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.

Living Frugally in Retirement

Retirement should be the time when you get to relax and enjoy the benefits of a lifetime of hard work. For some people, however, it causes a significant amount of stress because it means learning a new way of managing money. Many people fear that they haven’t saved enough money, and they wonder what their lifestyles will be when they actually stop working. Fortunately, your credit union can help you plan for your retirement, no matter what your age, and help you continue to live the lifestyle you want. These tips for living frugally during retirement will also help you take control of your finances without sacrificing your golden years.

Save on Banking

As you get older, more and more discounts will become available to you. These will help you save money on everyday expenses without cutting corners. One great place to start is your credit union. Check for financial products designed for seniors, such as the GCS Prime Time Club for members over 60 years of age. Members in this club get wide-ranging discounted services, including free basic checks, no foreign ATM fees, and unlimited check writing.

Assess Your Habits

Many people worry that living frugally means giving up things they want and need, but in reality, many people can easily cut things from their budgets if they take the time to examine their spending habits. Something as simple as bringing coffee in a travel mug when you’re running errands instead of stopping in an expensive coffee shop can make a big difference in the amount of money you can save. Track your spending for a few weeks and identify areas in which you could save some extra cash without feeling the pinch.

Stay Busy

When you stop working, you don’t have to stop being active. Some people find that their spending increases during retirement because they end up spending money as entertainment. Try volunteering, taking a class, or indulging a hobby to prevent spending money out of boredom.

It’s never too early or too late to start retirement planning with the help of GCS Credit Union. We offer a variety of financial products, including auto loans and online checking accounts to make managing your money as easy as possible. Find out more by calling our credit union in O’Fallon at (618) 797-7993.

Budgeting 101 for High Schoolers

Money management is one of the most important skills that parents can teach their teenagers. By leveraging accounts from the credit union, parents can teach their high schoolers about budgeting, managing a checking account, and other critical financial skills.

Watch this video to learn some simple budgeting basics that are geared towards teens. Using online banking, checking accounts, and more, teens can get practice to help them build their money management skills.

At GCS Credit Union, we offer a variety of account services designed with young people in mind, as well as the full support of our staff to help clients of all ages reach their financial goals. To learn more, call our credit union in O’Fallon today at (618) 797-7993.

Tapping into the Technology You Can Use to Manage Your Accounts

The days are long gone when making a money transfer or depositing a check required a trip to a branch of the local credit union. Online banking tools have made it convenient and easy to manage one’s finances. If you haven’t yet made full use of the technology available to you, consider visiting your credit union to discuss your options with a representative.

Online Banking

Online banking systems allow you to access and adjust your checking and savings accounts any time of the day or night, without needing to visit a physical branch. You can check your balances and scrutinize your eStatements for suspicious transactions. At a glance, you can see whether your paycheck has been deposited and whether your landlord has cashed your rent check yet. You can also view digital copies of the checks you’ve written, transfer money between accounts, and set up recurring transfers. For example, you can set up a recurring transfer from your checking to your savings account.

Cash Flow Manager

Online cash flow management systems offer different features, depending on the credit union you use. However, you’ll likely have the capability to link your accounts in one place so that you can see your overall financial status more easily. You’ll be able to track your spending habits, evaluate your income, and track your bills.


Popmoney is a sophisticated online banking tool that your credit union may offer. It allows you to instantly send, request, or receive money with your mobile device or on your personal computer. With Popmoney, you can easily pay the dog walker or split a restaurant bill; there’s no need to worry about having enough cash on hand.

Mobile Banking

After enrolling in your credit union’s online banking system, increase your financial flexibility and freedom further by enrolling in mobile banking. Mobile banking is a secure, convenient way to check your account balances and transfer money wherever you are.

GCS Credit Union is pleased to offer a suite of convenient online tools for members of our credit union in O’Fallon. In addition to online banking and bill pay with Popmoney, we offer a comprehensive money manager platform and secure mobile banking app. For further information, call us at (618) 797-7993 and speak with a friendly representative.

Seniors and Finances: Get the Facts

It’s usually difficult to begin a conversation with an aging loved one about finances. However, it’s best to begin the conversation sooner, rather than later. To avoid overwhelming your loved one, focus on just one or two key issues at a time. For example, it’s important that your loved one make a list of all of his or her accounts, including online checking accounts. You’ll need to know which credit union your loved one uses and where he or she is keeping important documents such as the will and power of attorney.

For more helpful ideas on helping seniors manage their finances, watch this video or speak with a representative at your credit union. This expert recommends choosing the time and place for the conversation carefully and encouraging back-and-forth discussion, rather than delivering a lecture.

GCS Credit Union is committed to helping seniors in our community take control of their finances. To get a checking account in O’Fallon or ask about our member benefits, call (618) 797-7993.

Could eStatements Help You Protect Your Accounts?

Online checking accounts go hand-in-hand with paperless statements, but many people are still resistant to the idea of signing up for eStatements from their credit union. It’s a commonly held misconception that eStatements will somehow be less secure than paper statements, when in fact, the opposite is true. Not all identity thieves employ high-tech means to steal the sensitive information of other people. Some of them go through trash or even steal mail from mailboxes. When you sign up to receive eStatements, you’re reducing the chances that identity thieves have to steal your hard-earned money.

Another way eStatements can help you protect your checking account is by simplifying the recordkeeping process. As soon as a new eStatement is ready, you’ll receive an e-mail. Then, simply log in securely to check the eStatement. You’ll be able to scrutinize it for unauthorized purchases much more quickly than if you waited for a paper statement to arrive.

To learn more about signing up for eStatements, call a credit union in O’Fallon at (618) 797-7993. GCS Credit Union is dedicated to guarding the sensitive information of our members.

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