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Money Matters Blog

Monday, December 31, 2012

Our New Year’s Resolutions – For You

It’s the time of year when people make resolutions on how they can improve their lives, their health, their finances or their overall happiness.

At Community Financial Credit Union, we wanted to share our resolutions to serve our members in 2013.

We resolve to:
-         -       Provide the best service possible: It is our goal to improve the service we provide our members every single day.  If there are ways in which we can improve, please let us know!
-       Invest in local communities: Without our local communities, we wouldn’t exist.  By continuing to invest in building strong communities, we are building a more stable and brighter future for everyone.
-       Educate students: Financial literacy must begin at a young age.  We will continue to work with local schools to bring first-hand financial education into the classroom.
-       Provide low rates on loans for cars, homes and everything else:  Our loan rates have always been among the lowest available.  We will continue to make lending easier for the major purchases in your life.
-       Make your accounts more accessible: From eBanking to mobile apps and text messaging, we are always looking for ways to help you take your accounts with you – wherever you are.
-       Help support small businesses: Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and  we will continue  to lend to keep them strong.  We will help support local businesses get their doors open and grow.
-       Keep our members informed: Our job is to give our members the best advice possible for building a better financial future.  Through emails, newsletters, blogs, social media and other avenues, we pledge to share information with you so you can make the best decisions.
-       Be a strong community credit union: We will always work to be a financially strong community credit union.  Through boom economies or sluggish ones, we will be right here, right for you.

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 24, 2012

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas at Community Financial

‘Twas the Night Before Christmas
And all through CFCU
Not a teller was stirring
Even in the drive-thru

The money was all locked up
In the bank-vault with care
For helping our members save
Is why we are there.

Our team members were nestled
All snug in their beds
While visions of helping others
Danced in their heads

The branch managers slept
In their blankets of down
Content and a-dreaming
of the joy in their town!

It’s been a great year here
Two Thousand and Twelve
We’ve accomplished a lot
Not unlike Santa’s Elves

We’ve warmed Hearts and Homes
O’er this Holiday Season
‘Cause just helping others
Is a pretty good reason!

O’er social media support we did draw
As we donated cash to food pantries, and THAW
And we proved our commitment was stronger than steel
When we added some warm Coats for Kids to the deal!

Our hearts - full of Giving
We’re so full of Pride.
It makes us so happy!
Can’t hold it inside!

It’s all due to our members
Our CFCU clan
They’re just like our family,
Down to the last man.

Membership open to all that
Work or live in in our region
That’s a whole lot of people,
In fact - it’s a legion!

For Car Loans! For Home Loans!
If they need an assist-
We’ll be there for our members
To Fulfill their next wish!

For low down payment options!
For the first time home applicator!
We’re here with the options,
To help make them our neighbor!

Banking here is so easy,
By text, branch, or cell phone
Should they have a question
‘Bout their Savings or Loans!

And we remember the children!
We teach them how to save
It’s a valuable gift
They’ll have all of their days.

Our members- they’re happy!
Satisfaction- Substantial!
It’s something we strive for
At Community Financial.

No matter what makes you merry,
No matter the reason--
We hope that you enjoy
The whole Yuletide season.

Happy Holidays from your friends at CFCU!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Tips for Holiday Shopping on a Budget

According to the National Retail Federation, the average consumer spent $423 over the “Black Friday” weekend this year, which was followed up by a record 129.2 million people making purchases online on Cyber Monday.

All of that spending can lead to a suddenly tight holiday shopping budget, but here are tips to make it last and to make sure everyone on your list is taken care of. 

Create a list ahead of time: Lists aren’t just for Santa Claus. A simple but detailed list of who you’re buying for, how much you want to spend and what gifts you’re planning to buy will help you stay on track, and resist the urge to overspend.

Come prepared: With so much information at your fingertips on the web, it’s a good idea to research deals at your favorite stores and to shop around before you hit the malls. Have a plan and do your research, and you’ll come out of the stores with spare time, and extra cash, in your pocket.

Save money on the little things: Take advantage of offers such as free giftwrapping and free shipping so that your extra funds can go toward gifts or to local charities. You can also save money by re-using supplies from the previous year such as  gift bags you may have  saved from past year.

Use a prepaid card to avoid overspending: With so many tempting deals, it can be difficult to avoid overspending. That’s why it makes sense to bring debit cards instead of credit cards, or prepaid Visa® cards, which are offered at Community Financial. You don’t want to be stuck paying interest months down the line for impulse purchases.

