The Towpath Credit Union Difference
When you walk into our lobby, or call a loan officer, what makes Towpath Credit Union different from a bank is not immediately apparent. The two financial institutions may offer similar products and services, but the similarities stop there. Crucial differences exist--in ownership, in cost of borrowing money, and in use of services.
- You own your credit union. Credit unions are member-owned nonprofit financial cooperatives dedicated to improving members' lives.
- Credit unions are the only democratically controlled financial institutions in the United States. You and other members elect a volunteer board of directors to oversee the credit union. The credit union president reports to this board.
- Because they are not profit driven, Credit unions generally have the best loan rates.
- The average credit card interest rate is four percentage points better at credit unions vs. banks. And credit union auto loans average almost one and one-half percentage points less than banks' auto loan rates. Credit unions make consumer loans.
- Credit unions educate members about money matters. They provide publications to keep you advised of rates, loan sales, and financial trends that affect you.
What is a Credit Union?
When you choose a credit union to serve your financial needs, you have selected a financial institution with many unique characteristics.
- Credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives, member-owned and controlled. Unlike commercial banks and other financial institutions, there are no stockholders. The credit union is operated by its members for the benefit of all who belong. Profits are returned to the members in the form of dividends, competitive loan rates and low-cost services.
- Credit unions have a volunteer Board of Directors, elected by their members/owners.
- Credit union policy is “Once a Member, Always a Member.” If you change employment, affiliation or residence, you do not have to close your accounts.