How to Make Your New Years Resolutions a Success

New Year’s resolutions are common practice after the first of the year. Many of the most popular resolutions regard health, finances, and careers/education. According to University of Scranton’s Journal of Clinical Psychology the top 4 most popular resolutions among Americans are to lose weight, get organized, spend less and save more, and to enjoy life to the fullest.

In order to help make this new year a more successful one here are some tips to help:

  1. Focus on one goal at a time – Trying to incorporate too many goals and resolutions all at once can be overwhelming. Taking your progress slowly will motivate you without causing too much stress.
  2. Isolate what makes it important – Recognize what makes your goals pertinent and important to you. If you need to lose weight for health reasons, remind yourself that. Isolating the WHY is the most important way to motivate success.
  3. Make it tangible and specific – Avoid sweeping statements like “I want to live abroad one day”. Making vague generalizations is the difference between a daydream and reality.
  4. Put a date on something – Dates help create motivation. We all work that little bit harder when there is a deadline and a time frame to work under.
  5. Think BIG but act small – Choose something that will stretch you but not overwhelm you.
  6. Don’t go off course two days in a row – If you make mistake –like go off your diet–don’t let it completely de-rail you. Pick yourself back up again and keep going. Don’t give up because you missed one day. We are all human, so just keep pushing forward.
  7. Tell other people your goals –  We are innately social beings and alerting people to what you are trying to accomplish will help you stick to your guns. Tell your family, friends, co-workers, etc. and they can become your cheerleaders and allies in reaching your goals.

Once your goals have been isolated, planned, and written down, remember to be patient with yourself and keep pushing forward. Along with the new year comes tax returns. That’s why at UCCU we offer discounted services through Turbo Tax for all of our members. Head to our Turbo Tax website for more details and the opportunity to win up to $15,000.

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How Will Working Affect Social Security Benefits?

Mature Businessman using tablet computerIn a recent survey, 70% of current workers stated they plan to work for pay after retiring. And that possibility raises an interesting question: How will working affect Social Security benefits?  To answer that question requires an understanding of three key concepts:  full-retirement age, the earnings test, and taxable benefits.

Full Retirement Age

Most workers don’t face an “official” retirement date, according to the Social Security Administration. The Social Security program allows workers to start receiving benefits as soon as they reach age 62—or to put off receiving benefits until age 70½ “Full retirement age” is the age at which individuals become eligible to receive 100% of their Social Security benefits. For example, individuals born in 1955 can receive 100% of their benefits at age 66 years and 2 months.

Earnings Test

Starting Social Security benefits before reaching full retirement age brings into play the earnings test.  If a working individual starts receiving Social Security payments before full retirement age, the Social Security Administration will deduct $1.00 in benefits for each $2.00 that person earns above an annual limit. In 2012, the income limit was $14,640.

Learn more at:
Or, contact Steve Lloyd at (801) 223-7502 to set an appointment with one of our financial professionals.
Curtis Willardson, CFP, CLU, Daniel O Palmer, Stephen Martin CFP, CLU, ChFC and Travis Morgan are registered representatives offering securities and advisory services offered through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC. David Palmer is a registered representative offering securities through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.  Cetera is under separate ownership from any other named entity. Registered address: 188 W River Park Drive, Provo, UT 84604.
Not NCUA/NCUSIF Insured – No Credit Union Guarantee – Not A Deposit – May Lose Value
Not Insured By Any Federal Government Agency.
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President's Message January 2015


As 2015 gets underway we note the relatively strong local economy. Unemployment is low, job creation is positive, population growth is strong, and consumer confidence continues to rise. Of course, our local economy is still impacted by the national and … Continue reading

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Pick Up UCCU's 2015 Calendar!

Calendar 2015


Our Utah Valley calendar is back!

Available in all 18 UCCU branch locations, our 12-month Utah Valley calendar features beautiful photography from UVU’s Photography students, professors and other local professionals. With full-color photography complete with a notes section for each month and plenty of space to write in important dates, this years calendar is the perfect way to enjoy 2015. Pick up your free calendar at any UCCU branch today.

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Spinal Interventions

Chronic pain solutions and drug detoxification

SpinalInterventions (2)

UCCU is proud to be the business banking partner for Spinal Interventions, a unique medical treatment center in Provo that provides advanced solutions for chronic pain.

Dr. Daniel Faber, founder of Spinal Interventions, first became a member of UCCU in 1977 while attending BYU (when the credit union was still known as Universal Campus Credit Union).

Today, over 35 years later, the financial relationship is still going strong. We sat down with the doctors at Spinal Interventions to discuss their approach to treating chronic pain. “There are many effective modalities available for chronic pain of all types,” said Dr. Daniel Faber, founder of Spinal Interventions.
“We focus on non-surgical and non-narcotic solutions.”

