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Credit cards are an important financial tool, but they need to be used responsibly.
ways to know you're using a credit card responsibly Six Ways to Know You're Using a Credit Card Responsibly

Credit cards are an important financial tool, but they need to be used responsibly.

Here’s how to know you’re okay:

  1. You can easily pay more than just the minimum payment each month.
  2. You don’t rely on your credit card for everyday purchases.
  3. You are using less than 30% of your credit limit.
  4. You never take out cash advances.
  5. You use it mostly for large, necessary expenses.
  6. You read all the fine print in every letter you receive from your credit card company.

Ready for a better credit card?

The Visa Rewards Plus credit card is a dream come true. There's no annual fee*, no balance transfer fee and you'll earn unlimited reward points on purchases. Best of all, we offer 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months, after that your APR will be 8.90%-14.90% based on credit worthiness. Apply today!

Need to build your credit?

Advancial offers a Savings Secured Visa® credit card to help you grow your credit responsibly. Secured with your Advancial account deposits, you can qualify for limits of $500 to $3,000. There's no annual fee**, you'll earn reward points on purchases and enjoy 0% introductory APR for the first 12 months, after that your APR will be 16.90%. Call 800.322.2709 to get started today!
Credit unions are an important part of our community. The members of your credit union are your friends, family, co-workers and neighbors.
Three friends smiling Why Should I Refer my Friends to the Credit Union?

Credit unions are an important part of our community. The members of your credit union are your friends, family, co-workers and neighbors. They care enough about where they live to invest their money locally by keeping savings accounts and their other banking matters “in the family.”

The strength and stability of a credit union comes from its members. The more members a credit union has, the more value it can provide to the membership as a whole – especially when the members do all or most of their banking with the cooperative that they collectively own. As a credit union grows, it can offer better services at more competitive rates and with fewer or lower fees. That’s the power of community support.

To keep up in a crowded marketplace, credit unions need to grow. Corporate financial institutions do this by selling stock in their company. But they are less accountable to their customers and more accountable to investors and paid boards of directors who probably live far away from the institution’s community. The constant drive to appease shareholders often propels the bank’s leadership to make decisions that may be immediately advantageous, but highly detrimental for the long term. Contrast this with credit unions, which are wholly owned by their members, who receive their shares of the revenue that is generated through better rates, lower fees, investments in technology and more. But a credit union needs to attract new members to continue the growth that makes all that possible.

When the credit union grows, the whole community benefits from that growth as well. We’re always looking to offer more and better services to our members. We want to continue to be the financial institution of choice for the community.

As a member, you know the benefits of doing business with the credit union.

  • Free checking and ATMs nationwide
  • Better rates of return on deposits
  • Low-cost financing for autos and mortgages
  • Low rate credit card with rewards
  • Youth and teen accounts
  • Unbeatable member service


Share the wealth and benefits of Advancial with your friends and family today!

It can be difficult to tell the difference between a credit union and a bank. There are a lot of similarities between the two; they both offer checking accounts, credit cards, auto loans and…
difference between a credit union and a bank What's the difference between a credit union and a bank?

It can be difficult to tell the difference between a credit union and a bank. There are a lot of similarities between the two; they both offer checking accounts, credit cards, auto loans and other financial products. However, there are a few distinct differences that set credit unions apart.

Credit unions are member owned, not-for-profit companies. That means you get a lot of great, free benefits – like lower loan rates, high deposit rates and little-to-no service fees. Once you have an account, you become a member and a part owner in the company. That’s why we say our accounts earn dividends, not interest. Banks pay profits to their stockholders or owners. That means you get stuck with higher interest rates and less flexible loans.

Credit union memberships are based on commonality, such as a specific community, organization or place of employment. We’ve created a warm, family environment, so any immediate family member is also eligible to join. You’ll get more value and a more affordable banking experience with Advancial.

