June 15, 2010

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Mike and I are thinking of leaving our national bank for a local credit union. We have many reasons for this. One of which being I am looking into some financing and a credit union offers much better rates on all kinds of services. Compared to banks, interest rates are lower when you want them to be low and higher when you want them to be high. And he and I are intrigued by the national movement of leaving the "too big to fail" banks that are in fact, failing.

I decided to start shopping around today. Some friends of mine were members of a local credit union until they moved so I'm going to pick their brains. In the meantime I called SEFCU of Albany to ask them if I could check out their online banking interface. If there is anything I love about Bank of America it's the amazing online banking tools (there surely isn't much else.) All the others I've seen pale in comparison. The very helpful and nice SEFCU service rep directed me to a demo and I was able to poke around. Being a bank-life-long customer of Bank of America I'm having a hard time dissecting my feelings about the interface. I can't tell if I'm just so pampered by Bank of America or if the site isn't what I like to see. Then I start to wonder if the online tools are so important that I risk smart money moves in the future. Should this be so scary?

This is all in the beginning phase and I'm sure we could always go back to Bank of America if SEFCU doesn't work out. But who wants to deal with constantly switching bank info? I don't have too many automatic payments, so that's no biggie. And it really could be a smart move for us. I stuck with my bank out of what I thought was convenience but really, it's not all that convenient. And besides, the credit union costs two dollars less a transaction from non-union ATMS. And that difference really adds up. As would many little differences. Maybe I just solved my conundrum...


Mike F said...

Switched to NEFCU two years ago .... never leaving ... much web interface ... and the rates are much better ... we get high interest on a checking/savings and low interet on a car loan.

B of A still owns my mortage and credit card, but nothing else.

Krisnvt said...

We have been with the local credit union since moving to VT. You can't beat the personal service. We have our mortgage there--no one could beat the minimal mortgage fees--and also our car loan. They refinanced our other car loan and saved us money on the payment and we paid it off sooner. You're dealing with real people, not corporations who could care less about you.