What is a Credit Union?

What is a Credit Union?

Credit Unions are community organisations that offer a range of financial services to their members. They are locally based and ethically run offering an affordable way to borrow money as well as a safe and secure place to save it. Credit Unions are for everyone and serve everbody’s financial needs.

The three main aims of a Credit Union are:

  • To encourage its members to save regularly.
  • To provide loans to members at fair and reasonable rates of interest.
  • To provide members with help and support on managing their financial affairs (if required).

What are the benefits of a Credit Union?

  • It is an easy and convenient way to save and borrow.
  • It offers low cost loans.
  • Insurance at no direct cost.
  • It’s a way to learn new skills.

How do Credit Unions work?

The members make regular savings, as little or as much as they wish. These savings then form a common pool of money from which loans are made to members. Members who have been saving for a certain period of time (usually about 12 weeks) can apply for a loan at lower interest rates than those without savings. The interest charged on loans is the credit union’s income.

Who can join a Credit Union?

The membership criteria of a credit union is called the Common Bond – Gloucestershire Credit Union has a Common Bond which includes all those who live or work in the County of Gloucestershire. This means that anyone living or working in Gloucestershire can be a member of the credit union. Gloucestershire Credit Union welcomes everybody from within the Common Bond regardless of income, employment status or age.

How do you join a Credit Union?

You will need to complete an application form and provide some ID. If you want to join Gloucestershire Credit Union, Check out the ‘Join’ Section of this website.

How safe is my money?

Credit Unions must be authorised with the Prudential Regulation Authority and they are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority. All savings in a credit union are protected under the Financial Services Compensation Scheme.