Friday, May 11, 2018

McHenry Savings Bank Celebrates National Military Appreciation Month


 National Military Appreciation Month
Every year during the month of May, communities, businesses, families, and friends celebrate and take the time to appreciate each branch of the military. This month, we encourage you to take the time to not only honor those in and out of the Marines, National Guard, Army, Navy, Coast Guard and Air Force, but also their families. In fact, McHenry Township will be featuring “The Wall That Heals” from Thursday, May 24th through Monday, May 28th to honor our service women, men and their families. Learn more about the event details by visiting this link: http://www.mchenrytownship.com/the-wall-that-heals.html

The History of Military Appreciation Month

In 1999, Senator John McCain decided to introduce legislation to designate an entire month to honor the military in the United States. Following this, the House of Representatives and the Senate then started new resolutions to celebrate and honor those in and out of the military. According to Military.com, “May was chosen because it has many individual days marked to note our military's achievements,” and also includes days of recognition for the Armed Forces, as well as Military Spouse Appreciation Day. 

Below is a full list of different military appreciation days recognized throughout the month:

  • Loyalty Day: Celebrated on May 1st, Loyalty Day kicks off Military Appreciation Month. 
  • Public Service Recognition Week: From Sunday, May 6th to Saturday, May 12th, and recognizes those who work as our federal, state, and county employees.
  • VE Day: Also known as Victory in Europe, this day marks the end of WWII, which happened on May 8th, 1945.
  • Military Spouse Appreciation Day: this day was traditionally set to take place before Mother’s Day. This year, it takes place on Friday, May 11th. 
  • Armed Forces Day: this day is a single day to celebrate all branches of the military, and falls on the third Saturday of May every year. 
  • Memorial Day: this Federal holiday is celebrated on the last Monday of May, and is a day to remember those who have died while serving our country. 
Military Appreciation Month

This year during Military Appreciation Month, McHenry Savings Bank would like to personally thank the men and women who sacrifice their lives for our country. McHenry Savings Bank can assist all Veterans with applying for a VA Loan*. Those who currently serve or have served in the United States military may qualify for a VA Loan. If you’re interested learning more about VA loans and would like assistance in the application to qualify for this loan type, give us a call today at 815-385-3000, or visit our website to learn more about the services we offer. 


*VA Loan may be brokered.





References

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

5 Ways Small Businesses Benefit the Local Community

Small Business Week

The week of April 29th through May 5th is National Small Business week. Small businesses give back in more ways than one, and because we’re in a community built on small businesses, we’d like to highlight some ways small businesses give back to the community. 
  1. Community Identity: Take the time to walk downtown and you’ll see all the small businesses that are unique, whether it’s McHenry, Richmond or Johnsburg. From coffee shops and restaurants, to the unique and varied shops that bring you to the area, these small businesses help create our local identity and builds community.
  2. Community Involvement: Small business owners are an integral part of the community and they tend to be cognizant of how their decisions will impact their neighbors. With this in mind, local business owners are usually involved in the community. They may sponsor a local little league team, donate to a homeless shelter, join the chamber of commerce, participate in community charity events, or donate to local non-profit organization. McHenry Savings Bank has a long-standing history of supporting many organization that serve the community.

    Small Business Week McHenry
  3. Community Health: Local business owners are more likely to build personal relationships with their customers. Many small business owners form casual relationships with one another, and can create groups such as a merchant’s associated or one-on-one counseling or mentoring relationships. These relationships leverage the expertise of the participants to contribute to the business community’s long-term success. Networking is a real thing. If one business doesn’t have what you’re looking for, they may know someone who does.
  4. Local Jobs: Small businesses create jobs and most of them are local. Rather than having employees commute from another city, they have the benefit of working closer to home. Having these small local businesses also help keep everything local. For example, employees from one small business can go grab lunch at another small shop, and vice versa. This keeps money local and further creates a tight-knit community with stronger economic growth. Instead of the profits going to CEOs in a different state, your money goes towards paying for the neighbor kid’s sports equipment or dance lessons.

    McHenry Small Business Week
  5. Entrepreneurship: Entrepreneurship fuels America’s economic innovation and prosperity, and shows that the business owner is taking control of his or her future. This inspires others who have the same dream of opening a small business.
McHenry Savings Bank is committed to our customers and our community, which is why we’re here to help you with all of your personal and commercial banking needs. Visit our website to learn more about the services we offer at each of our community branches. 

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Start Saving During America Saves Week


Anybody that remembers the Great Recession of 2008 can really appreciate our current economy, which seems to be humming along. Unemployment is at a 17 year low and the stock market is shattering records.


Despite these great economic times, we come upon some sobering statistics. Approximately 26% of adults have no savings set aside for emergencies. Another 36% of adults have yet to start saving money for retirement. The overall adult savings rate is 4.4%, a steep decline from the 10% rate in 2012.

The last week of February is “America Saves Week” according to the American Bankers Association. This is an event created to encourage people to automatically save. Below are some ways that you can build a savings habit. 

