As you all know, LDFA is beginning the process of setting up a credit union for all of our members. What this will mean is that every member will be able to have their own checking account within the credit union, and will be able to transfer funds between their checking account and their LDFA silver account almost instantly. Each account will be accompanied by a debit card, so when you withdraw funds from your silver account to your checking account, the money will be available to you within seconds.
In order to accomplish this lofty goal, we have to meet certain criteria that are established for credit unions based on an association, like us. As we mentioned before, we have to reach a certain level of membership, we have to establish a way to hold online meetings, and we have to establish and maintain a certain level of cash reserves. Those cash reserves will need to be quite substantial; we are literally talking about needing more than $1 million in cash reserve.
Because of the nature of our operation, and the fact that people are constantly purchasing more silver from us, we have devised a means by which we can keep the cash reserves secured with silver, even though the money itself has to remain in the bank. We maintain a silver reserve, as well, and we are always quick to purchase more silver during times when the price is down.
As the price of silver rises and our members purchase silver from us, the difference between what we paid for it and what we sell it for can add to that cash reserve fund, so that we can pay interest on this money. For this reason, and because the food co-op is now fully established, we will be shutting down all of our current TD Accounts as of the First of April, and replacing them all with the Credit Union Reserve Fund Account. This account will be a 12 month term deposit and will pay a flat rate of 1% monthly which will be paid directly into your main silver account; it will not be compounded. There will be a penalty fee of 5% for early withdrawal of funds from the account.
In addition, beginning April 1st, we are going to implement a $5 monthly membership fee, but this will then allow us to remove all deposit and withdrawal fees. The small $.35 transaction fee will still be in place, as will the Bill Payment check fee. The Referral Program will pay its commissions on the Membership Fee every month, and will continue to pay 3 levels deep.
We will also be offering a new Business Account, which will allow Business Members to pay employees, suppliers and creditors directly from their accounts. You’ll be able to list deductions, send detailed invoices (even to non-Members) and have checks mailed to make payments. Business Accounts will pay only $10 per month for all the additional services. Commissions will also be paid on the Business Account Membership Fee, so your referrals who choose Business Accounts will reward you as well.
Members can still sign up for free; the membership fees won’t come out until the next 15th of the month, and won’t apply to any account that has not yet been funded. Likewise, we won’t let the membership fee cause an account to go into the negative; if there is not enough money to pay the fee, that account will be briefly frozen until it is paid, but it will not go further and further into the hole every month like most bank checking accounts do once they are overdrawn.
We believe that these changes will make LDFA better for everyone, and look forward to continuing to serve our Members for a long time to come.
Mar 17, 2023