Utah Community Credit Union Launches Mobile Banking Applications for iPhone and Android Phones

-Mobile Money Management Made Easy Through Mobile Technology

Provo, UT, June 28, 2011 Utah Community Credit Union (UCCU) is making accessibility to your credit union accounts easier than ever through the newly-released UCCU mobile money management applications for iPhone and Android mobile smartphones.

UCCU continues to invest in technology to make life easier and more convenient for our members,” said Brad Norton, UCCU SVP of Marketing. “If you have a UCCU account, now you can have it in your pocket, anytime, anywhere you need it. Since a considerable percentage of UCCU members now reside outside of the immediate Utah Valley area, it’s important that they have access to their accounts at all times.”

UCCU members now have three ways to access information on their accounts from their mobile phones:

  1. Text banking– by signing up for UCCU’s text banking at www.uccu.com, members can get real-time account alerts, balances, and history information. For example, if your account goes below a threshold you set, you will get a text message.
  2. Mobile website– web-enabled smartphones can log onto the mobile version of the site (www.mobile.uccu.com ) and have quick and easy navigation as if they were on a computer at home. Additionally, coming soon are mobile deposits, where you can make a deposit with a picture of your check, taken from your smartphone.
  3. Mobile applications– the new mobile applications can be found by going to the UCCU website from your mobile phone (www.mobile.uccu.com ). From there, you may click on the icon to either the Apple or Android website to download.

With the new mobile phone application, members can:

  • Find out the balance(s) on their accounts
  • Transfer money
  • Pay Bills
  • View images of cleared checks
  • Find branches and ATM’s
  • Check savings and loan rates
  • Review transaction history

The new mobile banking applications are available immediately to all UCCU members.

About UCCU

Utah Community Credit Union is your dependable community partner, pairing unmatched personal support with a broad suite of innovative financial services that are available live or through our online interfaces anywhere and anytime.  For more information, visit www.uccu.com , follow us on Facebook here, Twitter here, or call 800-453-8188.

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PR Contacts:

Cheryl Conner or Randy Scott

Snapp Conner PR

801 994-9625

Cheryl@snappconner.com or randy@snappconner.com

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The Tax Benefits of Home Equity Credit

If you need to borrow, there’s no shortage of specialized loan programs available. For example, if you need to make home improvements, you can get a home improvement loan. If you need to purchase a car, you can apply for an auto loan. For college financing, you can get a student loan. But if you own a home, you may be able to take advantage of another option for all those purchases – home equity credit.

Home equity is a type of loan that allows you to borrow against a portion of the equity in your home. The equity is the difference between what your home is worth and the amount you owe on your mortgage. There are two types of home equity credit – home equity loans and home equity lines of credit (HELOC). The choice that’s right for you depends on whether you need to borrow in a lump sum or over time.

The biggest advantage of home equity credit – tax savings

Home equity credit offers a number of advantages to borrowers, including the flexibility to borrow for any purpose and competitive rates. But the biggest advantage of home equity borrowing can be summed up in two words – tax savings.

Thanks to changes in the tax laws in the 1980s, the interest borrowers pay on home equity lines and loans is tax-deductible, making home equity an attractive way to finance college education, pay for home improvements, purchase a new car or even consolidate debt.

Move cautiously

Because of the tax deductibility of home equity interest, many borrowers use it to consolidate higher-interest debt such as credit card or department store charge card debt. While that can be a wise move, it should be done only if you can avoid the risk of running up your credit card debt again. Many people fall into this trap, only to end up with more debt than they had before the home equity loan or line. This is one of the main reasons why many financial institutions advise members to consult their tax advisors before borrowing.

It’s also important to note that, unlike other types of credit, home equity credit involves taking out a second mortgage on your home. You are giving a security interest in your home for the loan. Be sure you can easily afford the monthly payment in addition to your first mortgage payment.

Talk to us

At UCCU we offer home equity lines and loans to meet virtually any borrowing need. To learn more and discuss your specific situation, stop by at any of our eighteen branches or give us a call at (801) 453-8188.

Consult your tax advisor for deductibility options. He or she can determine whether the tax advantage of home equity borrowing makes sense for you.

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Financing: The Most Important Part of Shopping for Your New Car

Consider your options to get the best deal in financing

Many people put a good deal of time into deciding on the perfect car for their next purchase. They have considered gas mileage, options, warranties, dealers, and even colors. Unfortunately, too many don’t invest much time into what will prove to be the most important decision of all for years to come – the best way to finance their purchase. You can save hundreds, even thousands of dollars by comparing rates. Even that low promotional rate offered by the manufacturer on a new car may not be the best deal in the end. Here at UCCU we can offer much-needed advice on finding the loan best suited to you. Here are a few options to consider.

