How to participate, to Apply and borrow from a Credit Union

A loan from a credit union is one of the most competitive loans available. If you need to borrow money, it is worth getting a local credit union when you go looking for a loan.

Credit unions loans typically come with low rates and fees, which means a lower total cost of borrowing. What’s more, it might be easier to get approved for a loan against a credit union.

No one wants a loan that does not get repaid, but small credit unions are more likely to take a more personal approach when evaluating your loan rather than taking the same rigid approach with anyone who applies for a loan.

Getting started with credit institutions


If you have never used credit unions before, you may not know much about them or you may just think they are the same as banks. There are numerous agreements between banks and credit institutions, but an important difference is an ownership: Credit Unions are non-profit organizations owned by their customers.

Most credit unions work with the aim of providing financial services to their member-owners. As a result, credit union loan rates often come from a little bit lower (compared to large banks that must constantly grow profits).


To apply for a loan, you must become a member or a partial owner of the credit union.

  • Membership criteria: To become a member, you must qualify by meeting certain criteria. That means that you usually share some characteristics with other members, such as where you live or the industry in which you or your family members work.
  • Easy ways in No matter who you are, there is a good chance that you can participate in a credit union, and you will be amazed at how easy it is to qualify. For example, when buying a car, you will find that the dealer is able to give you a member without ever having to visit one of the branches. By buying from that dealer, you meet one of the credit union’s eligibility requirements.
  • Finding a credit union: To find out which credit unions are available in the area, try the National Credit Union Administration credit union search tool. If you can’t find anything locally, numerous credit unions accept members from all over the United States.
  • Opening deposit: Once you have found a credit union that you are eligible to join, then you have to become a member by opening an account and making a small amount (often $ 25 or so). After that, you are ready to apply for a loan.

Apply for a loan

Apply for a loan

In many cases, you can participate in a credit union and apply for a loan at the same time. If you are already a member, you are much further ahead.

Talk to a credit officer to your credit union to understand the types of loans available and ask about the basic requirements for getting your loan approved. The process varies from place to place, but most credit unions (and any other lender) have the following requirements:

  • Application: You must complete an application, online or on paper.
  • Identification: On the application, you must provide identifying information about yourself, such as a social security number.
  • Employment: Some credit unions require you to have been in the same job for a certain time (one year, for example).
  • Income: You will need income to repay the loan, and you need to tell the credit union how much you owe on other debts. Your monthly payments on all debts will have to be under a certain debt-to-income ratio.
  • Equity or down payment: If you are buying a house or a car, you need to make some sort of down payment. For refinancing, you will need sufficient equity, usually measured as a loan-to-value ratio.
  • Creditworthiness: A history of loans and loan repayment will help you get approved. Your credit score is often used to assess creditworthiness.

There is nothing wrong with asking someone at the credit union about these requirements before you apply for a loan. A short conversation can save you (and them) time. For example, if you know your credit score, get an informal opinion about whether you qualify and as a recent foreclosure discuss any issues.

To the approved


After you apply, a loan officer will review your application to see if you are eligible for the loan. Even if you do not have a solid history of loan repayment or you have had a few problems in the past, you would still get approved for a loan. Especially in small community settings, there is a good chance that you can speak to an employee who will personally review your credit report and your personal situation. Sometimes a personal letter can help. That will rarely happen on a large bank – if your credit score is too low, there are no exceptions, and a computer will decide everything.

A long-term relationship with a credit union and getting to know the staff can improve your chances even further. If they see you manage your accounts properly, they are more likely to overlook a blemish in your past.

A secured loan can also help you get approved and it will help you build up your credit scores for the next time you need a loan. To get a secured loan, you need some sort of collateral, which the credit union can take if you fail to make your payments. You do not have to pledge your home, car, or cash-covered jewelry using money in your account to help you get approved.

5 Credit Mistakes You have no excuse for making

Some credit score killers are hard to avoid, such as missing a mortgage payment because you lost a job or maxing your credit cards because you are flooded with medical bills. But many of the common credit mistakes are simple mistakes that are easy to dodge.

Here are five credit mistakes that you have no excuse for making – no matter what shape your finances are in.


Forget about paying your bills on time

credit payment

You could have all the money you need to pay off your loans, but if you don’t keep an eye on when your bills are due, you could easily dent your dent with just a random 30-day late payment. If you miss an invoice of just a few days, your bank cannot report the late payment to the credit bureaus. But it could still be responsible for a painful late payment. For example, many credit cards charge reminder fees as high as $ 38 for repeat offenders. If you frequently make payments out of your bill payments, use the automatic payment service from your bank so you can be sure that you have paid at least the minimum amount due. Many banks also offer email and text reminders,


Prioritize other loan payments over your credit card bills

credit card bills

Many people who prioritize their bills to pay larger loan payments struggle, such as personal and auto loans, through their credit cards, according to the Transunion credit reporting agency. As a result, late payments on credit cards tend to be more common. But skipping out on a credit card statement just because your finances are tight is a mistake. Most credit cards charge a minimum of only 1 percent of your scales, plus interest, or 2 percent of the balance sheet total. So for example, if you owe $ 1,000 on a card that tops up a minimum of 2 percent of the total balance, you’d only expect to pay $ 20 – that’s not much more than the cost of a big pizza.


