This member needed to do dispute as a result of some fraud on his account. I could tell that he was upset so I wanted to make sure we got everything done in a timely matter. I looked at his account I noticed he only uses us for his Vacation Funds. I started chatting with him and asked where his primary institution was and he said, “a different credit union.” I could hear in his voice he wasn’t too happy with them, but he was dealing with it. I asked if they treated him well and he said he guessed they did. I asked if he had any loans with them and he instantly laughed and said, “That will be the day! They won’t even think to look at me with my credit score.”
Member Saving Stories
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A few months back this member called to request a $10,000.00 personal loan for home improvements. She had recently inherited some property with a mobile home that she wanted to fix up and sell. After starting the application, it was clear she wasn’t going to be approved because she had an extremely high debt ratio so the request was cancelled. She has been a Qualstar member for a very long time and is now a small business owner with lots of credit card debt.
I first met this member in September when he needed help getting statements printed. It seemed like such a simple interaction but it apparently had a huge affect on him, because within a month he came into the branch and asked for me by name. Long story short, we refinanced his auto from 25.59% to 6.49% APR with a $160/month savings. But there’s so much more…
One day in the Renton branch, I educated this member about the personal loan he was pre-approved for and when he said, “I am interested” I asked about credit cards he might have at other banks. He said, “Yes I do have many cards.” So then I asked, “Do you know with a Qualstar Visa Gold card you can do a balance transfer from your higher rate cards with no fee, and we give you 1% cash back?” Then he said, “Can I just consolidate all my credit cards?”…
This member came into the branch back in August and we started talking about him making his payments on time so he is on track to upgrade out of his Gateway Line of Credit to save some money and help build positive credit. He said he really didn’t think we would even consider upgrading him…
I helped this member in the Redmond branch with a large cash withdrawal, and noticed his Visa Gold credit line was recently increased. When I asked if he saw the notification of the increase that we sent him in November, he said he had no idea. I asked if he had any other credit cards out there with balances, and he said, “I think I have a few small ones.”
I have helped a particular member with several loans over the years at both the Renton and Seattle branches, and we recently had a discussion about her daughter’s mortgage woes. I suggested she have her come in to see what we could do, which she did. Her daughter runs a daycare out of her home and needed to do some repairs and upgrades as well as pay off some bills.
This member came into my office to request a balance transfer and when she handed me the balance transfer form, I noticed her limit wouldn’t cover the amount she needed to transfer. I said, “No biggie, let’s run a quick limit increase request.” So we started the application and while I was entering the details for the limit increase, I reviewed some notes from when she applied for an equity loan back in early 2016, but wasn’t able to get approved. At that time her husband had recently retired, and their income situation had changed. During that same time, I recalled they had a large outstanding loan at a pretty high rate so I asked if that ever got worked out. I could immediately tell I hit on a sensitive subject when she said, “No, we’re still paying them; and I’m retiring soon. I AM STRESSED OUT.”
Jim came into the Tacoma branch and sat at my desk to inquire about a pre-approved Home Equity Line of Credit mailer he recently received from us. I educated him on the various loan options and how they could be applied to his specific situation. Jim mentioned some work needed to be done around the house and had it all planned out, so we went with the Advantage Equity loan.
The transition from Woodstone Credit Union to Qualstar, like any merger, can be fraught with alignment issues.
Systems, processes, cultures, people, etc…I’ve experienced some of these issues from a customer perspective coming from Woodstone as well.
However, I had a very pleasant customer experience on 8/3/2018 with Falana Clark, the Branch Manager in Kent.
She helped with a deposit, then listened to my concerns such as is there a member CU closer to my home they take deposits, does Qualstar have a Certified Financial Planner or equivalent for financial services? Falana handled each of these requests delightfully, with a desire to help.
She even helped me with testing the Kent ATM with my account number to ensure deposit capabilities. In addition, she personally contacted Qualstar’s Investment Advisor at the Federal Way branch to determine his financial accreditation’s and experience while I was at the branch. She is now the primary reason I plan on staying with Qualstar.
Please pass along my compliments to her. She did a wonderful job and is a credit to your organization.