Bad practice: Your credit union should not send form letters in tough situations

As a companion to the new good practices blog category, I also have a new bad practices category. If I see something that every credit union should NOT do, I'll call it out. I won't name the credit union though.

Bad practice: Send your valued mortgage holders a form letter to inform them that their agreed-upon mortgage rate has increased. In this case, the credit union (my credit union) decided that it needed to increase all variable-rate mortgages that were tied to prime rate by 0.25 to 0.50%. It served notice in the form of a confusing notice-of-change document sent by mail.

My advice. If your balance sheet position requires you to make a huge decision that affects thousands of members, use some tact and call every single affected member and talk them through the reasons that you are making this very tough decision. Show your loyal members that you actually care—don't send out an official notice that leans on the fine print in the mortage agreement.

Now that's a bad practice that will give credit unions a bad name.

Got a bad practice that needs to be outed? Send your example to tmcalpine at currencymarketing dot ca. I'll keep your name and the credit union's name out of it. Let's wipe out bad practices that tarnish the credit union movement's brand.

Tim