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  • Start the New Year with SMART Budgeting, Saving & Investing!

    The start of a new year is a great time to reassess your financial goals.

    Don’t just make a few quick resolutions for 2019 to do better at everything you couldn’t quite get to or complete last year. Instead, focus on three of the most important actions you can take to maintain or improve your financial well-being:

    • Budgeting – This is how you make your short-term goals happen: having enough to pay monthly expenses, enjoy life a little and meet your saving and investing goals.
    • Saving – Here’s how to achieve medium-term goals: maybe it’s a big purchase or a vacation ... things that are too big to come out of your monthly spending.
    • Investing – This one might be the most intimidating, because it’s how you meet long-term goals, like retirement saving ... and retirement is soooo far away, right? Nope. It should be a priority to invest now, to be sure you have enough later.

    Now, challenge yourself to be SMART about those three areas. In other words, make your plans:

    • Specific – Spell out your goals. Budget for what you actually spend, and be sure to remember how some expenses change with the seasons, such as heating, cooling and back-to-school expenses. Save and invest toward specific goals.
    • Measurable – Name those dollars! “Save more” or “Spend less” is not good enough. If you have multiple goals, track your progress toward each one, rather than just watching your total savings or investments go up.
    • Achievable – Set goals that are challenging but within reach. Make sure it’s a goal that YOU can achieve, with your resources.
    • Realistic – Be honest with yourself. Don’t try to save or invest so much that there’s never anything left over. On the other hand, don’t budget so much for “fun” that you can’t save or invest. Being realistic goes both ways.
    • Timely – When EXACTLY do you want to accomplish your goals? Give yourself a firm deadline. If you have a big annual goal, break it down into quarterly goals so you can assess your progress.

    Members 1st Credit Union has the tools and the SMARTs to help you get your financial life in great shape. Stop by to find out how we can help!

  • Is your social media telling you what you need to know?

    Get the latest on social media … rate specials, home improvement ideas and more!

    Everybody seems to have a love/hate relationship with social media … especially people who love to go on it (and often!)! And with a seemingly infinite supply of everything from funny memes to angry politics, there’s plenty to like and dislike.

    However, here at Members 1st Credit Union, we’re not only active on social media, but we try to be helpful AND have a little fun!

    Members 1st posts all sorts of useful things on Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn. We strive to post different types of information on different social sites, as we have many different member/owner needs and like to show we are in-tune with what you want out of your credit union. (On all these sites, we always stay away from politics – left, right or center – but we can’t swear we’ve never posted a cat video!!)

    Pinterest – Members check out our Pinterest boards when they come in about a home improvement loan. We post great ideas about how to save money and specific ideas about bathroom and kitchen renovations. Or, thinking about a loan for a dream vacation? Check out our Pinterest vacation board for a little inspiration!

    Facebook, Instagram – During the recent harsh weather snap, we couldn’t open the office on time because of poor road conditions. Hopefully, you weren’t out that day, but if you needed to visit your credit union, checking Facebook or Instagram would have notified you that our offices were closed before you made the trip. Look for news about interest rate specials and other promotions for members here, as well as job openings at the credit union, changes to hours, emergency updates and a little FUN!

    Twitter – This is the place to go if you want just the facts, ma’am (or sir). We post quick and easy short versions of longer Facebook and Instagram posts on Twitter.

    LinkedIn – Look for professional-type or industry-targeted information here, such as job openings at the credit union, interest rate specials or trending industry topics.

    You can find links to all our social media pages at the very bottom of our home page as well as BELOW. Watch for special promotions coming up in the spring. And whether you LOVE or hate social media, we’re hoping to spread a little information and cheer for you on whichever social channel you prefer!

    Want to know what’s going on at our branches? Find out using the links below!

  • Is the equity in your home working hard enough for you?

    Have you considered a home equity line of credit (HELOC)? Now is the time to do so.

    Although interest rates have remained historically low for the past few years, these days interest rates are starting to rise across the board. That means now might be the perfect time to consider using the equity in your home to pay off higher-interest-rate debt or credit card balances.

    Our most important job at Members 1st Credit Union is to take care of our members, especially when they have a financial need. Depending on what you need the money for and your current situation, if a personal or note loan would be your best option, then that’s what we’ll advise. But sometimes a HELOC can save you quite a bit of money.

    At Members 1st, we traditionally recommend a HELOC to anyone who owns a home with equity. If you’re not using that equity, and you’re carrying higher-interest debt, it’s like you’re sitting on an untapped gold mine. You can definitely save money on interest payments by using the many benefits of a HELOC.

    Some people shy away from a HELOC because they have never had one, or because they worry about tying anything to their house. However, unless you’re planning on selling your home in the next six months, there’s no reason to not consider one.

    Here’s how a HELOC works.

