credit Union is a growing, federally insured financial institution with assets $1.5 billion that is headquartered in Madison, WI. We were founded in 1931 on the University of Wisconsin campus by … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
America First Credit Union
  • Description America First Credit Union is a Federally Insured State Chartered Credit Union with 100 branches, assets of $5,406,812,408 that is headquartered in Riverdale, UT. America First has a long-standing history of benefiting … more
  • Products Business Services, Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
Pentagon Federal Credit Union
  • Description Pentagon Federal Credit Union serves over 1,098,524 members in the Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, defense-related companies, Veterans of Foreign Wars, employee groups, and organizations. … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
VyStar Credit Union
  • Description VyStar Credit Union is a Federally Insured State Chartered Credit Union with 33 branches, assets of $4,669,193,894 that is headquartered in Jacksonville, FL. VyStar Credit Union has a rich history of financial … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
Desert Schools Federal Credit Union
  • Description Desert Schools Federal Credit Union is a Federal Credit Union with 66 branches, assets of $3,078,866,717 that is headquartered in Phoenix, AZ. Desert Schools Federal Credit Union is a full-service financial provider, … more
  • Products Car Loans, Checking, Credit Cards, Home Equity, Investments, Mortgages, Personal Loans, Prepaid Cards, Savings & CDs, Student Loans
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EXPERT’S ANSWERS

How Are Credit Unions Different from Banks?

By: Odysseas Papadimitriou If you need to set up a deposit account or take out a loan, you’ll need to decide whether to use a bank or a credit union. Both institutions provide consumers with deposit accounts and loans, among other services. And with few exceptions, both banks and credit unions provide federal insurance coverage for deposit accounts up to $250,000 per depositor, per institution.



On the surface, banks and credit unions look pretty similar. So what are the major differences?

  • Mission: Banks are profit-making enterprises. Just like any other corporation, banks use those profits to strengthen the company, provide bonuses to executives, and pay dividends to the shareholders. Credit unions, on the other hand, are not-for-profit organizations. The focus of a credit union is not on maximizing profit, but on supporting the community by providing members with the best possible products and services at the lowest possible cost. Any surplus income earned is returned to the members in the form of dividends.

  • Ownership: Banks are owned by shareholders, while credit unions are member-owned. Credit union membership is made up of the credit union’s own depositors and borrowers, and is based on a community of some type, such as a common location, profession, church, club, or military affiliation.

  • Eligibility: Banks are open to all customers, while credit unions are chartered to serve particular communities, and are required by law to restrict membership to those communities.

What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages of Credit Unions?

By: Odysseas Papadimitriou Advocates of credit unions are not afraid to mince words when it comes to cataloging the many advantages of credit unions. And you won’t have to look far to find those advocates. Here’s what they’re saying:

  • As not-for-profit organizations, credit unions are under no pressure to increase shareholder value by pinching customers with excessive fees or reduced service. The shareholders of a credit union, in fact, are the customers, so what’s good for one is good for the other.

  • The community orientation of credit unions allows them to promote local interests and target customers that are ordinarily underserved by financial services, particularly low-income groups.

  • According to data published by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), the average interest rates for both depositors and borrowers tend to be more favorable for credit union customers than bank customers.




Of course, nothing is ever as simple as you want it to be. Before you swear off banks entirely, consider the following:

  • The interest rate advantage that credit unions tend to have over banks is not absolute. That is, not all credit unions can offer rates on all products that are better than what’s offered by all banks. If your first priority is to find the best rate, it pays to shop around at both credit unions and banks.

  • You might have to work a little harder to find a credit union than a bank. Because credit unions serve specific communities, members must meet certain criteria, or fields of membership. This isn’t as difficult as it sounds. There are dozens of different fields of membership, and numerous ways of qualifying for each one. However, securing membership does represent an extra step that is not required when using a bank.

  • Because banks are more likely than credit unions to be vying for your business, they are also more likely to be engineering perks to lure you in and keep you. Rewards on cards, introductory rates, mobile features, and ATM networks are all likely to be more highly developed by the major banks.




