What Has 4 Wheels And A Windshield?

This week, CreditUnions.com explores the ways four credit unions from across the country are poised to take advantage of a booming auto market.

OK, the title’s riddle isn’t exactly a brainteaser the answer is a car.

The spring fever car-buying season is just around the corner, and experts predict it’s going to be a big one. CNBC reports auto sales will hit 13.83 million in 2015, inching out the 13.8 million all-time record posted in 2004. And Forbes reports sales could pass 17 million. Those are impressive numbers for a post-recession market; however, the volume won’t last long. Automotive News reportsthere will be a significant downturn in sales after 2018.

But it’s still 2015, and this week CreditUnions.com explores the ways four credit unions from across the country are poised to take advantage of a booming auto market.

From a member’s perspective, taking out a loan is just one of many interactions that puts them one step closer to achieving a life goal, such as owning a home or securing reliable transportation. To put itself closer to more of those critical activities, Redwood Credit Union tapped into the dealer and insurance side of things through a wholly owned CUSO. Now, the credit union is part of a one-stop shop to sell, purchase, finance, and insure a vehicle. Learn more in 4 Tips To Stop Selling Products And Start Selling Experience.

Orange County’s Credit Union had an active indirect lending auto program until 2007; that’s when the country entered a recession and margins on the credit union’s portfolio began to shrink. During its 2007 strategic planning, the credit union determined it needed to focus its efforts on direct lending to better serve its members. In 2011, Orange County’s increased direct originations by more than 70% compared to 2010 and has posted 10-20% growth in originations every year since. How’d it achieve this? Read How To Bounce Back When Your Auto Portfolio Bottoms Out to see.

In a state where credit unions excel at auto lending, Oregon Community Credit Union stands out. Driven by indirect lending, OCCU is the No. 3 lender in Oregon, with a 5.6% market share that trails only Wells Fargo and Toyota Motor Credit. Jerry Liudahl, OCCU’s chief credit officer, is wary as well as optimistic about possible changing conditions and shares insights about OCCU’s success and the road ahead in this week’s Q&A, How Indirect Lending Helped Oregon Community Achieve 5.6% Market Share.

Transportation provides access to professional and personal opportunities. It dictates where people can take jobs, their ability to maintain jobs, and how involved they can be in day-to-day family life. It offers freedom and choice. That’s why in 2012, Manatee Community Credit Union partnered with two well-known enterprises to create an affordable transportation initiative called Reliable Ride that is helping to solve communitywide transportation and financial education challenges. Read A Strategy To Provide Reliable Rides For Vulnerable Members to see how you can do the same.

Finally, check out the Graphic Of The Week, Indirect Versus Direct Lending,for peer group comparison that illustrates how lending business models perform differently.

Happy Reading!

January 26, 2015

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