Frequently Asked Questions:
- What is a credit union?
- How can I become a member of a credit union?
- How can I get a loan?
- How can I get access to the money in my account when I'm not near the credit union or the credit union is closed?
- Can I become a member if I don't have a social security number?
- Can I receive a loan if I don't have a social security number?
- Can I use the credit union to send money abroad?
- If my credit is poor, can the credit union help me?
- What other products and services are offered by the credit unions?
- Is my money safe at a credit union?
1. What is a credit union?
Credit Unions are not-for-profit financial institutions that exist to serve their members' needs. Credit Unions are cooperatives, which means they are owned by their members-people just like you. Like banks, Credit Unions are insured by the federal government for up to $250,000.
2. How can I become a member of a credit union?
You can become a member by being within the credit union's field of membership and by opening a savings account. Depending upon the credit union, their field of membership is defined by the residents of a particular community, employees of a company, or members of a civic or church group. The credit unions on this site can generally serve individuals who live, work, worship or volunteer within their community, as well as their family members. In choosing a credit union to join, pick a credit union that is convenient to where you live or work. Some of our credit unions have a wider field of membership. Call us to see if you can join.
You will need to show photo I.D., social security number or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), and proof of address. Any government-issued passport can be used as I.D. You can apply for an ITIN at the credit union if you need one. You will be required to make a $10-$25 deposit into your account and pay a $5 or $10 one-time membership fee. Call or visit the credit union's website to get more information.
3. How can I get a loan?
Whether you want to get a credit card, a loan for a small business, or a loan for a family vacation, credit unions offer you many options at great rates! Call 212-254-6060 ext 109 or 112 or visit our business lending page to learn how to apply for a business loan.
4. How can I get access to the money in my account when I'm not near the credit union or the credit union is closed?
There are hundreds of ATMs available to you in New York City at McDonalds and other locations. You may avoid paying a $1.50 - $2.50 surcharge by using ATMs with the CO-OP Network logo or the Allpoint logo for members of Brooklyn Cooperative FCU. Although you can use ATMs displaying other logos,you will pay a surcharge fee.
To search for an ATM located near you go to our ATM page.
5. Can I become a member if I don't have a social security number?
Yes! You may open a credit union account with an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). The credit union’s staff can help you get an ITIN if you don't already have one. Accounts opened without a Social Security Number or an ITIN are not eligible to receive interest on their savings account. The non-interest savings account can be converted into an interest-bearing account once the new member receives an ITIN.
6. Can I receive a loan if I don't have a social security number?
Yes. The credit union will consider loan applications from members without a social security number who provide an ITIN, since these loans can be reported to a credit reporting agency under the member's ITIN. The credit union may also consider loan applications from members without a social security number or an ITIN if another individual with either a SSN or an ITIN will co-sign the loan.
7. Can I use the credit union to send money abroad?
All credit unions featured on this site offer money remittance services. Fees vary by country, but are generally less expensive than commercial remittance stores.
8. If my credit is poor can the credit union help me?
Yes. The credit unions offer debt consolidation loans and financial education to help you solve your credit problems. They offer many other services, including second chance banking.
9. What other products and services are offered by the credit unions?
Most of the credit unions featured on this site offer money remittance services, check cashing, and credit/debit cards. If you would like to receive one of these products or services, simply speak to a member services representative at the credit union. Some of these credit unions also offer free tax preparation to those with qualifying incomes, financial education, or homebuyer counseling. There are more services available to you. Call to find out about all the services that you can enjoy as a member of Your Neighborhood Credit Union.
10. Is my money safe at a credit union?
Yes. Your money is safe and secure at the credit union because it is insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). The NCUA is a federal government agency that regulates credit unions. Its insurance fund protects you against any losses of up to $250,000 if the credit union fails.