By RUSSELL VANNOZZI
Evansville Teachers Federal Credit Union’s Liberty Financial division has opened a new, full-service retail branch in Franklin to better serve its Nashville-area members.
ETFCU purchased the Liberty Financial brand in late 2016 with plans to do more for its current members by expanding its geographic footprint.
“We have members in all 50 states and in seven countries,” ETFCU VP of Marketing Brent Joyce said. “We have over 2,500 members in the Nashville Metro area, so there’s definitely very good reason for the Franklin location.”
The new office, which opened July 9, is Liberty Financial’s 10th office but its first full-retail branch. It is located at 580 Franklin Road in the Branch Creek development just south of Moore’s Lane.
ETFCU was established in 1936 and is now the fastest-growing credit union in Indiana, touting more than 200,000 members and $1.5 billion in assets. The acquisition of Liberty Financial allows ETFCU to combine its financial services with Liberty’s mortgage expertise.
The Franklin location offers mortgage and personal loans, certificates of deposits and money market accounts, health savings accounts, individual retirement accounts and credit cards, among other services. Joyce said the company’s most popular product is its high-interest checking account, which offers a three-percent yearly return on balances up to $20,000, along with up to $15 per month of ATM fee reimbursements.
Joyce said the company does not plan to convert all the existing Liberty Financial locations into full-service branches. Rather, the company has chosen to focus on the Bowling Green, Nashville and Louisville markets, where the greatest concentrations of current ETFCU members can be served.
“We’re looking to better serve our members in these areas,” Joyce said. “One of our goals is to not only partner with Liberty Financial, but we are using that brand to open our full-service retail branches (in select markets).
Liberty Financial started as a mortgage company in 2002 and opened its first Middle Tennessee location in Brentwood in 2005. Joyce said the company averages just 21 days to close on mortgage loans, which normally take 40 days or longer.
“Liberty has always prided itself on having the right products to meet individual member needs,” Joyce said. “It sounds cliché, but service is actually something that has differentiated Liberty Financial throughout the years.”
Liberty Financial will open a second, larger Franklin location in 2019. Ironically, the branch will be located at 1207 Liberty Pike in the Liberty Station development.
“We would love to take credit for that, but it’s just a happy coincidence,” Joyce said. “We’d like to think it’s fate, but coincidence is probably the right term.”
The company will hold a grand-opening celebration for its Branch Creek location in mid-August. An official opening date for the second Franklin location has yet to be determined.