The loans policy is applied equally to all members regardless of their qualification. Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union has an obligation to lend prudently and productively, and to protect members’ savings. Maintaining a responsible balance between savings and loans is central to the Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union’s philosophy.
Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union Ltd will offer loans exclusively to credit union members and for a variety of purposes. Black Star Line Cooperative Credit Union loans are very flexible; you can borrow small or large amounts and over different periods depending of your eligibility and within the limits of the Loans Policy.
Advantages of a Loan from Black Star Line Cooperative Credit Union
- The interest rate is fixed for the duration of your loan, so if general interest rates change your repayments will not.
- Interest is charged only on the outstanding balance.
- There is no arrangement, set-up, or hidden fees.
- There are no charges if you want to pay the loan off early.
The Loan Committee are the individuals within the Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union that administer the loans policy and procedures. The Loan Committee are all volunteers and are authorised by the Board of Directors to determine the loans policy, and authorising loan applications within the policy, subject to regulatory requirements and the Credit Union’s rules and regulations.
There shall be regular meetings of the Loans Committee which shall be enabled by the Treasurer to view details of such account as is necessary in order to take decisions with sufficient information.
The Loans Committee shall be made up of 3 members. All decisions shall be by simple majority vote. The minimum number eligible to form a quorum shall be 2 and in this case all decision shall be unanimous.
The loans committee shall appoint from amongst their number a chairman and a secretary. Minutes shall be kept of all business in a secure book designed for the purpose.
Loans meetings should take the following format:
- Ascertainment of a quorum
- The appointment of a chairman for the meeting (in the absence of the regular chairman)
- The approval of the minutes of the previous meeting
- A report of loans issued since the last meeting
- Approval of new loan applications
- Arrears report
- Approval of arrears action
The Loans Committee should meet weekly if possible but at least twice monthly and the chairman should ensure that a report of their business is available for the next regular monthly meeting of directors.
The members of the Loans Committee should take great care even in very trying circumstances to keep the business of members using the credit facilities strictly confidential.
Policy and Procedures
1. All members of the Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union shall be eligible to apply for a loan from the Credit Union after they have completed 12 weeks or 3 months of regular saving. A loan will not be given on the basis of a sudden increase in shares or savings.
2. All loans are subject to the availability of funds and the number of shares and savings held by a member
3. Members must be aged 18 or over to be granted a loan.
4. A guarantor maybe required if recommended by the Loan Committee. A member must have saved on a regular basis over a 12 week period to be eligible to be a guarantor.
5. The availability of loans and the ratio of loan to shareholding shall be adjusted from time to time to adequately make use of accumulated savings for the mutual benefit of all the members
6. All loans shall be applied for using the Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union’s approved loans application form which shall be easily available to all members.
7. Loans must not be applied for to service a loan from another lending institution such as a bank or building society.
8. Loans application forms should be fully completed, if necessary with the help of a member of the loans committee or other competent member. Tellers on duty should not have to leave their posts to assist members with the completion of loans application forms.
9. Members should be made aware that their loan will be processed within 14 days in normal circumstances and, if approved, will be paid out during the following week’s business.
10. All loans will only be paid out by cash or cheque with the relevant member collecting it IN PERSON and signing a receipt for same.
11. The member must be made aware of the repayment schedule and the rate of interest to be applied (e.g. 3% per 30-day month on reducing balance).
11a. In accordance with the Loans Bond failure to make payment there will be a penalty of 1GHc per day for every 500GHc approved loan.
12. Loans must be repaid regularly as promised on their application form and must be for the minimum amount stated, although more can be repaid if desired.
13. Repayments of loan will be agreed to suit budget and individual circumstances and interest will be charged at 3% per month on reducing balance.
14. Whilst the loan is being repaid 75% of shares or savings must be kept in the member's main account. If the member's loan account falls into arrears the Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union has the right to transfer shares or savings to the member’s loan account under the Bye Laws of the Black Star Line Cooperative Credit Union.
15. When you sign your loan agreement, you are agreeing that the Black Star Line Co-operative Credit Union may hold your savings as security against your loan.
16. Therefore, savings withdrawals are not permitted from your Savings Account while you have a loan balance greater than your savings balance. If your savings balance is greater than your outstanding loan balance, you can withdraw savings, but only up to an amount which leaves the savings and loan balances equal.
