Does Closing a Credit Card Affect Your Credit Score? 

Your old credit card. It has plagued your thoughts and haunted your monthly bottom line for years—even decades. That exhilarating moment you FINALLY pay it off gives you such relief that you want to cut the card up and bid the credit card company good riddance forever.   But is this really the best move for your credit score? Starting off with a clean slate might feel good, but sometimes holding on to an “old friend” is better. Let’s dig a little deeper.  Anatomy of a Credit Score  Before we get too deep, it’s wise to explore the anatomy of a credit score and how closing a credit card may affect it.  Your credit score consists of five factors:  Payment history  Amount owed  Length of credit history (how long accounts…

February 15, 2021Borrowing Basics, Wallet Wins No Comments

Your old credit card. It has plagued your thoughts and haunted your monthly bottom line for years—even decades. That exhilarating moment you FINALLY pay it off gives you such relief that you want to cut the card up and bid the credit card company good riddance forever.   But is this really the best move for your credit score? Starting off with a clean slate might feel good, but sometimes holding on to an “old friend” is better. Let’s dig a little deeper.  Anatomy of a Credit Score  Before we get too deep, it’s wise to explore the anatomy of a credit score and how closing a credit card may affect it.  Your credit score consists of five factors:  Payment history  Amount owed  Length of credit history (how long accounts…

A Celebration of Black History

In celebration of Black History Month, PEFCU would like to explore the rich history of the Black community’s relationship to banking and the cooperative spirit that many credit union members share. Mutual Aid Societies & Cooperatives Before modern credit unions began, community-oriented institutions were set up to serve freedmen in the North. Like credit unions, they were co-owned by all their members, provided the community with affordable alternatives for financial services, and fostered self-sufficiency. By the late 18th century, northern Black populations had established mutual aid societies and cooperatives, creating networks that helped advance the community by supplying clothes, healthcare,…

February 5, 2021We Are PEFCU No Comments

In celebration of Black History Month, PEFCU would like to explore the rich history of the Black community’s relationship to banking and the cooperative spirit that many credit union members share. Mutual Aid Societies & Cooperatives Before modern credit unions began, community-oriented institutions were set up to serve freedmen in the North. Like credit unions, they were co-owned by all their members, provided the community with affordable alternatives for financial services, and fostered self-sufficiency. By the late 18th century, northern Black populations had established mutual aid societies and cooperatives, creating networks that helped advance the community by supplying clothes, healthcare,…

Which Savings Options Are Right for YOU? 

When it comes to saving money, most people begin with a basic savings account. Then, they move directly into market-based investments, like stocks and bonds. However, before you jump into higher-risk market-based investments, know that PEFCU offers many investment options that have great returns with little to no risk. Let’s review these options in more detail so you can choose some that will help you live your best financial life.  PEFCU Prime Share Savings Account  Savings accounts are your first step to saving money. This option is good to use as an emergency fund account; if an unforeseen event occurs, you have the money available to pay for any costs. Another use of a savings account is to save for the holidays or vacations,…

February 2, 2021Future Planning, Wallet Wins No Comments

When it comes to saving money, most people begin with a basic savings account. Then, they move directly into market-based investments, like stocks and bonds. However, before you jump into higher-risk market-based investments, know that PEFCU offers many investment options that have great returns with little to no risk. Let’s review these options in more detail so you can choose some that will help you live your best financial life.  PEFCU Prime Share Savings Account  Savings accounts are your first step to saving money. This option is good to use as an emergency fund account; if an unforeseen event occurs, you have the money available to pay for any costs. Another use of a savings account is to save for the holidays or vacations,…

5 Budget-Friendly Ways to Romance Your Valentine

The chocolates. The hearts. The flowers! Valentine’s Day is the most romantic day of the year, right?  It can also be one of the most expensive, especially if you’re wining and dining your sweetheart.  We’ve got a secret for you: Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be pricey. There are plenty of fun, romantic, cute things you can do to romance your honey on that date without wondering if your card will be declined at the end of the night.  Cook Dinner Together.  It’s popular to dine out at an expensive restaurant on Valentine’s Day. However, having more diners means that restaurants get crowded and that their employees are pushed to their limits. Plus, the price of the…

