South Dublin Credit Union members urged to borrow more to ensure survival
Members of the South Dublin Credit Union, which has branches in Stillorgan and Donnybrook, have been urged to borrow more money from the institution to ensure its survival.
In his statement to members in the Credit Union’s latest annual report, President Paul Cooney said that “the banks have now started charging” the credit union for investments.
“So it’s important that we increase our loans,” he said. “I stress that in order to survive we have to lend more, so any member who is considering borrowing next year, your first stop should be your credit union.”
South Dublin bank charges increased to € 48,352 during the year, up from € 32,064 in 2018.
The report shows that the credit union’s income rose to € 880,626 from € 864,736 a year earlier, but its surplus declined 10 percent to € 489,195. This is explained by a sharp drop in investment income, which fell from € 667,333 to € 507,277.
Its investments amounted to 29.6 million euros at the end of the year, against 37.8 million euros a year earlier.
South Dublin approved 1,162 loan applications last year, for a combined value of € 6.6 million. Interest rates on its loan products (it does not offer mortgages) range from 5.5 to 10.5 percent APR.
Total member loans amounted to just under € 12.1 million, up 2.8% from 2018. The credit union canceled loans worth € 88,046 but has collected bad debts worth € 136,966.
“This reflects the return of members and the start of repayments on written off loans,” the report said.
Its provisions for bad debts amount to € 721,015, a figure that the board described as “extremely prudent”. The credit union’s reserves stood at 9.4 million euros, which represented about 15.6 percent of its assets.
South Dublin is one of the largest credit unions in the state with 11,898 members. The annual report notes that its regulatory levy decreased slightly to € 71,004 while its share and loan insurance fell by 0.3% to € 140,984.