Trends of UK credit unions

With 2023 in full swing, the Bank of England has recently released their data which shows the trends of the UK credit union sector from the past year. The headline statistics show some really positive changes in the sector. Let’s take a look…

Credit union membership

The UK credit union sector now has 1.44 million members. This shows over 20,097 people have joined a credit union compared to the last Bank of England report!

There are 246 UK credit unions which encourage members to join based on their employment, or where they live. The average number of members per credit union has grown to 5,869. Credit unions are owned by and run for the benefit of members so we’re proud to see so many more people are choosing to become members of their credit union!

Robert Kelly CEO of Association of British Credit Unions (ABCUL) said “Our sector continues to gather pace as more people from all walks of life trust credit unions. Credit unions offer safe savings and access to affordable and ethical credit facilities alongside access to a range of associated products and services”

Borrowing from a credit union

As well as growing membership, UK credit unions are also lending record sums to members. Members’ borrowing has increased and The Bank of England figures show that total borrowing from UK credit unions has reached £1.35 billion – this is an increase of £70 million.

With the cost of living and energy crisis affecting many of us, credit unions are more ethical alternatives to high interest, payday, or illegal money lenders.

“Credit unions are building financial resilience in households and communities all across the country and helping consumers manage their finances in a hugely positive way” says Robert Kelly.

We understand from time to time we all need to borrow, and we’re here to help. With rates from just 2.9% APR and cheaper than most credit cards, our straightforward loans are easy to apply for, with options for everyone!

Try out our loan calculator to see how much you could borrow and the bite-sized repayments.

Saving with a credit union

The amount of savings members have with their credit union has decreased slightly over the past year. The average amount members have saved has shrunk by 0.1%. This means UK credit unions members have saved £2.12 billion in total.

Throughout the pandemic, credit unions saw members save more money. With lockdowns meaning many of us were unable to go on holiday or go out socially, members had more money to put away for a rainy day. Now, the rising cost of living mean many of us are relying on the savings built up during the pandemic.

Credit unions continue to offer essential financial services to members amid the cost of living crisis. These trends are evidence that credit unions are playing an important role when households are looking to meet their financial needs.

There are exciting times ahead for the UK credit union sector.

Want to join the other 1.44 million members of UK credit unions? Join now!