Five Common Myths About Credit Unions

Written by Christina Miller
Edited by Carly Simon-Gersuk

“Credit unions are not as good as big banks because…” We’re sure you’ve heard it all before. And while some credit union vs banks facts have been true in the past, most don’t hold water today. Instead, they just serve to scare people into staying with the big banks instead of benefiting from the world of credit unions.

So what’s true and what’s not? Don’t worry.

We’re about to bust some credit union myths for you:

Myth #1 - Credit unions don’t have enough ATMs

While small credit unions may only have a few ATMs that they individually operate, most credit unions now offer access to an ATM network called the CO-OP ATM network. This broad system contains nearly 30,000 ATMs across all 50 states and 10 countries. You will find them in convenient places such as Costco, Walgreens and 7-Eleven, among others. With the ATM network, you don’t have to worry about fees and the accessibility of your money will never be an issue.

Myth #2 - Credit unions are “technologically lacking”

While the technology budgets of credit unions can be smaller than those of big banks, innovative and accessible financial software means that today most credit unions offer the same technology as the big banks. In fact, nearly all have online banking services and mobile banking apps capable of everything the big banks offer. Yes, we’re including the beloved remote deposit.

Myth #3 - Credit unions don’t have convenient, or many, branches

When choosing a financial institution, one of the most important factors to some consumers is branch location. Historically, this has been the Achilles heel of credit unions that only have a few branches. However, just as credit unions utilize a cooperative network of ATMs, they also have joined together to share branches. With shared branching, credit unions share facilities to allow members to use a branch of another participating credit union to perform transactions, as if it were their home credit union.

Myth #4 - Credit unions don’t offer rewards programs

There can be a little truth behind this one. But while many banks gain customers by offering miles, points, cash-back, and other perks – they make up for it in fees. In contrast, credit unions offer better loan rates, lower fees, and higher yields on deposits, making credit unions the better choice. In fact, according to the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), only about 10% of all credit union credit cards charge an annual fees – compared to 45% of banks who do.

Myth #5 - Credit unions don’t pay taxes

It is true that credit unions can be exempt from paying federal taxes because of their not-for-profit status, but they still pay local, property, and employer taxes. What do credit unions do with the money saved from not paying income taxes? They put the money right back into the organization and community! This allows credit unions to offer fewer fees, lower rate, and higher yields.

Make the switch to a credit union. can show you the way.

About MoveCU Inc.

MoveCU is the nation’s first credit union loan marketplace. Now users can instantly find, compare, apply for, and get pre-approval online in minutes on loans from credit unions around the U.S. Using their intuitive industry-leading technology, MoveCU is giving America’s smallest financial institutions a bigger voice and breathing new life into the credit union movement. For more information, visit our homepage.