This month Lowell Stevens, President/Chief Executive Officer, and Marlys Wilson, Chief Operations Officer, took time from their busy jobs to share some history and information with me about Latah Credit Union.
Latah Credit Union is the only financial institution located solely in Moscow. Starting in 1969 as the University of Idaho Federal Credit Union, in 1992 it merged with Potlatch Community Credit Union and the name was changed to Latah Federal Credit Union. In September of 2016, the Latah Federal Credit Union converted from a federal charter to a state charter, and the name changed to the Latah Credit Union. It is now open to all who live, work, worship, or regularly do business in Nez Perce, Lewis, Latah, Benewah, Kootenai, Shoshone, Bonner and Boundary Counties. Latah Credit Union currently serves over 7,000 members.
Latah Credit Union offers multiple products and services, including savings and checking accounts, Visa debit cards and credit cards, share certificates, Traditional and ROTH Individual Retirement Accounts, Coverdell Education Savings, Idaho Medical Savings Accounts, cashier checks, drive-up and night deposits, and free notary service for members. They offer lending services for vehicle loans, mortgages, home equity loans, lines of credit, and more. According to Stevens and Wilson, the credit union also makes accessing your accounts easy with online and mobile banking, shared branching, a 24-hour audio response system, and a network of automated teller machines, including one inside the Co-op and one in the UI Commons.
According to Stevens and Wilson, Latah Credit Union strives to keep loan rates and fees as low as they can while offering competitive savings rates. There is no monthly service charge for a checking account. Latah Credit Union is connected to the Co-op Financial Network, so 35,000 ATMs all across the nation are surcharge free with an LCU Debit Card. Wilson said, “You can pretty much find [one of these ATMs] anywhere in the USA. A reciprocal agreement also allows the members to participate in shared branching and use more than 5,000 credit unions worldwide as if they were their own.” She said local residents who spend winters elsewhere find they can do all of their banking transactions just as if they had stayed home and used one of our local branches. Students can continue to use Latah Credit Union after graduation rather than having to move their account.
Latah Credit Union is a not-for-profit financial cooperative and, like the Co-op, is a member owned organization. Every member is an account holder, and the volunteer Board of Directors are all members. Every member has one vote, regardless of how much money they have deposited, so as Stevens said, “It is as democratic as you can get.”
Stevens also said, “Everything we do is member-centric. Our focus is on how we can best serve our members.”
Wilson added, “We offer great service because our customers are our bosses.”
It is easy to become a member of the Latah Credit Union. There’s a one-time membership fee of $5 and a required balance of $25 in a dividend-earning Regular Savings Account. To make becoming a member even easier, they waive the membership fee for Moscow Food Co-op members. For more information about Latah Credit Union check their webpage: https://latahcu.coop.
THE LATAH CREDIT UNION IS A MOSCOW FOOD CO-OP BUSINESS PARTNER
- Through our Business Partner Program, Co-op owners receive a discount on locally owned businesses that partner with the Co-op, and the Co-op promotes our locally owned partners.
- Latah Credit Union will waive the $5.00 membership fee for Co-op members. Call 208-882-0232.
- For more information about the Co-op's Business Partner Program, please ask for a brochure and/or an application at the Customer Service Desk.