February 1, 2021Wallet Wins No Comments

The chocolates. The hearts. The flowers! Valentine’s Day is the most romantic day of the year, right?  It can also be one of the most expensive, especially if you’re wining and dining your sweetheart.  We’ve got a secret for you: Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be pricey. There are plenty of fun, romantic, cute things you can do to romance your honey on that date without wondering if your card will be declined at the end of the night.  Cook Dinner Together.  It’s popular to dine out at an expensive restaurant on Valentine’s Day. However, having more diners means that restaurants get crowded and that their employees are pushed to their limits. Plus, the price of the…

Q & A with Tina Green, Head Teller, 25 years 

At PEFCU, we are proud of what each of our employees brings to our Credit Union. We are especially proud to showcase the employees who have contributed to our organization for many years. When our employees love PEFCU enough to stay with us, it shows that we have a lot to offer.  One of those employees is Tina Green, Lakeland Head Teller, who has been with PEFCU for 25 years. We interviewed Tina to find out why PEFCU won her heart. Check out the interview below:    Q: Why did you choose to join the PEFCU team?  A: I chose PEFCU because I heard it was a wonderful place to work. The Credit…

January 25, 2021We Are PEFCU No Comments

At PEFCU, we are proud of what each of our employees brings to our Credit Union. We are especially proud to showcase the employees who have contributed to our organization for many years. When our employees love PEFCU enough to stay with us, it shows that we have a lot to offer.  One of those employees is Tina Green, Lakeland Head Teller, who has been with PEFCU for 25 years. We interviewed Tina to find out why PEFCU won her heart. Check out the interview below:    Q: Why did you choose to join the PEFCU team?  A: I chose PEFCU because I heard it was a wonderful place to work. The Credit…

4 Ways to Stop Impulse Buying

Right now, you can easily buy anything with a quick swipe, tap, or click at any online or brick-and-mortar store. All these stores constantly push impulse buying on you by design, and that makes it hard to say no. But you can take control of impulse buying once you stick to a few of these rules.    1. Don’t Go Cold Turkey. Cutting yourself off cold turkey from impulse buying is not always the right move. This makes many people feel like they’re being punished, and they may want to rebel against their self-imposed restrictions. Be realistic and admit that everyone deserves a fun treat occasionally, even you. Allow yourself a couple of impulse purchases.   To stay in control, give yourself a weekly or monthly allowance, but don’t spend more than that. This helps you balance your need to enjoy the fruits of…

January 25, 2021Wallet Wins No Comments

Right now, you can easily buy anything with a quick swipe, tap, or click at any online or brick-and-mortar store. All these stores constantly push impulse buying on you by design, and that makes it hard to say no. But you can take control of impulse buying once you stick to a few of these rules.    1. Don’t Go Cold Turkey. Cutting yourself off cold turkey from impulse buying is not always the right move. This makes many people feel like they’re being punished, and they may want to rebel against their self-imposed restrictions. Be realistic and admit that everyone deserves a fun treat occasionally, even you. Allow yourself a couple of impulse purchases.   To stay in control, give yourself a weekly or monthly allowance, but don’t spend more than that. This helps you balance your need to enjoy the fruits of…

11 Smart Ways to Protect Your Personal Data

Fraud prevention can take some effort, but it’s worth it. Especially when your financial security is on the line. These days, you can’t confuse a constant awareness of fraud risk with paranoia, because it’s easy to fall victim to scams. However, common sense goes a long way toward keeping your accounts secure.  Remember, YOU are the first line of defense in protecting your data. Learn about new threats, stay current, and take necessary precautions to keep your personal information secure.   Here are eleven common-sense tips for protecting your personal data:   1. Think twice.   From the clerk asking for your email address at your favorite store to the food delivery website requiring your address, there’s always someone asking…

