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Jan 17, 2017

Financial planning resources

Do you find financial planning intimidating? You are not alone; there are millions of Americans just like you. Fortunately, there are resources available that can help you. Here are 8 resources that are free or low cost and can help you navigate your financial waters.

1) Money Magazine
Founded in 1972, Money Magazine has a circulation of almost two million and is owned by the same corporation that owns TIME. Topics include investing, saving, retirement, and taxes. How will you pay for college, with its skyrocketing cost? How will you maximize your career? Which home improvements make sense? Learn more by reading Money magazine, it is a fascinating magazine! Next time you see publication in the news stand check it out. It is easy to read.

2) Kiplinger magazine
Founded in 1947, Kiplinger has a circulation of 700,000 and covers many of the same topics as Money. Recent topics include dividend-paying stocks and smart ways to invest $1,000. Kiplinger, like Money, is an excellent publication for those trying to become more money savvy. It’s definitely worth the twenty or so bucks to subscribe for a year. Their website is also extremely helpful, with lots of high-quality articles.

3) Mint, a powerful, free, app
It updates you on your finances. This is great, as other programs force you to download updates to your computer. Mint is automatic. This is a great way to get a financial snapshot of how you are doing financially. Know up to the minute of how you are doing. For many, this is much better than waiting until the end of the month when you’ve done your finances for the month. It’s made by the same people behind Quicken (Intuit.)

4) For power users, there’s Quicken
Quicken does pretty much everything Mint does, but it offers even more. Quicken can be used to record tax-deductible expenses, forecast cash flow, create spending records, pay monthly bills and track investment performance. If your situation is more complex and you have time on your hands to analyze activity, then Quicken is for you. However, remember Quicken costs money. Personally, I prefer Mint and a little bit of spreadsheet work. But I have friends that use Quicken and would highly recommend it.

5) Numerous free finance blogs
For example, check out Mr. Money Mustache. It’s written by a guy who was able to retire in his 30s. There’s a blog for everyone out there. If you like spending money on travel reward cards and getting free trips, there are blogs for that too. Content is usually free and advertising is usually not the intrusive. For the most part, sites do not have popups or spyware. Use Google to find these sights. Alternatively, you can ask for recommendations on forums.

6) Speak with a Financially Savvy Friend or Family Member
Sometimes they can be a great resource! Fortunately, they often love to help people out with their financial issues. This is free advice. Just be sure to occasionally fact check what they say. But often their advice is as good as an expert. It wouldn’t be a bad idea to take them out to dinner and run your finances by them. Just be sure that you can trust them and that they won’t talk about your money details to friends and family. That can be embarrassing and awkward.

7) Library Books
There are hundreds of great personal finance books out there. Although finance books can sometimes be a little dry and slow reads (there are some easy reads, however), you can usually check out books for two weeks or more. Fortunately, if you’ve read a few you likely do not have to read more. Personal finance usually just means sticking to a few rules. The most important of course is living beneath your means, saving and investing. But check out a book from the library to learn more.

8) Hire a Financial Planner
For someone very busy, sometimes leaving it to the experts is the best possible solution. Many people have stressful jobs. After their family life, they have little time left over to learn financial planning. This is why financial planners exist. Their entire profession is based on giving other people financial advice. Some even have the CFP designation, which stands for certified financial planner. A financial planner has to take extra classes and pass a very difficult test to gain the CFP designation. Be selective, choosing a financial planner is an important decision.

Financial planning can be difficult. Use the 8 resources listed above to help you plan.

Jan 10, 2017

Uchoose rewards

Not only does your Eastex VISA PLATINUM REWARDS Credit Card offer convenience and a great low rate, now you can earn the rewards* you want and deserve! It’s simple: accumulate points when you make purchases with your Eastex VISA PLATINUM REWARDS Credit Card, then redeem your points for millions of items like travel, gift cards and brand name products.

*rewards program is valid only on Eastex VISA PLATINUM REWARDS Credit Card accounts.

How Does it Work?

Sign Up, Shop, Select

  1. Sign Up – you are required to register your card at uchooserewards.com to begin earning points.
  2. Shop – each time you use your card for purchases in-store or online, you’ll earn 1-point per $1 spent.
  3. Select – check POINTS balance and redeem points on millions of items at uchooserewards.com.

Don’t have an Eastex VISA PLATINUM REWARDS Credit Card, it is fast and easy to apply!*

Click Here to apply online, call us at 866-445-9622 or stop by any of our convenient locations and speak to a loan officer today!

