Pittsburgh Legal Back Talk

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An Old Idea is New Again: Borrow from a Community Bank or Credit Union!

Posted By Cliff Tuttle | February 7, 2009

Posted by Cliff Tuttle

Spring is in the air, interest rates are becoming more attractive every day and a young man or woman’s fancy turns to thoughts of refinancing that mortgage. Good idea. And here is another good idea to go with it.

When you pay off that Countrywide/Wells Fargo/Bank of America — you name it — mortgage loan, the one that was re-sold immediately on Wall Street, don’t go back to the same old place. This time, go to a Community Bank or Credit Union, preferably one that keeps its own residential loans in portfolio.

They still exist, you know. You don’t have to look very far. You probably pass a half dozen branches of Community Banks or Credit Unions on your way to work. None of them are getting bail-out money from the government. And if you check their financial statements, you will almost certainly find that they don’t need it. Community Banks and Credit Unions are, as a group, safe and sound. For the most part, they had nothing to do with the conditions that created the meltdown of ’08. But they probably have a great deal to do with bringing about economic development and home ownership in the town where you live. So why not do business there? Why not indeed!

Nothing is inherently wrong with big banks. There are even several with deep roots in Pittsburgh that are in excellent financial condition. They perform vital roles in arenas that smaller financial institutions cannot. We need them, but we need Community Banks and Credit Unions just as much. Do business with a Community Bank or Credit Union and you’ll be doing a favor for yourself, your family and the whole neighborhood.



CLIFF TUTTLE has been a Pennsylvania lawyer for over 45 years and (inter alia) is a real estate litigator and legal writer. The posts in this blog are intended to provide general information about legal topics of interest to lawyers and consumers with a Pittsburgh and Western Pennsylvania focus. However, this information does not constitute legal advice and there is no lawyer-client relationship created when you read this blog. You are encouraged to leave comments but be aware that posted comments can be read by others. If you wish to contact me in privacy, please use the Contact Form located immediately below this message. I will reply promptly and in strict confidence.

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