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The average adult has used the same checking account for over 14 years. That’s good news if people are happy with their accounts. But the fact is that many people are losing money…

article preview image More Than Your Average Checking Account

The average adult has used the same checking account for over 14 years. That’s good news if people are happy with their accounts. But the fact is that many people are losing money thanks to fees and other charges. In fact, the average checking account holder pays $7.69 in fees per month.1 If you’re also paying fees on your checking account, know that there are other options out there, including at Advancial.

Fewer Fees

Virtually all of the fees you’ll find at big banks are nowhere to be found with Advancial’s Ultimate Checking account. At Advancial, we don’t believe in charging members for the services they use every day. That’s why Ultimate Checking accounts have no monthly service fees, no fees for using a non-Advancial ATM and no foreign transaction fee. Even if a bank or credit union charges you for using their ATM, we’ll reimburse you automatically. We also don’t charge any fees for instant-issued debit cards, overdraft transfers from your savings account or for using our Bill Payer service.

Even More Features to Appreciate

Finding a checking account that earns dividends and rewards can be difficult if you don’t want to pay any fees. But that’s another way our Ultimate Checking account is made to satisfy the needs of our members. Ultimate Checking  earns dividends with any balance. Plus, for every $5 spent with a debit card, you’ll earn one point to use for a variety of exciting rewards. These points can even be combined with any points earned from Advancial’s Visa® Rewards Plus credit card.

Advancial checking account holders also have access to the CO-OP Shared Branching Network. That means if you’re traveling to a location with no Advancial locations, you can visit one of the 5,000+ branches in the network. These network branches let you make deposits, withdrawals, payments and transfers with your Advancial accounts with no fees.

Start Enjoying a Different Approach to Checking

Don’t lose a single dollar more to checking accounts loaded with fees. Become a member of Advancial and you can sign up for an Ultimate Checking account. All it takes to join is a $5 deposit in an Advancial savings account. To learn more about eligibility or to apply for membership, visit joinadvancial.org.

1 Source: Bankrate

Millions of Americans are taking a financial hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you count yourself among them, you might be looking for some stability and ways you can save some money…

article preview image What Does It Mean to Be a Member?
Millions of Americans are taking a financial hit due to the COVID-19 pandemic. If you count yourself among them, you might be looking for some stability and ways you can save some money. Fortunately, one of the simplest ways to get more out of your financial accounts is to become a member of a credit union. But how different is it really to be a credit union member versus a bank customer?
 
You’re a Co-Owner
Credit unions are owned by their members. It’s why every credit union requires a small deposit in a share account — this contribution represents your stake in the credit union. As a member-owner, you’re entitled to vote for the board of directors, giving you direct say in the leadership of your financial institution. At Advancial Federal Credit Union, you can cast your vote during our Annual Meeting held in the first quarter of each year. In contrast, bank customers rarely have any say in how business is run. Instead, the board of directors is elected by shareholders who may or may not have customer interests at heart.

You’re Part of a Community
Many credit unions, including Advancial, limit their membership to people who share the same community or workplace. This means your fellow members likely live or work in the same space as you. By focusing on a limited member-base, you’ll find that credit unions do a better job of meeting your unique needs compared to the big banks you see everywhere.

You Get Better Rates and Fewer Fees
Because credit unions are non-profit and member-owned, all earnings are used to benefit the members. This means members can expect to pay less in fees and interest. Plus, they can enjoy higher rates on savings accounts. Meanwhile, customers at banks are frequently taken advantage of to boost profits. Checking account maintenance fees and paltry interest rates on savings accounts are the norm and show little sign of changing.

You’re Treated Better
Credit unions have historically maintained higher customer satisfaction ratings, thanks to their strong emphasis on member service. Plus, members will discover services that simply don’t exist with the big banks. Have you ever wanted to manage your accounts in-person, but you’re traveling with no familiar branches anywhere? Credit unions, like Advancial, are part of shared branch networks, meaning you can use the services of any credit union in the network. There are over 5,000 shared branches available to Advancial members. Plus, Advancial reimburses fees from all non-Advancial ATMs, meaning our members don’t lose a cent to ATM fees when they aren’t near one of our branches.

You Get the Financial Features You Want
No need to worry about missing any features offered by banks! Checking accounts, savings accounts, youth accounts, credit cards, loans, online banking, a mobile app, mobile wallet compatibility, phone support, chat support, email support and financial education resources are all available at your local credit union.