*normal credit criteria applies.

Get Started Today!

If you already have a Eastex VISA PLATINUM REWARDS Credit Card, visit www.uchooserewards.com and register to get started. Plus you will find information and tools to help you make the most of your rewards including:

  • A complete list of in-store and online-only retailers
  • Access to search tools to help find the right retailer – use keywords, categories, zip code searches and more
  • A full online catalog of redemptions options – including cash back
  • Create a Wish List to track items you really want
  • Smart shopping advise so you spend your money wisely
  • And much more!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is uChoose Rewards®?

uChoose Rewards is a rewards program where you earn points for shopping or using your Eastex CU Visa Platinum Rewards Credit Card, then redeem your points for anything of your choice from a huge online rewards catalog.

How do I earn points?

You earn 1-point per $1 every time you use your Eastex CU Platinum Rewards Card. Whether you shop in-store or online, you’ll earn points.

Where can I earn points?

You earn points everywhere your card is accepted.

What can I redeem my points for?

You can redeem your points for literally thousands of options. It all depends on your personal preferences. You can get event tickets, electronics and hi-tech gadgets, spa treatments, apparel, airline tickets, activity vouchers – the list goes on and on. Browse the redemption section to see all the exciting options available to you. We keep track of all the points you earn and will help you find just what you are looking for when you are ready to redeem. We even have a Wish List that will help you track when you have earned enough to redeem a specific item.

Jan 3, 2017

Financial Resolution

New Year, New Resolutions!

The start of a new calendar year represents a fresh start for many people. Some commit to lose weight, get fit, become organized or spend more time with family and friends. One important resolution that often gets overlooked is a Financial Resolution.

Whether getting out of debt, saving for a down payment on a new home or investing in retirement is on your horizon, implement some of these simple strategies below to set your New Year’s Financial Resolution in action.

Review Your Finances

Take the time to do a thorough financial assessment. Commit to regularly reviewing your income, expense, debt and savings. The more often you review your budget, the easier it becomes.

Create a Monthly Budget

If you don’t know where your money is going, how are you going to prevent overspending? Remember to be realistic when determine your budget. Incorporate funding for emergencies and entertainment. Also, reevaluate as your budget or income adjusts. Implementing and consistently maintaining your budget will help you stay on the right financial path to achieving your goals.

Build an Emergency Fund

An emergency fund is strictly for emergencies like car repairs, unexpected medical expenses or job loss. A once-in-a-lifetime sale is not considered an emergency! Eastex suggests your emergency fund should contain three to six months’ worth of living expenses. If that seems out of reach, start your emergency fund in phases by saving $1,000 and growing your fund from there.

Done with Debt

If debt is consuming your thoughts, start the new year out right by putting debit in its place. Focus on the accounts that charge the highest interest rates and start paying down those balances. The faster you can wipe debt out, the more money you save on interest and fees. This means more cash for savings and meeting your financial resolutions.

Set Small Goals

Once you have established your goal, break it down into actions you can do today. If you want to save $100 this week, what can you do today to make that happen? Skip your morning coffee run to Starbucks, eat dinner at home, pack your lunch for work, etc. If you can spend $15 less per day on food, there is your $100 savings this week. Break things down into small goals, and focus on those actions.

Pay Yourself First

If your resolution is focused on saving or eliminating debt, the most important thing you can do is pay yourself first by taking money out of your paycheck as soon as you receive it. Put the money immediately into savings or make your debt payment. If you don’t do this immediately then something will always come up that feels more urgent and cause you to miss savings or paying down debt.

Automate, Automate, Automate

The most effective way to pay yourself first is to automate. Eastex can work with you to have your savings automatically deducted. For example, transfer $50 into your savings account every time you get paid. If you automate your financial goals, it easier to leave the automation in place rather than make choices that lead to failure.

Let us know how Eastex CU can help you meet your New Year’s Financial Resolutions. Visit our website at www.eastexcu.org or contact us at 866-445-9622.

