New app gives 'fingertip' access to the credit union
Norwich Credit Union has developed a new mobile phone app to support the increasing numbers of people using its online services.
Individuals can now interact directly with the credit union from their smartphone. As long as they have access to WiFi or 4G, they can use the app to manage their credit union account, get information about opening times etc, apply for membership or offer their services as a volunteer.
Jon Warne, president of Norwich Credit Union, says:
"The new mobile phone app makes us visible at all times. It raises our profile and helps us stay closer to our members, who are always just a ‘fingertip’ away."
"Our credit union is run by volunteers with limited resources. We’re finding that more and more people are engaging with us online. The new app increases the ways that members can communicate with us, and hopefully will help us reach more potential new members in Norfolk."
The new Norwich Credit Union app was developed on behalf of the credit union by Community IT Services CIC (CITS), a new community interest company committed to bridging the digital divide in Norfolk. Karen Downer, Community Liaison Manager for CITS, explains:
"We started developing the app for the credit union in August 2018. There were several challenges to overcome, mainly relating to integration with the online banking system."
Testing of the apps was particularly interesting, as we opened this up to the Norwich Credit Union members. With their feedback we were able to identify the features that were most requested for the apps."
The new Norwich Credit Union app is available now on Google Android smartphones and iPhones from their respective app stores.
Opening Times for our Phone Lines
To assist our members during this time, our volunteers are committing to regular times where inbound calls to our mobile phone number (07504 433758) will be taken. Outside of these ours memebrs can email or leave a message on the main phone number (01603 764904). Emails and messages sent or left before 2pm will be dealt with that day.
Line opening times:
Tuesday: 10:30-12:30 & 1:30-2:30
Thursday: 10:30-12:30 & 1:30-2:30
Saturday: 10:30-12:30 & 1:30-2:30
Thank you for your continued patience throughout this difficult time.
FREE £25 Offer
Terms and Conditions
Thanks to Stop Loan Sharks (England Illegal Money Lending Team), we’re announcing an exciting offer for NEW MEMBERS!
To qualify, you must
Live in NR1-NR7 (Norwich), NR19 (Dereham), NR29, NR30, NR31 (Great Yarmouth) and PE30 (King's Lynn)
Join Norwich Credit Union/ Norfolk Save & Borrow
Save regularly for 3 months
Be aged 18 or over
If you meet all 3 conditions, we’ll add £25 to your account at the end of the 3 months!
Simply put £25-SLS in the "Promotion Code" section of our Join Online form. Terms and conditions apply – see below.
Only 50 people can qualify for this offer. So hurry - sign up today, or tell friends and family if you’re already a member!
Contact the office if you have any questions.
What is Stop Loan Sharks?
Stop Loan Sharks (England Illegal Money Lending Team) investigate and prosecute illegal lenders or loan sharks. A loan shark is someone who lends money as a business without the legal authorisation required by the Financial Services and Markets Act. They rarely give any paperwork and if repayments are missed they often use violence and intimidation to get their money back.
When loan sharks are convicted, Stop Loan Sharks look to seize their assets under the Proceeds of Crime Act. A small proportion of the money generated from these assets can be used to fund education and crime prevention initiatives, such as this Norwich Credit Union membership incentive scheme.
£25 voucher - terms and conditions
Only new members can apply - ID will be required.
Only those living in areas at higher risk from loan sharking will be eligible for this promotion: NR1-NR7 (Norwich), NR19 (Dereham), NR29, NR30 & NR31 (Great Yarmouth)
A maximum of 50 new members can take up this offer.
The value of the voucher is £25
Those redeeming vouchers must be new members and make at least 3 deposits over a period of 3 months to be eligible for payment. This must be achieved by 31 December 2020.
The first 50 new members to achieve 3 deposits within 3 months will receive £25 each, paid directly into their Norwich Credit Union account.
NORWICH CREDIT UNION
Welcome to Norwich Credit Union (also trading as Norfolk Save and Borrow). Since we were established in 1989, we have loaned out more than £2.5 million to our members. Anyone who lives or works
in the Norfolk area can apply to join.
How does the credit union work?
