The Credit Union Difference
While services from a credit union may appear nearly the same as a bank, the structure and philosophy is quite different.
Credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives owned by the very people they serve. Credit unions exist solely to serve their members, not enrich outside stockholders. They are overseen by a board of directors, who are volunteers elected by the members.
Credit unions considered “not for profit” because operating income is returned to depositors in the form of higher savings rates and lower loan rates and fees.
Each credit union has a defined field of membership. Individuals share a "common bond" with other members of the credit union. Examples are employees of a company, members of an association or church, or residents of a defined geographic community. Some credit unions serve more than one group, with each group sharing a common bond.