  • Health Savings Account (“HSA”). Why pays taxes on money that is going towards health expenses? An HSA is an interest bearing, tax deferred account for the purpose of saving for and paying the expenses associated with a High Deductible Health Plan (“HDHP”).
    • A key aspect of an HDHP is your ability to set aside money to be used to pay your deductible or qualified medical expenses. 
    • Contributions to an HSA are tax deductible or, in the case of an employer sponsored plan, made with pre-tax dollars.
    • Withdrawals from an HSA used to pay qualified healthcare deductibles and qualified medical expenses are tax and penalty free.
    • HSA funds that are unused at year end are carried forward into future years. Unused funds can even be used to supplement your retirement income.
  • Minor Savings Accounts. Start your children on the path to saving and financial responsibility while they are young. By providing the financial education and tools for saving now, you're contributing to your children’s financial freedom later. Parents and guardians can open a minor account at MSB with as little as $10.

  • Certificate of Deposits (“CD”). A certificate of deposit is a time deposit with specific terms and Annual Percentage Yield assigned to the length of time money is placed in the CD. This is a financial product commonly sold in the United States and elsewhere by banks, thrift institutions, and credit unions. CDs are similar to savings accounts in that they are insured "money in the bank" and thus virtually risk free.

  • Christmas Club Savings. This is a way to safeguard your money, usually from yourself, so you have enough funds to spend for gifts or even travel during the holidays. This is also a way of shielding yourself from a pile of credit card debt in January.

  • Individual Retirement Accounts ("IRA"). If you’re thinking it is time to start saving for retirement, you want to consider an IRA. An IRA is an account in which you sock away money for your future retirement. Depending on the type of IRA you have, you will either have tax-free or tax-deferred growth. 
At McHenry Savings Bank (“MSB”), we are a full service financial institution with a complete line of automatic saving products. MSB is a FDIC insured financial institution that provides federally backed insurance up to $250,000 per account owner. Your money is secured and insured. MSB has been serving the banking needs of the residents of McHenry County since 1955. We are local people making local decisions. Call us (815) 385-3000 or visit our website at www.mchenrysavings.com to learn more about saving specials and rates offered.



Sources: 

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

New Year, New Plan - Financial Resolutions for 2018

New Year’s Resolutions are easy to make. Publicly claiming “I will eat more kale” might earn you some brownie points with the health gurus, but it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll go through with it. Or you could start off the year strong, working out daily, and two weeks later you haven’t given the gym a second thought. So when people say “2018 is the year that I’ll save more money,” what are some actual ways of putting their money where their mouth is?

Financial Resolutions


Determine Your Priorities
Drawing a line between necessary expenses and everything else will help you paint a picture of your savings potential. Sitting down and accounting for your monthly payments matched to your income also allows for a bit of spring cleaning and clarity to then grow from there.

Set Specific Goals
Now that you have an idea of the monthly costs that can’t be changed, it’s time to determine what you’re hoping to accomplish. Resolutions that are specific are typically easier to stick with. “I will save more this year” is great, but “I’d like to put $100 into a savings account each month” is a tangible goal that can then be worked out. 

Target Areas of Change
Just as important as identifying the spending that can’t be changed is identifying the habits that CAN be changed. This could be something as simple as looking at how often you go out for lunch or dinner; if you go out often after work or on the weekends; tiny things like how often you buy coffee vs. how often you make your own. If saving is important, then frivolous spending, no matter how small, should be considered a habit that can be changed to accommodate a new savings strategy.

Find Alternatives
Spending $10/day on lunch and coffee? Make coffee in the morning before you leave, or cook meals at home that can make plenty of servings for work lunches. Tallying up how much you spend on buying lunch each day can quickly add up. Doing this exercise gives you an idea of what you’d save with a packed lunch. Buying an afternoon soda to stay awake? Drink more water and go for a brisk walk to perk you up. 

Have a Buddy System
Have someone keep you accountable for your habits. It could be your significant other, it could be a family member, friend or coworker, but having a second pair of eyes on those unconscious spending habits can help curb a bad habit. 

The above examples are simple suggestions for making changes in your life, but if you are looking for financial advice that you can pair with your New Year’s resolutions, McHenry Savings Bank is here to help. We have been serving the banking needs of the residents of McHenry County since 1955.  Call us (815) 385-3000 or stop in at any of our locations.

Sources:

Sent 21 hours ago

Thursday, December 28, 2017

The Benefits of Money Markets

When we think about investing, it is common to feel anxiety. People are curious about stocks and bonds but they are also concerned about the risk. Money markets can be a happy medium in putting money somewhere and seeing it grow without high risk and with a great deal of safety.

Money Market


What is a money market?


A money market account is an interest-bearing account that typically pays a higher interest rate than a savings account and which provides the account holder with limited check-writing ability. Money market accounts offer the account holder benefits typical of both savings and checking accounts. This type of account is likely to require a higher balance than a savings account.


Money markets are able to offer higher annual percentage yields than savings accounts. Money market accounts can offer a higher interest rate by requiring a higher minimum balance. These types of investment tools offer higher yields than traditional savings accounts. They also place restrictions on the number of withdrawals the account holder may take over a given stretch of time.


