11 Apr

Five Benefits of Digital Banking

Digital Banking on a cell phone

Today, many banks offer digital banking, RMLEFCU included. You can easily access your bank accounts through your phone or via the financial institution’s website. Banking digitally from the comfort of your own home makes everything a little easier. Take a look at some of the benefits of digital banking at RMLEFCU offers.

Easy Accessibility

One of the seriously underrated benefits of online banking is its easy access! This convenient feature allows you to take advantage of budgeting or checking your funds from anywhere. It’s free, secure, and easy to use for RMLEFCU members! You can make more time for yourself with fewer bank trips and manage a number of banking activities anytime with internet access! These include access to eStatements, account balances and history, transfer funds between accounts, and more!

Mobile Payments

Contactless payments are a simple way to make your purchases more secure and private and are as easy as a few taps on your smartphone or tablet. RMLEFCU supports Apple Pay, Samsung Pay, Google Pay, and Visa Checkout on several devices! Not only do these services make your purchases more secure, but you can also add membership and loyalty cards, and have a shot at other great rewards!

digital banking on laptop or cell phone and credit card

Mobile Deposits

You can deposit checks right from your phone, which makes business move quicker and easier. There are no hours of operations or brick and mortar requirements with mobile banking. This free service for members saves you time and allows you to avoid unnecessary trips to a bank!

It’s secure and easy to use! Mobile deposits use your smartphone camera to make deposits in just a few clicks. Learn how to deposit a check right from your phone here!

Bill Pay

A great perk that comes with digital banking is the ability to pay bills without writing checks or walking into offices. You can pay one-time or recurring bills with a click of a button and it’s accessible anytime! You can also pay anyone in the country and payments are credited faster with email alerts. This convenient feature makes sure you never miss another bill payment.

eStatements

Online banking helps you get rid of paperwork, which in turn helps the environment and your sanity! This fast, free, and easy alternative can provide your statements easily online through the RMLEFCU website or through your phone! It simplifies record keeping so you can easily access past statements. You also get email alerts whenever a new eStatement is ready!

No one enjoys getting bank statements in the mail. Not only is this great for the trees, but it’s safer for your finances since you’ll never toss sensitive information in the trash!

Do these perks sound great? Give us a call at (303) 458-6660 to set up your digital banking today!

05 Apr

 The Advantages and Benefits of Credit Cards

Credit Card

While credit cards and debit cards may seem quite similar, they are actually very different when it comes to how they are used. A debit card is directly linked to a checking account or money market and transactions are taken from the available balance in that account. Credit cards, on the other hand, are not linked to a checking account and there is no balance due immediately after a transaction. Instead, it works with monthly payments.

Credit cards often get a bad reputation, because of the delayed balance due and temptation surrounding that, but the truth is they can be very advantageous to your finances! Credit cards are a great tool for earning rewards, traveling, building credit, and handling emergencies or unplanned expenses. And, if you use them correctly, these advantages can even earn you money!

Benefits of Using a Credit Card

Let’s talk about the biggest benefit. Building your credit. A credit card is a line of credit and paying it off in full every statement can help you build your credit.

Along with that, when used responsibly, they can be beneficial when traveling. Major hotels and car rentals often require a hold on a credit or debit card. If you don’t currently have the funds in your account for the deposit/hold, it’s great to use a credit card for the time being.

You can also earn rewards on your card for purchases you make. These rewards can be in forms of cash back, discounts, or even travel miles! For those who use their cards regularly, a rewards card might be the best option for you so you can earn those extra points and redeem them for rewards!

How Do I Use Credit Cards Responsibly?

Treating your credit card as a debit card is a top priority. You should never spend more than what you can pay back. It’s essential for anyone who decides to open a line of credit to consider how they plan to make the payments and how to use their new purchasing power responsibly.

Credit cards also offer balance transfer options. These options allow a cardholder to transfer the balance on one or multiple credit cards to another card. The transferred balance is now subject to the interest rate and terms of the new card. Be sure to read the terms and conditions of you are to utilize the balance transfer option!

Which Card Should I Apply For?

There are credit cards options for every kind of spender. Some are specifically tailored for people trying to build up their credit, usually with a deposit attached to the card. There are some cards with low-interest rates for users who want to keep money on their card and there’s also rewards cards that offer enticing rewards in exchange for spending.

RMLEFCU offers three credit card options for our members. The Classic Visa, the Platinum Visa Select, and the Platinum Visa.

These three cards all have the following benefits:

  • Accepted worldwide
  • No fee for cash advances or balance transfer
  • Competitive rates with no annual fees
  • 25-day grace period to pay for purchases
  • Make payments and view statements online

Don’t know which card to choose? Watch this video to see which card is right for you!

