Illustration: David Wyffels

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Why It's Important: Credit unions are often a better deal than banks and tend to pay higher yields on deposits.

Do This Now: Go to and look for one that is part of the federal insurance program run by the National Credit Union Administration (go to and click on Protect Your Finances, Share Insurance Coverage to check). Coverage is the same as at an FDIC bank—$250,000 per person per credit union is fully insured, and additional coverage is based on the types of accounts you hold.
Please note: This is general information and is not intended to be legal advice. You should consult with your own financial advisor before making any major financial decisions, including investments or changes to your portfolio, and a qualified legal professional before executing any legal documents or taking any legal action. Harpo Productions, Inc., OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Discovery Communications LLC and their affiliated companies and entities are not responsible for any losses, damages or claims that may result from your financial or legal decisions.