Tuesday, March 5th, 2013
From our own Captain Safety:
Warning: Our elderly family and neighbors are being targeted by Lottery type scams. Nefarious scoundrels are calling and sending letters to seniors advising them of false winnings, and asking for “fees” and “taxes” to be paid in advance of prize delivery. This can go on for years without any reciprocation or prize. Criminals are also apparently harvesting information about individuals in order to prey on potential emotional weaknesses. The bottom line is just hang up, and don’t reply to any written communication, as doing so makes you a target for more fraud attempts. There are a couple of short video trailers for a report by Dan Rather linked in this article. (Remember, if you click the link, you’ll leave Salal’s site, and we cannot guarantee the content.)
Friday, February 8th, 2013
Beware of Housing Voucher scams! On Tuesday, Seattle Housing Authority launched its Section 8 Waitlist Lottery, a federally funded voucher program that helps people making 30 percent or less of the area median income pay for housing. However, there have already been complaints about spoof websites attempting to mimic this program. Housing-voucher.com and housingvoucher.org have specifically been named; these sites ask people to give up personal information, including credit card numbers, in the belief that they are signing up for Section 8 vouchers. Please make sure you have the genuine SHA website, http://www.seattlehousing.org/waitlist/index.html.*
For more details:
*Please be advised that by clicking these hyperlinks, you are leaving Salal Credit Union’s website. This link is provided as a courtesy. Salal Credit Union does not endorse or control the content of third party websites.
Thursday, January 31st, 2013
Beginning Monday, February 4: check your account balance at the coffee shop. Make payments at the park. Transfer money on the train. With Salal’s new, free Mobile Banking2 and your smartphone or tablet, you can conduct your financial business wherever you can access the Internet!
Hurry! Give Salal’s Mobile Banking a try between February 4 and March 15, 2013, and you’ll be registered to win an iPad!
Here’s how to access Salal’s Mobile Banking, starting February 4:
- If you have an iPhone, iPad or Android, download Salal’s Mobile Banking app from iTunes or Google Play. The application is free, secure, and oh so convenient.
- If you have a Blackberry or other Internet-enabled device, you can access Salal’s Mobile Banking at our mobile site: m.salalcu.org.
Remember, you must log on by March 15, 2013 to be entered in the iPad drawing!
What can you do with Salal’s Mobile Banking? You can….
- check balances on your Salal accounts,
- transfer funds,
- pay bills,
- locate the surcharge-free ATM or Shared Branch nearest you, wherever you are,
- take a photo of your check and make a remote deposit (coming soon),
- and much more!
Ready to get started?
If you already use Salal’s Online Banking, just download the app or navigate to our mobile site and log on. Your User ID and password are the same ones you use to login to Online Banking.
If you’re not registered for Salal’s Online Banking, you’ll need to register first. From a desktop or laptop computer, go to salalcu.org, and find the log-in box in the upper right-hand corner. Enter your member number where it says “User ID” and click the arrow. The last four digits of the primary member’s Social Security number will be your temporary password. When you’re logged in, you’ll be asked to change to a new password. Once you’ve successfully logged in to our Online Banking, you’re eligible for Mobile Banking!
Have the power of Salal’s Online Banking and Bill Pay at your fingertips and at your convenience. Download the app or visit our mobile site, starting February 4!
1No purchase required. Click here for Sweepstakes rules and alternate means of entry.
2Message and data rates from your wireless carrier may apply. Contact your service provider for details.
Saturday, January 26th, 2013
Tax refunds from the IRS will be coming soon. If you would like your refund deposited directly into your Salal account, please provide the correct information to your accountant or on your return, including the Salal routing number and your 13-digit account number which can be found on your checks.
Friday, January 25th, 2013
MSN Money provides some excellent tips for a richer 20131. Here are a few:
Retirement Readiness. Check your retirement accounts to see if you’ll be where you want to be when it’s time to retire. Should you bump up that 401k contribution? Shift into investments with more risk? Less risk? If you received a bonus or raise, can you move more cash into your retirement funds?
Flexible Spending Accounts. If you have one, don’t forget to use it up by the deadline or it’s gone. If you don’t have one, but your employer provides it, consider signing up and using pre-tax dollars to pay for many medical and child-care expenses.