While prescription narcotics often provide short-term relief from physical pain, addiction and dependence can be an unintended long-term consequence. The doctors and nurses at Spinal Interventions work closely with patients to develop chronic pain solutions that are both effective and drug-free. Modalities include physical therapy, cognitive therapy, and multiple types of injection techniques.

Spinal Interventions also offers drug detoxification services. “Our goal is to truly understand what our patients are suffering from,” explained Dr. Faber, “and provide treatments that can really help them manage and overcome their pain.”UCCU is thankful to have these dedicated professionals working to improve the quality of life for those who suffer in our community.

To learn more, visit

Spinal Interventions 280 W River Park Dr.
Suite 200
Provo, UT 84604

With over 60 years combined experience serving businesses of
all sizes, the UCCU Commercial Lending Group is ready to help
your business succeed.
801.223.7620 |
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Distributions From Retirement Plans


If you’re like many Americans, you’ve been setting aside money for your retirement. Now that you’re near­ing retirement age, it may soon be time to start drawing money from your qualified retirement plans. Withdrawing money from a retirement plan is called “taking a distribution,” and there are a variety of ways to do it. We’re going to review several approaches.

UCCU Financial Group provides a wide range of services, with the primary commitment of helping our clients pursue their unique financial objectives. Our firm wants to help you develop a financial strategy tailored to your goals, values, and risk tolerance.

Some retirees may have several sources of income. Among them are retirement plans, such as traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs, as well as 401(k) and 403(b) plans. Of course, you may receive Social Security ben­efits and some people also have other investments and savings that they intend to use during retirement. If you’re nearing the age when you may consider drawing money from your qualified retirement plans, you face a number of important distributions decisions.

Remember, withdrawals from traditional IRAs, 401(k)s, and other employer-sponsored retirement plans are taxed as ordinary income and, if taken before age 59½, may be subject to a 10% federal income tax penalty. Generally, once you reach age 70½, you must begin taking required minimum distributions.

To qualify for the tax-free and penalty-free withdrawal of earnings, Roth IRA distributions must meet a five-year holding requirement and occur after age 59½. Tax-free and penalty-free withdrawal also can be taken under certain other circumstances, such as after the owner’s death. The original Roth IRA owner is not required to take minimum annual withdrawals.

Keep in mind that the information in this material is not intended as tax or legal advice. It may not be used for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. Please consult a professional for specific information regarding your individual situation.

Learn more at:
Or, contact Steve Lloyd at (801) 223-7502 or by email: Steve Lloyd to set an appointment with one of our financial professionals.
Curtis Willardson, CFP, CLU, Daniel O Palmer, Stephen Martin CFP, CLU, ChFC and Travis Morgan are registered representatives offering securities and and advisory services offered through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC. David Palmer is a registered representative offering securities through Cetera Advisor Networks LLC, member FINRA/SIPC.  Cetera is under separate ownership from any other named entity. Registered address: 188 W River Park Drive, Provo, UT 84604.
Not NCUA/NCUSIF Insured – No Credit Union Guarantee – Not A Deposit – May Lose Value
Not Insured By Any Federal Government Agency.
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Christmas Shopping Tips


Christmas is fast approaching, and sometimes it can seem impossible to buy presents for everyone, host and attend parties, stay in a budget, and keep your sanity. We hope the following tips will help you navigate through the holiday shopping season so you can enjoy this time of year.

Make a list

Making a list is one of the easiest ways to organize yourself this holiday season. Write down everyone you are planning to buy a gift for–no matter how small the gift is, and ideas for what to get and an amount you would like to spend. By planning everything out, you will be better equipped to handle this crazy and sometimes stressful season.

Start early

We’re already into December now, but in the future try not to wait until after Thanksgiving to start shopping. So often while shopping we find the perfect gift for our boss or best friend when we aren’t looking for it. If you do keep your eyes open earlier in the year, once December hits you’ll be so glad you already have people crossed off your list. Just make sure to keep all your gifts purchased in advance in a designated spot so that you  don’t forget what you have already purchased.

Do your research – Shop Smart

Purchasing a present you do not know much about can be a daunting task. For example, if your husband wants a new camera and you are unsure  which brand or model to buy, search online for reputable reviews that can help in the decision making process. There are hundreds of websites where you can look up expert reviews on every kind of product available. Shopping smart is also a good idea, so use a price comparison website to find the best deal possible on whatever you need this holiday.

Pay with cash or debit card if possible

It may sound completely old-fashioned, but paying with cash is something that can help keep you on budget this year. If you want to take it a step further, getting larger bills like hundreds and fifties may make you think twice before putting up the big bucks. No one likes breaking a one-hundred dollar bill.

