Some of the important aspects to look at when deciding whether to put your money in a bank or credit union are pretty obvious; how far away from your home or work is the branch office, number of ATM’s available, and whether or not your employer has an affinity for a specific institution. But many others may not be so clear. How then, does one decide which type of institution they should join? Hopefully this table will be able to help you decide. Since I’m not advocating one over the other, I will only do a listing of positive attributes at this time. Depending on the demand, I may follow this up with a list of ‘con’s at a later date
I’ve only done a few attributes for each this time, because deciding which type of institution really is a personal choice, and one I believe you should talk over with your parents.
|Lots of available locations||Most are part of Co-Op Network|
|May have many local branches||May be part of Shared BranchNetwork|
|All branches can access all account features|
|Larger, usually can offer more products or services||Smaller, usually can offer more “personal” service|
|Greater asset size should mean more technologically advanced||Because of community status, may bemore willing to experiment with new technologies|
|Are, “Not for Profit”, so income is reinvested to members|
|Usually offer higher savings rate and lower loan rates, due to “Not for Profit” status|
Once you’ve made this decision, then the fun part begins. Now you can decide, (depending on your age and your maturity level), what type of account you should open. I believe you should start with just a regular Savings account, and build your way up to the checking, but I know there are a few of you out there that are already shouting about how you are responsible enough to handle a checkbook. For you people, I’ll see you later, when you decide that you may need more help after-all.