Choosing between a credit union and a bank can be as much about personal values as about rates, services, and convenience. And it may be that no list of pros and cons will be enough to tilt the scale one way or the other. Any consumer will have to agree, though, that it is good to have a choice.

How Do I Find the Right Credit Union?

By: Odysseas Papadimitriou For some, the most daunting aspect of becoming a credit union customer is finding and joining the right institution. You may assume that if you don’t belong to an obvious field of membership—such as a military branch or a labor union—you’re not eligible to join a credit union. Make no such assumption. The National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) asserts that anyone can join a credit union, and there are dozens of fields of membership—from professional affiliations to geographic locations to churches.



You may be eligible to join a credit union even if you don’t belong directly to its given field of membership. For example, you don’t have to live within the boundaries of a location-based credit union—it’s enough to work or worship there. Your company might not have its own credit union, but its employees may be welcome at the credit union of an affiliated or neighboring company. And credit union membership is often open to the siblings, children, and parents of current members.



A credit union search tool can help you narrow down the field. Once you’ve selected some likely candidates, you can read through their material or contact them directly to find out whether you qualify. According to the NCUA, it will probably cost about $5 to $10 to purchase a credit union share. Once that’s done, you will be able to take advantage of all the services the credit union offers. In addition to that, you’ll be one of the owners of a community-based, communally-owned financial institution. For many consumers, that is worth the effort.
COMMUNITY DISCUSSION

Help others find the best banking institutions by sharing what your deciding factor was when choosing your banking institution

