We are simplifying our loans

Later this week – and before launching online loan applications – we are simplifying our loan products.

Member loans

We want to reward savers with a reduced rate of interest.

If you’ve been a member of the Credit Union for more than two years AND have more than £500 in savings you can apply for a Member Loan.

You can apply to borrow up to three times your savings balance.

If you need more than three times your savings you should apply for an Opportunity Loan.

Opportunity Loans

You can apply for an Opportunity Loan, regardless of your savings balance or length of membership. New members can apply as they join.

Loans are based on affordability, but as a rule of thumb you can apply to borrow up to one month’s income. We will always take into account your personal circumstances and prior borrowing history.

The interest rate charged depends on the amount you borrow. You can  top up a loan after six months’ payments.

To apply for more than £5,000 you must be a homeowner.

You do not have to use the loan for home improvements. However, if you want to undertake expensive renovations in your home – perhaps to cater for a growing family – then a homeowner loan can help fund this work. Improving your flat or house can also make the property more attractive to potential buyers as well as increasing its value.

Business loans

For members who own businesses needing working capital or help with cashflow. Our business loans are available for sole traders and limited companies, including social enterprises.

We’ll be introducing online applications for business lending later in the year. In the meantime if you want to find out more contact us.

Applying for loans online

From April you will be able to apply for a loan online.

We will always welcome people into our offices. But from April you will be able to apply at a time and place of your choosing, including from your mobile without the need to download an app.

We’ve made this process as simple as possible. And to reduce paperwork, we will be using Open Banking.

Open Banking is a secure way to securely grant a regulated financial services organisation time-limited access to your bank account transactions. If you choose to provide this access, you no longer need to send in your bank statements to the Credit Union. Loan applications can be made entirely online. Decisions are quicker.

You’re protected

We’ve been taught to never share our account details. That’s still good advice in many ways, however the difference with Open Banking is that software and security systems give you the option to share your account information securely. Data is encrypted and usage is tracked. Only companies regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority can access your information.

How it works

When you apply online for a loan you may be asked to provide your bank statement. You still have the option to bring these into the office, but that will delay your application. Alternatively, if you have an online account, you can select to provide this added secure information over the internet. This enables us to provide a much quicker decision.

If you choose to do provide online access you will arrive at a secure portal where you select your bank account and log in using your usual online banking credentials. Your log in details are not shared and remain secure. No one will see them, they are not accessed by the Credit Union or stored in any way. They are fully encrypted.

How we use your data

We receive a summary of your income and expenditure in the form of a monthly budget. This covers the previous 90-day period. The connection to your account remains open for 90 days. If you apply for a top up loan within three months, we do not need to get you to logon again.

More information

The Money Advice Service has more information about Open Banking.

If you have any questions, contact us

Access your account online

You can now access your account online.

Registering will mean you can check your balance and view transactions.

How do I sign up?

  1. Online registration is only available if you have a working email address.
  2. Before you start you will need to think of a username that you can remember. You will also need to create a memorable password.
  3. You will need to know you member / account number. ALL member numbers changed on 17th September 2018. If you do not know your member number use the form below to request it. We will phone you, ask security questions and provide your member number.
  4. Visit our secure registration page.
  5. Complete your details and submit the form. Make a note of your username and password.
  6. We will perform security checks to verify your details within 24 hours.
  7. You will receive a Personal Identification Number in the post within 5 working days.
  8. When your PIN has been received you will be able to log-on with the details you entered in step 2.

Contact us if you have not received your PIN within 7 working days or if you have any questions.

If you do now know your account / member number – contact us using the chat at the bottom right of this page.

More online services on the way

More online services are on the way, providing a better and quicker service to our members.

Having the option to apply online does not mean we want to see less of our members. On the contrary. More members choose to transact over the internet frees up the office.

As a result, that’s less queuing and a more personal service for anyone visiting us.

Here’s a timeline of what’s planned:

September

We made our website mobile friendly. It will be stacked with useful information and money saving tips.

An online chat facility opened. You can use it during our normal opening hours.

October

We completed the move to a new a IT system.

However things never go completely according to plan. Some members’ payments were sent to their savings accounts rather than to bank accounts. We apologise for the inconvenience these late payments caused.  Payments after 10th October are processed as normal.

Online access to your account will be available at the end of October. This will enable you to view your balance and recent transactions. To register you will need your member number.
Can’t remember your member number? Send us a message on chat.

Got your member number? Click on register for online access, above.

November

Applying for share withdrawals using your online account will mean you no longer need to contact the office.

December

Our mobile app will be available.

2019

Members will be able to apply for a loan or savings account online. e-signatures will enable members to sign agreements using their email address.

 

Do more online thanks to our new IT system

Members will be able to do more online as we upgrade our IT system.

Your Credit Union will be closed on Thursday 13th and Friday 14th September when we will move to the new system.

As a result we will be

  • Speeding up branch activities, including taking deposits, making withdrawals and applying for loans
  • Providing online access to your account, including from a mobile app
  • Taking online loan applications

We will roll out these features by Christmas.

Above all, our systems have been tested and work. However, you may find our service a little slower next week as we implement the changes.

Want to get in touch? Click on the chat icon. Its in the bottom right of your screen.