Get ready. If large, unusual expenses are looming in 2013, be prepared! The time to revamp your budget is now. Stick extra cash into savings or short-term certificates where you won’t touch it until you need it. Find “money leaks” you can plug now to have the funds you need later.
It’s IRA time! There’s never a bad time to put money away for retirement, and if you open or add to a traditional IRA before April 14, 2013, you may also enjoy a 2012 tax benefit. Roth IRAs won’t reduce your tax burden for 2012, but you can enjoy the benefits when it’s time to cash out in retirement.
1Please consult with your tax advisor before implementing.
Friday, January 25th, 2013
You know mortgage rates are at or near historic lows. You know you could likely save money by refinancing your home loan. Or perhaps you’d like to start building equity by buying a home instead of renting. But the process of buying a home seems so…daunting. How do you know if the time is right to refinance? Which loan is best for your situation? Where do you even start?
Fortunately, you’re a member of Salal Credit Union! Not only do we have great rates and lower closing fees than you’ll find at most big banks, we also have a team of experts dedicated just to mortgages. Our Senior Residential Loan Specialists have more than 70 years’ combined experience and the knowledge and expertise to make buying or refinancing a home as simple and pain-free as possible.
The Residential Loan Team:
Note: You’ll notice all our staff who originate mortgages have a “UI” number. Federal law requires each Mortgage Loan Originator (MLO) be registered. Salal is pleased to make each MLO’s UI number available to you.
Owen Williams (UI 757534) has more than 10 years’ experience in the financial services industry. He works out of our Capitol Hill and Lake Union branches, and his expertise makes him a great partner for those wanting to buy or refinance. You can contact Owen at 206.713.3894 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Debbie DeLisle (UI 747698) works with our Northgate and Tukwila area members and has more than 30 years’ experience in the mortgage business. She enjoys getting to know members so she can find the loan product that fits their needs. You can reach Debbie at 206.595.9713 or email@example.com.
Alan Newhouse (UI 506985) serves the Bellevue area and also has more than 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry. He enjoys matching borrowers with just the right loan. Contact Alan at 595.5674 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please feel free to contact any specialist directly, no matter where you are. They’ll be happy to set up an appointment to help you get started!
Friday, January 25th, 2013
It’s official: our payroll tax “holiday” has expired, and most of us can expect smaller paychecks in the new year. For an individual earning around $50,000 a year, the cut could be as much as $1,000 in 2013. But there are ways to make up for the loss. Here are a few you may not have considered:
- Are you withholding too much from your monthly paycheck? Yes, it’s lovely to get that big refund check at the end of the year, but you may be missing out on interest and dividends. The government won’t pay you dividends, but your Salal Money Market or other investments might!
- Are you eligible for a Flexible Savings Account (FSA) with your employer? FSAs allow you to pay medical costs with pre-tax dollars. If you’re not taking advantage, talk to your benefits rep and see how much you might save.
- Consider refinancing your auto or home loan. If you’re paying a higher rate than you need to, you’re paying too much. Consult with Salal staff to see if a refi is right for you.
- Transfer high-interest balances to lower-interest lines of credit. For example, those with debt and a Salal Rewards or Classic Visa can transfer non-Salal debt to their Salal Visa for 12 interest-free months. Additionally, home equity loans and lines of credit (also available from Salal) are often at a lower interest rate than many credit cards. Lower rates can mean lower monthly payments to help make up that payroll gap.
- Review your family budget. Think about reducing cell phone plans, ditching unused gym memberships, nixing cable, eating out, and the daily latte: sometimes we mistake wants for haves and our finances suffer as a result.
A little less money each month doesn’t have to mean greater hardship as long as you plan and prepare for it. If you have ideas for savings, please leave a comment at the end of this post!
Friday, January 25th, 2013
Buying a car can be tough, especially if you don’t have a lot of car-buying experience. So why not let a trusted partner do the work for you?
Recently, Salal member Gale Massey found herself in need of a car. She hasn’t bought many cars in her life, and she was dreading the experience. A recommendation from a Salal staff member led her to Auto Solution.