Dec 28, 2016

shutterstock_155669345

Eastex Credit Union is proud to continue the tradition of serving members since 1955. Although times have changed since our founding, our mission of helping members meet their current and future financial goals has not changed.  You – our member – are the reason Eastex CU exists and we never lose sight of that fact. We take the trust you have placed in us to handle your transactions quickly, accurately and completely, very seriously.  As we reflect on 2016, we want to highlight a few things:

This year Eastex CU made significant investments in technology:

  • Mobile Check Deposit – This service is secure, easy to use, convenient and available anytime, anywhere. Although we love to see you in the lobby, we understand that sometimes it’s easier to do things remotely.  If you are not taking advantage of this technology, you are missing out. Click here for more details.
  • Connect on the Go – The Interactive Teller Machine was added to the Buna and Kountze locations, to give members safe and secure transactions closer to work or home. It looks like an ATM, only better. A live Eastex CU teller appears on screen allowing you to make deposits, withdrawals, make loan payments, cash checks and more!
  • EMV Chip Card Technology – All Eastex CU issued debit cards now have EMV chip card technology. This chip enhances our member’s level of personal financial security by providing added protection against fraud. Learn more here.

At Eastex CU we strive to help individuals, families, businesses, schools and organizations succeed.  We do this by offering debt counseling, providing savings options for future generations, teaching in the classroom and offering financial resources. Eastex CU also strives to be good neighbors to the community by volunteering our time and energy to serve others. Whether it’s buying a new home, purchasing a new car or helping you save for that rainy day, Eastex CU wants to be your financial partner every step of the way.

As we look toward 2017, we are excited to bring you new products and services that reward. On behalf of the Management Team, Board of Directors and Dedicated Staff, we are honored to have the privilege of serving you and helping to make a difference in our members’ lives.

Dec 13, 2016

Charitable gift alternatives - A New Concept in Gift Giving!

During this time of giving, why not make it a season to remember? Instead of getting out with all of the other shoppers, standing in long lines and buying something for your family or friends that they don’t want or even might re-gift; consider doing something meaningful for them by making a contribution in their name to a favorite charity.

Consider how many billions of dollars are spent this time of year on wrapping paper that ends up in the trash and gifts that end up shoved in a closet. Now, consider how many worthy charities are in desperate need of funds? Your charitable gift alternative could make a real difference.

Everyone has something they are passionate about – the sick, the hungry, foster children, the elderly, abused animals, or cancer research, to name a few. Whatever it is that they care about, you can use that to turn your holiday stress into something meaningful.

For the parent or grandparent who has everything, donating to a charity in their name might just be the perfect gift this year. If you need a hostess gift, skip the bottle of wine and make a contribution instead to their favorite charity. Of course, your children and spouse might still like to have that special beautifully-wrapped present under the tree, but why not cut back a little on gifts and make charitable-giving part of your Holiday Traditions?

You can also let family and friends know you’d prefer gift-givers to contribute in your name to an organization you care about. Let them know how much you appreciate it and ask if you can return the favor. Start a new tradition that will truly bring joy and peace. Why not add something meaningful to the season?  Giving to worthy causes is a priceless gift.

Dec 6, 2016

Thrift shop

Let’s face it: The Christmas gift giving season can sometimes be a little overwhelming.  Perhaps this year you have decided to step off the materialistic rollercoaster ride that is the American Standard. Maybe you are tired of working overtime the following year because you are deep in debt for having poured all of your resources into one spectacular Christmas morning.   Some of you may have suffered your own personal economic collapse and just can’t afford it this year.  Whatever your reason is for wanting to be budget-conscious this holiday season, rest assured there are many ways to think outside the box and give something special that will not break the bank.

Low cost holiday gifts can come in many shapes and sizes and some of these don’t even cost a penny. Here are a few ideas to help you get started.

The Gift of Time

Offer a free service that will only cost you your time.  Perhaps you have an elderly neighbor that cannot physically mow his lawn anymore.  Offer to mow his grass for him. Or you might can offer babysitting service for one night for a young couple with little ones, so that they can enjoy a night out. They will be so thankful for your thoughtful gift.

The Gift of Food

Who doesn’t love getting a basket of homemade cookies or a delicious tin of brownies? You may also enjoy giving homemade jams, pickles or salsa.  It’s easy to mail these little tastes of home to friends and family that live far away. It’s like opening a box of hugs.

The Gift of Reading

Books are a great gift!  Search out your local Half Price Books or Thrift Shop to find just the right vintage book for that special person on your list. You can also find good deals on the sale tables at Barnes and Noble.

The Gift of Memories

Make a simple drawing of a memory that involves the recipient. Maybe it is a place you visited together or a fun time you shared.  Frame it and gift it.  Photographs are another wonderful present to share in a photo book or framed collage. Another idea is to ask your children to write a story, then scan the pages and create a book with photos to give to the grandparents.  Year after year, they will have a growing collection of memories from you.