If you have any questions or concerns, give us a call at (303) 458-6660 or visit a branch today.

20 Mar

2019 RMLEFCU Unparalleled Community Impact Award

2019 Unparalleled Community Impact Award

It’s that time of year again for the annual RMLEFCU Unparalleled Community Impact Award!

This award is designed to honor a local law enforcement officer who demonstrates outstanding community service consistently. We created this award because we are constantly impressed with the exceptional community service our local law enforcement officers demonstrate and believe their good deeds should be formally recognized and appreciated. We value our members and their noble professions and would like to acknowledge the great community we serve.

In addition to the Unparalleled Community Impact Award, we will be honoring two additional officers with Outstanding Act of Service Awards, which honor individuals who have displayed a recent act of outstanding service.

Have anyone in mind?

Please submit your nomination below by filling out all required information. The more detail you can provide, the better the selection committee will be able to choose a winner.

Deadline for all nominations is Friday, April 19th, 2019.

 

Unparalleled Community Impact Award Nomination

  • Nominee Information

  • Your Information

  • Any More Relevant Information or Attachments

  • Drop files here or
20 Mar

Easy Step-By-Step Guide to Getting an Auto Loan

Auto Loan Approved

Purchasing a new car is an exciting time for everyone, whether it’s your first car or your third. The thing that’s not fun is spending hours at the dealership figuring out auto loan terms! If you’re a seasoned car buyer or it’s your first time purchasing a car, here’s a great step-by-step guide on how to purchase your car with an auto loan, painlessly.

Check Your Credit

First thing’s first. You need to check your credit report.

Your credit score will play a huge role in the rate you’ll pay for your loan. A high credit score can help you get a low car loan rate, which, in turn, will save you money on interest.

Read our blog post on credit scores and how to raise yours.

You’re entitled to a free copy of your credit report every year from each of the major reporting bureaus, Credit Karma, Experian, and TransUnion.

Shop for Auto Loans

Once you have your credit score in hand, it’s time to check out a variety of auto loans from lenders which can be large national banks, local banks, credit unions, online auto loan lenders, or dealership financing.

You’ll want to compare quotes from at least three lenders. RMLEFCU has auto loans as low as 4.0% APR.* If you are preapproved, RMLEFCU will also pay the Colorado Motor Vehicle Filing Fee! If you also qualify for the relationship rate, ½% will be taken off your loan! It always pays to shop at your local credit union first.

Set Your Budget

Your preapproval offer will tell you the maximum amount you can borrow, but that shouldn’t be the price of your next car. You should set aside about 10% for taxes and fees and use an auto loan calculator to work in your down payment, trade-in value, and lending terms to see what your estimated monthly payment will be.

Find Your Car

Now that you have the price range of what you can afford and are pre-approved for, it’s time for the search! RMLEFCU has an amazing auto broker service through Auto Trek which makes finding your dream car easy! They take care of finding the make and model at the price you want so you can skip driving from dealer to dealer.

If you’re an RMLEFCU member, you have amazing car loan services at your disposal! Give us a call at (303) 458-6660 to learn more!

*Annual Percentage Rate. With approved credit. Some restrictions may apply.

13 Mar

When to Refinance your Mortgage

Refinancing Your Mortgage

Let’s start with the basics. What does it mean to refinance your mortgage? Refinancing your mortgage means to pay off the existing loan and replace it with a new one. There are a lot of reasons why homeowners refinance their mortgages. Perhaps it’s to get a shorter loan term, convert to another mortgage rate, or even obtain a lower interest rate.

Some of these motivations have benefits and pitfalls. Because refinancing can cost 3% to 6% of the loan’s principal and – like taking out the original mortgage – require an appraisal, title search, and application fee, it’s important for a homeowner to determine whether his or her reason for refinancing offers a true benefit.

Securing Lower Interest Rates

One of the main reasons to refinance your mortgage is to lower the interest rate on your existing loan. Many lenders say if you save even 1%, that’s enough of an incentive to refinance.

Reducing your interest rate will not only help you save money, but it will also increase the rate in which you build equity in your home AND decrease your monthly payments! How amazing does that sound?

Shortening Loan Terms

When your interest rate falls and you have cheaper payments, you can also shorten the term of your loan. If you opt to pay the same monthly amount with a lower interest rate, you can significantly shorten the term.

Converting Adjustable-Rate and Fixed-Rate Mortgages

While Adjustable-Rate Mortgages (ARMs) are intriguing because their rates are lower than Fixed-Rate Mortgages, the periodic adjustments can result in rate increases that are higher than Fixed-Rate Mortgages.

