Many of us get the itch to clean out closets and dust behind the sofa as soon as the air warms, beginning the annual spring clean. Or we start thinking about some of the fun we have in store for the season: the road trip with family, the annual camping trip, or finally replacing the ice fishing shanty with bobbers and life jackets on the lake.
The team at Michigan Schools and Government Credit Union recommends using that inspiration to check up on your financial goals. Whether it’s to save more or purchase that long-awaited big-ticket item, here are some tips from MSGCU.
Look at your budget.
Dust off (or click on) your budget and look at your spending compared to what you planned. Do you see spending increase or decrease in certain areas? Tracking to your budget isn’t about judgement, it’s the opportunity to evaluate whether it needs to change. For example, many have shifted habits due to the pandemic, like subscribing to a streaming service versus going out to the movies or spending to upgrade internet services to handle increased bandwidth needs.
If you don’t have a budget, take the time to create one. If creating a budget sounds like a daunting task, MSGCU is here to help. You can start with a 5-minute interactive lesson on the topic. And if you’re interested in one-on-one support, talk with a Credit Union Certified Financial Counselor at any MSGCU branch or give us a call.
Check out your account activity and review your credit report.
Most of us log in to online banking a few times a month. Take a few minutes extra this month to give everything a good look. Here are a few questions to ask yourself:
- Do you see any abnormal transactions?
- Notice charges for any subscription services you aren’t using?
- Do you have alerts set for spending over a certain amount, or when your balance gets low? You can easily set those up – check out our tutorial.
Now’s also a great time to obtain your free credit report. Sign in to Online Banking or the MSGCU Mobile App and choose Credit Score from the menu. Here are a couple items to look for on your credit report:
- Does it reflect open accounts correctly?
- Do you see any abnormal accounts?
- Do you see loans that are paid but still showing open?
The team at MSGCU is always willing to walk through your credit report with you and answer any questions you have. A bonus: the team may be able to find ways for you to save when walking through the report, too.
Clear up some extra cash by refinancing your ride.
Used car values are high right now, prompting many to stay with their current vehicle for the foreseeable future. Good news is that you may be able to lower your rate and monthly payment with MSGCU’s Auto Rate Pledge. When you bring your auto loan to MSGCU from another financial institution, we’ll give you a 0.25% rate discount, or our lowest rate, whichever is lower. Watch the savings add up, while we keep our promise to your financial success. See more details.
Save when buying a new or new-to-you vehicle.
If you are looking for a new or used car, get a preapproval from MSGCU before you go to a dealer and know you’re buying with a low rate and a lender you can trust. As a not-for-profit credit union, one of the ways we give back to members is through market-leading rates.
Give your home and auto rates a checkup.
When is the last time you compared auto rates or home insurance rates? A quick phone call could add up to hundreds in savings, or the peace of mind you’ve got a great deal with your current provider. MSGCU has two partners to help you save with your homeowners and auto insurance: Members Home and Auto and TruStage Insurance Program. Both offer exclusive discounts for members and will provide the service you would expect from an MSGCU partner. Since each situation is unique, we recommend giving both companies a call to see what may work best for you.
Save on boats or RVs too.
If you’re ready to start planning your camping trip or drop a line in the lake, MSGCU also has great rates on RVs and boats. Check them out here.
MSGCU is your financial champion.
Whatever your financial goals are, we are here to help you meet them. Stop in to any of our convenient branch offices or give us a call at (866) 674-2848. Or feel free check out our online educational resources or start an application online.
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