January 25, 2021Wallet Wins No Comments

Fraud prevention can take some effort, but it’s worth it. Especially when your financial security is on the line. These days, you can’t confuse a constant awareness of fraud risk with paranoia, because it’s easy to fall victim to scams. However, common sense goes a long way toward keeping your accounts secure.  Remember, YOU are the first line of defense in protecting your data. Learn about new threats, stay current, and take necessary precautions to keep your personal information secure.   Here are eleven common-sense tips for protecting your personal data:   1. Think twice.   From the clerk asking for your email address at your favorite store to the food delivery website requiring your address, there’s always someone asking…

3 Strategies for Improving Your Credit Score

Your credit score is a number you need to know. Lenders, insurance companies, and even some employers use this score to decide how reliable you are. It pays to do your best to make sure it’s as high as can be.   There are many ways to find out your credit score. As a PEFCU member, you can access your score with the FICO feature in our mobile banking app. Your FICO score, the most widely used credit scoring tool, specifically details what affects your score. If you need more details, you can order a free copy of your credit report through www.AnnualCreditReport.com. From there, you can check to see if the information on your report is correct and file a complaint if necessary.   If you’re ready to boost your score, take these three steps to…

January 19, 2021Borrowing Basics, Wallet Wins No Comments

Your credit score is a number you need to know. Lenders, insurance companies, and even some employers use this score to decide how reliable you are. It pays to do your best to make sure it’s as high as can be.   There are many ways to find out your credit score. As a PEFCU member, you can access your score with the FICO feature in our mobile banking app. Your FICO score, the most widely used credit scoring tool, specifically details what affects your score. If you need more details, you can order a free copy of your credit report through www.AnnualCreditReport.com. From there, you can check to see if the information on your report is correct and file a complaint if necessary.   If you’re ready to boost your score, take these three steps to…

Make Your Retirement Money Now

The best reason to start saving for retirement now is that your money will grow right away. The money your savings earn this year will keep growing for many years in the future. It‘s this cumulative effect of saving over time that makes today’s $1,000 contribution to your retirement plan much more valuable than the $1,000 you might sock the day before your retirement.    Why Take Responsibility for Your Retirement Early?  Imagine you just turned 25. If you were able to save just $250 per month in an investment account earning 5% APY, by the time you hit your 65th birthday, your savings would be over $370,000!  But if you waited until you were 50 years old and plan to still…

January 19, 2021Future Planning No Comments

The best reason to start saving for retirement now is that your money will grow right away. The money your savings earn this year will keep growing for many years in the future. It‘s this cumulative effect of saving over time that makes today’s $1,000 contribution to your retirement plan much more valuable than the $1,000 you might sock the day before your retirement.    Why Take Responsibility for Your Retirement Early?  Imagine you just turned 25. If you were able to save just $250 per month in an investment account earning 5% APY, by the time you hit your 65th birthday, your savings would be over $370,000!  But if you waited until you were 50 years old and plan to still…

Building Good Financial Habits for Life 

Where do you see yourself a year from now? Hopefully, you see yourself better off financially. But resolutions and goals with no plan are bound to fail.   While it’s reported that around 73% of Americans plan to start the new year with resolutions, about 12% of them don’t even think their goals are possible. In fact, an average of 80% of us don’t meet our resolution goals.   But failing to meet your resolution doesn’t make you a failure. In fact, you’re an amazing person who might not have an amazing plan. We want to see you live your best financial life as much…

January 4, 2021Borrowing Basics, Future Planning, Wallet Wins 3 Comments

Where do you see yourself a year from now? Hopefully, you see yourself better off financially. But resolutions and goals with no plan are bound to fail.   While it’s reported that around 73% of Americans plan to start the new year with resolutions, about 12% of them don’t even think their goals are possible. In fact, an average of 80% of us don’t meet our resolution goals.   But failing to meet your resolution doesn’t make you a failure. In fact, you’re an amazing person who might not have an amazing plan. We want to see you live your best financial life as much…