Refinancing your mortgage will sometimes allow you to switch from an adjustable rate to a fixed rate allows for reliable and stable monthly payments that can give homeowners the security of knowing their mortgage payments will never change.

Consolidate Mortgages and HELOCs

You can also consolidate your mortgage and HELOC into one monthly payment and simplify your finances by focusing on one debt. HELOCs often have adjustable rates so refinancing both into one fixed-rate loan can potentially save you money in the long run.

If you’re looking to refinance your mortgage, you’re in luck! RMLEFCU has new lower rates on mortgage loans as of March 1st! 30-year mortgages are as low as 4.25% APR* and 15-year mortgages are as low as 3.75% APR* with NO private mortgage insurance required. If you’re interested in learning more about our mortgage loan offerings, give us a call at (303) 458-6660 or email lending@rmlefcu.org.

*APR = Annual Percentage Rate. With approved credit. Some restrictions may apply. Rates subject to change.
08 Mar

Retirement 101

saving for retirement

Ahh, retirement. The greener pasture that lies ahead. But how do we keep that pasture green for the rest of your retirement? If you have doubts on how much you’re saving or how to save for retirement in the first place, keep reading to get the lo-down!

First thing’s first, how do you save for retirement? With these three easy steps, you’ll be saving for the future in no time.

How to save for retirement in three steps

  1. Free money
    If your company offers an employer-sponsored retirement plan, like a 401(k), and matches any portion of the money you contribute, put your first savings into that account. If your plan doesn’t offer matching contributions, or you don’t have a workplace retirement plan, start with the next step.
  2. Contribute to an IRA
    You can contribute up to $6,000 to an IRA each year (or $7,000 if you’re 50 or older).
  3. Max out your IRA
    If you max out your IRA, return to your 401(k) or other employer plan and continue making contributions there.

Okay, but what is a 401(k) and IRA?

And wait, there’s a Roth IRA and a traditional IRA?

Let’s break down what these three investment accounts are for retirement savings.

Let’s start with the 401(k)

A 401(k) is a retirement savings plan that is sponsored by your employer. It lets employees save and invest a piece of their paycheck before taxes are taken out. Taxes aren’t paid until the money is withdrawn from the account.

Some huge pros are how easy it is to save on autopilot. Money is taken out of your paycheck automatically, so you don’t even see it! A lot of employers also match a portion of employee contributions making them one of the biggest tax havens as the IRS lets individuals save more than 3x as much as in an IRA. Again, the investment gains are tax-deferred so as long as the money remains in the account, you owe nothing as it grows!

But not all that shimmers is gold. The investment choices for a 401(k) are limited. They’re picked by the plan administrator and selections are typically small. Fees can also eat at your returns. In addition to investment expenses (which are charged by the investments themselves, not the 401(k) plan), there may be administrative fees charged by the company that manages the plan.

The best way to invest in a 401(k) is to invest up to the match and pay attention to fees! The money you contribute to your 401(k) lowers your taxable income for the year and you get tax-deferred growth on investment gains.

What is a Traditional IRA?

A Traditional IRA is an individual retirement account that offers tax advantages to savers. The money you contribute is deducted from your taxable income, meaning the money you put into the account is pre-taxed. The taxes you’ll pay will be what you withdraw in retirement.

There’s no income limit to open and contribute to a traditional IRA! And you can use Traditional IRA money to pay for qualified college expenses without paying an early distribution penalty, although taxes are still a thing… You can also use up to $10,000 from a Traditional IRA toward the purchase of your first home as well!

However, if you tap into the money before age 59½, you’ll pay taxes AND a 10% early deduction penalty. You HAVE to begin taking distributions at 70½ and can no longer make contributions.

Let’s compare to the Roth IRA.

For the Roth IRA, contributions are not deductible as the account is funded with post-tax dollars. This offers you a tax benefit which raises the incentive to save! A Roth IRA is an account that holds your investments, which means you can select what you want to invest in, such as mutual funds, stocks, bonds and exchange-traded funds (ETFs).

It has all the benefits of a traditional IRA, but you get no upfront tax break as you do with the traditional IRA. The payoff comes later as withdrawals in retirement are not taxed at all.

Lucky for you, RMLEFCU offers options with the Traditional IRA and the Roth IRA and on top of that, Debby, our registered representative with LPL Financial, can offer you expert financial planning advice. RMLEFCU provides you with all the resources to plan a happy, healthy retirement. Give us a call now: (303) 458-6660.