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non interest income ideas for credit unions

Within the first year subsequent to graduating from college, I moved from the Detroit suburbs to Chicago. I was working for a credit union headquartered in Michigan with a branch in the State Street Macy’s store. As a single, early-career credit union team member, my budget was not robust. I found a small (think 450 square feet) apartment in a great neighborhood. It was close to the train and it was also about three houses away from a local pub called Southport Billiards & Lanes. It was not only a fun atmosphere, but they also made amazing comfort food including quesadillas.

One of the few things that matches my passion in life for credit unions is my passion for quesadillas. I rarely meet one I do not love, but these quesadillas were special. Southport Billiards & Lanes made quesadillas with real Chihuahua cheese and most importantly pesto. The zing and flavor this added was unmatchable and provided additional value for this quesadilla fan.

With all of the continued revenue generation and expense pressures facing credit unions today, pursuing noninterest income opportunities is essential. In the Filene report, “In Search of Member-Friendly Noninterest Income,” the path toward the best choices for noninterest income was illuminated by author Ben Rogers, Filene’s Managing Research Director: “Credit unions should be uniquely concerned about their fee practices because their mandate is to be sustainable and profitable but not to the detriment of their member-owners. Fees at credit unions should be transparent and freely chosen, and they should add value for members.”

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Tansley Stearns


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