Tralee Credit Union held its 49th Annual General Meeting on Monday, December 12th. at the Rose Hotel, Tralee.
Its Board of Directors reported a very positive and busy year for the credit union with Assets reaching €200 Million and local members’ savings now standing at €174 Million.
Tralee Credit Union is now ranked in the top five credit unions in Ireland based on asset size affiliated to the Irish League of Credit Unions, and the largest community based credit union in Munster.
This year saw their biggest growth in lending with 9,256 members taking loans valued at €34 million, a 33% increase on the previous year. The credit union attributed this growth to a return in consumer confidence and their competitive loan rates particularly for car and home related loans. The credit union paid out €13.2m on car loans 53% up on 2015, reflecting the fact that car buyers are turning away from PCP finance, in favour of owning their own car.
Strong Loan Book
Other loan types such as home improvements and education loans saw a similar increases. Tralee Credit Union is hoping this level of growth in loans will continue in 2017 as a strong loan book means a strong credit union with its main source of income coming from its Loan Book.
There was good news for members as a dividend and loan interest rebate to borrowers were approved. Members approved a 0.25% dividend on savings, while reduced from last year it reflects the rates currently on offer for ‘on demand’ deposits.
Recognising the valuable role their borrowers play in supporting the credit union and its income, members approved a refund of 5% of loan interest back to borrowers. This means that every borrower will receive a 5% refund on the interest they paid in the credit union in the year.
This refund, on top of the competitive loan rates, free life cover on their loans and the flexibility to repay their loan early without penalty, makes credit union loans very attractive to members.
3,000 Transactions Per Day
In his report, Fintan Ryan, CEO said that the credit union was going from strength to strength. Reporting that the credit union was processing about 3,000 member transactions each day, Mr. Ryan said that improved opening hours in Killorglin and Castleisland would enhance the level of service to members.
Members in the Castleisland area have better access with the office now open Tuesday to Saturday and through lunch times.
At the AGM, the board announced that it had approved a fund of €260,000 to be shared with the community over the next four years. Chairman, Tom Lawlor announced that in addition to its ‘normal’ sponsorships amounting to €25,000 and the annual education fund of €10,000 it was committed to approving €30,000 each year to support significant community projects.
“The Lauri Healy Community Project Fund ammounted to €120,000, in honour of one of its founding directors. The fund will support community based projects initiated by organisations in the area over the next four years.
“This is an exciting development and we are looking forward to receiving applications when the full details were announced in the New Year.
“Lauri Healy was a founding director of Tralee Credit Union and served on our board of directors for over 30 years. He served with Chapter 23 for as many years and as a board member of the Irish League of Credit Unions and helped shape the movement in its early days.
Community Project Fund
“We would like to honour Lauri Healy’s commitment to Tralee Credit Union and dedicate our Community Project Fund in his name,” said Mr. Lawlor.
Mr. Healy’s wife, Marie and son, Dermot were on hand to welcome the announcement of the fund. Applications for the Lauri Healy Community Project Fund will be made available online on Tralee Credit Union’s website in January 2017.
Membership of Tralee Credit Union is voluntary and open to everyone who lives and works within Tralee, Castleisland and the Killorglin area.
For further information on their services call in to Tralee Credit Union in Tralee, Castleisland and Killorglin or visit their website www.traleecu.ie
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