CU membership not being passed from parents to adult children: Report

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A new report from Access Softek found that more than half of the adult children of credit union members over age 65 are not members of their parents’ credit union.

Along with 60% of respondents who said their children elected not to bank at their parents’ credit union, just 9% said they recommended their credit union to their children.

The study could be troubling news for credit unions, given that many institutions have placed a premium on establishing youth and young-adult accounts in an attempt to entice parents into starting their children at the credit union early on.

Access Softek said data from credit union payments firm Trellance pegs the average credit union member age at 47, essentially where it has been for decades. But the company noted that a study from FICO found millennials are leaving the movement as they get older. About 20% of people under the age of 25 use a credit union but that number drops to 10% for those who are 25 to 34 years old.

“Credit unions appear to be doing great with loyal members over the age of 65, indicated by the 68% of surveyed consumers who had been with their credit union for more than a decade, but this loyalty does not make the transition to the younger generations,” Chris Doner, founder and CEO of Access Softek, said in a press release. “Credit unions need to ensure that they are not just offering the tools that appeal to their existing base but add in digital offerings such as real-time online loan products and mobile-based investing that are needed by Generation X and millennials.”

While digital solutions can help retain younger consumers, said Doner, credit unions must also understand how membership is evolving, particularly as baby boomers age and begin to transfer wealth to younger generations.

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