Why is saving with a credit union better?
Regular saving with your credit union is an even better idea. At your credit union, you’re not just a customer; you’re a member of a successful financial co-operative.
Each share you hold in your credit union is equal to €1. To be a member there will be an entrance fee of €1.27 and you will need to hold a minimum savings of ten shares. Members enjoy equal rights to vote (one member, one vote) and participate in decisions affecting the credit union.
- Savings are insured at no direct cost to the eligible member.
- No hidden fees or transaction charges. When your credit union declares a dividend at the end of its financial year, each share you hold for that year is eligible for a dividend.
- The more shares you have, the greater the dividend you will receive.
- And you have the added bonus of knowing that your savings are being used to make loans to other members. Members just like you.
When a member who is over 16 years of age opens a credit union account, he/she is entitled to nominate a person (or persons) to receive his/her property in the credit union on his/her death. Property includes shares, deposits, loans and insurance proceeds. This is of benefit if the member dies without leaving a will as the property left in the credit union will not have to pass through the sometimes timely intestacy process.
Are my savings secured?
Credit Unions in the Republic of Ireland are covered by the Deposit Protection Scheme which is administered by the Financial Regulator. This is a scheme that can provide compensation to depositors if a credit institution is forced to go out of business. It covers deposits held with banks; building societies; and credit unions. The maximum amount a credit union member can receive under this scheme is €100,000.
The Deposit Protection Scheme covers:
- current accounts;
- demand deposit accounts;
- term deposit accounts;
- share accounts and deposit accounts with building societies; and
- share accounts and deposit accounts with credit unions
In addition to this, the Savings Protection Scheme (SPS) owned and operated by the Irish League of Credit Unions is also available to proactively intervene to protect members’ savings by making available financial assistance to help any credit union which may experience difficulties.
What return will I get on my credit union savings?
Every share you hold with your credit union for the year is eligible for a dividend when declared. A dividend is the return on your shares and it is paid by your credit union out of surplus.*
*Past performance is not a reliable guide to future performance.
The amount of your dividend will depend on:
- The amount of shares you have saved (one share is equal to €1/£1stg).
- The surplus income available for distribution by your credit union to members.
Only members of your credit union receive a dividend from your credit union. The amount paid to members varies from one credit union to another.
Can I have easy access to my savings?
- They continue to earn a dividend.
- They continue to benefit from the Life Savings Insurance protection.
Your credit union will be happy to talk to you about suitable alternatives to withdrawing your savings.
Can anybody save with the credit union?
Members of a credit union are united by a common bond. This is a characteristic that every member has in common (for example, it might be where you live or where you work). Anyone within the common bond is eligible to apply for membership, and start saving as soon as they are admitted. So, whatever you’re saving for – a car, home improvements, a big day, holiday, school or college fees, your place will give you a fair deal.