ipswich suffolk credit union ltd
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Ipswich & Suffolk Credit Union Ltd. Who we are. A community based financial co-operative offering community banking services, especially “savings and loans”. An alternative to ‘doorstep’ and other high cost lenders. ISCU is not a charity but has charitable aims.

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who we are
Who we are
  • A community based financial co-operative offering community banking services, especially “savings and loans”.
  • An alternative to ‘doorstep’ and other high cost lenders.
  • ISCU is not a charity but has charitable aims
iscu is regulated and protected
ISCU is Regulated and Protected

by the Financial Services Authority (FSA)

which regulates all credit unions

The Financial Services Compensation Scheme


The Financial Ombudsman Scheme (FOS)

Deposits are protected just like banks

what we do
What we do
  • Enable our members to save when they can and borrow when they need to.
  • Provide bank-like services to those who are refused by banks or choose not to use high street banks.
how we are governed
How we are governed
  • 85 volunteers (all over Suffolk)
  • Unpaid Board of Directors elected by members at AGM, then checked by FSA
  • Unpaid Audit committee and Loan committee, elected by members at AGM, then checked by FSA
  • 5 paid staff in Ipswich for all admin and compliance of £1million assets
  • We are regulated by the FSA
our board of directors
Our Board of Directors
  • Chairman Reg Ruffles works for SCC as Trading Standards Officer
  • Treasurer Michael Hole is a semi-retired Accountant
  • Company Secretary Robin Chesterman, OBE, is a retired Managing Director
  • Other Board level members include retired Building Society manager, social workers and business people
our history
Our history
  • 6,000 joiners since 2002, now about 4,000 adults and 350 juniors with active accounts
  • 80% of our members live in Ipswich.
  • About 350 of our members live in Whitton postcode area
  • Our members are representative of the local population with various income levels and ethnicity
  • ISCU has paid a dividend of 0.5% for the last two years to savers
how people join
How people join
  • Applicants are asked to present:
    • 1 ID document, 1 Proof of address,


    • A referral from a partner agency so that people who have been excluded from a bank account can be accepted at ISCU.
    • Joining fee £5
    • Completed Application Form including signature
    • Local groups host collection points locally
products and services
Savings Accounts – Adult members have £560,000 saved in their credit union share accounts, Juniors have about £30,000 saved

Budgeting Accounts – members use this to spread costs such as pre-payment meters

Rent processing Service for private Landlords

Additional Savings Accounts

Personal Loansfor all purposes

Specialist Loans with partner organisations

From summer 2012 community groups will be able to have an account at ISCU

Products and services
additional savings accounts
Additional Savings accounts
  • We run “Lock-it-away” savings accounts to which members make regular payments.
  • Most additional savings are for Christmas.
  • Funds are “locked” until a specified date, usually mid-November.
  • Savings are safe and protected – unlike many informal Christmas clubs and hamper schemes.
processing rent to landlords
Processing Rent to Landlords
  • Private Sector Landlords pay £5 per tenant per month for this rent processing service
  • Reduces impulsive tenant behaviour
  • Avoids problem of bank overdraft swallowing rent
  • Makes it easy for tenant to pay rent if they have limited banking access
  • ISCU processed more than £1million in 2011
jamjar budgeting accounts
‘Jamjar’ Budgeting Accounts
  • Members choose how much to transfer weekly/fortnightly/monthly
  • Most people use it for set purposes ie prepayment meters, energy bills, rent
  • Savings are protected – unlike many informal Christmas clubs and hamper shemes.
loans for all purposes
Loans for all purposes
  • We offer general purpose loans at affordable rates of interest.
  • Rates of interest vary from 0% - 9% APR for special offers, 12.7% APR to 26.8% APR for other loans. Typical rate is 26.8% APR
  • We do not front-load interest charges.
  • We do not penalise early repayment.
  • Loans are only offered if the member can afford them.
doorstep lenders in whitton
Doorstep Lenders in Whitton
  • 13 Legal lenders call at people’s homes to offer loans and then collect payments.

Source: www.lenderscompared.org.uk

June 2012

iscu loan compared
ISCU loan compared

Example loan

Source: www.lenderscompared.org.uk

October 2011

other lenders
Other Lenders

Source: various websites

June 2012

loans for all purposes1
Loans for all purposes
  • ISCU’s range of loan products reward regular saving and payments.

