How Does Your CUSO Impact Bottom Line?

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LAS VEGAS-During the NACUSO Annual Conference here, Credit Union Journal asked attendees, "What impact is your CUSO(s) having on your bottom line, and will your CUSO be taking on a larger role?"

Jerry Liudahl, chief credit officer, Oregon Community CU, Eugene, Ore.
We invest in CU Direct, which gives a dividend and gives our credit union good pricing on indirect lending. We have other CUSOs, but they are more long-term investments-we don't expect a return immediately.

We are looking for other CUSOs to partner with to serve other needs. CUSOs are definitely a benefit. They are a way for us to be involved in ventures we could not do on our own.

Janita Clausell, EVP for ORNL FCU and its CUSO, CU Community, LLC, Oak Ridge, Tenn.
Credit unions have less than 6% of mortgage market share, which our CUSO is attempting to address. Our CUSO does mortgages, title, and property and casualty insurance. It is definitely helping our credit union. It helps the credit union retain members and generate more loans.

There is a misperception of our CUSO in the community. Too many credit unions worry that our CUSO, and other local CUSOs in some cases, are going to steal their members. We are here to help credit unions keep members with credit unions and not go to banks.

Kay LeFrancq, board member, SELCO Community CU, Eugene, Ore.
We have several CUSOs and all are successful and bring revenue to the credit union. Just through rentals of space our CUSOs bring in $35,000 to $40,000 per month. When the CUSOs use the credit union's marketing, IT or advisory services, that brings in revenue. The mortgage company made about $250,000 to $300,000 last year and the insurance CUSO also generated about $200,000. We even have a financial planning CUSO that is successful.

Kent Hudson, SVP of Greylock FCU and president of its CUSO, Greylock Financial and Insurance Services, LLC, Pittsfield, Mass.
We started our multi-use CUSO with two objectives: first, to offer more to the members and make banking more convenient, and second to generate non-interest income. We started with just offering insurance, but have since added a marketing group. It started slow, but there have been many positive steps. Today, it is a big part of the credit union. Members really like having an insurance agency inside several of their branches. They are there anyway, so they can visit the insurance department.

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