Strunk Goes Back To Roots

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Overdraft privilege programs go far beyond simply offering members added convenience. That's one reason Strunk & Associates decided to rededicate itself to its core product.

The Houston-based firm's bread-and-butter has always been overdraft privilege but it had also started to branch out into financial advisory services, according to Strunk's Marc Paine.

"But we felt like we owed it to our customers to concentrate on that core product of overdraft privilege service," he explained. "We now have a total of 1,300 clients, we need to just dedicate ourselves to overdraft privilege."

And besides, there's a lot going on with the service.

"We have dedicated ourselves to having the best, most compliant, up-to-date service," Paine offered. "We have a best practices guide on overdraft privilege, we literally wrote the book on this stuff."

Since NCUA issued guidance on overdraft privilege programs last year, Paine said Strunk is seeing more and more interest in the program.

"If credit unions felt uncomfortable with this before, that comfort level has increased now that there is something official from the regulator," he related, suggesting that the federal agency validated what Strunk had been saying about this service all along.

As more credit unions get into overdraft privilege, one of the things they are learning, Paine said, is that in addition to offering members added convenience while reducing fees associated with bounced checks, these programs can also be used to identify when members need help that the credit union can provide.

"You can figure out who may need some additional help from you to do some financial education and develop relationships," Paine said.

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