Are You Happy with Your Financial Institution?
If you’re still a customer at a for-profit bank, now’s a great time to make the switch to a not-for-profit credit union. At Advancial, we offer checking accounts with no monthly fees, no foreign transaction fees, no ATM fees and no minimum account balance requirement. Plus, you can enjoy the benefits of monthly dividends and debit card rewards. Start enjoying our higher deposit rates, lower loan rates and great services by becoming a member at joinadvancial.org.
 

Love your car, but not your loan? Many Americans are paying way too much on their auto loan each month, averaging about $550 per month on new car payments.* If your loan payments…

article preview image Your Guide to Auto Refinancing

Love your car, but not your loan? Many Americans are paying way too much on their auto loan each month, averaging about $550 per month on new car payments.* If your loan payments are too high for your budget or you’re overpaying on interest, then refinancing might be right for you.

What Is Refinancing?

Refinancing is when you replace your current loan with a new one from a different lender. For example, you might have applied for your original loan with a bank that partnered with the car dealership. You decide to refinance through your local credit union, which buys out your original loan. From there, you make your new auto loan payment to your credit union.

A refinanced loan can have an entirely different term length and interest rate than your original loan. So if you’re unhappy with any of your current loan’s terms, it might be time to refinance.

When to Consider Refinancing

You should consider refinancing your auto loan in the following situations:

• The original interest rate was high. A lot can change in the months after buying a car. For example, the Federal Reserve may cut interest rates, lowering rates for many types of new loans. If you’re looking to lower your interest payments, refinancing after rates have dropped is an easy way to save.

• Your credit has improved. If you’ve been making timely payments on your auto loan, there’s a good chance your credit has improved. The better your credit history and the higher your credit score, the more you’re seen as a responsible borrower by lenders. This means you’re more likely to be approved for a loan with a great rate.

• You want to lower your monthly payments. Are car payments taking a big bite out of your paycheck? Refinancing your loan could reduce your monthly payment. This can be accomplished by extending the loan, such as from 36 months to 48 months. For example, maybe you originally borrowed $30,000 with a 36 month term and 3.8% interest rate. Your loan would be $883 per month. After six months, you have $25,234 left and decide to refinance. Even if the interest rate stayed the same, if the new loan had a 48 month term, you would pay only $568 per month.

Another factor to keep in mind: how long you’ve been paying your current loan. It’s more financially savvy to refinance when you’ve not been making payments for too long. That’s because you pay more interest in the beginning and less toward the end of your payment plan.

How to Refinance Your Auto Loan

It doesn’t take long to apply for a refinance, and many applicants can receive a decision in just a few minutes. Follow these steps and you’ll be on your way toward a refinanced auto loan:

1. Check your credit. Before submitting an application, you should be reasonably confident that you’ll qualify for the loan you want. Pull a free credit report from annualcreditreport.com to see if your credit history is in your favor and has no mistakes. You can also check your credit score to get an idea of the interest rate you’ll qualify for.

2. Gather information. You may need to provide the following:

• 10-day payoff amount

• Account number, monthly payment amount, months remaining and interest rate of your current loan

• Current lender’s address

• Driver’s license

• Pay stubs from work

• Social Security number

• Vehicle identification number, mileage, proof of insurance and registration

3. Submit the application. It costs nothing to submit an application and you can expect an answer quickly.

4. Verify the switch is worth it. Use an auto refinance calculator to help you decide if it’s worth refinancing your loan. You should carefully consider whether it’s more important to pay off your loan quickly or lower your monthly payments.

5. Complete the loan forms. Confirm the interest rate and term length and sign the final documents. Your new lender will then pay off the old loan and you’ll start making payments on your new loan.

Switch to a Loan You Like

Learn more about Advancial’s auto loan options, including rates and current offers. You can also apply online today.





 

* Source: LendingTree.

In times like this, you want to be confident that the savings you set aside will be there when you need it. If you’re looking for a safe place to keep your savings for a set period of…
article preview image Stack Up Savings with a Certificate

In times like this, you want to be confident that the savings you set aside will be there when you need it. If you’re looking for a safe place to keep your savings for a set period of time, a savings certificate is a great solution. A certificate earns higher dividend rates than a regular savings account, which can help you reach your goals faster.

You might be surprised by how much you can earn when you let your account balance grow!

Put Your Savings to Work

When you open a savings certificate, you agree to keep your money on deposit for a set amount of time. Certificates are available in terms from three months to five years. In general, the longer you commit your funds, the better the rate you’ll earn. It’s important to choose a maturity date in line with your goals because there may be a penalty for early withdrawal.

