GCS Credit Union
GCS is a full service financial institution serving the following counties in Illinois: Madison, St. Clair, Jersey, Macoupin, Montgomery, Bond, Clinton, Washington, Randolph, and Monroe.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Credit Card

If you’re planning on applying for a credit card with your bank or credit union, there are a few things that you should consider first. You can quickly get in over your head with credit card debt, and the situation will be even worse if you chose the wrong credit card company. Here are some of the most important factors to consider when you’re choosing a credit card.

The Credit Card’s Interest Rate

Credit card companies offer varying interest rates to customers, depending upon their credit ratings. Your interest rate might be a fixed rate, meaning it is the same from month to month, or it might be a variable rate that fluctuates based upon the federal funds rate or prime rate. Credit unions often offer the most competitive interest rates for credit cards, auto loans, and home mortgage loans.

The Credit Card’s Fees and Penalties

Your credit card company can also charge you fees and penalties in addition to monthly interest. It’s important to have a very clear understanding of these fees and when they will be implemented before you enter into a credit card contract. Your credit card company may charge you fees for balance transfers, cash advances, late payments, going over your credit limit, paying via phone, or requesting a higher credit limit.

Your Personal Spending Habits

Finally, you should consider your own personal spending habits before choosing a credit card. If you plan on paying off the balance of the card every month, the interest rate won’t matter to you as much. If you plan on using the card frequently and paying the minimum amount every month, you’ll want a card with a low interest rate, a high credit limit, and a customer rewards program.

At GCS Credit Union, we offer a Visa rewards credit card in O’Fallon with competitive interest rates and low fees. Our credit union also offers great rates on personal loans, lines of credit, auto loans, and home mortgage loans. To learn more about our banking services, call us today at (618) 797-7993.

Online Bill Pay 101

You should take advantage of the many benefits offered by your bank or credit union’s online banking and online bill pay options. Online bill pay allows you to quickly, securely, and conveniently manage your bill payments from any computer or electronic device, anywhere, at any time. You can also monitor activity on your checking account and savings account to ensure that you aren’t at risk of overdrawing your account.

With online bill pay, you can schedule bill payments in advance and set up payment reminders, so you’ll never forget to pay a bill again. All of your payee information will be stored in one secure, convenient place, so you won’t have to continually be looking up information. You can also easily track your monthly, quarterly, or yearly payments for accounting or tax purposes.

If you’re interested in setting up online bill pay in O’Fallon for your checking account, come see us at GCS Credit Union. We offer a variety of secure online banking services designed to make your life simpler and less stressful. To learn more about our banking services, call us today at (618) 797-7993.

Calculating Auto Loan Interest

Before signing the papers on an auto loan from your local credit union, you should take the time to determine how your auto loan interest will be calculated. Your interest rate will depend upon your credit score and your history of repayment on previous loans.

Watch this video to learn more about calculating auto loan interest. A credit repair specialist demonstrates using the auto purchase price and length of the auto loan’s term to determine the auto loan interest.

If you’re looking for a competitive rate on an auto loan in O’Fallon, come see us at GCS Credit Union. Our loan officers will guide you through every step of the process to ensure that you fully understand your auto loan terms and interest rate. To learn more about our lending services, contact us today at (618) 797-7993.

What Are the Benefits of Credit Unions?

Many people switch to credit unions because they’re tired of paying high checking account fees and mortgage and auto loan interest rates. Credit unions follow a different business model than traditional banking institutions, and are committed to providing a much friendlier experience for their customers. Here is a look at some of the benefits of choosing a credit union.

You’ll Pay Lower Interest Rates and Fees

As a credit union member, you’ll pay lower interest rates on auto loans and home mortgage loans, lower fees for your checking account. You will also enjoy higher interest rates on savings accounts. Most credit unions have a lot of flexibility regarding the fees that they charge members, and will opt to cut unnecessary costs or services rather than increase fees.

You’re a Shareholder Rather than a Customer

The members of a credit union are shareholders in the financial institution, and thus credit unions are only accountable to their members, rather than a governing board. The goal of a credit union is to pass along any profits that they make to the customer, rather than making money for the stockholders of the company. This means that your benefits as a credit union member are far more varied and valuable than the benefits offered by most banks.

You’ll Get Superior Customer Service

Because credit unions are cooperatives that are partially owned by each member, the employees are invested in providing members with superior customer service. They are non-profit financial institutions, and aim to provide members with affordable services. As a result, the majority of credit union members are incredibly satisfied with the banking services that they receive from their credit union.

If you’re interested in joining a credit union in O’Fallon, come see us at GCS Credit Union. We have been providing community-powered banking services since 1941, and are a full-service financial institution that offers checking accounts, savings accounts, online banking, auto loans, home mortgage loans, personal loans, credit cards, and IRA and retirement services. To learn more about our credit union, call us today at (618) 797-7993.

The Facts About Personal Loans

If you’re in need of money and don’t have enough in your checking account or savings account, you should consider taking out a personal loan from your local credit union. Credit unions are able to offer incredibly competitive interest rates and low fees on personal loans.

Watch this video to learn some important facts about personal loans. Matt McKillen, a financial specialist, discusses your personal loan options, and what to consider before taking one out.

At GCS Credit Union, our credit union in O’Fallon offers great rates on personal loans, lines of credit, auto loans, and home mortgage loans. Our loans are available in a wide range of customizable terms that can be designed to meet your personal financial needs. To learn more about our loan services, call us today at (618) 797-7993.

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