Throw or file your bills without going on them

credit loans

It can feel like a chore to comb through your bills for incorrect or mysterious loads. But don’t do it just because it’s boring. You could pay for a fee you don’t make, or miss your chance to dispute an incorrect load from a dealer. The Fair Credit Billing Act gives you the right to deny merchant settlement errors, such as incorrect or double fees … But you have a dispute within 60 days of taking advantage of protection. (You’ll have a bit longer if the unauthorized charge is from someone who stole your credit card information.)

But you can’t pay a fee if you’ve never looked at your bill, and you can’t stay aware of the fact that someone stole your credit card. It could be boring, but read your bill.


Ignore your credit reports and ratings

credit reports and ratings

But if you don’t take advantage of this annual benefit, you can never know if credit report mistakes or unauthorized accounts are wrong to harm your credit score. To get your free reports, visit You can also keep tabs on your credit scores for free by taking advantage of free credit score services offered by your credit card. And you two such services – Discover the Credit Score and MoneyWish Finance is LendWiser – let you see your results even if you are not a customer.


Close an old credit card account

credit card account

If an old card is going to collect dust in your wallet, you may be tempted to close the account and toss it. But unless you are paying a large annual fee then it is a mistake to close your card. Closing an account could credit your credit score unexpectedly even if you haven’t used the card in months. By closing the account, you will lower the total amount of credit that is available to you, which will negatively affect your credit usage – an important component to your score.

And if it’s your oldest card with a long history of on-time payments, the impact could be worse as this will dent you in the “length of credit history” section. Lenders will see how long-running accounts with positive payment behavior, but closed accounts with a history of on-time payments will eventually drop your reports. Put the card in your sock drawer if you need to but doesn’t close the account; and consider adding a one-time payment to ensure that the bank does not close the account due to inactivity.

Build credit using a credit card

When building credit is an important aspect of your financial health, it is all too easy to take your credit instead of to end up damaging it if you don’t do it properly – especially when using a credit card.

There is a big difference between no credit history and a bad credit history and how it affects your credit score. In addition, you can qualify for a home mortgage without having a credit card. So don’t jump into building credit too quickly if you know that you lack self-control to do it responsibly.

But when you are ready and want to build your credit with a credit card, these four steps will help you do it responsibly and effectively.


Limit the number of cards you have

Limit the number of cards you have

You don’t need more than a credit card. This includes gas cards, customer cards and any other type of credit card. A credit card is all you need. If you have too many credit cards it badly reflects on your credit report. In addition, while opening a business credit card can be tempting (hello, discounts!) This may not be the best choice when trying to build the loan.

On the one hand, they charge a very high interest rate. Stores know that the majority of people don’t pay off their balance in full each month, which means they do a lot more in interest than they offer you in savings. And we all know it can be tempting to spend money, you don’t have to if it’s a sale. You are not trying. Instead, having a low interest rate keeps credit card with no annual fee and a limit on small loans when trying to build your loan. Bonus if you find a card that offers good opportunities like cash back or travel deals that will save you money in the long run.


Keep your credit limit low

credit limit low

When you start using credit cards, it can be tempting to use a card with a high credit limit. As a loan novice, you don’t want to do this. Stick with a credit card with a lower credit limit, like $ 500- $ 1,500. This helps you stay on track and not get out of control with your expenses. It will also help you to pay off the balance in full each month, which is the goal when trying to build the credit with a credit card.

You can call and ask your bank not to automatically increase your credit limit. Doing so will stop you from making too much debt, preventing you from being able to pay the balance out in full each month. If you concentrate on these smaller amounts of payouts, you should be able to build up your credit fairly easily and in the process.


Pay your balance in full every month

credit card

You build your credit history and show that you are responsible by paying your monthly payments on time, every month. By staying in your estimated amounts on all of your expenses, you should be able to do so.

You can avoid simply by carrying a heavy burden of debt never carrying anything that you cannot pay cash. That is the most important thing you can do to show that you are managing your finances and building your credit history.


Keep the amount of your used credit low

Close your credit cards

Using a large amount of your credit or almost all of the available credit will make your credit score drop. If you are carrying out a balance for a few months, be sure to keep a maximum of 30% of the credit limits available on the scales used.

If the scales are inches taller than this (and especially when it reaches the limit), you can see your credit score drop. It is important to keep this in mind when using your credit cards to improve your credit score.


Avoid the free offers that come with credit card applications

Check your credit report

You can be offered free pizza, t-shirts, and numerous other gifts for credit card applications. You may think that something is free or something that does not hurt you to get the registration. In addition, you can just cancel this card later, right? Not really. Every time you open a credit card, your credit score can take a hit. Your credit score can also get dinged if you have too many credit cards open. Also, canceled cards do appear on your credit report. This saves you the trouble of simply not applying. This will save you time and money in the long run.