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Lonnie Hicks

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Finance: The Family Bank As An Answer to America's Problems
By Lonnie Hicks
Posted: Saturday, October 01, 2011
Last edited: Thursday, July 05, 2012
This short story is rated "G" by the Author.
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We in this country are looking for answers. I have blogged on this site offering what I think will put this country back on track.
One blog is "What America Needs to Do To Survive?"
Another is on Obama, offering him advice on what needs to be done.
This one is yet another aspect of what can be done to turn things around.
It is the family bank.
The short summary is: Don't give your money to wall street every day, start your own family bank.

The Family Bank idea is to teach families how to organize themselves into being a bank for the immediate and extended family.  Formed as a non-profit, the Family Bank would:

1-Assess family members small payments of five dollars a month in exchange for the right to borrow up to 300 dollars in a revolving loan fund.

2-Participate in a savings fund for the children and the elderly and for family emergencies.

3-Participate in a investment program for the family

4-Being an non-profit, the Bank could solicit grants and tax-free donations and ultimately start to help other families as well.

I did this in Berkeley years ago and that worked very well, eventually families accumulated money to provide security for family members in as little as three years while taking care of immediate needs.

No family member should be living isolated, poor, with no security. A Family Bank can help, especially if many such banks are organized. Family Banks often traded services eliminating the need for money between them. That helped.

Anyway, its time to put our money into family banks, instead of wall street banks.

Any given family member, with some resources, can start a  bank with as little as 200 dollars.
All profits go to fund family projects. In Berkeley, each family of any size sub-divided the work into sub-committtees to reduce time allotments.

Now with the internet, banking transactions among family members could be handled on a Family Bank website, or an existing one utilizing Pay Pal.

Much easier to do these days.

 For a video on the idea click on the link below:


Here is more detail on how the FB would work:

It can be an entirely on line operation. There are many on-line banks in operation already. Don't need an office or advertising, just a way to deposit and transfer loan monies or an account for savings.

First an individual, like me for example, a Dad transfers money, in this case say 5k dollars on an account which lives on my web site.

Individual B, say my daughter or son needs to quickly borrow 300 dollars. They can borrow the money however, only after joining the family bank paying say 10 or 15 dollars a month, that is deposting it (say via paypal) or from their own bank in the Family Bank accounts having their name.

Once a member they become eligible for loans say after three payments or a total of 30 dollars.

They go to the web site, request the loan, and then the money, after approval, is transfered to their account at the Family Bank ready for transfer to their own bank or they could use the money to pay bills right there on the FB web site.

The money could be paid back on a flexible schedule but it must be paid back in order for the individual to be eligible for a new loan.

So with 30 family members the FB has 300 plus 5000 dollars on day one when it opens up on line.

The interest rate on loans is no interest, or a maximum of three percent.

The profits go back into the FB.

Now the money the FB has can really grow quickly under the following scenarios:

Donations and grant money can be solicited, in connection with helping other families set up a similar FB

I, or a family member, rather than deposit my paychecks into Wells Fargo or greedy bank number two, would deposit my paycheck into the FB bank. If several family members do this the FB could open with 10 or 15k in the accounts useable for loans and emergencies.

Say that adds 5,000 extra dollars a month to the FB, money now available for loans.
The FB in the first one to three months would have over ten thousand available for loans, or the money could be put into a family investment account, or to help the poor in the family or whatever.

How do I pay my bills if the money is not in Wells Fargo Bank? The same way you do it now by transfering the funds online to your vendor on line.

If you don't want that hassle, this need could be a job for a family member, a stay at home job for a small fee could see that bills got paid. People don't know it but Visa and Master card will issue cards to individuals and organizations, not just to banks.

Trust is a factor here, of course, and some family members might not be entrusted with the family finances.

What if a borrower doesn't pay back. Well then no more loans until the money is paid back.

Emergency loans, funerals and such could be handled differently.

Also time banking could be a way of paying off a loan. Person A goes and takes care of Grandma for a few weeks as a way of paying off a loan.

Services could be used where person A has no cash and services could be directly exhanged among family members. Job leads, borrowing cars, adding a family member to insurance policies are ways of relating that save family members money and constitute a gigantic self help organization.

Family members would have to agree to serve on various family committees helping to make decisions on the various financial projects identified above.

Who needs money for college, how can the FB help?

The advantage of the FB is that the family instead of putting thousands of dollars each month into wall street banks who use our own money against us , we put the money into our own family banks and use that money for our own benefit and cut out the profit wall street banks take from us. This is thousands of dollars each year in interest we pay the greedy who give us nothing in return.

We regain control of our own lives and our own money. And did I mention that if a castrophoe hits like flood, earthquake and such, groups of family banks can make the difference help each other with loans and support, housing and such without waiting for FEMA to show up.

And if enough families did this, say 100,000 we could also bring wall street down or effect real change in this country. There is nothing that terrifies a banker more than a threat to take our money from them.

Besides, in the case of something like the down payment on a house the kids save thousands of dollar paid out to banks in interest, have a much lower mortgage which they pay to the FB not wall street.

There is a family board of directors, the kids can take over the bank and some can get a real paying job handling the bank, as the non-profit, or in the foundation side of things and the families future is much more secure.

That is a quick summary of how it can work.

October 20th  I will make the first deposit in the FB to get things rolling.

 For a real education of how commerical and wall street banks really work to profit from your money click on the link below. Also see my blog on this site "Wall Street, the Banks, The Government"

Those interested in learning more can message me on this site or at my website: 

Web Site:  

Reader Reviews for "Finance: The Family Bank As An Answer to America's Problems"

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Reviewed by J Howard
ok i am a scaredy cat, for sure. but an interesting proposal! you are so creative, so intelligent-and...a far reaching mind. good job!

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