One of the country’s largest credit unions is increasing fees for using its checking account.
The move comes despite the movement’s attempts to attract some of the one million customers who are seeking new checking and deposit account providers after the planned departures Ulster bank and KBC Bank.
Progressive Credit Union, which has 60,000 members in north Dublin, will charge up to €7 per transaction in a new fee schedule from July. Other credit unions have recently introduced similar fees.
Nine credit unions in Cork City and County have launched a campaign to encourage people to switch to them for their current account services.
Financial experts said raising current account transaction fees made little sense at a time when Ulster and KBC customers were scrambling to find new providers.
But Progressive has written to its members outlining new checking account fees.
There is a new fee of €7 for returned checks and a €3.50 fee for issuing a check from a savings account and a €1.10 fee for funding membership in the Irish League of Credit Unions.
These fees are in addition to the €4 monthly management fee for a checking account.
Progressive said it needed to introduce some service fees for check processing, in line with all other banking institutions in the country.
There is now a fee to process expired checks, returned checks, and voided checks.
A number of other credit unions have similar fees, including Member First in Dublin, First Choice in Mayo and St Columba’s in Galway. But some of the fees are lower than those at Progressive.
In December 2020 it emerged that First South Credit Union in Cork was introducing transaction fees for members wishing to access their savings accounts.
At the time, it was believed that this was the first time a financial institution had charged fees for transactions on savings accounts.
Banks charge fees for checking account transactions.
Cork’s credit unions said they hope to encourage thousands of customers to open current accounts with them, where they can take advantage of services such as overdrafts and direct debits.
The nine credit unions involved in the campaign have 21 offices in Cork City and County.
The credit unions are Aviate, Access, Douglas, First South, Macroom, Synergy, HSSCU (Health Services CU), Bishopstown and St. Pauls.
Credit unions have expanded their offerings over the years and today offer a range of services such as checking accounts and mortgages.
The campaign comes in response to announcements by some banks that they are exiting the Irish market.
Cork’s credit unions say they offer competitive rates, with account maintenance fees starting as low as €4 a month.
They also offer free banking for students.
Savings bank current account users also have free direct debit and standing order processing. The Sparkasse current accounts are also compatible with Apple Pay, Google Pay and Fitbit Pay and offer a globally accepted Mastercard debit card.
And Cork’s credit unions offer a mobile app and electronic statements.
https://www.independent.ie/business/personal-finance/credit-unions/credit-union-hikes-fees-despite-move-to-attract-ulster-and-kbc-customers-41555606.html The credit union is raising fees despite trying to lure customers in Ulster and KBC