• Tips for Coping with Debt

    If your checking account has been empty for a while, then you may be among the many Americans who are in debt. Being in a financial hole can be incredibly stressful, but there are steps you can take to handle and get out of this situation. Keep reading for tips on coping with debt.

    Face the Issue

    Debt can take more of an emotional toll if you know it’s there but choose to ignore it. Because of this, when it comes to coping with debt, one of the most important things you can do is accept that it’s a problem. After you face the issue, you can develop a plan for getting out.

    Discover Your Options

    Once you’ve acknowledged that your debt needs to be addressed, the next thing you should do is take action. You can start by contacting your creditors and getting in touch with organizations that offer free and impartial debt advice.

    Take Small Steps

    Just beginning the process of dealing with your debt can help you cope with the problem, and taking even small steps can do a lot to restore your confidence. Also, you’ll soon learn that your debt can be overcome with the right strategy.

    Examine Your History

    For many individuals, their debt is due in part to spending more than they should. Recognizing this, learning why you spend when you do, and taking steps to change your habits may help you cope with and understand the debt that you have now, as well as help you stay out of financial trouble in the future.

    Create a Budget

    When it comes to getting and feeling in control of your finances, a budget can be indispensable. The process of developing a budget will give you a clear picture of where your dollars are going now and what changes must be made for you to get out of debt.

    GCS Credit Union offers online banking and checking account tools that can help you better manage your finances. For more information about the services that we offer at our credit union in O’Fallon, please call (618) 797-7993.

  • The Couple’s Guide to Money Management

    Developing good money management skills can be critical for fostering a happy marriage, building a strong foundation for your relationship, and avoiding stress related to your checking account . To get started, refer to this guide on money management for couples.

    Beginning the Conversation

    If you have yet to discuss finances with your spouse, then this is a critical step for you both to take. You can start by letting each other know how you expect money to be handled, how much debt you have, and what accounts you have. Because finances will play a significant role in your lives together, you should bear in mind that being honest is ideal when it comes to discussions about money.

    Setting Financial Goals

    Once you know where each of you stands financially, as well as what you expect from each other as far as spending and saving go, you can have a conversation about your long-term financial goals. You can discuss, for example, how much you want to have saved in five years or when you would like to retire. Also, if one or both of you have debt, then eradicating it should be at the top of your financial to-do list. To remind yourselves of these goals, consider putting them in writing where they will regularly be seen. Finally, try to work as a team and utilize each other’s strengths as you work toward your financial goals.

    Considering Account Options

    Many couples wonder if a joint bank account is a good idea. Combining your finances can offer benefits, such as building trust within your relationship and simplifying your finances. However, some individuals prefer a level of financial independence and feel more comfortable keeping accounts separate. Some couples even choose to keep individual accounts and open an additional joint bank account. What’s right for you and your spouse will depend on your needs and preferences.

    If you and your spouse are interested in joining a credit union in O’Fallon, then contact GCS Credit Union at (618) 797-7993 for information about our online bill pay and checking account services.

  • Keeping Your Online Financial Information Safe

    Online banking makes managing savings and checking accounts quick and convenient. However, it’s always important to think about security when it comes to financial data. Luckily, there are plenty of things you can do to help keep your online financial information safe.

    First, never give out your online banking details if someone contacts you. Instead, contact financial institutions yourself to initiate the conversation. Next, shred any financially-related printed materials that you don’t need. Also, you should occasionally switch any passwords that you use to access your online financial information, ensuring that they are difficult to guess and out of sight if you must put them in writing. Finally, use secure portals to share financial documents and log in through an app’s portal instead of using links that you receive in emails.

    GCS Credit Union offers online banking that is available 24/7 and allows you to conveniently and securely pay bills, manage your accounts, and make transfers. For more information about our services for online banking in O’Fallon, call (618) 797-7993.

  • Finding the Right Credit Card

    While going overboard with a credit card is a bad idea, having one can still offer you benefits. If you’re thinking about contacting your credit union to sign up for a new credit card, then watch this video for tips on finding the right one for you.

    Begin by thinking about how you plan to use the card and would like to apply the points that you earn. The right card for you will offer rewards for shopping places where you frequently spend money, as well as allow you to use your reward points in a way that makes sense for you.

    You can get more out of shopping with a Visa rewards credit card from GCS Credit Union . To learn if this card is right for you, please contact our credit union in O’Fallon by calling (618) 797-7993.