The Gift of Teaching

Do you have useful skills?  Someone on your list may want access to your sewing or carpentry skills. Don’t overlook things like bike repair, baking, gardening or even financial know-how.  Sometimes we have a blind eye to our skills. Ask a friend which one of your skills may be in demand and figure out how to offer it to others.

The Gift of Movies

Everyone has a movie fanatic in the family, right? Give a bag of popcorn and a Coke with a $5.00 movie coupon.  You could even give them a themed basket with a couple of their favorite movies.

The Gift of Travel

Have a world traveler on your gift list? Give them a journal that you’ve decorated, then add a special message or drawing inside. They will remember your gift throughout each day of their travels as they log their journey.

There are so many options and so many ways to keep it simple and thoughtful. Who knows?  It might be the best Christmas ever.  Don’t let the mainstream media and the advertisers define your perfect Christmas.  Don’t get caught up in spending money you don’t have because the big corporations are telling you what you need or what your kids have to have in order to be happy.

Make the Holidays your OWN by creating memories, not debt.

Nov 29, 2016

Eastex image

It’s hard to be festive when you have big credit card bills or student loans looming over your head. Family parties, teacher’s gifts and long shopping lists can result in huge bills.  Christmas gives us lots of excuses to justify excessive spending: that 60-inch TV that’s on sale or your daily peppermint mocha.  On top of all of this, end of year expenses like taxes come rolling in right as the Christmas expenses are racking up.

According to recent polls, the average American will spend $850 on gifts this season. And that is just an average.  Many spend much more without even realizing it. Here are some common problems, and how to get ahead this Christmas and next year.

Mistake #1 – Waiting until the last minute. Sprinting around the procrastinators panic will only cost you more, and you could spend double what you planned to.  Plus, you will be adding much more stress and frustration which is not good for your health. Start early, make a plan, and avoid the holiday rush.

Mistake #2 – Decoration overkill. Does your tree look like it belongs on the Las Vegas strip instead of in your living room?  If you’re not careful, you can spend your entire Christmas budget on decorations before you buy even one gift. Keep it simple!  No need for a new, taller tree or elaborately themed ornaments.  Handmade ornaments from the kids or grandkids are much more special and meaningful, anyway!

Mistake #3 – NOT searching for coupon codes.  Online shopping is great, but look for coupon codes before clicking “buy”. Type in things like “coupon code” or “promo code” into the search engine. There are many helpful sites like bargainist.com and retailmenot.com that offer discounts and free shipping.

Mistake #4 – Buying all of your presents.  Homemade gift such as delicious cookies or a craft is much more special than something you can purchase at a shopping mall.

Mistake #5 – Overlooking entertainment cost.  If you are throwing the annual block party in your neighborhood, stock up on the basics early. Watch for sales that you can store in your pantry or freezer such as canned pumpkin, frozen rolls or pies.  Consider borrowing holiday serving pieces from a neighbor – no need to buy all new pieces for one party when you have a wealth of resources right around you!

Mistake #6 – Forgoing a list or budget.  Heading to the shopping mall without a list or budget tempts overspending. It is too easy to get enticed by those impulse buys.  Ask yourself if they really need this?  Set a maximum dollar amount for each person and stick to it.

If you are looking to save money this year, relieve yourself of the pressure of having to spend the MOST and look the BEST.  Gift-giving is about thoughtfulness, not about the monetary value.  The Holidays are about spending time with family, no matter how perfect your decorations look.  Time with friends and family doesn’t have to cost a thing, so remember that this season.  Don’t carry over the regret of overspending into the New Year!

Nov 23, 2016

Eastex young child save

Did you ever wish you were taught more about money in your childhood? Many people graduate from college with no idea how to manage their finances or even balance their checking account. It’s never too early to begin those conversations with our kids or even our grandkids!

One of the first, and most important things to do is to just start having conversations. Money does not have to be scary or overwhelming. Use these money discussions as teachable moments. There are ways to empower the next generation and that starts by teaching children at a very young age.

Here are a few tips:

Teaching Preschool Kids about Money

  • It’s easy to teach your child about money. Trips to the grocery store, visits to the ATM, even buying insurance can be used in a discussion about the value of money.
  • When children are very young, you can work money concepts into everyday interactions.  Set up a grocery store with a play register and pretend money. Create a store in your living room with items they can buy with pretend money.
  • When you child reaches age 4 to 5, have your preschooler learn the value of “coupons”. Have them help you clip out coupons at home, or save them on your shopping app.  When you are headed to the grocery store, hand them the coupons and put them in charge of looking for the items. This will make them feel like they are helping and it will be a fun and easy way to talk about saving money.