Creature comforts like smartphone bank deposits are nice, but how much are they costing you? Your statement might not show the costs directly, but there’s an old adage about situations…
Split road Five Reasons to Choose a Credit Union Over a Bank

Creature comforts like smartphone bank deposits are nice, but how much are they costing you? Your statement might not show the costs directly, but there’s an old adage about situations like this: If you’re not paying for a service, you’re not the customer. You’re the product. In this case, corporate banks use slick technological bells and whistles to get you in so you’ll be more likely to take out loans and use other for-pay services.

If you’re tired of being treated like a product, you’re not alone. Last year, 2 million people between the ages of 18 and 35 joined a credit union. In fact, 28% of credit union members are under 35 while 54% of them are under age 50. The tools of technology are making it easier to see the value that credit unions offer.

Don’t just take our word for it. Do your research and see for yourself how credit unions compare to for-profit banks. Consider these five categories:

1.) Ease of service

Here’s a fun game. Call a corporate bank with a simple request, like checking the balance of a savings account. Count the number of irritating phone tree menus you have to sift through before you could talk to a real person who could answer your question. You win when you get frustrated and slam the phone down in anger!

For-profit banks have earned a reputation for cumbersome customer service and out-of-touch policies. Getting information on financial services, like credit repair or auto loans, means sitting on hold for hours. Credit unions, on the other hand, provide easy-to-use services and real, live human beings who can answer questions, make recommendations and help you understand the complicated world of finance.

2.) Lending practices

For-profit banks answer to corporate owners. They expect a predictable, stable rate of return on their investments. This demand puts a straitjacket on lending and ensures those practices never deviate from a predetermined formula. Take income, multiply by credit score, divide by two; that’s the interest rate they’ll charge.

However, let’s pretend you just got a new job, so last year’s tax returns aren’t a good indicator of how much you are earning. That’s not in the formula, so it doesn’t matter. Credit history ruined by an old medical bill? Corporate banks stop reading after the first three words of that sentence. In short, there’s no room for flexibility and interest rates tend to be much higher.

Credit unions are community institutions, so helping people out is part of what they do. Their rates tend to be lower than those of corporate banks. They also tend to be more willing to make exceptions for details that may not be reflected in the conventional lending formula.

3.) Online banking is everywhere

In the wild west days of the internet, only corporate banks could afford online banking. Now, your pet gerbil can have his own website. The internet is everywhere and credit unions are on board. The services you use every day, like online bill pay, direct deposit and checking on account balances are just a click away. Credit unions are increasingly integrated with e-commerce services like Paypal and Square, making it easier than ever to send and receive money electronically.

Individual smartphone apps and other gimmicks don’t provide a whole lot of extra service. A disappointed 67% of young people say mobile banking services at banks don’t measure up to their expectations. Most people don’t handle paper checks anymore, so banking from the computer is all most consumers really need.

4.) Educational resources

Corporate banks have historically made a killing by keeping people in the dark about their practices. Credit card companies made it hard to tell exactly how much interest you were being charged. Banks charged overdraft fees without ever telling you they were doing it. These things got so bad, Congress took action. Consumer ignorance was built into the profit model of big financial institutions. Educating consumers was not just a waste of money to them, it was actually costing them business.

Credit unions are not-for-profits that want to make their communities a better place. Part of that mission includes financial education. If you need advice about homebuying, making a budget or using credit responsibly, your credit union will be happy to help.

5.) Savings

Credit unions work for their members. They pay back the money they make to their members in the form of dividends. Since their members are also the people paying for their services, they don’t have much of an incentive to charge an arm and a leg in interest and fees.

Credit unions also offer competitive rates on savings accounts and CDs. Because they don’t have to siphon off money to pay shareholders, they can return that money to their investors: you know, the people who do their banking with the credit union. Compare the earned interest on a credit union checking or savings account to those offered by a for-profit bank. Then, go open an account at a credit union. You’ll thank yourself later.

Being a member of a credit union is a coup for your finances for many reasons. Here are just a few facts that make credit unions a great option.
10 Facts About Credit Unions

Being a member of a credit union is a coup for your finances for many reasons. Here are just a few facts that make credit unions a great option.

