London Plus partnership: two years on and still going strong

It's been two years since we partnered with London Plus Credit Union to offer Genesis residents and staff a way to save and borrow money safely.

Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority, a Credit Union is like a community bank where people can get help to manage their money and access low cost loans up to £7,500*. Unlike ‘pay day’ and high cost loan companies, interest rates are comparatively low and there are no penalties for paying back money early.

Despite the name, London Plus accepts all Genesis customers, not just those that are London-based. Since the partnership launched in April 2015, there are 200 Genesis members with over £64,000 in savings and over £109,000 of loans issued. 

One such resident is Charlene** who has three children aged 15, ten and four. Charlene found herself struggling day to day to make ends meet, and however hard she tried she never seemed to have enough money.

Last year things came to a head when Charlene had some larger than usual expenses to provide for her children. She had nowhere to turn but she realised that she could approach London Plus for help. She borrowed about £900 and was able to consolidate her debts into one payment at an interest rate that she could afford.

Charlene said: “My dream was to clear some outstanding debts that I struggled to get rid of for some time. [London Plus] not only help(ed) with an affordable loan, but I am able to save and build at the same time. The staff are both friendly and helpful. I'm always at ease and stress free while dealing with the credit union.”

Charlene loves the ‘Save As You Borrow’ option where she isn’t just paying back the loan but building up savings. She is now ‘back in the black’.

“I would definitely recommend [London Plus], whether it's for a cheaper rate loan or just the comfort of saving for the unexpected!”

Cheryl Gale, CEO of London Plus, said: “Unlike ‘pay day’ loan companies or unofficial money lenders (‘loan sharks’) which charge very high interest rates so that you often end up paying back more than double what you borrowed, Credit Unions are different. They are not out to make a profit (their primary aim is to better the lives of members/customers) and most can provide you with a loan at a repayment rate that you can afford, even if you have limited income or no credit history.

“Many members divert their child benefit as a source of repayment for loans or to build up some savings for Christmas.

“It’s quick and easy to become a member or apply for a loan online.”

 

To find out more, call 020 7471 2620 or go to www.londonpluscu.co.uk

*Depending on different loan products and eligibility criteria.

** Name has been changed.

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