Credit unions are financial services providers run by the community, for the community, which means members have a real say in how they are run. Credit unions are not run to make profits for external investors and profits are used for the benefit of members. They all offer savings and loans, but some offer current accounts and even mortgages.
Generally, to be part of a credit union, you need to share a ‘common bond’ with other members. This means you need to have something in common with them - whether that’s living in the same town, working in the same industry (e.g. transport) or belonging to a particular trade union.
Credit unions are regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority and deposits up to £85,000 per person are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme – which means they offer the same protection for your money as high street banks.
More than 355,000* people in Scotland are credit union members. Find your nearest credit union for more information.
* As of March 2014