Fact #1: President Roosevelt signed the Federal Credit Union Act in 1934 to promote thriftiness and prevent usury during the Great Depression.

Fact #2: Credit unions are insured. Most credit unions are insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA), which provides essentially the same coverage on funds as does the FDIC. If the word “federal” is in the name, they are insured. If not, check with your credit union. It may be state-chartered or have private deposit insurance, or both.

Fact #3: Eligibility is fairly flexible at most credit unions. Most require residency in a certain community, city or state, or that you are employed by the credit union’s sponsor company, also known as a Select Employee Group (SEG). But requirements are pretty broad on most, making eligibility at a credit union a possibility for almost anyone.

Fact #4: Credit unions are not-for-profit institutions and are owned by the people they serve, not by a few shareholders.

Fact #5: Credit unions can offer better rates on savings accounts, lower interest rates on loans, and little or no fees on accounts because they are exempt from federal taxes. Credit unions still pay state taxes.

Fact #6: The credit union’s board of directors, which is elected by members, can set loan limits in an effort to help the credit union grow.

Fact #7: Credit union members have democratic control of the credit union and can attend and participate in regular and special membership meetings.

Fact #8: Nonmembers benefit from credit unions too. Competition for low rates keeps banks’ fees in check, thereby benefiting nonmembers.

Fact #9: With more than 5,000 credit unions across the globe and access to tens of thousands of ATMs, credit unions are increasingly convenient on a national scale.

Fact #10: Once you are a member of a credit union, you stay a member for as long as you maintain your deposit account (share), regardless of whether or not you continue to meet the original eligibility requirements.

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Displaying results 66-70 (of 74)
Check-Writing 101: What You Need to Know About Writing a Check
In an era of digital payments, you may not regularly need to write a check to complete a purchase. But at some point, you will likely want or need to write a check, because it’s the best option available, such as when you are:   Lacking …
Junior Year Rules! Why Your Junior Year in High School is Important
If you’re a junior in high school (or will be soon) and you’re thinking of attending college, know your junior year is critically important. That’s because junior year is the last full school year that colleges can review your high school per…
Why Advancial Versus Other Alternatives?
Life is full of choices, including deciding whether to bank with a credit union, like Advancial, or a traditional bank. Unlike banks, credit unions like Advancial are not-for-profit organizations that exist exclusively to serve their members.…
Consider the Benefits of Using More Energy-Efficient Appliances
Household energy bills have been surging, making it more expensive than ever to heat, cool and electrify your home. If you’re still using older, less energy-efficient appliances or reside in a less energy-efficient home, now may be an ideal t…
Making Sense of Our Current Inflation
As you may have noticed when buying anything lately, America is experiencing significant inflation – the highest in 40 years, according to economists. What really is inflation? How did we get to this point? What’s being done about it? And mos…
Everyone Could Use a Helping Hand – Assisting Others
It might be tough to recall, but when you were younger, you were almost always in need of someone else’s help. The person you are today is the result of a lot of people – family, friends, teachers, neighbors and more – who’ve helped you along…
It’s Smart to Protect Your Online Presence
Wouldn’t it be great to see around corners, like some of the action heroes in the movies, to know if anything dangerous is coming your way? Of course, that’s impossible in real life. But you can do the next best thing and help ensure you’re p…
How Best to Take Care of Your Money
There’s an age-old saying: “Take care of your money so that your money can take care of you.” What it means is that if you’re careful with your money now – saving it as much as you can and limiting your expenses – you’ll likely have more mone…
How to Make Money Management Less Confusing
If you think managing your money is challenging, you’re not alone! Nearly three-quarters of teens (74%) say they’re not confident about their personal finance knowledge, according to a recent survey .   Who can you turn to for learning m…
Beware of Spoofed Texts and Calls
Fraudsters are more active than ever and targeting credit union members and bank customers. Their new method is very clever and very deceiving. The member receives a call or text with the number spoofed to look like it's from Advancial. I…
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Displaying results 1-10 (of 74)

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