Auto manufacturers

On the plus side, there is no doubt this is the most convenient way to finance your vehicle. Most car manufacturers have their own lending subsidiary, such as GMAC and Ford Motor Credit, enabling you to choose your vehicle and loan in a single application process. Another big plus is the low-rate promotions sometimes offered.

There are some downsides to a manufacturer-supported loan that you need to be aware of. The special promotions usually apply to a limited number of models, so much-higher rates may apply to the car you want. Dealers often make as much profit on the financing as on the car itself, so be aware that they may not have your best interest in mind in the loan deal they offer. The best rates are usually available only to those with the most sterling credit ratings, so know what yours is before you apply. The best approach is to negotiate the price of the vehicle itself before discussing any loan terms at all, and to shop for the loan as a completely separate transaction.

Financial institutions

The rates at financial institutions are set, nonnegotiable rates, and are usually less expensive than dealer financing. Because your financial institution isn’t attached to the dealer, it is also less inclined to push for add-ons like credit life insurance, which, in your case, may be unnecessary. A wise loan officer is also aware of loans you may have never considered and can give you advice about other options that may have been presented to you.

If you’re not buying a new car, your local financial institution is even more competitive, and rates for used cars are currently at historic lows. Where car dealers may offer “buy here, pay here” financing on used cars, your financial institution can almost surely offer you a loan with a much more attractive annual percentage rate. Your financial institution may also offer a percentage discount if you choose a direct deposit option and allow automatic withdrawals of your payment.

Other finance options to consider

Personal/Business Contract – Often called a lease, this option involves a fairly large deposit (usually up to 20%), lower monthly payments than traditional car loans, and a final payment in a predetermined lump sum. At the end of the monthly payments, you can pay the final lump sum and keep the car, return the car and owe nothing further, or exchange the car as a deposit toward another lease. The greatest advantage to you is that monthly payments are much lower than other financing arrangements. There are also several disadvantages: You do not own the car and lose it if you cannot pay the final lump sum. The terms of such contracts are based on total miles on the vehicle during the life of the agreement. Should you end up driving the car more than expected, there is a penalty for additional mileage. These arrangements are best if you plan to use the car only two to three years and are using it for business purposes.

Contract Hire – This is actually a straight rental. A fixed monthly rental charge is offered, based on the estimated miles you will drive the car in that period of time. The only added charges at the end of the rental period involve mileage overage.

Because there are so many options, we invite you to consult with a member services representatives at any of our eighteen UCCU branches, before making any decisions about how you will finance your next vehicle.

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Utah Community Credit Union Elects Members to Board of Directors

-UCCU Directors Provide Guidance and Experience in Customer Service, Technology, and Financial Security

Provo, UT, June 23, 2011 Utah Community Credit Union (UCCU) announces the recent election of three members to the Board of Directors, based on the election that occurred May 9 to May 20, 2011, and was ratified during the Annual Meeting on May 26, 2011.

The nine-person Board of Directors is responsible for establishing the goals, strategy, and approving major financial decisions for the Credit Union, in cooperation with the members of the credit union.

The members that were elected are:

  • Steven W. Mann- Steven currently works as a Solution Manager for the LDS church, and is the founder of Boulder Mountain Software.
  • John Stevenson- John has served as a UCCU board member since 2000. He works at AT&T and has been highly focused on technology, including how it can best serve UCCU members.
  • Paul R. Timm- Paul is passionate about customer service and has authored 43 books on the subject. One of his primary focuses is creating a great customer experience at UCCU, resulting in loyalty and active membership participation.

All three elected members have previously served on the Board of Directors.  The term of each Board member is for a period of three years, and members are divided into sub-committees to focus on subjects such as customer service, technology, member growth, etc.

As a credit union, UCCU members own the financial institution, and are responsible for the control, direction, and profitability of the credit union. Unlike banks, who have a paid Board of Directors and shareholders, the benefits, including lower interest rates, higher returns on savings, and lower transaction fees, are returned to the members.

About UCCU

Utah Community Credit Union is your dependable community partner, pairing unmatched personal support with a broad suite of innovative financial services that are available live or through our online interface anywhere and anytime.  For more information, visit www.uccu.com , follow us on Facebook here, Twitter here, or call 800-453-8188.

