A credit union in North Carolina investing in underbanked Latino communities with great impact
Charlotte is a city in which is particularly difficult to bank compassionately, as it’s the headquarters for Bank of America, currently the second largest bank in the United States. When enormous banks have influence in a region, like Bank of America does in Charlotte, smaller banks tend to disappear, bought out by larger banks attempting to stay in competition with the mega-banks. As a result, there are fewer banking options in Charlotte than one sees typically in an urban area of its size, and those looking for a great community and local bank in the city are out of luck.
However, although their headquarters are not located in Charlotte, there are two great credit unions operating in Charlotte which have caught our attention and are our official recommendations for banking options in the city. Self-Help Credit Union, which we’ve done a bank feature on previously, and Latino Community Credit Union (LCCU) are two community-driven banking options operating in Charlotte that are sure to make the most impact with your banked assets.
LCCU’s first branch was formed in 2000 with contributions from Self-Help and a couple of Hispanic organizations in the state to provide banking to Latino individuals who had previous been underbanked or unbanked. After growing rapidly since their inception, opening 12 new branches across North Carolina, they’ve made a huge impact on the Latino communities they work in, with 65% of their members being previously unbanked and having given home loans which led to 3,600 families and individuals being able to buy their first homes. They’re also a national leader with 2,400 DACA loans, and according to the impact page on their website, 80% of their borrowers are low-income.
We would recommend Latino Community Credit Union to anyone looking to support underbanked, Latino populations in North Carolina. However, we would encourage them to increase the amount of small business lending that they do, as they currently do a very minimal amount of lending in this field. They have online and mobile banking options, and unlike many credit unions, no limited eligibility, so it is possible for anyone to bank in this Better Banking Option. Learn more at their website here.