"Thinking Outside the Box"
Welcome to South Florida FCU, A Division of Guardians Credit Union. Your credit union thinks outside the box to provide financial solutions to our members allowing them to accomplish goals like purchasing cars, becoming homeowners and making the dream of sending their children to college attainable. We think outside the box to offer service solutions which make banking from your home and office more convenient than ever. With Free Online Banking, Bill Pay and Direct Deposit, banking has never been more convenient. With our new Secure Remote Check Deposit option, you can make deposits from anywhere in the world with an image of your check.
Our Mission Statement
Our Board of Directors, Staff and Volunteers are committed to being the first choice of our members by delivering financial services in a timely, efficient, convenient and courteous manner. We are committed to exceeding our member’s financial expectations.
What is a Credit Union?
A Credit Union is a not-for profit member-owned financial cooperative federally or state chartered and federally insured. Their not-for-profit structure greatly distinguishes them from the more common financial institutions, banks. By being not-for-profit, they emphasize on member care, needs and value. In particular, credit unions strive to support the motto of being "Not for profit, not for charity, but for service."
Credit unions of today share their origins in southern Germany where cooperative credit societies were formed by poor farmers during the mid-1840s. With feudalism gone, farmers were allowed to own land; however, they lacked the finances to purchase land, farming equipment, and other tools essential for operating farms. The struggling farmers had no choice but to seek out credit from existing credit facilities, banks. Unfortunately, farmers and those of lower or equal social status could not qualify for loans from such credit facilities. As a result, farmers and people of the like were forced to borrow money from unscrupulous money lenders at exorbitant rates of interest. The birth of credit societies provided a convenient place to save and borrow money at reasonable rates. These societies grew in vast amounts and became known as "people's banks."
By the early 1900s, the "people's banks" were largely established in Europe and, although their idea was spreading worldwide, they were virtually unknown in the United States. Credit Societies were first introduced in the United States in 1907 by a Boston merchant named Edward Filene. He observed various credit societies in the Bengal area of India and instantly knew they had a place in the United States. Mr. Filene and several others, including Roy F. Bergengren, were instrumental in the early development of credit unions on a local level. It was not until the passage of the Federal Credit Union Act in June of 1934 that credit unions became nationally recognized.
Today, the main focus of a credit union is to provide an economical facility for members to save, borrow, and obtain financial services. The members pool their money and use it to provide financial products to themselves and other members. Profits are returned to members in the form of lower interest rates on loans, higher returns on deposit accounts, lower fees, and more free services than typically provided by a bank.
A credit union gives back to its members and the community it serves every day by providing services without the need to generate excess profits to pay out to stockholders. Members can trust in the products and services offered by their credit union, because the only reasons profits are generated are to pay for operating the credit union and to provide a return to the members.
Because of their structure, credit unions have no motive to engage in deceptive advertising or predatory lending. They want what is best for their members, especially providing sound financial advice to members, in order to protect the interests of all who participate in the cooperative.
The existence of credit unions offers a market-based pricing control that benefits all consumers of financial services. Without this member-owned institution, there would be no financial institution whose sole interest was to price services to benefit you, the member.