 
September 12, 2014
Photo of mrowlet
mrowlet
These credit unions have too many fees and also horrible service, and it is also very easy to get tossed into debt just by trusting them. I do not like credit unions also because they are very frustrating to me, but these problems are probably only coming from my previous credit union. IT is probably why they have shut don in my area, they really did have some bad service. I cannot believe how hard it was just to get some service from these people. I have had many problems with them and they have made my life only worse. And the fees are just too ridiculous for me.
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August 5, 2014
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maribonpr
I just moved to Oak Ridge, TN where there is a lack of big corporate banks and an abundance of federal credit unions. I decided to get an auto loan with ORNL FCU and I could not be happier with the experience. Everyone was really nice to me and kept in touch via email and phone through the whole process. They knew this was my first car and they gave me a lot of personal advice on how to choose the right used car, what to ask the dealership and even told me to not pay for a fee that most dealerships charge because I am not obligated to. They gave me a great rate for the loan (2.96%!) and overall it was a smooth experience.
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July 11, 2014
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Walker5
Overall they are a good CU. Their weakest spot is they have a lot of fees for a CU and their interest rates are a joke. I don’t recommend going in at lunch as their lines are slow and getting in and out in a short amount of time is hard to do. Their investment guy is first rate, responsive, easy to deal with and you don’t’ need a degree in accounting to understand him
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June 25, 2014
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suresh
Before i went to college i opened a account in city union bank. Not only was i able to obtain a vehicle loan for a much more lucrative interest rate than any deal i could obtain from the mainstream bank I was using for checking. To be honest I wish I would have had a checking account with college First years before now, it would have saved a ton of frustration dealing with cookie cutter main stream bank representatives.Now i am getting plan to open new account take housing loan from city union..
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May 15, 2014
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tgibson_17
The search tool worked excellently in finding the closest credit unions to me. It also helped me be able to compare one credit union to another. It could not have possibly been any easier. This is a great search tool to find the information you need quickly. I will definitely use wallet hub for future purposes and recommend it to my friends.It has options to search for a specific bank or by zip code which makes things very easy to explore.
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May 15, 2014
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jennbuzbee
The search tool is a really excellent feature. I was able to quickly and easily locate a credit union that is in my area and that met my banking needs. The search tool made it easy for me to compare credit unions in my area so that I could make an informed choice on where to bank. With all of its options the search tool makes it so easy to narrow down your options to exactly what you need.
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May 14, 2014
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stephanie_racey
I have just recently obtained my mortgage through CSE credit union. They have been fairly decent throughout the process though at times did not seem up to speed on what was going on with the transaction. The house that I purchased had a special city grant attached to it and CSE was recommended to me by the city because they were supposed to know the ins and outs of the program. Overall the process was long but in the end I felt that my loan officer and the loan team at CSE did work hard for me to get my house closed.
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May 13, 2014
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jayseehey
I tried out America first credit union for a while now. This is my first time using a credit union and I wanted to see how things worked as i heard many benefits. I was satisfied for a few months with the service, but after a while I received a few security issues with my account. All have been resolved but it gives me doubts on constantly using this account.
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May 8, 2014
Photo of joy_hopewell_5
joy_hopewell_5
Hi I became a member of RiverSet credit union. It has been about 5 months now. I was able to join because I live in Allegheny county. What I was not made aware of is all the checks that I deposit will not post to my account until the account has been open 90 days, a little bit disturbing to me. Also I applied for a car loan and still have not heard back wait that was two months ago. So these are two things that have left a sour note in my mouth. I am currently looking for a new credit union.
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May 1, 2014
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rockinc23
New Mexico Educators Federal Credit Union was used when I purchased my first car. I was very excited to get a car and to keep a very high credit score. This credit union was crucial for me as I look back and can tell you all the things I have been approved for instantly because of a great credit score. As my first big credit venture New Mexico Educators Federal Credit Union has helped me in more ways than just getting my first car.
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April 30, 2014
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craig_thompson_733076
Georgias Own Credit Union has been a wonderful partner of mine for over ten years now. They have the best rates I could find in the Atlanta Georgia as far as car rates are concerned, and they have excellent customer service. Just last year, they called me at 10:00pm to let me know that there was suspicious activity on my checking account, and that they were calling me to ask me a few questions and to let me know that they were canceling those transactions, and i would not be held accountable to any of the charges. I felt great that they were watching over my checking account, and they were proactive in alerting me. I have great confidence in Georgia's Own Credit Union.
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April 14, 2014
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blam19
Boeing Employees Credit Union otherwise known as BECU is definitely one of the best credit unions on the market right now. It provides numerous services such as checking, car loans, credit cards, home equity, investments, mortgages, personal loans, savings & CDs, and student loans. All of these services are excellent as I definitely have partaken in many of them. I really like the savings & CDs service because I had a good experience with them. This service provides good rates which help me produce more money per year with the program at BECU. This service is not only for Boeing employees which other people get confused about, but for everyone who is willing to use their services.
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April 9, 2014
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powerhouse3
