6Towns Credit Union
If you need to open an account for your Universal Credit payments, the 6Towns Credit Union can help you. To help you make a decision about opening an account with them, here are some frequently asked questions about the Credit Union.
6Towns Credit Union provides ethical quality financial services for everyone; from the financially excluded to those who are financially secure. Their profits are reinvested back into the communities they serve, for the benefit of their members.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can join 6Towns?
Anyone who lives or works in Sandwell.
Can someone apply for a loan with 6Towns without having savings with 6Towns?
Yes – anyone can apply for a loan without having savings. 6Towns loans are based on a person’s ability to repay and not their Credit Rating.
The applicant will have to become a member of 6Towns to be approved a loan. There is no joining fee, however £1.00 needs to be held in the account so that the account remains ‘active’.
Are there any reasons why someone would be refused a 6Towns loan?
- a declared Bankrupt
- have a current/active IVA (Individual Voluntary Arrangement) in place
- have existing debts or outgoings that mean they could not afford any form of repayment plan without getting into financial difficulty
- had defaulted on a previous loan with 6Towns
- had threatened or had been verbally or physically violent to any 6Towns staff or volunteer
How can someone join 6Towns?
Someone may join by:
- visiting their office in Oldbury - 6Towns Credit Union, First Floor. Municipal Buildings, Freeth Street, Oldbury B69 2AB. Monday - Friday 10:00am - 3:00pm
- by telephone 0121 553 3110
- by using their website www.sixtowns.co.uk
Can 6Towns open an account for those that cannot get a bank account?
Most High Street banks now offer a Basic Bank Account (no overdraft facility) which means that most people can now access a bank account, with the exception of:
- someone who is homeless
- students from abroad
- asylum seekers often find it difficult to obtain basic bank accounts
- people who have been trafficked
6Towns can help people in these circumstances.
Please note: some individuals who claim they cannot get a bank account often do have an existing bank account, but have used the overdraft facility or had a credit card and have failed to clear the overdraft or make credit card repayments and have stopped using the account. If the overdraft is over a certain amount (the amount varies between banks) the individual will find it almost impossible to find another bank willing to provide another bank account.
Do 6Towns offer a current account?
Banks offer Current Accounts, Credit Unions offer Savings, Loans and Budget accounts. However, 6Towns can offer an account called Instant Access Account which will do the same functions as a Current Account.
Do 6Towns provide a debit card to use with the Instant Access account?
They no longer provide a debit card as they found many members found it too easy to overspend using it. However, they now provide a prepaid card. The account holder needs to request that money is transferred from their Instant Access account onto their prepaid card. They can make the request online, by text or by phone – they just need to give 2 hours notice during the working week. The member can also set up a ‘set amount’ to be transferred weekly/fortnightly/monthly to the prepaid card. By putting an extra step into the process, the prepaid card slows spending down and helps people on low incomes to plan their spending, resist the temptation offered by debit cards and helps them to budget more effectively. There is a charge of £0.89p per week for a prepaid card.
Please note there is no overdraft facility on any of the 6Towns accounts.
Do 6Towns make a charge for any of their accounts?
6Towns do not make a charge for having any of their accounts. They do charge £0.89p per week for the prepaid card. If the prepaid card is lost there will be a charge to replace it (if a card is stolen it will be replaced free of charge if the member is able to provide a Police Crime Number). They also have to pass on charges for services such as BACS transfers and standing orders.