FAQ

We have compiled a list of the things people ask us the most below. If there’s something you need to know that isn’t here, why not email us a suggestion and we’ll add it to the list?

What is a Credit Union?

In a nutshell, a credit union is a member-owned financial cooperative, controlled by its members and operated on the principle of people helping people, providing its members credit at competitive rates as well as other financial services. To find out more about the products and services City of Plymouth Credit Union offer, please browse our web site, you’ll find the information in the Products and Services pages.

Who runs the credit union?

The credit union is governed by a Board of Directors, all of whom are unpaid volunteers. The Board of Directors is elected by the credit union members attending the Annual General Meeting (AGM). They oversee the operation of the rest of the staff who are a mixture of volunteers and paid staff.

How do I join the credit union?

To join the City of Plymouth Credit Union, you must first live or work in Devon, Cornwall or the Isles of Scilly. You then have to complete a Membership Application form by either downloading a Membership Application form from our website, printing it, filling it in, adding the necessary proof of identity documents and either sending it to us or handing it in in at a Service Point – for full details see our Membership page. You can also download our Nivo app to your smartphone by clicking this link, following the instructions and then leave us a message to request to join that way. We’ll get back to you with all the details. This is by far the most convenient way, especially if you don’t have easy access to the Service Points.

Do you offer Corporate accounts?

We offer Corporate accounts to legally-incorporated entities. For full details, click or tap on this link. We do not offer Corporate loans at the present time.

How safe is my money?

Credit Unions are covered by the same regulatory requirements as Banks and Building Societies, so savings made with the credit union are covered by the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) which will repay your savings up to a maximum of £85,000. For full details, see the FSCS web site by clicking or tapping on this link.

Can a junior under the age of 18 join the credit union?

Yes, but the account must be opened jointly with a parent or guardian over the age of 18. Grandparents can also accounts for children. All transactions must be completed and signed by the person with parental responsibility up to a certain age determined at the time of joining, at which time the Junior can sign without a parental signature. Junior savers cannot have a loan. See this page for more details. It is important to understand that junior savings are the property of the junior, not of the parent or guardian who opened the account, even if they are required to sign withdrawals.

What documents do I need to provide in addition to an application form when joining the credit union?

Known as “Know Your Customer” or “KYC” checks, like all Building Societies and Banks, we need to positively identify you. This is part of government anti-money laundering regulations. You need two forms of identification, one to establish your identity and one to establish your home address. You can see the full list of acceptable documents in the Adult and Junior Membership pages by clicking on the “Show Table” links for each category. If you are joining a Junior Saver, we will also need a Birth Certificate and proof of guardianship if not on the Birth Certificate. Alternatively, you can upload the documents by photographing them and sending them to us using our Nivo smartphone app. Please don’t send them to us by email for Data Protection reasons.

How much does it cost to join the credit union?

We have an extremely low cost of membership, a £2 membership fee on joining and an annual fee of £5 or less. This is used to cover the administration fees for all the products and services we offer which are provided cost-free.

I don’t live in Plymouth, can I still join the credit union?

Yes, but you need to live or work somewhere in Devon, Cornwall or the Isles of Scilly. If not, you may still be able to join your local credit union. You can find out who they are by clicking or tapping this link.

I don’t live in Plymouth or near a Service Point, how can I contact you and carry out transaction?

You can telephone us, use our online contact form to send us a message, send us an email, send us a letter, or use our new on-line Nivo service. For full details, click or tap on this link. We can carry out most of our services using one or more of these contact methods, subject of course to us being able to confirm your identity.

I need to talk to you in person. How can I do this?

You can reach us at any of our Service Points, for their location, click or tap this link. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, at present, there are severe restrictions on our Service Points, but we hope to resume their full operation when things return to normal. To keep up to date with our COVID-19 arrangements, click or tap on this link.

Do I need to be an existing member to get a loan?

No, but part of the Loan Application process will involve joining the City of Plymouth Credit Union. To see the full range of loans we offer, click or tap on this link.

Do I need savings before I apply for a loan?

Not necessarily, it depends on the type of loan you’re applying for, some need savings, others don’t. To see the full range of loans we offer, click or tap on this link.

How do I apply for a loan?

To apply for a loan, look at this page and decide which loan you would like to apply for. Then click on the appropriate link and follow the instructions. You can either download a form, print it, complete it and send it to us or, for a faster, less hassle option, download our Nivo app (if you don’t have it installed on your smartphone already) by clicking here and then requesting a loan that way.

How can I pay money into my credit union account?

You can pay into your credit union account by Standing Order, by Bank Transfer, by Payroll Deduction (click or tap this link for more information), by getting your benefits paid directly into your account, or at a Service Point by cash or cheque. We currently do not accept Direct Debit payments. If paying by Standing Order or Bank Transfer, don’t forget to include your account number in the “Reference” field so we know which account to pay the money into.

How can I get a loan advance or a savings withdrawal paid?

You can get your money by Bank Transfer to your bank current account (this is the preferred way), by transfer onto one of our Prepaid Debit Cards (click or tap this link for more details), by cheque or by cash at a Service Point.

Can I get my benefits paid into the credit union?

Yes, we have an arrangement with the Department for Word and Pensions (DWP) which allows you to get your benefits paid directly into your credit union savings account.

I read somewhere that you offer Life Insurance?

Subject to certain age- and health-related terms and conditions, your savings and your loan (if you have one) are covered by Life Insurance free of charge. The amount paid to your executor or to someone you nominate will be up to twice the value of your savings and your loan will be fully repaid. For full details, click or tap on this link.

Can you help me pay my regular bills?

We can help you pay your regular bills using our Budget Account facility, also known as a “Jam Jar” account. For full details, click or tap on this link.

Can you help me with my rent payments?

The credit union has a scheme where you arrange for your benefits or Universal Credit to be paid into your credit union account. By arrangement with your landlord, we then pay your rent directly from your account. This is often done in conjunction with our Budget (Jam Jar) account scheme. For further details, click or tap on this link.