I have used America first credit union for years. I like the benefits of credit unions. but AFC is not very good at keeping fraud from my bank account. I have had over $2000 pulled from my account. unwanted, by who knows who. now yes this has happened several times with different amounts. and yes my money had been returned. but the bank has given me over draft fees for this and they are trying to make me pay them. I have called corporate, but they have not resolved my issues. overall the bank is great they just have problems that should be resolved. in a timely fashion. (fast).
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April 8, 2014
Photo of LucyE25
LucyE25
Bangor Federal Credit Union in Bangor, ME has been extremely good to me. I have been with them for years and I have to say when the times have been tough they have come through. I divorced several years ago and my husband failed to make payments on the vehicle we owned together. He had possession of it, until the Credit Union called and told him they were going to repossess it. He brought it to the Credit Union and they called me and gave me a chance to make good on the late payments. I didn't have that kind of money at the time and didn't have good credit to refinance. So, they refinanced it for me, down to an interest rate that I could handle. It turned out that my mom ended up paying it off for me a few months later as a birthday gift and I drive her still. I wouldn't have had the chance though if the credit union hadn't known me and trusted me based on our affiliation.
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April 8, 2014
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sweetaesthetic
I had been with National City for nearly 2 decades, before they turned into PNC. I was already extremely unhappy with their customer service, and realized I was about to be drowned in fees. It was time to switch. I chose DFCU Financial mainly because it was within walking distance of my home, but I know now I couldn't have made a better choice. The employees at my branch know me by name and greet me as such when I walk through the doors. And whenever there is a hiccup or fraudulent charge on my accounts, it is taken care of quickly and easily. They offer every service I will need for my future, and I will never, ever go back to using a bank.
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April 8, 2014
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stephen_mcmadu
using the search engine here in wallethub.com has really been helpful for me, for a while now i have been thinking of a good credit union to start up with and been a bit confused but i came on here did a little search and some reading and i think i am happy with the choice i have made thanks to the result i got here. nice one guys.
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April 1, 2014
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OUNJANICE
Palmetto Citizens Federal Credit Union is wonderful. I received paper statements via mail and also emails from them. They have always been friendly when coming to the institution whether it be by drive up teller or inside the lobby area. I have switched over to the credit union for all banking needs for personal and business. They have low fees and I earn interest on both accounts. I would recommend Palmetto Citizens to members of other institutions because I have been with them for three years and this is the best bank I have ever banked with. They have many different options of accounts you can choose from and they have things for pre-teen to college students.
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March 28, 2014
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Joshuwar
My credit union is Randolph Brooks Federal Credit Union. My parents opened up the account for me in 1999 and I've had my account with them ever since! I love my membership with RBFCU. They have a low auto loan rate at 1.65 percent. In order to open up a savings account is only five dollars and with that you can open up a checking account for free. They have an online banking service that I use often and I'm even able to use the RBFCU app on my phone to check my bank account whenever I please. They also give you the opportunity to electronically deposit a check by just taking a picture of it. The employees are all very friendly and helpful in offering products and services while looking out for my well being as well. I can say that I'll be a member with Randolph Brooks Federal Credit Union forever. It's my institution of choice and I'd never look elsewhere.
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March 28, 2014
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bblazing
I joined Schools First many years ago when it was still Orange County Teachers credit union. Not only was i able to obtain a vehicle loan for a much more lucrative interest rate than any deal i could obtain from the mainstream bank I was using for checking. To be honest I wish I would have had a checking account with Schools First years before now, it would have saved a ton of frustration dealing with cookie cutter main stream bank representatives.
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March 26, 2014
Photo of mkyoung100
mkyoung100
I picked Mainstreet Credit Union while I was living in another state. My husband had already moved to Kansas for a new job and I was living back in Nevada. I stayed back for about 6 months to pack our house and wait out our lease agreement. We were banking at one of the large well known banks, the only problem was that bank is not in Kansas, the closest one is in Oklahoma (4 hours away). So he was mailing me his paychecks so I could deposit them. It was a real pain so I made the decision to change banks. This was in 2009 and people were really mad at the big banks and suggested that everyone should use a local credit union. I started shopping credit unions online and found that there were several in my area. It was a hard choice simply because I was 1500 miles away and my husband was too busy at his new job to do the legwork. So I narrowed my search down to 3 credit unions in my area. We had not found a house yet, so we weren't sure which town we would be living in. When the move date came closer and my husband finally found us a house, we picked Mainstreet Credit Union because they have several branches in many of the cities we go to. They also have agreements with many ATM agencies so we are able to use a non-Mainstreet ATM almost anywhere. We have been members since 2009 and my banking experience has always been positive there. I have no complaints about Mainstreet Credit Union.
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February 25, 2014
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rramos12
I joined McCoy Federal Credit Union in 2005, when I was looking for a trustworthy financial institution to finance my first Pick-up truck. I was not just looking for low interest rates, but for a financial institution in which I would be seen as part of the family; not just as another customer. I was starting a new career, and a new life, and needed a place where my hard-earned money could grow and be safe. Naturally, I had experience with Federal Credit Unions before; Fort Rucker Federal Credit Union in the US Army Aviation base of Fort Rucker, Alabama. Thus, I was quite familiar with these types of institutions. I did an intensive research over the internet, and read few rating reports, before making my decision of joining McCoy FCU. This was a decision I would never regret—for more than a customer, I am a valuable customer. The past financial recession caused me to be laid-off in two occasions during the past 9 years, and was forced to face tough financial decisions. However, McCoy FCU was always ready and willing to help alleviate my financial concerns. They provided me with many alternatives to fulfill my financial obligations, including payment postponements. More than just a business organization, McCoy FCU has been, to me, a close friend always there to understand and to help.
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