We are owned and run by our members, and offer access to safe savings and affordable loans (subject to a small annual administration fee). All members aged 18 and over can:
Vote at the Annual General Meeting on dividend policy and other Credit Union matters
Stand for election to any of the officers' posts
In return we ask you to:
Save at least £5 in the first 3 months of joining, and save regularly
Consider a low-cost loan from us, if you need to borrow money
Remember that all our members are affected if a loan isn't repaid
Contact us immediately if you get into repayment difficulties - we may be able to help
Tell us when you change address, email, mobile etc, so we can contact you quickly about your account
At the Annual General Meeting, the members elect:
Board of Directors Responsible for the operation of the Credit Union
Credit Committee Assess loan applications
Supervisory Committee Act as internal audit or check, independent of the Board, and report to members
The Board also employ a part-time Coordinator and appoint volunteer service point assistants.
Save with Norwich Credit Union and you can rest assured that your savings are being invested in an ethical organisation that uses your money to help other members of the community. If the credit union is performing well and in profit, you will receive your share of the rewards through a dividend paid as a percentage of your savings. It costs £1 to open an account and is free for Juniors.
Face to Face
Face to Face
One of the key principles of the credit union movement is people helping people. We will do our best to answer any queries our members may have. Simply contact the office or drop in to one of our many service points and talk in confidence to one of our collectors.
It is our policy to meet the borrowing needs of as many of our members as possible. We have several loan products, including our Standard Loan for which we charge only 1.5% interest a month (19.6% APR); this means that for every £100 paid back in 1 year you will only pay £10.04 in interest.
Click here for more details about the loan products we offer.
With our pre-paid cards members can load-up a card with a set amount of money from their Savings or Loan balance for use in shops, online and at ATMs.
With our online banking suite members can check their share and loan balance, apply for a loan or request a share withdrawal.
With our payment cards members can pay into their accounts or repay loans at any Post Office or PayPoint station. The cards can also be used 24 hours a day to make payments either by telephone of via the www.allpay.net website.
All adult and junior members can save as much or as little as they can afford, by cash, cheque (NOTE the cheques have to be made out to Norwich Credit Union), savings card or standing order (forms are available from the office). You can also transfer money to your account by internet or phone banking. Norwich Credit Union will never send you an email requesting your poassword or log-in details. If you receive a suspicious email, please let us know as soon as possible.
Only Junior Saver accounts attract interest. Dividend policy is considered annually, and adult members may receive a Credit Union dividend, based on their share balance.
Prepaid cash cards are available for use in shops, online and at ATMs. Members can also ask for a payment card, for paying money into their account at PayPoint locations and Post Offices.
If you have an outstanding loan, your share withdrawal will be restricted to ensure that your loan stays within the Credit Union's loan policy. You can also transfer shares to pay off part or all of a loan. Contact the Credit Union office for more details.
We welcome young savers! When opening an account for a member under the age of 18, the Trustee (eg parent, grandparent or legal guardian) of the account needs to provide two forms of ID, including their current address, signature and preferably photo ID too.
The Trustee must also provide the name, address and date of birth of the junior member (with proof, such as a birth certificate of hospital referral letter).
Norwich Credit Union allows young savers to control their own accounts, that is, withdraw money, from the age of 14. However, the Trustees can stipulate that this is postponed until the young saver is 15, 16 or 17. At the age of 18 the account will automatically become an adult account.
Please note, young savers are not allowed to take out a loan, vote at the AGM or stand for election to any of the officers' posts.
We grant loans for 'provident and productive purposes', e.g. house-hold expenses, car maintenance, studies, holidays, etc.
Our loan policy
Our loan policy
Full terms and conditions can be found in our Policy Manual. The main points are:
New members must save regularly for 13 weeks before they can apply for a loan
The maximum amount for a first-time loan is twice the amount saved
Our standard interest rate is 19.6% APR
A range of products/interest rates are available to established members
No loan set-up fees or penalties!
Free loan protection insurance included (subject to terms and conditions)
Loans must normally be repaid within 3 years
If you borrow £100 over 12 months, you pay only £10.02 interest (APR 19.6%)
Each loan application is treated in confidence
All loans are subject to approval and availability of funds
We use an internal credit rating system. Members who have repaid previous loans on schedule have faster access to new loans
Small loans within policy can be dealt with rapidly
For large loans or loans outside policy, you may be asked to come into the office, provide additional information and/or find a guarantor. Your loan application may be referred to the Board of Directors for approval
Large deposits made before a loan application, above your usual savings pattern, are likely to be disregarded when your application is processed
We provide Loan Protection insurance on the life of any member who takes out a loan. This means that if you die the balance of any outstanding Credit Union loan will be paid off in full (subject to terms and conditions).
