Understanding Credit Unions

What is a credit union?

A credit union is a not-for-profit financial cooperative. Instead of customers or clients, credit unions are made up of members who have ownership in the overall institution. Credit union members often share an occupation, geographic region or religious affiliation. At Bethpage, anyone with a $5 savings account can start taking advantage of our services today.

Bethpage provides a convenient place for members to bank, access loans and learn more about how to manage money. Credit unions exist to serve their members and the surrounding communities. This means we aim to give members low rates, high returns and unbeatable service.

How did credit unions begin?

In 1849, struggling farmers in rural Germany decided to pool together the community's money so that everyone could have access to affordable loans. The same essential blueprint explains the way credit unions like Bethpage work today.

Eventually, credit unions came to the United States! The first credit union in America was founded in 1909 in Manchester, New Hampshire and in 1934, President Roosevelt signed the Federal Credit Union Act. After the Great Depression, credit unions presented a way for Americans to avoid the predatory practices of banks and larger financial institutions.

How popular are credit unions today?

There are currently more than 6,500 credit unions in the United States. These organizations hold more than $1 trillion in assets and serve 100 million members. Around the world, credit unions can be found in 101 countries and boast a membership of over 200 million members.

How are credit unions governed and regulated?

Credit unions are governed by their members, which are usually managed by an elected board of directors. Members are able to attend regular meetings to weigh in on matters affecting the credit union.

These institutions are chartered by state and federal governments. State-chartered credit unions are governed by state regulations, while federal credit unions like Bethpage are subject to the very same act President Roosevelt put into place. Credit unions are overseen by the NCUA, a group that holds reviews to ensure members are being served fairly and effectively.

Assets are protected by $250,000 worth of coverage from the NCUA's shared insurance fund. This guarantees that your investments, deposits and other holdings are secure.

What are the principles of credit unions?

Voluntary Membership Membership is open to anyone with a $5 Savings account.
Must be a US citizen or permanent resident alien.
All Members are Equal At Bethpage, your asset size does not matter. Each member is treated with the same outstanding service.
Members First At Bethpage Federal Credit Union we are committed to giving our members extraordinary value and service, anytime, anywhere.
Cooperation among Cooperatives As part of the CO-OP Network our members can use ATMs throughout the country for surcharge free transactions. We also offer Shared Service Centers with other Credit Unions and select retailers such as 7-11, CVS, Walgreens and Costcos across Long Island.
Community Involvement Through volunteer work, legislative action, community partnerships and other activities, Bethpage Federal Credit Union is committed to giving back to our community

What do credit unions do for their members?

Here's the bottom line: Credit unions provide lower rates, higher returns and unrivaled convenience for our members. At Bethpage, anyone with a $5 minimum share account can start taking advantage of our services today. We want members to know where they stand money-wise, make good decisions and feel supported in everything they do with us!

Whether you're looking to finance your first house, save for retirement, open a or buy a new car, our experts are ready to help you along the way.