    • The amount is flexible, based on the equity you have in your home.
    • For 10 years, you can draw cash equal to as much as 90% of your home’s equity.
    • Because it is a line of credit, not a loan with a lump-sum distribution, you don’t start paying interest until you start using it. You only pay interest on what you use.
    • Once you have been approved, you can draw out cash against the line at any time without going through another loan approval process.

    When members come in wanting a traditional loan for a big project – say new windows or siding – we tell them a HELOC is a better deal if there is equity in their home. Another benefit is your line of credit could essentially be bigger than the amount you need right now. This definitely would come in use should, five years from now, you have another home project or costly home repairs (such as a furnace unexpectedly going out in the middle of winter!). If you have a HELOC with additional funds on your line, you can simply write a check from that account without going through the approval process for a loan all over again.

    Did you know we currently have a HELOC special for Members 1st Credit Union members who qualify? We’re offering a competitive home equity line of credit with a fixed 3.0% interest rate for three years. Be sure to visit one of our branches to see if you qualify and to get more information. It could help you to save money and best position yourself for your financial future.

  • We Appreciate Our Members!

    You know those corny moments in movies when two best friends exclaim “I love you”? (If it’s a guy movie, they beat on each other’s backs. If it’s a chick flick, they say “Aww!!”) You’ve probably seen it in a million movies, but it works, because you know the friendship is genuine and the emotion is real.

    Just reading our name tells you the most important thing about us – our members are our top priority at Members 1st Credit Union.

    Well, at Members 1st Credit Union, we feel the same way! We truly appreciate and care about our members. We strive to show it every day by offering you something more than a traditional bank. Things like lower lending rates and paying our members the highest possible dividends every year to name a few.

    When you belong to a credit union, you own your financial institution—you’re the boss! Because our members are owners, you have a voice in how Members 1st Credit Union is run. Each year, you can attend our annual meeting in the spring. Watch for an announcement and make plans to attend, so your voice can be heard. We also welcome your input as an owner at any time – we’re here to make your membership experience the best it can be.

    Just like in the movies, sometimes it feels good to say, “We appreciate you!” and do something special. (Especially when food is involved, right?) That’s why we’re hosting Member Appreciation Days this month at both of our branches.

    Friday, Oct. 19, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
    Festus location, 1200 East Gannon Drive, Festus
    Free kettle corn

    Friday, Oct. 26, 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
    Mattis Location, 4702 Mattis Road, St. Louis
    Free hot dogs and drinks

    Members 1st offers a wide variety of products and services for personal and business banking, including checking and savings accounts, credit and debit cards, mobile banking, loans, individual retirement accounts, a nationwide ATM network and more.

  • You Come First at Members 1st!

    Welcome to the very first post of our Members 1st Credit Union blog! We’re glad you’re here, and we hope you’ll come back often. We have lots to share about how being a member of Members 1st has its many advantages. We want you to get the most out of your membership and we’d like to highlight some of those services, programs or features monthly.

    Just reading our name tells you the most important thing about us – our members are our top priority at Members 1st Credit Union.

    However, did you know that our name is relatively new? Even though we’ve been serving members for quite a few years, Members 1st Credit Union was formed when two existing credit unions joined together: Southpointe Credit Union – formed in 1951 to serve the needs of Assumption Catholic Church in St. Louis, then broadened its charter in the early ‘90s to serve the community, and Jeffco Credit Union – established in 1972 to serve all of Jefferson County.

    Those two solid and admired credit unions combined resources in 2015 to form what you know today as your Members 1st Credit Union. We’ve been honored to continue to build on the long-standing traditions of service that go back more than 60 years, serving people who live or work in St. Louis County, St. Louis City, Jefferson County, Franklin County and St. Charles County in Missouri, as well as Madison County and St. Clair County in Illinois.

    Want to know what drives us to put our Members needs 1st? Take a look at our Mission and Vision statements that are at the forefront of every decision we make:

    MISSION STATEMENT: Members 1st Credit Union assists its members through a wide assortment of products and services to make sound financial decisions that lead to their improved financial well-being.

    VISION STATEMENT: Our vision is to be our members’ most trusted financial partner. They think of us first because they know we have the products and services to meet their financial needs and the capability to deliver those products and services in the manner that is the most convenient for them. They also realize that we will always strive to do what is in their best interest.

    Members 1st offers a wide variety of products and services for personal and business banking, including checking and savings accounts, credit and debit cards, mobile banking, loans, individual retirement accounts, a nationwide ATM network and more.

    As a member-owned credit union, we’re different than a bank. Because we are a not-for-profit financial cooperative, our staff and management are committed and better positioned to serve our members’ individual financial needs. As a credit union member, you are also an owner. We operate like a business; however, the profits are returned to members in the form of incredibly competitive rates, programs and dividends.

    To learn more about our services, click around our website, call or stop by at one of our offices to find out what we can do for you.

Mattis office (314) 487-5628 | Festus office (636) 931-7144 | Toll-free (877) 487-5628

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