7 Ways To Save On Thanksgiving Costs This Month

Date October 18, 2017

It’s hard to believe that we’e already talking about the holidays, but they’ll be here before we know it!

Between your turkey, ingredients for the holiday meal and décor to set the ambiance, hosting a Thanksgiving dinner is not cheap.

If you’re looking for ways to cut back without compromising on quality, read on for seven easy ways to save on Thanksgiving costs this year. 

1.) Verify your guests’ attendance

Get an accurate head count of your dinner guests. Verify that all who are invited are indeed planning on showing, and only then begin planning your menu.

2.) Find out what your guests like

While doing your inviting, find out your guests’ individual tastes and diets. Be sure to ask about particular foods your guests like to eat and those they won’t touch. If something on your menu isn’t very popular with your guests, skip it – even if you think it’s “obligatory” for a Thanksgiving table.

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Holiday Hacks For Traveling College Students

Date October 16, 2017

With the holiday season fast approaching, college students across the country are thinking about their trips home. Whether you choose to go home for Thanksgiving or Winter Break -or both – if that trip means hopping on a plane, you’re looking at some big expenses. Can a cash-strapped college student pay for airline flights during the most expensive traveling seasons of the year without going broke? They sure can! Here’s how:

1.) Start saving now

If you’ve got a part-time job, start skimming a bit off each paycheck for holiday travel costs. You can also skip one pricey indulgence each week from now until the holidays. This small sacrifice will help you save up that extra cash for when it’s time to travel. Every little bit adds up!

2.) Use student discounts

Some airlines understand that you’re a college student wanting to spend time with family over the holidays. That’s why some, like American Airlines, offer discounts for students of specific colleges. You can also look for other student discounts on sites like studentuniverse.com and STAtravel.com.

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I Need Money Fast! Is a Personal Loan the Answer?

Date October 13, 2017

Q: I need to get money together in a hurry. What can I do? Help!

A: There are times in your life when you need cash fast. It may be hospital bills, car trouble or crushing debt. A personal loan is for times like these. Personal loans range from $1,000 to more than $50,000, and are not secured with collateral. That means there’s no property that backs the value of the loan. Personal loans may seem attractive, but they do come with some downsides. Is a personal loan right for you? And if so, how do you go about getting one?

Let’s take a look at four critical questions to ask before getting a personal loan.

1) How’s my credit score?

Closely examine your credit score. You can check your credit score once a year at annualcreditreport.com. If your credit score is above average, finding a personal loan with a reasonable interest rate is easier. If your score is lower than you’d like, try a secured loan. Rates on secured loans are usually lower. You provide collateral as insurance in case you can’t pay it back on time. In many cases, you can use your savings account as collateral, but be sure to pay on time!

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Payroll (Pay) Card Or Direct Deposit?

Date October 10, 2017

Q: My workplace is offering employees a choice of receiving their wages by direct deposit or pay cards. What are the main differences between the two options?

A: Direct deposit  means your paycheck will be deposited right into your checking account, while a pay card works much like a prepaid gift card. There are many other differences, though. Here’s some things you’ll want to know about the two options:

1.) Attached fees

When your paycheck is directly deposited into your accounts at Matadors Community Credit Union, you keep every dollar; we never charge you for putting money into your account.With pay cards, though, fees are often attached to every point-of-sale transaction. Also, in order to access your cash, you may need to use an ATM, which means you may have to pay a surcharge to the ATM owner for doing so.

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How Low Can You Go? Give Your Child The Grocery Challenge

Date October 6, 2017

young girl grocery shopping with her motherDo you ever feel like all your money goes toward groceries? Out of all the non-fixed expenses a household can have, food costs take the biggest bite out of the average monthly budget. Understandably, trying to trim the family’s grocery bill is an ongoing battle for most of us. Give your kids a leg up on this lifelong skill by challenging them with this fun and educational activity.

Materials needed:

  • Coupon circulars and/or newspapers
  • Writing materials
  • Calculator
  • Piggy bank

Instructions:

  1. Give your child a reasonable budget to be used for a week’s worth of groceries for your family.

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Should I Make A Balance Transfer?

Date October 4, 2017

Q: I’m considering a balance transfer to an interest-free card. Is that a good idea?