If carrying cash seems a little too old-fashioned, You can also try shopping with a debit card that only has a certain balance completely designated for holiday shopping. That way when the money’s gone, it’s gone.

Keep a running tally of your credit-card spending

When you come home from a day of shopping, immediately subtract what you’ve spent on your credit card from your checking-account balance. This helps give you a visual record of how much you’ve spent and also it ensures that you’ll have enough money in the account to pay the bill when it arrives.

Take advantage of Cyber Monday

Cyber Monday is known for being the biggest online shopping day of the holiday season. As a spin-off of Black Friday it takes the camping outside for days and long lines out of the picture. Cyber Monday allows you to find amazing deals, all from the comfort of your home. To help you stay even more in the know during this season, you can sign up to receive emails from your favorite stores to help you get advanced notice and member only deals.

Buy gifts online if traveling

If you are going out of town this season a great way to up convenience is to shop online. There is so much less hassle if you can ship the presents directly to where you are going to spend your holiday. Especially with flying, suitcases are prime real estate that should be designated for essentials, not Christmas Presents.

One great way to cut back on cost with online shipping is to find free shipping for the presents you buy. A great website that offers information about getting free shipping this holiday season is On their website you will find a list of hundreds of retailers that will be participating in “Free Shipping Day”. All Free Shipping Day offers will be revealed on their website at 12:01am EST on Thursday, December 18, 2014.

Do it yourself

If you’re creatively inclined, try and find a way to harness your creativity into a thoughtful, handmade gift. Bake a batch of cookies, sew personalized tote bags or make beautiful earrings for friends and family. If you need to learn a new skill, look into taking some classes locally or invest in a how-to book. With so many online, and print resources you can make Christmas presents an easier, more thoughtful experience.

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The Giving Tree 2014


As Christmas approaches, UCCU is proud to sponsor the Giving Tree, brought to you by United Way. UCCU has sponsored the Giving Tree for many years, helping hundreds of individuals and families in need. The Giving Tree program provides a way for whole communities to get involved in making sure that families in need can have Christmas presents for their children.

Each UCCU branch will provide a Giving Tree with names of local families and individuals who will benefit greatly from this program. GivingTreeCardTo participate in the Giving Tree, stop by any UCCU branch during the month of December to select a card with a person or family from the Giving Tree and tell a UCCU Employee which name you have taken.

Each card has information about the family, or individual–what they like, what size clothing and shoes they wear, and things they enjoy. You will then purchase gifts for your selected individual or family and bring the gifts back to the branch to be delivered.

Please return the gifts, unwrapped, to the UCCU branch you took the card from no later than Dec. 16th.

Join with UCCU and United Way in getting into spirit of giving this holiday season by participating in the Giving Tree!

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Meet The Board: Michael Orme

For the past 25 years, Michael Orme has helped guide UCCU’s growth by addressing current financial trends and preparing for the future. After receiving a B.A. in history from BYU summa cum laude in 1975, Mike received a J.D. from BYU’s J. Reuben Clark Law School in 1978. He returned to BYU in 1989, where he worked as Associate General Counsel and joined the UCCU Board of Directors. Since 2005, Michael has acted as Assistant to the President, General Counsel, and Corporate Secretary to BYU. He is rated “AV”—the highest rating for legal expertise and ethics—by the national Martindale–Hubbell directory. We spoke to Michael about his experience serving on the UCCU Board of Directors.

What brought you to UCCU?
Before coming to BYU, I practiced law in Idaho Falls, where I represented a
couple of credit unions. When I came to BYU, the UCCU board approached me
because they were in need of a lawyer. I realized I could put my experience
with banking and credit unions to work for UCCU. I didn’t anticipate serving on
the board for as long as I have, but it’s been a wonderful experience and a very
worthwhile place to volunteer my time and efforts.

Can you tell us a little about your role on the board?
My job is to not only see where UCCU is now but to anticipate where it will
be in ten years and how we can plan for that. I really enjoy strategic planning;
anticipating trends and changes and putting the credit union in the best position
possible as the world moves forward. The world is very fast paced and change
is happening all the time. But with strategic planning, we can ensure stability and

What philosophies guide UCCU’s strategic planning?
We’ve always administered UCCU according to conservative strategies and what we
believe to be correct financial principles, such as “thrift” and “savings.” Even
as we’ve grown, we’ve stayed true to these principles. I attribute much of our
success to that. Since I joined the board, the nation has gone through three major
downturns, but UCCU has continued to grow. We don’t chase after trends or take
risks with temporary bubbles. We stay true to who we are.

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President's Message December 2014


The Christmas Season gives us all the opportunity to think of others and seems to bring out the giving nature in all of us. UCCU is proud to continue our sponsorship of The Giving Tree, as part of our ongoing … Continue reading

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