The Loan Protection insurance does not cover pre-determined conditions where a person dies of that condition within 6 months of taking out the loan.
Available to members who have been saving with us for 13 weeks or more. Charged at 1.5% per month on the reducing balance (19.6% APR).
Available to members who have been saving with us for 13 weeks or more with a good history with us, for loans exceeding £5,000 charged at a reduced rate of 1% per month (12.68% APR).
Half Price Loan
Want to borrow without harming your nest egg? Our Half Price Loan allows members to borrow an amount less than their share balance at a discounted rate of 0.75% a month (9.8% APR).
Child Benefit Loan
This product allows you to borrow up to £500 and repay the loan through having your child benefit paid into your credit union account. Non-members can apply but will have to become a member before being granted the loan. Charged at 3% internet a month (42.6% APR).
Share your skills or qualifications (such as administration, secretarial, book-keeping, IT, marketing, web development) to help the credit union
In return you have a chance to:
Learn new skills and gain valuable workplace experience - which may help you find a new job in financial services or elsewhere
Meet new friends and get to know your community better
Support an ethical organisation that benefits the whole of Norfolk
What does volunteering for Norwich Credit Union involve?
Click on one of our three volunteers below to find out what volunteering involves, why people volunteer and what they get out of it.
Julia is self-employed. From a standing start, she developed her own brand of rum and coconut cream liqueur, Sisserou. She spends her days encouraging retail outlets, restaurants, clubs and wholesalers to stock her product.
She joined the credit union because she wanted to get involved in a community-led financial institution, and she is a member of FunPro, the credit union's fundraising and promotion committee, where she supports the Credit Union in marketing and outreach activities. This includes going out into the community and raising awareness. She enjoys working as a volunteer because she knows she is helping people.
"The credit union belongs to its members. It gives the community something to be proud of. It creates a caring, saving and borrowing environment in the community."
Malcolm retired in 2015, after working for Broadland District Council for 15 years. He was responsible for complaints handling, freedom of information and data protection. Before that he worked at Orbit Housing and Norwich Union (now Aviva).
He joined Norwich Credit Union at the beginning of 2016. Malcolm liked the community feeling and level of involvement at NCU, compared to the credit union he'd previously belonged to, and he was keen to offer his services in a voluntary capacity.
Malcolm's main role is assisting at the credit union's Saturday service point in the city. He provides members with financial services, such as the collection/withdrawal of money and the management of their loans. He also provides information about the credit union and signs up new members, and takes part in promotional events. Malcolm is a former border member and responsible for the monthly rolling review of the policy manual.
With a background in personal finance, Malcolm is happy to use his skills and experience to make a difference in the local community. As a credit union volunteer, he gets immense satisfaction from helping people who would otherwise find themselves at the mercy of institutions which don't have their best interests at heart.
"I'm a strong believer in local co-operative movements and believe that credit unions are a key component of these, especially in this day and age, when some members are not having an easy time financially. Credit unions allow people to manage their money independently but also partake in a community, working for the local common good."
Danny works for a motor insurance claims consultancy on a system development project.
He joined Norwich Credit Union in October 2012, after a chance meeting with Doreen Hatch, a long-serving credit union volunteer at his local community centre. Impressed by what he'd heard, he joined up the following week. A few months later he volunteered to join the credit union's supervisory committee.
Danny currently serves on the IT subcommittee, focusing on computer operations. He led the redesign and construction of the new website, recently updating it to make it more accessible to mobile users.
He joined the credit union out of desire to give something back to his local community, something he doesn't get from his day job. In 2016, he received the Tracy Slane Award, a national award which recognises an outstanding contribution to the credit union movement by a young person. Following on from this, he won a place on the inaugural CU Futures scheme, a year-long training programme designed to develop the next generation of credit union leaders. As a result he has participated an All-Parliamentary group in Westminster, attended a meeting at Citibank's Canary Wharf office, received media training from a BBC radio presenter (Liz Barclay) and accessed a national network of credit union contacts.
In September 2017 Danny acquired a Certificate in Credit Union Professional Conduct, an industry-specific Level 3 qualification from the London Institute of Banking and Finance, and in March 2019 was elected onto the Board of Directors.
"Credit unions provide a valuable service to financially-excluded members of the local community, providing a safety net for people against loan-sharks and mega-interest payday lenders. They have the potential to provide a viable and ethical alternative to the banking system which has failed so many communities in recent years."