//Credit Unions vs. Banks: the ultimate comparison

Credit Unions : Have members/owners
Banks: Have customers

Credit Unions Are not-for-profit.
Banks: Are for profit.

Credit Unions : Democratically-controlled by its members. Each member has one vote in electing board members and can run for election to the board or committees.
Banks: Controlled by stockholders and board of directors. Customers do not have voting rights and cannot be elected to the board.

Credit Unions : After expenses are paid and reserves are set aside, surplus earnings are returned to members in the forms of lower loan rates, higher savings rates and free or low-cost services.
Banks: Profits are paid only to investors.

Credit Unions : Can serve only those individuals within their field of membership.
Banks: Can serve anyone in the general public

Credit Unions : Are socially driven, focused on financial education and improving the quality of life of members around the world.
Banks: Are profit-driven.