With lower interest rate products, savings must remain in the account during the loan

loans for all purposes2
Loans for all purposes
  • Small loans to new members decided in 5 - 7 days, faster for existing members.
  • Large loans need Credit Committee approval – up to 14 days.
  • Average loan: £300 - £600 over 2 years, no minimum size loan so some loans are as low as £20 - £50
  • Larger loans: £1,500 - £10,000 over 3 - 5 years
specialist loans
Specialist Loans
  • Child Benefit Savings and Loan Plan
    • Pay Child Benefit direct to ISCU, £300 loan issued with repayments set at £9 per week for 37 weeks.
  • Swift Loans
    • For members paying in by employer payroll deduction, access to same day £500 loans
  • Budgeting Loans
    • Make regular payments and gain instant access to a pre-approved loan ceiling.
loan and share withdrawals
Loan and Share withdrawals
  • Can be issued:
    • Bank Transfer (BACS), same day
    • In cash at Austin Street, up to £500.
    • Cash cheque at Co-op Bank, Princes Street, Ipswich, up to £2,000.
    • Cashable cheque at 28 Post Offices in Suffolk, up to £500 per cheque.
    • Cheque for goods or services.
    • Load to Credit Union Visa Card.
other services
Pre-paid Visa Card

Money Transfer

Bureau de Change for travel money

Group accounts

Micro Finance – new for 2012 and beyond

other services
visa card
Visa Card
  • Pay-As-You-Go debit card accepted worldwide.
  • Instant issue, immediate load.
  • £10 to buy. No monthly fees.
  • No charge for use at Point of Sale or for internet shopping.
  • 50p load fee
  • 75p ATM fee in UK. cash-back in shops free
western union
Western Union
  • Send money securely worldwide.
  • Send money in minutes or next day.
  • Credit Union members pre-qualify for the ID checks needed for most smaller transfers.
  • Receive money from 200 countries.
bureau de change
Bureau de Change
  • Competitive exchange rates for holidays or business travel.
  • Euros, US Dollars and Turkish Lira in stock.
  • Other currencies to order.
  • No commission charged.
partnership working
Partnership Working
  • ISCU works with partners in the statutory and voluntary sector:
    • Interest free “Green Loans”
    • Low interest business start -up loans
    • Opening an account for people who need to receive DWP benefits, wages or housing benefit
    • Cashing cheques immediately at no charge
    • Working with Adult Social Care to enable vulnerable people to manage their money with the Prepaid Card
    • Issuing cash to very vulnerable social work clients
    • Debt payment plans by arrangement
community group accounts
Community Group Accounts
  • ISCU will be able to offer accounts to community groups from summer 2012:
    • Accounts for small voluntary groups which banks don’t want
    • Groups who want to receive donations or payments by Debit card will be able to do so through ISCU
    • Cheques can be deposited at no charge
    • Working with groups to provide specialist services using our Pre-paid Card
    • Issuing cash where needed
    • Cash payments can be deposited daily using PayPoint
working with the big local trust
Working with the Big Local Trust
  • ISCU can help the project :
  • You could use our pre-paid card to pay volunteers or for other expenditure
  • You could fund loans at preferential rates to local residents
  • You could encourage local savers by offering cash incentives or “bonuses”
  • You could fund loans to local groups or businesses to generate local trading
working with community groups
Working with community groups
  • Your organisation could hold £15,000 at any one time with ISCU
  • You could choose ISCU to process Big Local payments – compare bank charges
  • Informal groups find it difficult to open a bank account, ISCU will be able to offer accounts to small or new community groups from summer 2012
  • You can specify to ISCU the governance rules for groups to draw down their spending
help iscu grow in whitehouse whitton and castle hill
Help ISCU grow in Whitehouse, Whitton and Castle Hill

ISCU already works in partnership with groups in these areas to receive referrals

ISCU works with Childrens centres in Bramford Lane, Highfield and Meredith Road

Publicise ISCU within your projects

Castle Hill School has expressed interest in a junior savers club, we need local volunteers to make it happen

Help us run a “Pop-Up Shop” in your area

so that is iscu
So that is ISCU!
  • A safe place to keep money
  • Affordable credit
  • Owned and run by our members
  • Providing community minded, high quality services