###

PR Contacts:

Cheryl Conner or Randy Scott

Snapp Conner PR

801 994-9625

Cheryl@snappconner.com or randy@snappconner.com

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Members Re-elect Three Board Members

Thank you for participating in this year’s annual elections for members of the Board of Directors. As a member, you have a unique opportunity to help decide who serves on the credit union board. Three members of the board were re-elected.

The nine-member Board of Directors sets the credit union’s direction and plays a vital role in ensuring that the credit union offers the best possible services and products to members. Our trained staff works hard to provide members with friendly, professional service.

The credit union is growing and remains financially sound and healthy. We are fortunate to have professional, experienced, and very capable board members setting the direction at UCCU.

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President’s Message June 2011

SUMMER

It appears that summer may finally be arriving. Along with summer comes plans for family vacations, projects around the house, family reunions, and other activities meant to take advantage of the beautiful place in which we live. Despite the temporary inconvenience of freeway construction, we live close to many remarkable parks, campgrounds, and other scenic attractions that allow us to appreciate where we live.

Due to the effects and uncertainties of the continuing recession, many are modifying summer plans and choosing to stay closer to home. High gas prices add to the pressure to cut back. Luckily there are many close opportunities for us to access the nature and beauty of a very picturesque state.

SUMMER PROJECTS

For others, summertime represents the perfect opportunity to upgrade the yard, finish a basement, or add a garden shed in the backyard. With record low interest rates, a convenient home equity loan at your credit union can supply you with the resources you need to make valuable improvements.  You can choose between low variable and fixed rate options. Check out our website (uccu.com) or call us at 801.223.UCCU (8228) for more information about how a home equity loan can help you with your summer project plans.

TAKE ADVANTAGE OF LOW RATES

One silver lining of the recession is the historic low loan rates.  If borrowing money fits into your financial plans, there has never been a better time. With auto loan rates as low as 2.99% APR, many members are taking advantage of the opportunity to purchase an auto. We are especially busy helping members in the used car market. Perhaps due to the recession, used autos are very popular right now – driving the prices of used autos higher than normal. If you find just the right car for your family, be sure to include UCCU in your plans and take advantage of the credit union’s low rates. We also have low rates available for recreational vehicles/trailers and other things that might be part of your family’s summer vacation plans. Let us help you!

TAKE FULL ADVANTAGE OF YOUR UCCU MEMBERSHIP

Your membership at UCCU offers you many advantages! Whether you are a saver or a borrower (or both), the credit union has programs and services that will help you achieve your financial goals. Even though savings rates are low everywhere, UCCU pays the highest possible rates to members and offers the additional security of deposit insurance. Accounts are insured up to $250,000. For many members, the insured security of a credit union savings account offers reassurance and calm in a world of financial uncertainty. Your money is more than safe at UCCU.

Helpful, no-cost, financial planning advice and retirement planning help is available from Utah Community Investment Services (UCIS) where trained professionals can help you put together a plan for retirement, estate planning, insurance protection, and investments – all tailored to suit your needs.

Put these services together with a UCCU checking account, VISA debit/credit card, mobile, texting, and other on-the-go banking resources, and you have all the tools necessary to manage your finances, plan your future, and reach your financial goals.

And that, simply put, is why we exist – to serve you and your family throughout your life.

Thank you for your continued trust and the opportunity to serve you!

Jeff Sermon
President/CEO
Utah Community Credit Union

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June's Member Story

A loyal member in distress.

Several weeks ago an older woman, close to retirement age came into our branch.  She was warm and personable and throughout the course of our conversation we discovered she had been a long-time loyal member of UCCU, with accounts dating more than 30 years back. She came into our branch to find out the details of her loans—specifically, how much she owed on her car, her home and her credit cards. It was clear this member was in some distress and in need of some solutions. As I probed a little further and asked her if there was anything I could do to help, she confided in me and shared her financial concerns. Our member was a widow with a set income who not only had recently lost money in investments including her retirement, but in a few months would receive a pay cut which would reduce her salary by half. She had little idea on how to begin adjusting to her changing financial situation.

We began the process of examining her finances. We went over the details of her home loan and spoke to a member of our mortgage department in search of options that might lessen some of our member’s burdens. After some discussion with the member of our mortgage department, we presented our member with an option to refinance her auto loan. By lowering the loan’s rate, we were able to cut her car payment by about half. We also offered her a home refinance option. We immediately began the process and I could almost see a visible load come off her shoulders as we completed this transaction. We helped a loyal member transition smoothly into new and challenging financial circumstances.

