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going through the mortgage loan process for buying a home

Mortgage Loan Process: A Step-By-Step Guide

access_time Posted on: May 12th, 2020

Qualifying for a mortgage can feel like a daunting task with all of the paperwork, documentation, and steps needed to go from pre-approval to closing. However, having an understanding of the mortgage loan process in advance can make the journey easier. Keep reading for a simple step-by-step guide to getting a home mortgage loan. Prepare Your Finances Before you ever apply for a mortgage, you want to prepare your finances for making this large purchase. To do so, here are a few steps you should take: Check your credit score Your credit score is a significant indicator of your ability to qualify for a mortgage. That’s why it’s essential to… read more »

Applying For An Auto Loan: 5 Factors To Consider

access_time Posted on: May 12th, 2020

There are more options now than ever for getting an auto loan. However, not all car loans are created equal.  When going through the process of applying for an auto loan and reviewing your options, you want to be sure that you find the best loan available to you. In doing so, there are certain factors you want to consider. Here are five things to look for when getting an auto loan: Interest Rates You want to score the lowest interest rate possible on an auto loan. Low-interest rates paired with other good loan terms will provide you with a better quality auto loan.  Your interest rate will vary based… read more »

couple making mortgage decisions

Types Of Mortgage Loans: A List Of Options

access_time Posted on: May 12th, 2020

Life situations differ wildly, so buying a home will look a little different for each person and family. As such, mortgage loans come in numerous types to accommodate many different scenarios. Fixed-Rate Mortgage The most common type of mortgage is a fixed-rate loan. Fixed-rate mortgages have an interest rate that remains consistent throughout the life of the loan, meaning monthly payments are predictable. When to choose a fixed-rate loan These mortgages are fairly standard, which means many home buyers opt for them. They tend to be best for buyers with good credit who buy when rates are low since they can lock in a solid rate early on. It’s worth… read more »

Staying Safe Online During the Pandemic

access_time Posted on: April 24th, 2020

During these uncertain times we are all facing during the COVID-19 Pandemic, Internet bad guys have made it clear they aren’t giving us a break. Phishing emails (fraudulent emails made to look like legitimate emails which contain malicious links and attachments) are on the rise as cyber criminals look to make quick money and exploit people using email. Common malware & virus attacks such as ransomware are seeing a dramatic increase while the world is transitioning temporarily to working safely from home. Despite all this bad news, with a little bit of caution, you can protect yourselves online! Most phishing emails from the past contained easy to find spelling and… read more »

5 Days of Ways to Boost Your Financial Health Amidst COVID-19

access_time Posted on: April 13th, 2020

Financial decisions can feel complex and hard even under normal circumstances. If the current market volatility has you questioning what are the “right” actions you should take now, you are not alone. Here is the first of five concrete ways for you to jumpstart your financial wellness in the wake of the novel coronavirus. Day 1: Don’t touch your face or your 401k Time for some facts. Markets fluctuate over time and returns often come with risks. While COVID-19 is certainly adding unprecedented volatility to the stock market, it is critical to take a long-term view when it comes to investing. Chances are that when you set up your 401k… read more »

Tax Filing Deadline Has Been Extended

access_time Posted on: April 6th, 2020

For any procrastinators that have put off doing their taxes, good news – U.S. taxpayers have a three-month extension on the deadline to file their federal tax return due to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Tax Day has been pushed from April 15th to July 15th, 2020. Most states have matched the July 15th deadline, but check here to determine your state’s filing deadline. If you are among the many Americans who typically receive a tax refund — that is, you paid more taxes to your state or federal government (through payroll withholding, for example) than your actual tax liability, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is advising that you file your… read more »

Eleven Ways to Help Yourself Stay Sane in a Crazy Market

access_time Posted on: March 30th, 2020

Contributed by CUNA Mutual Group Eleven Ways to Help Yourself Stay Sane in a Crazy Market March 27, 2020 Keeping your cool can be hard to do when the market goes on one of its periodic roller-coaster rides. It’s useful to have strategies in place that prepare you both financially and psychologically to handle market volatility. Here are 11 ways to help keep yourself from making hasty decisions that could have a long-term impact on your ability to achieve your financial goals. 1. Have a game plan Having predetermined guidelines that recognize the potential for turbulent times can help prevent emotion from dictating your decisions. For example, you might take… read more »

couple took out a home equity loan for home improvements

When Is a Home Equity Loan a Good Idea

access_time Posted on: March 23rd, 2020

As you pay off your home loan, you’ll build equity in your home. Equity is the value of your home that’s considered to be debt-free, or already paid for, and it can be used as collateral against a loan if you need it.  A home equity loan is one way to use the equity you’ve worked hard to build up to meet pressing financial needs. When A Home Equity Loan Makes Sense A home equity loan can be a great way to handle sudden expenses and meet other financial needs, but it needs to be used wisely. After all, you’re putting your home on the line when you borrow against… read more »

budgeting tips for developing your personal budget

6 Budgeting Tips To Bulk Up Your Savings

access_time Posted on: February 14th, 2020

Budgets can be used for many purposes in a personal finance framework, including paying off debt, managing wealth, and padding retirement accounts. However, many people find the process of creating or sticking to a budget difficult, frustrating, and perhaps a little annoying.  This is not an unusual sentiment. In fact, only two out of every three households choose to budget their income monthly. This percentage of use goes down as populations age, making budgets a highly suggested but infrequently implemented practice.  It is important to remember that the goal of a personal budget is not to restrain financial freedom, but to liberate consumers from the uncertainty surrounding their funds.   What… read more »

woman reads about credit card rewards points

Belco Podcast | Protect Yourself From Identity Theft

access_time Posted on: February 6th, 2020

Identify theft is increasing each year, and anyone can become a victim of identity theft – but is especially common among young adults and teens.  On this episode of the Belco podcast, Johnathan Miller, Marketing Intern, and Brian Smith, Belco Information Services Security Specialist, discuss ways to protect yourself from ID theft.   Tune in and learn from Brian, who holds a degree in Information Technology and specializes in security. He also holds certifications as an Ethical Banking Hacker and as a Banking Technology Security Professional, while also pursuing additional education in cyber security.