What are money markets fees and minimums?


The minimums to establish an account generally vary among financial institutions. Some banks range anywhere from $100 while other banks require a deposit of $10,000 to open an account. Some accounts require a minimum balance of $500, avoiding a $10 monthly service fee. Other banks require a $50,000 glance to sidestep monthly fees of $50 a month. Shop around. Most institutions offer check writing privileges.


Other Benefits


FDIC Insurance. The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insures deposits and the interest accrued up to the maximum amount allowed by law- currently $250,000. FDIC insurance protects the money in your money market account the same way it does in regular savings accounts.


Money markets are a great home for emergency savings, something you can access immediately. One way to think of a money market account is to think of it as less liquid than a checking account, but more liquid than bonds or Certificates of Deposits.


At McHenry Savings Bank, we are a full service financial institution with a complete line of deposit and loan products. We have been serving the banking needs of the residents of McHenry County since 1955. We are local people making local decisions. Call us (815) 385-3000.


Sources:


http://money.howstuffworks.com/personal-finance/financial-planning/money-market-accounts.htm


https://www.investopedia.com/terms/m/moneymarketaccount.asp

https://finance.zacks.com/advantages-disadvantages-money-market-accounts-2170.html

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Veteran Assistance Loans - How Do They Work?



With so much positive growth expected in the housing market during 2017 and expected into 2018 and further, many veterans are researching the  benefits of VA housing loans.  

The VA home loan program was created in 1944,  VA Home Loans are provided by private lenders, such as banks and mortgage companies. VA guarantees a portion of the loan, enabling the lender to provide you with more favorable terms.
VA Housing Loans

Here are many of the benefits when taking advantage of the VA housing loans.  
  • No down payment.
  • No monthly mortgage insurance.
  • Limitation on buyer's closing costs. Sellers can pay all of a buyer’s loan-related closing costs and up to 4 percent in concessions.
  • Lower interest rates. Since the VA guarantees a portion of every VA loan, financial institutions can offer lower interest rates to VA borrowers that are typically 0.5 to 1 percent lower than conventional interest rates. Rates are based on the inherit risk assumed by the lender to finance the loan. On a 30-year $250,000 loan, the difference between paying a 4 percent and 4.75 percent rate can mean approximately $40,000 in savings over the life of the loan.
  • No prepayment penalties.   Because many  people realize how much money they can save by paying off their loan early, but are often forced to pay prepayment penalties if they wish to do so. Prepayment penalties were created to protect lenders and investors from the financial loss of losing years and years of interest payments on issued loans.  Fortunately for VA borrowers, you can pay off your VA loan early with no fear of getting hit with any prepayment penalty.  This is a huge benefit and makes VA loans so desirable.  
  • No credit score apprehension. Veterans don’t need anything near perfect credit to secure home financing at competitive interest rates despite the relaxed credit score requirements. VA loans are also more forgiving when it comes to bouncing back after a bankruptcy, foreclosure or short sale.

McHenry Savings Bank has been serving the banking needs of the residents of McHenry County since 1955.  We encourage Veterans to research VA loans and visit one of our local branches where we can further explain the process. Call us (815) 385-3000 NMLS#630527.


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Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Shop Local, Bank Local: 3 Reasons to Choose a Local Bank

By shopping local, residents are not only supporting other residents but the local economy as well. By keeping dollars local, this revenue is more likely to continue circulating locally than if the same money were spent at a big box store or chain. Shopping local helps create new jobs in the community, it reduces the environmental impact, and it adds to the local tax collection annually. This means more money for schools, parks, roads, and non-profits. So, we stick to the local butcher, the local diner, the local veterinarian, why should one choose a local bank?
Shop Local MSB

1.      Lower costs – Smaller financial institutions can provide all the same services as big-name chains but with lower costs. On average, local banks, like McHenry Savings Bank, will offer better interest rates on home and used auto rates as well.

2.      Grow Local Economy - The largest 20 banks in the financial community control 57% of banking assets. Sadly, only 18% of their commercial loans are given to small local businesses. Small banks help small businesses start or grow by taking on these smaller financing loans. These loans are done face-to-face and banks develop relationships with these local businesses, not just with their check books. For local banks, it’s not all about dollars and cents. It’s about providing and bettering a community that they too call home.

3.      Investments vs. Gambling-  Big banks are busy trading on Wall Street generating big profits for themselves. Smaller banks, are more old-fashioned and choose to turn small loans and investments in revenue. This practice is safer for the bank and gives them more time to focus on what matters most, the community!

Since 1955, McHenry Savings Bank has been a proud supporter of all things local. With 3 local locations in McHenry, Richmond, and Johnsburg, MSB offers hometown amenities you won’t find at other big-name banks. We offeronline banking, investment services, personal and commercial loans, and more. We are open from 9 AM-5 PM Monday through Friday and 9AM – 1PM on Saturdays with additional hours for our convenient drive-up services.