As relieved as our member felt, I was equally contented. After the rapport we had built, including the exchange of stories about our children and families, we both felt as if we were working with a trusted friend. It meant a great deal to me when she later took the time to call me to thank me again.

It is no small thing when someone takes their hard earned money, which represents everything that they have worked for, and trusts our institution with it. We love helping our members to the best of our abilities in their time of need. It is something that is very fulfilling for us and we humbly take that responsibility very seriously.

Story by: Keith Lowell,

Member Service Representative / Loans

UCCU Stadium Branch

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June’s Member Story

A loyal member in distress.

Several weeks ago an older woman, close to retirement age came into our branch.  She was warm and personable and throughout the course of our conversation we discovered she had been a long-time loyal member of UCCU, with accounts dating more than 30 years back. She came into our branch to find out the details of her loans—specifically, how much she owed on her car, her home and her credit cards. It was clear this member was in some distress and in need of some solutions. As I probed a little further and asked her if there was anything I could do to help, she confided in me and shared her financial concerns. Our member was a widow with a set income who not only had recently lost money in investments including her retirement, but in a few months would receive a pay cut which would reduce her salary by half. She had little idea on how to begin adjusting to her changing financial situation.

We began the process of examining her finances. We went over the details of her home loan and spoke to a member of our mortgage department in search of options that might lessen some of our member’s burdens. After some discussion with the member of our mortgage department, we presented our member with an option to refinance her auto loan. By lowering the loan’s rate, we were able to cut her car payment by about half. We also offered her a home refinance option. We immediately began the process and I could almost see a visible load come off her shoulders as we completed this transaction. We helped a loyal member transition smoothly into new and challenging financial circumstances.

As relieved as our member felt, I was equally contented. After the rapport we had built, including the exchange of stories about our children and families, we both felt as if we were working with a trusted friend. It meant a great deal to me when she later took the time to call me to thank me again.

It is no small thing when someone takes their hard earned money, which represents everything that they have worked for, and trusts our institution with it. We love helping our members to the best of our abilities in their time of need. It is something that is very fulfilling for us and we humbly take that responsibility very seriously.

Story by: Keith Lowell,

Member Service Representative / Loans

UCCU Stadium Branch

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Condition Yourself to Succeed Financially

Summertime not only represents warm weather and tasty BBQs with friends and family, but the halfway point of your personal fiscal calendar. Are you currently on target to hit your financial goals for the year?

Here are five things you can do today to come out ahead in the future:

Start Trimming Down

The four words most repeated by financial gurus are “pay down your debt.” Now that interest rates are low, take the opportunity to pay more toward principal. If you feel stuck in high-interest credit cards, there may be options for you to transfer your balance to a UCCU Platinum credit card with a lower rate.

Likewise, if you have multiple credit card balances, you may be able to consolidate into one account at a lower rate. If you have any extra funds, put whatever you can into a high-interest account, CD, or other savings. Talk to your financial advisor or one of our member service representatives to find the options that work best for you.

Cut the Fat

So you have conditioned yourself to pay down your debt — great! Now it’s time to buckle down and control frivolous spending.

Begin by taking an audit of your current spending habits and trim back unnecessary purchases. That soda run every morning may not be so appetizing once you see what it’s costing you over the course of a few months.

Do not Be Afraid

Although you should always be thinking about cutting the unnecessary fat from your financial diet, there are smart investment opportunities out there that can provide gains over the next few years. Now that property values are down, you may be able to take advantage of huge discounts offered by sellers. The same applies to the stock market. There are quite a few good deals out there, including several undervalued companies that will come out well ahead in years to come. As always, you should consult a UCCU financial advisor to determine which companies are right for you to invest in.

Educate Yourself

If you talk to athletes about their respective sport, they can go on for hours about the ins and outs, rules, and history of their game — it’s part of their success.

You must also continuously educate yourself on financial best practices and products to prepare for today and the future. There is a wealth of information online from respected financial sites as well as how-to books that can help. You can also visit one of our 18 convenient branches and ask speak to one our knowledgeable trained staff.

Envision Success

Top athletes envision victory. So do the wealthy. Take time to look into the future and picture what having a million dollars or more in your portfolio looks like. To some, it’s sending their child to a distinguished university. To others, it’s sitting on their deck overlooking the Pacific. Whatever your dream, you can make it a reality through hard work and dedication to your financial life. So, take 30 seconds, right now, and think, “How does it feel to be wealthy?” Now, begin your plan to get there.

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