June 16, 2023

Credit Union Membership: How to Manage Your Account


Managing your credit union membership is an important part of budgeting and financial planning. With the right resources, you can easily keep track of your accounts, stay informed about changes in interest rates, and make sure your money is working for you in the best possible way. In this article, we’ll explore how to effectively manage your credit union membership and get the most out of it. 

Importance of managing credit union accounts effectively

Managing your credit union accounts effectively is much like tending to a garden; it requires dedication, attention, and strategic decision-making. As a well-maintained garden yields fruits and beauty, an efficiently managed account can reap significant rewards, like better interest rates, lower fees, and improved financial health. 

The more you know about the benefits and rewards of an Interior Federal membership, the more successful and fruitful your financial journey will be. By keeping tabs on your transactions, ensuring timely payments, and utilizing the diverse offerings, you’re creating a secure foundation from which to grow and flourish. 

Important steps for managing your credit union accounts 

Managing a credit union account is similar to managing a regular bank account, but there are some important differences. Understanding the terms and conditions of your account, setting up account alerts and notifications, utilizing online banking services, and checking and maintaining a good credit score are all important steps in managing your credit union account successfully. Let’s take a look at each of these steps in more detail. 

Understand the terms and conditions of your accounts

Knowing the details of your credit union accounts is essential for successful management. Make sure you understand the terms for each of your accounts, such as  interest rates, fees, minimum balance requirements for checking and savings accounts, deposit limits, ATM access privileges for your debit card, overdraft policies, etc. This information can help you make informed decisions about how to use your accounts and save you from any unnecessary surprises down the road. 

Set up account alerts and notifications

Imagine the convenience of receiving a friendly nudge each time something significant happens with your finances, that’s the beauty of setting up account alerts and notifications! These helpful tools, which cover everything from deposit and withdrawal warnings to those much-needed reminders for direct deposit or scheduled transactions, can be your secret weapon in better managing your hard-earned money. 

Setting up these alerts and notifications is a game changer when it comes to staying on top of your finances, and you’ll wonder how you ever managed without them.

How to set up alerts

Mistakes happen! Maybe you forgot about an ATM withdrawal, expected a deposit to arrive sooner, or simply lost track of how much money was available in your checking account. Services like overdraft protection can help you avoid penalties.

Save time with online banking services

Managing your money and finances can be time consuming, so why not let technology do the brunt of the work for you? Taking advantage of the online banking services offered by your credit union is an easy way to streamline how you manage your accounts. Log in anytime from the convenience of your own home to track account balances, transfer funds, and pay bills securely. Not only is using these services a time-saver but they are also eco-friendly as they help reduce paper waste. And if that’s not enough, you can easily access the mobile app when on the go! All in all, utilizing online banking services is a great way to stay organized and make your financial life better.

Monitor and maintain a good credit score

A good credit score is an invaluable asset when dealing with any financial institution because it shows lenders you are responsible with your money. A higher credit score increases the chance your loan application will be approved. Make sure to check your credit score regularly so that any discrepancies can be sorted out quickly before they become major issues down the road. Additionally, always pay off debt on time as this will help keep your score high over time while also avoiding late fees or other penalties associated with missed payments or excessive debt accumulation.  

Interior Federal offers a free credit score tool with our digital banking service. Use the tool to check your score anytime you need, receive alerts for any changes to your score, review your full credit report, and much more. 

Familiarize yourself with all the available services and benefits

Both federal credit unions and state-chartered credit unions provide unique services and benefits that can help you save money, build wealth, and reduce debt. Here are some tips for getting the most out of your credit union membership. 

Take advantage of financial education resources 

Have you ever considered exploring the wealth of financial education resources that federally insured credit unions have to offer? If not, it’s time you did! Credit unions, unlike banks, are member-owned and operated institutions. They are also not-for-profit organizations, which means that their primary goal is to serve and support their credit union members. As a result, they often provide a wide range of valuable financial education tools and resources aimed at helping you better manage your finances, save smarter, and make sound investments. 

At Interior Federal, we strive to provide you with free, useful and relevant financial information that will help you manage your money, make smart decisions, protect your finances, and plan for the future. Visit our free financial education center to learn about all of the tools and resources available to you. 

Utilize credit union loans and savings options 

Have you ever considered exploring the world of credit union loans and savings options? Credit unions offer fantastic opportunities and a personalized touch that sets us apart from traditional banks. We’re all about providing members with tailored solutions which can make a huge difference in your financial journey. We provide a wide variety of loans to our members in their times of need, including credit cards, personal loans, home equity loans, mortgages, student loans, and vehicle loans.

We also offer a variety of savings account options with competitive rates to make it easy for you to achieve your saving goals, no matter what they are.

View the different savings account options

Best practices for avoiding common account pitfalls

Credit unions are a great option for people who want more personalized service and better rates than traditional banks offer. Here are some best practices for avoiding problems with your accounts. 

Overdraft fees 

The biggest pitfall associated with an account is over drafting your account. Overdrafting occurs when you spend more money than what is actually in your account and the number one way to avoid it is by setting up automatic reminders or budgeting tools that can help you keep track of your spending. 

Interior Federal offers digital banking which allows you to easily monitor your account balance on the go, so you can always know exactly how much money you have available. Additionally, we offer overdraft protection plans that can help protect you from incurring fees if you accidentally overdraft your account. 

Identity theft and fraud 

Interior Federal takes the security of your personal and financial information very seriously. We use all the latest technologies to make sure your information in the branches and online is safe and protected. Your financial information is encrypted, secured by firewalls, and has your personalized password to keep it safe. 

Learn more about our online security

We also want to help you learn how to protect your other personal transactions outside of the credit union. Take advantage of these free resources to teach yourself the steps needed to secure your identity. 

When setting up your account, make sure you use strong passwords when accessing your account; even just one character can make a big difference in the protection of your data. Never give out any personal information unless it’s necessary, and be sure to check your credit report regularly for fraudulent activity. Lastly, consider signing up for text or email alerts with digital banking so that if anything happens to your account, good or bad, you’ll be notified twofold.

Plan for unexpected expenses 

No matter how carefully you plan out your budget, unexpected expenses can still pop up at any time. To avoid getting caught in a financial bind due to an unplanned expense, make sure to set aside some extra cash in an emergency fund each month just in case something comes up unexpectedly. Another option is taking advantage of a personal loan, such as a personal line of credit. This way, if an unexpected expense does occur, you will have the funds available to cover it.  


Credit unions can be an excellent financial resource for people looking for more personalized service and better rates than traditional banks offer. By taking advantage of the available financial services and using the best practices mentioned above, members can ensure that they are making the most of their credit union accounts.

Want more credit union information?
Subscribe to eNews