A: Transferring some or all of your credit card debt to one that includes an introductory interest-free period can help you move toward a debt-free life. However, there are some things to be aware of. Consider these pros and cons:

Pros

1. Interest-free debt

Your biggest push for making a balance transfer is to get a break from the interest that’s added to your balance. Depending on the offer, that may be up to 21 months. Making a balance transfer will allow you to take a real bite out of your debt and make progress toward getting rid of it completely.

2. Convenience

The more monthly bills you need to pay, the greater the chance of missing a payment. A balance transfer lets you consolidate the balance on several different cards into one, decreasing the number of monthly payments you need to make.

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Buy a New Car AND Get a Special Rate Discount!

Date October 2, 2017

For a limited time, you can buy a new or pre-owned car, without the hassle of visiting a Dealership, and you can enjoy a special low rate! Now through November 30th, when you buy a car through Autoland, and finance with MCCU, we’ll lower your rate by .25% APR!²

Autoland works for you, saving you both time and hassle to get your perfect vehicle at a fair price. There’s no obligation and your personal Autoland Consultant is available to help you regardless of where you buy your next car.

Q. Who is Autoland and how does the service work?
A. Since 1971, Autoland has helped credit union members get their perfect vehicle. Your personal Consultant will do all the work to find the model and options you want, secure a fair price and coordinate your Matadors auto loan. They’ll even deliver your vehicle to the credit union!

Q. Why should I shop with Autoland?
A. With Autoland, there’s no need to search all over for the perfect vehicle only to settle for something less and haggle for hours over price. You’ll get the vehicle you want at a great value, including all available manufacturer incentives.

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Debit Cards – Credit Cards With Training Wheels

Date September 29, 2017

teenager with cashWhen it’s time for teenagers to drive, they’ll need to pay for gas, insurance, and vehicle maintenance costs. Plus, whenever they are out on the road, there’s a good chance they may be spending money at restaurants, stores, and theaters too.

You probably don’t want your teenager carrying a lot of cash, so that means they’ll need a credit card. What may have been a luxury for many parents when they were young is now a necessity for our teenagers, and it’s crucial to establish spending boundaries long before they get in the car and drive away for the first time.

Fortunately, you have some good alternatives for controlling how much your child is able to spend. Handing your teenager a high-limit credit card with your name on it is not one of the best alternatives, so let’s explore a couple others.

You can set up a separate share draft account (checking account) in your child’s name, with a debit card issued in their name as well. This is the best way for a teenager to get in touch and stay in touch with the responsibility for monitoring an account balance and spending limits. If there’s only $10 in the account, there’s probably not enough to buy gas and get around. That means it’s time to talk to mom and dad about making a deposit. Plus, with this account, we’ve already set a limit on how much they can withdraw from the ATM each day.

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How To Spot A Credit Repair Scam 

Date September 26, 2017

Credit repair scammers tell you they can make credit repair quick and easy. Unfortunately, when they’re done, your score may still be low, you’ll have lost a nice chunk of change and may even be facing criminal charges. Here are the warning signs of a credit repair scam:

1.) Upfront payment
Under the Credit Repair Organizations Act (CROA), credit repair companies are forbidden to request or receive payment until they’ve completed the services they’ve promised.

2.) Big promises
Scammers may claim they can remove negative information from your credit report, even information that is accurate and current. Don’t believe them; no one can do this. They might also promise to boost your score in just a few weeks. This, too, isn’t true. It takes at least 30 days for changes to be evident on your credit report.

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International Credit Union Day: Dreams Thrive Here

Date September 21, 2017

Two people being helped by an employee at a deskAre you as excited as we are to celebrate International Credit Union Day on Oct. 19, 2017?

It’s a day to share your experiences as a member and to reflect upon all the benefits you enjoy by being a part of your credit union.

Each year, CUNA (Credit Union National Association) and the World Council of Credit Unions chooses a theme for ICU Day. This year’s theme, which was selected via an online poll of credit union professionals, is “Dreams Thrive Here.” As a credit union member, you know this statement is true. Credit unions help your dreams thrive by helping to make them possible.

In the spirit of ICU Day, let’s take a quick look at four factors that make credit unions the best choice and allow your dreams to thrive.

1.) Members first
As a member of a credit union, you are treated like a person, not a number. Credit Unions strive to offer members the best products and services that YOU want and need. Your credit union is not betrothed to Wall Street – we only want what’s best for you. This means we can focus on offering you superior service.

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