Be Merry and Bright–Shop Wisely Online During the Holidays

 

Protecting your privacy is essential when shopping online. These signals indicate that you have entered a secure Web page:

* A screen notice that says you are visiting a secure site

* A closed lock or unbroken key in the bottom corner of your screen

* The first letters of the Internet address you are viewing change from “http” to “https”

Source: Federal Citizen Information Center

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Know Your Priorities to Make Holidays Special

Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, or the solstice, the holiday season can be stressful—with financial stress often playing a large role.

Figure out what makes the holidays special for you and your family and allocate most of your spending to those things. Maybe there are other, less important things you can scale back or skip.

For instance, if you love hosting a lavish holiday dinner but are ho-hum about festive holiday clothing, don’t buy that new outfit. Budget more for your dinner instead. The key is to set priorities and identify the important things.

And remember that handmade or homemade goodies, charitable gifts, or the gift of time can mean much more to recipients than presents.

Here are some ideas:

* Give loved ones a framed photograph of a place or event that is special to both of you.
* Make a charitable contribution in someone else’s name. Give to a fund that person believes in.
* Offer to help with a project around the house, take a friend to lunch, or just go for a walk together.
* Give baked goods or premade dinners to family or friends.
* Offer to pet sit or babysit free of charge.

The holidays tend to bring people together. “So if you have a bad relationship it’s a great gift to mend it and make amends,” says Rob Severson, a financing coach in Deep Haven, Minn. “You’ll be a lot happier if you don’t wait and it will probably mean a lot more than a box of candy.”

The holidays are about being focused on others, which actually makes it easier to budget. The less self-centered you are, the less likely you are to have financial issues from spending every nickel on yourself.

Generally the holidays require some gift buying. To help get ahead on next year’s shopping, set up a HOpewell HOliday Club account at Hopewell Federal Credit Union today. Call us at 740.522.8311 or contact us at info@hopewellfcu.org.

Copyright 2011 Credit Union National Association Inc. Information subject to change without notice. For use with members of a single credit union. All other rights reserved.

Please be Advised: HOPEWELL FED FUND is in no way affiliated with Hopewell Federal Credit Union

This is a phishing scam and is fraud.  Despite how useful technology is, it can also be a dangerous place for phishing scams or fraud placement.  We want you to be safe and not fall prey to these types of vicious online attacks.  Please remember to follow a few simple steps for online safety:

NEVER respond to emails requesting account information. Hopewell Federal Credit Union will never request that you provide your Social Security Number, Tax ID Number or any other sensitive information via email.

NEVER click on a suspicious link from someone you do not know. 

ALWAYS enter information by going to www.hopewellfcu.org. DO NOT use an alternative website address to enter account or personal information.

ALWAYS feel free contact Hopewell Federal Credit Union at 740.522.8311 if you feel something is suspicious or fraudulent.

For printed information, click here.

CREDIT UNION REPORTS ‘WE’RE READY’ TO RECEIVE NEW MEMBERS’

Nationwide movement urges customers of big banks to switch to credit unions

With thousands of consumers pledging to move their money to a credit union by Nov. 5 as part of “Bank Transfer Day,” Hopewell Federal Credit Union of Heath/Newark, Ohio reports it is ready to accept new members now.

“Every day is a good day to join a credit union,” said James G. Johnson, President / CEO of Hopewell Federal Credit Union.   Now is the time to become one of more than 92 million Americans nationwide who are already enjoying the advantages of credit union membership.” Johnson said consumers who do make the switch will find that on just about any given day, on average, credit unions offer higher return on most savings, lower rates on most loans, and lower (or no) fees than other financial institutions charge. (See the national daily rate comparison at http://creditunion.coop/ratedex.php).

In fact, the Credit Union National Association (CUNA) estimates that, over the last year (12 months ending June ’11), the average credit union member saved $69 (and $132 per household) just by doing business at a credit union. And that’s on average; the more a consumer does with a credit union, the more the consumer saves.

For example: Financing a $25,000 new car for 60 months at a credit union would save a credit union member an average of $174 each year in interest expense compared to what that member would pay at a bank. That’s about $1,000 in savings over five years.

Johnson added that credit unions are not-for-profit financial cooperatives, organized solely to meet the needs of their members, who govern the institution by electing from within the membership officers and directors (who establish the policies under which the credit union operates). The elected officials may also employ professional management to run the credit union day-by-day. Voting is one person, one vote, meaning every member has an equal voice regardless of the amount of savings or loans they have with the credit union.

To join a credit union, a person must meet eligibility requirements (called a “field of membership.”) Typical fields of membership include employee groups, associations, religious or fraternal affiliations and residential areas. “Not everybody can join any credit union — but there is a credit union for everybody,” Johnson said.  “Make your best decision based on your needs and that of your family,” Johnson added. “If you like saving money, and conducting your financial business at a place that focuses on your needs, join a credit union.”