Benefits of a Credit Union

A credit union is a cooperative financial institution which is controlled and owned by its members, operating solely for the provision of credit, promotion of thrift, as well as different financial services to its members. It is a democratic institution with member owned financial cooperatives, allowing members, regardless of the sizes of their accounts, to also run as a volunteer on the board and able to cast their vote during union elections.

Operating as financial intermediaries, credit unions finance its loan portfolios with the mobilization of member savings and shares within the union, instead of using outside capital resources. This ensures opportunities for members for many generations.

Compared to a bank which are owned by various shareholders, that does not necessary belong to the specific bank in question. They are paid board members and boards of directors and will make decisions that are good for the small group of shareholders as oppose to the average members of the financial institution. A credit union allows all its members to have a voice in the financial institution, regardless of the size of their portfolio.

Operating as a non-profit organization, a credit union uses excess earnings of the financial institution to offer its members better and more affordable loans, lower fees as well as higher return on their savings. Members from all walks of life are welcome to join and in order to find out if you qualify, it is simply done by contacting the desired credit union interested in as there is literally hundreds available for the individual.

In order to apply for membership of a particular credit union there is some important information for the individual to know about the procedures for opening an account. It is specific identification procedures and requirements which was mandated by the Patriotic Act of the USA. This Act was established to fight funding of possible terrorism as well as money laundering activities within the unions in the USA.

The federal law requires from all financial institutions the obtaining of all the information which identifies every individual opening an account. The acquired information needs to be verified and recorded within the financial institution. However as with all financial institutions, the provided information is guaranteed to be protected by federal law as well as the union’s privacy policy.

Mobile Banking Apps – Provides Consumer Flexibility

Mobile banking apps provide consumers with remarkable flexibility in conducting financial transactions remotely. Unlike online banking that requires an internet or Wi-Fi connection from a specific location, mobile banking allows a member to access a variety of banking functions from a cellular connected device. As more Credit Unions adopt banking mobile formats that can be accessed through different apps, we are seeing mobile phones, laptop computers and tablet PC’s becoming instant banking centers.

How Mobile Banking Apps Work

Many Credit Unions utilize the Mobile Finance Manager, which is a fully featured banking mobile app. This small program can be downloaded directly to any compatible smart phone, where it provides nearly all of the same features that are available through online banking.

Mobile Finance Manager is currently available for a number of platforms, including Windows Mobile, Blackberry, Palm Treo, and Java. Within the context of each operating system, there are literally hundreds of phones that are compatible with the app.

Popular Features

Popular mobile banking applications offer a number of useful features and functions that are simple to access and navigate. Among these are the following:

- All account balances can be viewed simultaneously.

- Access to all available functions 24/7.

- Graphic Reports enable the account holder to easily track assets.

- Online bill pay with repeat pay options ensures payments are made on time.

- Funds can be seamlessly transferred between accounts in real time.

- Secure encryption of transmitted data prevents unwanted intrusion.

- User ID and password are identical to the online log-in that members use at home.

The Latest in App Development

Advanced apps include a branch and ATM finder that taps into the phone’s GPS capabilities. Users can also access all available branch information including hours of operation, contact details, and available services.

As mobile banking apps continue to develop, expect to see Credit Unions offering applications that provide a fully functional banking environment that can be accessed through any remotely connected device.

Mobile Apps Make Remote Deposits Easy

As banking increasingly goes digital, credit union members have a new way of handling paper checks. Instead of using an ATM or making a personal appearance in the branch, members of a growing number of credit unions can endorse the back of a check, take a photo of the front and back, and then upload the image via their credit union’s mobile application (remote deposit capture, as it is sometimes referred to).

Depositing a check with your smartphone can literally take only seconds. As effortless as this process may seem, you may encounter some bumps along the way. Below are some simple steps to assure your success with mobile deposit.

Know your credit union’s requirements: Make sure you are eligible to use your credit union’s mobile deposit service. Most credit unions will let you use this feature if you are eligible or have signed up for mobile banking.

Endorse the check: Sign your check with blue or black ink and make sure there are no other items that need to be written on the check. For example, you may need to write “for remote deposit only” or include the last four digits of your account number.

Make sure the amount of your check is within the deposit limits: Because of security risks, many credit unions will limit the amount you can deposit remotely. If your check doesn’t fit those limits you will need to make your deposit at an ATM or the branch office.

Take a clear picture of your check:

Make sure your checks are deposited by using these tips for taking a clear, quality photo of your check.

· Place the check on a dark background that won’t reflect your camera flash.

· Make sure there’s plenty of light on the check.

· Ensure that all four corners of the check are inside the photo.

· Make sure no other objects are in the frame of the photo.

· Hold your smartphone directly above the check.

· If you get a blurry image, move the camera a few inches higher above the check.

· If you are having problems with quality or lighting, turn off the flash.

Confirm and press send: Make sure the check is going to the right account and that all other information is correct before you click send.

Keep the hardcopy of the check until it is processed. Your credit union may touch base with you via email when the check is accepted. Once you have your follow-up email, write “deposited by mobile” on the check and hold on to it until the deposit shows up in your account.

By following these simple steps, you can make a safe, secure mobile deposit. Remote check deposit has already begun to change the way credit unions interact with their members. With a mobile banking app., members can check their balance, transfer money between accounts and deposit checks remotely. No matter how convenient mobile banking has become, your credit union still can’t produce cold, hard cash through the phone so don’t kiss the brick-and-mortar branches goodbye just yet.