(From Financial Literacy Blog) – With Maine Governor Janet Mills declaring a civil state of emergency due to coronavirus, much of the state is staying home and practicing social distancing. Many businesses are temporarily closing their doors to the public and schools have been asked to end classroom time as soon as possible. Out of an abundance of caution, many Maine credit unions have made the decision to move all branch activity to drive-through service only. Maintaining the well-being of staff and members is a top priority. Your local credit union is taking a proactive approach while still providing members with the financial services they rely on.
Maine credit unions are financially strong, fully insured, and well-prepared to operate under these unique circumstances. Your money is safe and secure, and you will continue to have reliable access to your accounts. Along with drive-through teller services, there are a number of ways you can access your money and have your banking needs met without setting foot in a branch:
Online and Mobile Banking
Credit unions across the state offer both online and mobile banking services, where you can:
- Check your account balances
- View your transaction history
- Transfer funds
- Pay loans and credit cards
- Make your normal bill payments
- Schedule future and recurring transfers
Additionally, check with your credit union to see if they offer eAlerts. These alerts are free electronic notifications that help you keep track of your finances. By opting in, you can receive a text, email, or push notification when a specific event occurs—whether it’s when a debit occurs, a deposit or payment posts to your account, or if your account balance falls below an amount of your choosing. If you aren’t currently enrolled in online or mobile banking and need help, call your credit union during normal business hours or head to their website for more information.
Mobile Check Deposit
In conjunction with your credit union’s online and mobile banking offerings, you can take advantage of mobile deposit capture. With this method, you can deposit checks from the comfort of your own home. Here’s how it works:
- Select Mobile Check Deposit on your credit union’s app or mobile banking offering.
- Choose an account for your deposit.
- Enter the amount on your check.
- Take a photo of the front and back of your check.
- Submit your deposit.
It’s that easy! Depositing with this method is safe, secure, and can be done at any time. The funds are usually made available to you within the business day, but it’s recommended that you hold onto the check for at least a week. In the event your credit union needs a clearer picture, or you need to dispute an error, having the check on-hand can be helpful. If you haven’t heard from your credit union a week after submitting your mobile deposit, you should be in the clear to destroy the check.
SURF ATMs and Shared Branching
Although some branch lobbies may be closed temporarily, you still have access to Maine’s largest surcharge-free ATM network. The SURF ATM network has over 260 locations across the state. If you want free access to your money, find the nearest SURF ATM here. Additionally, you can take advantage of Shared Branching. With Shared Branching, members of a credit union can perform a wide range of transactions at another credit union. There are over 170 branches across the state that participate, so if you’re interested in conducting in-branch transactions at another credit union if your home branch is temporarily closed, you can do so through Shared Branching. However, it’s recommended that you visit the credit union’s website or call first to determine what services are available in-person or by drive-through, as well as their hours of operation.
Depending on what kind of loan you’re looking for, you may be able to apply on your credit union’s website. With an online loan application, you can safely and securely apply for a loan 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Check your credit union’s website or call to see what types of loans you can apply for online.
Safe and Secure
Remember, your money is safe and secure at your credit union, which is insured by the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund (NCUSIF). The NCUSIF was created by Congress in 1970 to insure members’ deposits in federally insured credit unions. Administered by the NCUA, the Share Insurance Fund insures individual accounts up to $250,000, and a member’s interest in all joint accounts combined is insured up to $250,000. The Share Insurance Fund separately protects IRA and KEOGH retirement accounts up to $250,000. Credit union members have never lost even a penny of insured savings at a federally insured credit union.
Credit Unions Are Here to Help
People Helping People. Serving our members and our communities is our top priority. Please contact your local credit union directly with specific questions or concerns you may have. We are here to help!