3 Reasons Consumers Choose Banks over Credit Unions

Banks and credit unions offer similar services for their customers. However, they differ in a number of ways as well. Here are a few reasons that many consumers choose banks over credit unions.

1. Not Eligible for Credit Union

One of the biggest reasons that people do not join a credit union is that they are not eligible. Many credit unions are like exclusive clubs. For example, many large employers have credit unions and limit membership to employees and often their close family members. There are other groups that have credit unions for their members as well. If you do not qualify to join a credit union in your area, it is much easier to do business with a bank because banks are not exclusive. If you have money that you need to deposit, a bank will open an account for you.

2. Number of Locations

Another big reason that many people prefer banks over credit unions is the number of locations that they offer. Many credit unions have only one or two locations that you can visit. Depending on where you live and work, it might be inconvenient for you to do business with them. In today's fast-paced world, we like to be able to do business with our financial institution regardless of which side of town we are on. 

Many banks have many locations in an area. This way, it does not matter where you are in the city; you should be able to do business with them. Many banks also have locations in other cities and states. Therefore, you can even do business when you are traveling. Most credit unions simply do not have the capability to do this, and that can be inconvenient.

3. ATMs

When you need cash, using an ATM is one of the most convenient ways to get it. Having access to an ATM linked to a bank will typically help you avoid any fees for taking out your money. No one wants to pay an extra $3 just to withdraw money. However, if you do not have access to your financial institution's ATM, this is exactly what you may have to do.

Many of the larger bank chains in the country have their ATMs spread out all over the place. You can find them at gas stations, inside stores, and in many other locations. With most credit unions, this is simply not the case. They might have a few ATMs placed sporadically throughout the city, but other than that, you may not be able to find one.

If you do business with a credit union, you will want to make sure that their ATMs are linked into a large network, such as Co-op. This could make it possible to use other ATMs without the fees.

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