Teaching Elementary Kids about Money

  • Piggy banks are a great idea, but it does not give them a visual idea of the money adding up. Try a clear jar instead so they can see the money growing! Each time it grows, make a big deal out of it and talk it up!
  • Show them that the things they want cost money. It seems obvious enough, but if they’re accustomed to seeing you pay with a Credit or even Debit card, they don’t see actual money leaving your hands.
  • When your child wants that favorite new toy or video game, let them know they have to save for it. Give them a jar for each of their desired purchases. If your daughter wants that new princess game, help them grab a few dollars out of the jar to take to the store.  When they get their item, physically hand the item and money to the cashier. If it is not enough to purchase their item, educate them that they must go home and save some more.

Teaching Teenagers about Money

  • Help them find a job. It could be a seasonal summer or winter break job, or a job in the evenings after school. If they aren’t 16 yet, mowing yards and babysitting is a great way to start earning (and saving!) money.
  • Give them the responsibility of a checking account. This takes money management to a new level. It will help prepare them for a healthy account balance perhaps even before they graduate from high school.
  • Talk honestly about money. Involve your teen in spending decisions or debt-reduction discussions. This is a great way to show them the depth and complexity of money decisions, and that they should be considered carefully.

iSave and Mad City Money

Eastex Credit Union proudly offers iSave, a program designed to teach financial literacy through the local schools. Eastex CU periodically holds Mad City money events at various times throughout the year.

Mad City Money events are a 2-hour financial education simulation game that puts students in a real-life adult scenario that they have to work to sort out on their own. Students are given an occupation with a set income. Some are given a family with a spouse and children, some are divorced and some are single parents. Some have credit card debt. For those two hours, the students have to follow that scenario by setting a budget and visiting different merchant booths,  Here they can purchase housing, transportation, food, household necessities, clothing, day care and other essential items. At each booth, students are faced with choices that range from basic to luxury, and the students have to decide what they can and can’t afford.

The goal behind Mad City Money is for the senior high school students to be allowed to make mistakes in a safe, simulated environment, and see the consequence of their decisions in order to figure out how to right the mistakes.

Eastex Credit Union has been offering MCM events for many years. President/CEO Loretta Chatagnier says, “The program has been overwhelming and we are proud to partner with the local schools for this event.”

Ask one of our member service representatives for more details about Eastex CU’s iSave program and how you can help your child began a healthy financial journey. You can also visit isavecu.com for more information!

Nov 15, 2016

Household image

We’ve all heard the saying, “Home is where the heart is.” But for some, “Home is where the debt is.” When your home becomes a place filled with stress and worry, it’s hard to enjoy it.  The good news is, there are some easy ways right there in your home to cut down expenses, sometimes substantially, without sacrificing the pleasures of life.

Bundle your Services

If you have cable, phone and internet with different providers, there is usually a benefit to bundling those services with one provider.  Even if you already have them with one provider, call them up to make sure you are taking advantage of those bundle savings.  This could knock off $20-$40 from your bill each month!

Get Energy Smart

Texas summers are no joke, but you don’t have to sweat that energy bill if you take a few steps to conserve electricity!  Remember what your mom said – turn off the lights and close that door – you weren’t raised in a barn, after all!  Here are some other energy saving ideas:

  • Switch to LED light bulbs. LED lights use 90% less energy than incandescent bulbs.
  • Lower the temperature on your hot water heater. Up to 13% of your home’s electricity can come from heating water. You can lower this percentage by setting your hot water heater to 130-140 degrees.
  • Add weather stripping to doors and windows.  For the low cost of some new weather stripping, you can keep your home cooler in the summer and warmer in the winter.  You might be surprised how much air is getting out around your doors and windows.
  • Hang it out to dry.  Set up a clothesline in your backyard. That’s right – just like your grandmother used to do.  If that is not an option, consider a clothes drying rack or hanging clothes to dry on a shower rod.

Clip Coupons 

If you have ever watched TLC’s Extreme Couponing, you might think couponing is a little over the top and you may not have time for that.  But, give it a try on a lower scale and see how much you can save.

The Sunday newspaper the best place to look for coupons, where you’ll find at least 75% of the coupons. Some stores will have circulars sitting at their front entrance, and magazines will offer some as well.  Digital coupons are also growing in popularity, so be sure to check your store’s website for options to print out coupons or even download them to your phone’s “wallet”.  Subscribing for email and text offers will also send coupons and deals your way!

