Tips to Create a Budget

America Saves Week, an annual event sponsored by the Consumer Federation of America, is Feb. 24 to March 1. In these tough economic times, it is more important than ever for families to develop a budget and stick to it. Rainy-day funds, savings for college or just making your rent payment can all be made easier . . . → Read More: Tips to Create a Budget

Mobile Banking: Safety First

As mobile banking continues to exceed online users, it’s more important than ever for customers to use mobile banking safely. Convenience is the driving factor in the rise of mobile banking. It opens the doors to consumer choice and access to banking options. But, as mobile devices such as smartphones and iPads become more popular, . . . → Read More: Mobile Banking: Safety First

Ten Timely Tax Time Tips

The income tax filing season has begun, and important tax documents should be arriving in your mailbox. Although your return is not due until April 15, you can make tax time easier on yourself with an early start. Here are 10 tips to help ensure a smooth tax-filing process.

1. Create a system for organizing tax documents . . . → Read More: Ten Timely Tax Time Tips

Save Energy & Save Money

Now is the perfect time to assess your home’s energy efficiency. An energy-efficient home can keep your family comfortable, save you money and make your home more attractive to buyers when you sell. Whether you take simple steps or make larger investments, you’ll likely decrease your average utility bill. Over time, those savings will automatically put . . . → Read More: Save Energy & Save Money

New Year’s Resolutions — For Your Wallet!

As you’re considering your New Year’s resolutions for 2014, don’t forget to think about your money. The New Year is a great time to assess your finances, gain control and stick to a new budget or saving plan. Taking control of your personal finances will allow you to save and prepare for unexpected expenses. Here are . . . → Read More: New Year’s Resolutions — For Your Wallet!

IRS Warns of Tax-Time Scams

It’s true: tax scams proliferate during the income tax filing season. This year’s season opens on Jan. 31. The IRS provides the following scam warnings so you can protect yourself and avoid becoming a victim of these crimes:

• Be vigilant of any unexpected communication purportedly from the IRS at the start of tax season.
• Don’t fall for phone . . . → Read More: IRS Warns of Tax-Time Scams

When News Breaks, Be Aware of Scams

Attackers like to use real world events when they can. Public interests can help them determine what people are more likely to click on, making their attacks more successful. Here are a few ways the news can be used against you:

• Phishing . . . → Read More: When News Breaks, Be Aware of Scams

Protect Your Physical Wallet

As consumers spend time online protecting their identity, now is a good time to look at how you store personal information in and around your home. Local bankers urge you to protect your physical wallet with these tips:
1. Safeguard your identity in physical locations. Secure your valuables – electronic devices, purses, wallets, etc. Do not leave . . . → Read More: Protect Your Physical Wallet

What Makes a Good Password?

Choosing a good password is one of the first steps in protecting yourself online. Consider the following tips when creating a good password:

• Private: it is used and known by one person only;
• Secret: it does not appear in clear text in any file or program or on a piece of paper;
• Easily remembered: so there . . . → Read More: What Makes a Good Password?

Got a Charity that’s Near & Dear?

Consider using Qualified Charitable Distributions to benefit you and your favorite non-profit

Qualified Charitable Distributions (QCDs) from your IRA account are authorized for 2013 as long as they are made by December 31, 2013. Local charities and other non-profit organizations benefit when qualifying individuals make QCDs. The individual benefits, too. A QCD is a tax-free distribution and . . . → Read More: Got a Charity that’s Near & Dear?