17. Loan applications that exceed member’s savings will not be accepted without one or all the following documents, which must be recent:
- 1 month bank statements
- 1 month wages slips
- 1 Utility bill
- In some cases proof of property ownership
18. A signed letter must accompany an application if it is presented by anyone other than the applicant.
19. All details on a loan form must be completed especially the health declaration.
20. We must point out that on pre-existing condition limitation the following rules apply:
- Savings and loan insurance carry a 6-month pre-existing condition limitation, as standard.
- Each new share deposit/loan agreement a member makes is governed by the 6-month pre-existing condition.
- Benefit will not be paid on the members outstanding share/loan balance if death results from a pre-existing illness or injury for which medical advice, consultation or treatment was received within 6 months prior to taking a share deposit/loan.
21. It is important that members continue to save whilst repaying a loan so a minimum amount of 10Ghc must be saved each month whilst a loan repayment schedule is in place.
22. A loan shall not be made by the credit union to a member for a period exceeding two (2) years commencing on the date on which the loan is paid to the member.
23. Loan amounts are at the discretion of the Loans Committee; however, a first loan will be calculated at 100% of the member’s savings and depending on the members borrowing status subsequent loans may be increased.
24. If a member finds difficulty in repaying a loan, then he/she should immediately inform the loans committee so that mutually acceptable alternative arrangements can be made. “Courtesy, Care and Consideration” should work both ways, all information is treated in strictest confidence.
25. The loans committee shall ensure that a regular analysis is made of any loans of which the repayments are in arrears. This analysis should be in depth with the aim of identifying at the earliest stage the formation of a “bad debt”.
26. The maximum amount that can be loaned legally is 5 times member’s savings, however no individual shall be allowed to borrow more than 20% of the total savings assets of the society. This will be subject to Terms and Conditions.
27. All loans are subject to Loan Protection Plan (LPP) which is a mandatory payment. The amount is calculated and must be paid at the application stage when the applicant agrees and accepts the repayment schedule.
. LPP remittance must be sent to CUA by the 15th of the following month of loan approval.
28. Calculation of all loans will be calculated to be repaid monthly.
29. The unsecured part of any loan shall not exceed 5% of the credit union’s total shareholding/assets.
30. Regular borrowers shall have a maximum loans/share ratio of 3/1. You cannot withdraw shares lower than this level (i.e. 3/1).
31. No officer or staff member of this credit union will, in any manner, discourage a member from applying for credit. This credit union will accept and consider an application from any member who wishes to submit a request for credit. Such requests must be in writing via the appropriate Credit Union loan application form. Solely verbal requests will not be honoured.
32. No credit will be extended to any person who has caused the credit union a loss or who has not voluntarily repaid the loss or who is not voluntarily repaying the loss, whether the loss was by bankruptcy or otherwise.
33. No credit will be extended to any person who does not comply with all requirements and qualifications of the Bye Laws and BSLCCU policies and procedures
34. Loans to Credit Union personnel, Board or Committee members will be underwritten in the same manner as that of the regular membership.
35. Loan Officers are prohibited from approving their own loan(s) or those of their next of kin.
36. The final decision on any loan application is at the discretion of the Loans Committee.
All loans may be subject to credit checks.
Types of Loans
The following types of loans are available to members:
Ø Personal loans
Ø House proud loan
Ø Vehicle Secured loans
Ø Farm Equipment
Ø Land (acreage)
Ø Home Equity
Ø Consolidation Loans
Ø Personal Loan
A member must be over 18 years of age and have saved regularly for a period of 12 weeks or 3 months minimum prior to applying for a loan. Terms and Conditions apply. Each loan application is decided upon its own merits.
The interest charged on Standard Loans is 3% per month on the reducing balance of loan.
All applications for loans must be made on our approved loan application form. All loans are presented to the Loans Committee for a decision, subject to funds being available.
Member’s first loan will be calculated at 100% of savings, subsequent loans could be a multiple of their savings to a maximum of 5 times members saving. A loan shall not be made by the credit union to a member for a period exceeding two (2) years commencing on the date on which the loan is paid to the member.
Members must continue to save while repaying a loan.
Members should repay previous loans through regular payments before applying for another loan. However, the Credit Union recognises that on some occasions it may be necessary to borrow again before an existing loan is paid off in full. On these occasions your existing loan will be refinanced and a new loan granted for the increased amount. The maximum total amount you can borrow is three times your savings balance at the time of application, which includes the outstanding balance of your existing loan subject to Terms and Conditions.
Please note: all applications are subject to a credit check.