Dine In instead of Out.

Americans spend an average of $6,500 per year on food. With prices going up, food is definitely taking a huge bite out of our budget.  Deciding to cook instead of eating out is an important budgetary decision, but even after you’ve made that choice, there are smart ways to cut down on your grocery bill.

  • Make a List…and stick to it!
  • Buy whole foods instead of prepackaged foods. So, instead of buying prepared frozen mashed potatoes, buy a couple of potatoes and cook and mash them yourself. It will cost the fraction of the price and it probably taste better.
  • Buy less frequently.  Stop running to the market every time you prepare a meal. By shopping once or a week, you will save money and time.
  • Pay with cash.  You will most likely stick to what is only on your list and not fall for those tempting displays.
  • Buy in season.  Are you craving Strawberries in January? You will pay top dollar. Purchase in-season, and try canning or freezing so that you can enjoy year-round.
  • Cook cheaper meals.   Instead of serving huge portions of meat, use it to prepare several different casseroles and freeze for future meals.

We have just scratched the surface. There are so many other ways to trim the fat on your household bills.   So, go ahead – challenge yourself to have more fun with less money and see where you end up.  Take that challenge one step further and take that money you’re saving each month and invest in YOU by contributing regularly to an Eastex Credit Union Savings or Investment Account.  Contact a Member Service Representative today to learn more about your options!

Nov 8, 2016

sign that says rent or buy

Should I Rent or Buy a Home?

Perhaps you have been renting for a couple of years and begin thinking to yourself, “Am I throwing my money away? Should I go ahead and take the plunge and purchase a home?   After all, it is the American Dream, right?”  Sure, but it takes more than dreaming.  This could be one of the biggest decisions of your life, so before you “take the plunge” here are some things to ask yourself.

Am I Financially Ready?

Buying a house usually involves a down payment and a commitment to pay a monthly mortgage for the next 5 to 30 years. There are other costs as well such as insurance, maintenance, and perhaps home owner’s association fees, but let’s start with the basics.

Down payment:

This is the lump sum you will pay upfront that shows lenders that you are financially able to make this commitment.  Down payments can vary anywhere from 5% to 20%, but a 20% down payment is often preferred and will most likely get you the lowest rates. If you are not prepared with a down payment, then take some more time to save up and carefully consider if now is the right time to purchase.

Monthly Mortgage payment:

This is your monthly commitment to the loan that you will make throughout the term of the loan.  Remember that putting down a larger down payment can reduce your monthly payment.  Another thing to consider in your monthly payment is insurance and taxes.  Often, lenders will add these into the monthly note (called escrow) which could add a substantial amount on top of your regular note.  So, if two to three hundred dollars per month will put a strain on your finances, consider your options – buying a less expensive house or spending some more time saving up for this investment.

Am I Emotionally Ready?

We’ve discussed the financial commitments of purchasing a home, but when deciding between whether to rent or buy there is also an emotional commitment as well to take into account!  You need to be confident about choosing a neighborhood, and you’ll have maintenance to keep up with like the lawn and gutters and the occasional home maintenance issue.  When you’re renting, those things are handled by your leasing company, but in your own home they are suddenly your responsibility!  You face the trade-off between what you want to do and what you HAVE to do when you own your own home.  But it’s not all bad!  Taking care of your biggest investment can be gratifying, when you are emotionally ready to take that leap!

Do I Have the Skills?

No matter how new or old your home is, over time it will require some maintenance. You will need some basic handyman experience so that it will not cost you an arm and a leg to get the work done. Here are a few things to be ready for in Homeowner 101:

  • Operating your breaker box. Know where it is located and label the switches to make it easier down the road.
  • Changing an air conditioning filter.
  • Knowing where water main valve is and how to shut it off.
  • Cleaning the fireplace flue.
  • Changing a toilet flapper.
  • Changing smoke detector batteries.
  • Locating studs to hang shelves and pictures.

Home ownership is an exciting and gratifying adventure, and taking these important steps to be ready will give you peace of mind and increase the joy of ownership.  It’s not something to rush into, so take your time, consult a financial adviser, run the numbers, and make sure that now is the right time for you.  Eastex is here to help you make wise financial decisions and have many savings options for you to choose from!  Contact one of our member service representatives to find out how your Credit Union can help you financially prepare for home ownership!


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