When a certificate matures at the end of the term, there’s a grace period, usually about a week, when the funds can be withdrawn. After the grace period, certificates are automatically renewable, making reinvestment quick and easy.

Types of Certificates

Advancial’s lineup of certificates provides more ways to maximize your savings:

  • Regular Certificate — start saving with a minimum of $1,000. Choose from a range of terms available, including 3, 6, 12 and 18 months, and 2, 3, 4 and 5 years.
  • Junior Jumbo and Jumbo Certificates — earn higher annual percentage yield (APY) with a minimum balance requirement of $25,000 (Junior Jumbo) or $50,000 (Jumbo).
  • Milestone Certificate — this add-on certificate has a low minimum of $100 and allows you to add funds to your certificate at your own pace. You’ll be rewarded with higher yields for each milestone you reach.
  • Starter Certificate — these certificates for Money Musketeers® and Dinero Teens® offer low minimums and competitive rates for young savers who meet the age requirements.
  • IRA Certificate — save for retirement with the protection of a certificate and the tax advantages of an individual retirement account (IRA).
Building a Certificate Ladder

You can buy a series of certificates with staggered maturities to have access to a portion of your funds at regular intervals. This strategy, called laddering, can help you take advantage of the best interest rates when rates are changing. If rates are falling, a portion of your money is still earning the higher rates that were available earlier. And if they’re rising, a portion of your money is available to reinvest at the higher rates at regular intervals.

To create a certificate ladder, open a series of certificates with different maturity dates. For example, if you have $4,000 to put into certificates, you might invest $1,000 each in six-month, 12-month, 18-month and two-year certificates. As each certificate matures, you have the option to use the money or reinvest it.

Take Advantage of the Benefits

When you’re ready to start saving, visit advancial.org to open a certificate online or call 800.322.2709 with questions.

Scammers are taking advantage of fears surrounding the Coronavirus. They’re setting up websites to sell bogus products, and using fake emails, texts, and social media posts as a ruse to…
a girl on her phone who is wearing a face mask. How Scammers are using COVID-19
Scammers are taking advantage of fears surrounding the Coronavirus. They’re setting up websites to sell bogus products, and using fake emails, texts, and social media posts as a ruse to take your money and get your personal information.

The emails and posts may be promoting awareness and prevention tips, and fake information about cases in your neighborhood. They also may be asking you to donate to victims, offering advice on unproven treatments, or contain malicious email attachments.

Here are some tips to help you keep the scammers at bay:
  • Don’t click on links from sources you don’t know. It could download a virus onto your computer or device. Make sure the anti-malware and anti-virus software on your computer is up to date.
  • Watch for emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) or experts saying that have information about the virus. For the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus, visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).
  • Ignore online offers for vaccinations. If you see ads touting prevention, treatment, or cure claims for the Coronavirus, ask yourself: if there’s been a medical breakthrough, would you be hearing about it for the first time through an ad or sales pitch?
  • Do your homework when it comes to donations, whether through charities or crowdfunding sites. Don’t let anyone rush you into making a donation. If someone wants donations in cash, by gift card, or by wiring money, don’t do it.
  • Be alert to “investment opportunities.” The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is warning people about online promotions, including on social media, claiming that the products or services of publicly-traded companies can prevent, detect, or cure coronavirus and that the stock of these companies will dramatically increase in value as a result
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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 t…
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…
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 no…
10 Myths About Credit Unions
How much do you know about credit unions? Test yourself on these 10 myths: How many did you believe until today? Myth #1: You must meet strict eligibility requirements. Fact: While credit unions do require that members meet certain requi…
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 thriftine…

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When to Refinance a Mortgage

Contrary to what you may think, signing up for a mortgage loan doesn’t mean you’re trapped in that rate or term. If rates change or events arise that prevent you from paying as you had planned, refinancing might be an effective way to change your monthly payments.
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How to Protect Your Money and Accounts Online

Being able to bank or shop online is a great convenience, but you want to be sure you’re protecting yourself before you hit “send.” If the wrong people access your accounts, you might find yourself with a lot less in the bank than you thought.
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a girl on her phone who is wearing a face mask.

How Scammers are using COVID-19

Scammers are taking advantage of fears surrounding the Coronavirus. They’re setting up websites to sell bogus products, and using fake emails, texts, and social media posts as a ruse to take your money and get your personal information.
 
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We do business in accordance with the Federal Housing Law and the Equal Opportunity Act.

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Your savings are federally insured to at least $250,000 and backed by the full faith and credit of the United States government.

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