More about the banking landscape of our hometown in Kentucky
We’re introducing a new kind of article to this blog, one similar to the bank profiles you may have read before but with a slightly wider scope. Most people in the U.S. live and work in metropolitan areas, meaning the majority of banking transactions take place in cities as well. We thought it would be a great resource for anyone within a certain metro area to be able to come to the blog and find an article on the banking landscape of their city, as well as our recommended Better Banking Options for the area. This is the first of those articles, specifically focused on the place we operate in: Louisville, Kentucky.
Although it’s a wonderful place to live, Louisville doesn’t offer great options in terms of banks and credit unions that do a lot of wealth-building loans. There are also very few local banks which specifically focus on the banking needs of Louisvillians and lend within the metro area. However, there are definitely some better banks and credit unions that are going to do much more good with your deposits than a mega bank. Here are our top choices;
- Liberty Bank – This bank is not yet listed in our search engine, as the most recent available data is from mid-year 2020, and Liberty Bank just bought Metro Bank at the end of the year. But this is a Better Banking Option we would love our readers to check out. Although Liberty is a fairly large institution headquartered in New Orleans, we like them as a Louisville option for those looking for a bank that will invest in BIPOC families in the city. As the only Black-owned bank in Louisville, located right next to the West End, they’re also a CDFI, and we hope to see them do more in Louisville’s Black neighborhoods as they get acquainted with the area.
- Park Community Credit Union – This is a bank we have personal experience with, and we’ve enjoyed their accessibility and modern technologies, especially throughout the pandemic; they make online banking easy. They’re also an LICU, meaning the majority of their account holders qualify as low income. Overall, they’re a solid banking option that operates locally in Kentucky and are working on becoming a CDFI. We recommend them to anyone looking for a credit union with all the conveniences of a big bank.
- L&N Federal Credit Union – As the first option that comes up when you look up Louisville in our search engine, L&N is an LICU which makes a significant amount of quality, wealth-building loans in the metro area. Although we would encourage them to open more, they do have some branches in low-income census tracts, and about 80% of their branches are within the city. They’re a truly local institution, and do more quality lending than most credit unions.
Overall, there are no perfect Better Banking Options in Louisville metro, or even great options. This may be the case in many cities that we survey, as we’ve seen a continuing trend of small local institutions being bought out by larger ones. However, even though there aren’t any fantastic banks or credit unions in Louisville, the ones listed above are miles better than your typical mega bank and will still at least keep your deposits in your city and neighborhoods. Sometimes the best choice is not always a great choice, but it is still the right one.
We encourage all Louisville residents to move your money to one of the above choices or find your own with our search engine! Making one simple change can allow many people in our community access to wealth-building loans they wouldn’t have otherwise.