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WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. – Since members can’t take their credit union with them when they shop for a car to remind them of the pitfalls of auto dealers’ 0% financing offers, Members Credit Union has designed what it considers the next best thing – a pocket-sized payment comparison card. The “unique” card measures 2 1/4 inches wide by 3 1/2 inches tall – a little larger than a business card – and is small enough for members to keep in their wallet or glove box and have available to them whenever they decide to go car shopping. Members CU designed it that way deliberately so before the member even walks into the dealership, they can whip the card out and know the payments they can afford based on rate, term, and the sticker price of the card and whether or not the dealer is offering them the best available plan. One side of the features a car payment calculator with estimated monthly payment rates for a loan from MCU calculated at 5.00% APR based on 5% equity and payroll/special savings transfer. The payments are given for 60 months, 72 months, and `super saver” (84-month) terms, for loans ranging from $10,000 to $30,000. The other side of the card gives the locations for all of MCU’s 14 branches including their phone and 800-numbers, as well as the CU’s Web addresses. It also lists all the free member services Members CU offers such as telephone banking and online banking. Carol Hilgenberg, MCU’s director of public relations explained that the payment comparison card was the idea of the credit union’s marketing director Eric Stiff, and designer Matt Davis. They’d seen a similar piece used by a different industry and thought the idea would work well for Members CU. Hilgenberg said the credit union was surprised with just how much information it was able to include on the card and how readable the information is considering the font size is 12 point. “We were finding that a lot of our members were going to the dealerships first without checking around for the best rates and financing through them, then they thought about our rates afterwards,” said Hilgenberg. “By having this card with them, members will be easily able to calculate what their auto loan payments would be by financing through the credit union.” Members CU has $176 million in assets and 52,000 members. -

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