Consider a Holiday Loan from Community Financial: If you think you’ll need a little extra money this holiday season, consider a Holiday Loan from Community Financial (LINK). The loan offers rates as low as 4.74% APR* and could give you up to a $3,000 credit to use for shopping, entertaining, travel or more.

By following some simple steps, you won’t find yourself in a cash crunch this season, or paying for  the holidays well into 2013.

Sources for this article include:

Monday, November 26, 2012

Little Steps Can Go a Long Way in Saving Money on Winter Heat

Saving money is important, and not just when it comes to making purchases. There are strategies you can use to save money every day just by changing little things.

For example, cutting down on energy consumption is a smart way to save, and it’s easy to do. A few simple steps can make a big difference down the line.  But remember safety should always be top of mind considering more homes burn in the winter than at any other time of the year according to the U.S. Fire Administration.

Here are tips for saving money, and staying safe, this upcoming winter season: 

Time for a check-up: DTE Energy recommends scheduling a visit from a qualified heating contractor to make sure your system is operating efficiently prior to each winter season. Filters should be changed to allow more warm airflow, and vents and heat registers should be cleaned.

Watch that thermostat: Keep an eye on your thermostat to make sure you’re not wasting energy. A programmable thermostat can allow you to automatically lower the temperature when you’re away and then increase it just before you get home.

According to DTE, each degree lowered on your thermostat below 72 degrees Fahrenheit will save about three percent on your energy bill, so dial down to make sure you’re not wasting your heat. Research also shows most people sleep best at a degree or two below 70 degrees Fahrenheit.

To find out exactly how much you can save, DTE offers a programmable, detailed thermostat calculator on its website at:
A furnace calculator based on your unit’s efficiency and other factors is also available at
Keep the cold air at bay: Don’t forget to seal off any door or window spaces where air can get through with caulk and/or weather stripping.

Work with nature: Opening curtains during the day will add natural heat through sunlight. Just be sure to close them at night to insulate your windows.   

Consider new programs: DTE Energy offers several new programs to assist customers in saving energy at Discounts, rebates, assistance and home energy audits are among the services offered.

Be safe: Be sure to have your fireplace cleaned out frequently and inspected for cracks and obstructions if you plan to use it this winter. Always make sure the fire is completely out before leaving the house or going to sleep.

With a little time and effort you can stay warm this winter and save some money.   

Sources for this article include:,

Monday, November 19, 2012

Small Business Saturday Supports the “Backbone of Our Economy”

Super-shopping day Black Friday’s little sister, Small Business Saturday, November 24, 2012 is making headway and finding its own place in the American holiday shopping vernacular.

Started in 2010 by American Express with the stated goal of helping small businesses get more exposure during the post-Thanksgiving weekend in which they were often forgotten among the big store advertising frenzy, the movement has grown and become a strong contributor to local economies.  It even has its own Facebook page!

Last year during Small Business Saturday, it is estimated that 103 million Americans participated by shopping at small businesses.  This far exceeded American Express’s expectations of 89 million shoppers.

Locally, the Canton Chamber of Commerce has worked all year to get the word out about the importance of support local businesses. They hope residents continue to support area businesses in the spirit of the new shopping holiday:

“Small Business Saturday was created with the original mindset for consumers or shoppers to patronize those brick-and-mortar business, small and local, and we definitely do the same thing and not just on one day of the year,” said Thomas Paden, president of the Canton Chamber, which works in partnership with the Canton Downtown Development Authority on its ‘Shop Canton’ promotion.

“We’re definitely promoters of small businesses in the local community because they are the backbone not just of the Canton community, but they are a backbone nationwide.”

Statistics released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2010 back those words up, as it announced that small firms accounted for about 60-percent of the nearly 1.2 million jobs created and have thrived despite uncertain economic times and trouble getting loans from banks.

But now, thanks to conscious consumers, promotions like Small Business Saturday, and institutions such as Community Financial Credit Union providing them with the loans they need, things are looking up for many of America’s most important economic engines.

So remember to support your favorite local businesses during the holiday shopping season.  If you are a small business owner, give Community Financial a call to find out how we can help grow your small business.  For more information on Small Business Saturday and to find small businesses in your area, visit the U.S. Small Business Administration here.

For more information on Community Financial’s Business Services, contact Business Development Officers David Sanctorum at (734) 582-8850 or Mark Evenson at (734)-751-5723.