Please understand that clicking this link will take you off Salal Credit Union’s site. Please be advised that Salal Credit Union provides this link as a courtesy to you; however, we are unable to endorse or guarantee the content accuracy of any third party websites.
Auto Solution partners with credit unions in the Northwest to help CU members with their auto buying needs. Gale told Auto Solution staff what she wanted, and they found her exactly the car she was looking for.
Gale says of her experience, “It’s a great option for anyone, especially those of us who doesn’t feel confident about buying a car. It was an amazing experience. It’s like they went out of their way to make it easy for me. I would recommend Auto Solution to anyone. Once you know what you want, they make it happen—my car came all the way from Oregon! I just didn’t feel prepared to do it myself; it was so nice to have them take care of everything for me. I just sat at home thinking, ‘Should I be doing something?’ but no, it was all done for me!”
Don’t go it alone. Let the auto buying experts at Auto Solution take the work and worry out of buying your next vehicle!
Friday, January 25th, 2013
Lean close and let us whisper in your ear: How much will it cost you to transfer a balance to your Salal Visa? Nothing. How much will you pay in interest on that balance for the next 12 months?1 Nothing! Your credit union is so happy to have you as a member, we’re giving you…NOTHING. But this might be the sweetest nothing you’ve received in a long time.
Transfer a non-Salal balance to your Salal Rewards or Classic Visa by February 28, 2013, and pay 0% APR2 interest on that balance for the next 12 billing cycles! There is no balance transfer fee, and of course, Salal Rewards and Classic Visas have no annual fee3, so it’s a win-win-win!
Why is it a good idea to transfer a balance? According to Creditcards.com, American households with debt have an average of $16,000 in credit card debt, and the average APR on a credit card with a balance is around 15%. Transfer that amount to your Salal Visa at 0% for 12 months, and you could save nearly $200 a month! That’s almost $2,400 in one year.
What could YOU do with the interest you could save? A good idea is to apply the money you would have paid in interest to paying the principal off faster. Or stash that extra cash in your emergency fund so the next time the unexpected becomes the inevitable, you have the funds to handle it.
For more information or to apply for a Salal Visa4, you can drop by your branch or click here.
1Length of introductory period will be 0% APR for 12 billing cycles from date of first balance transfer. Balance transfers must be completed between Jan. 1 and Feb. 28, 2013. After the introductory period ends, the standard APR will be applied to unpaid promotional balances.
2APR = Annual Percentage Rate
3The standard Variable Annual Percentage Rate (APR) is between 9.99% to 13.49% for our Rewards card and 7.99% to 15.74% for our Classic card. APR is determined when you open your account and is based upon your creditworthiness. After that, your APR will vary with the market based on the Prime Rate. Foreign Transaction Fee of 3% of each transaction in US dollars for the Classic card and 1% for the Rewards card. Information is current as of January 1, 2013 and is subject to change without notice. Additional limitations, terms and conditions apply.
4Subject to credit approval.
Monday, December 10th, 2012
It’s the season for giving: gifts, time, affection, and if we’re not careful, our identities. The holidays are a boom time for cybercriminals, so we all need to continue to be vigilant and protect our sensitive information.
Scammers use many techniques to fool potential victims, including conducting email and texting schemes posing as financial institutions. Please be aware that Salal Credit Union–like all reputable finanical institutions–would never ask for your personal information via text, or email.
Here are a couple of examples we’ve heard about from other financial institutions:
- A member received a text message stating that her online banking password had been reset – the message did not reference her credit union’s name. A link and phone number were provided in the text–allegedly for her to sound the alarm if she didn’t request the password reset. When the user contacted the number provided, she was asked for a credit card number.
- A member received an email notice not referencing his financial institution but noting that his online banking profile needed to be updated for security purposes and to avoid interruption. There was a link provided in the email that would have enabled malware if selected.
If you receive a questionable email or text message, don’t respond to the message. Call your financial institution directly, using only the phone number or email address you know is correct. Never provide personal or account information if you have any doubt with whom you’re speaking.
Not sure if a message you’ve received is from Salal? Call us at 800.562.5515 or 206.298.9394.