Merger will present wider product and service offerings to Telco members

FORT WORTH, Texas (Feb. 26, 2013)—Effective May 31, Fort Worth Telco Credit Union will merge with Fort Worth-based EECU in an effort to provide enhanced product and service offerings to the former’s 5,000 members.

“EECU has a long-standing relationship with Fort Worth Telco Credit Union and its leadership,” said Lonnie Nicholson, president and CEO of EECU. “The decision to merge seemed like a natural extension of the relationship between the two credit unions. We are excited to enhance the products, services and delivery options provided to Telco’s members.”

As one of North Texas’ largest locally owned financial institutions, EECU serves more than 167,000 people with products and services to meet their financial needs, including checking and savings accounts, credit cards, loans, insurance and investment services. In addition, the credit union offers the convenience of multiple branch locations and online and mobile banking products, not previously available to Fort Worth Telco members.

“We feel this merger will be extremely beneficial to our members as they will have access to resources not currently available to them,” said Ron Reed, Fort Worth Telco Credit Union president. “Having been our neighbor in Fort Worth for 33 years, we’re confident in EECU’s commitment to upholding the high standards of service our members are used to.”

The merger, which is already in progress and scheduled for completion on May 31, will transfer the approximately 5,000 Fort Worth Telco Credit Union member accounts, which include checking and savings deposits and loans, to EECU where they will continue to be serviced.

Fort Worth Telco Credit Union members will receive communications throughout the merger process to ensure the transition is completed smoothly and all questions are answered.

Good credit: it’s difficult to get, and even more difficult to understand. You’ll have an easier time building credit if you know the building blocks of a good credit score. Turns out it’s a bit more complicated than saving money and staying debt free.

Your credit score (also called a FICO score) is a 3-digit number based on a formula issued by the Fair Isaac Corporation (FICO). This formula uses 5 different factors to determine your overall credit worthiness. You don’t need to have each factor memorized, but you do need to make your payments on time, maintain accounts that build credit, and avoid a few common pitfalls. Here’s the breakdown:

1. Payment history – 35%

Making regular payments on your credit cards, student loans and other debts will boost your credit score. Any missed payment will lower it. Recent history counts more, so if you’re making a good effort to repay your debts now, fear not: credit bureaus will take notice.

2. Amounts you owe – 30%

Long story short, don’t max out your credit cards. Credit bureaus look at the difference between your spending limits and the total amount of debt you have, so if you carry a balance regularly, this will lower your score. However, this doesn’t necessarily apply to installment loans (like student loans), which can actually improve your score if you keep up with the payments. Continue reading

Each year, the Better Business Bureau compiles a list of the year’s biggest scams to help consumers avoid being taken advantage of. These are ten of 2012’s most prominent scams as described by the Better Business Bureau.

Original Article: “Better Business Bureau Names ‘Top Ten Scams’ of 2012,” The Torch Newsletter, Vol. 77, No.1, January 2013 Continue reading

Looking for a way to help your kids or grand kids begin learning about money and personal finances? What if they could get paid to learn? As part of our efforts to help educate our young members and local youth, EECU partners with Googolplex, an effort of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA), to help students learn the fundamentals of money management through fun, interactive materials, and they’re looking to hire youth for the upcoming school year.

googolplex-youth-board

Googolplex is seeking responsible young people with diverse backgrounds for 12 paid positions on its youth editorial board. No travel is necessary—applicants are welcome from all over the country. Continue reading

Did you know the average American gets a new cell phone every two years? If you’re like most people, you probably have one or two devices sitting around not being used. Now through April 10, EECU would like to take your extra cell phones off your hands and put them to good use.

Cell Phones for Soldiers

Through a partnership with Cell Phones for Soldiers, your unused cell phone can be turned into a direct line home for an overseas soldier. Cell Phones for Soldiers is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing cost-free communication services to active military members and veterans. Through generous donations, the organization has provided more than 181 million minutes of free talk time through more than 10.8 million recycled cell phones. For an overseas soldier, that time is extremely valuable.

Before you bring your device in, follow these simple steps:

  1. Terminate service to the advice by contacting your wireless carrier.
  2. Clear the phone’s memory of contacts and other stored information. If you need help doing this, click here for instructions.
  3. Remove your phone’s SIM card if it has one. For assistance, or to find out if your phone uses a SIM card, contact your wireless carrier.

If you or anyone you know has unused devices you would like to donate to this cause, bring them by any of EECU’s convenient branches through April 10, and give one of our soldiers the chance to call home.

According to a study recently conducted by Ohio State University, consumers are not paying off debt as quickly as they once were. In fact, some younger Americans often pile on so much debt between credit cards, student loans and other financing that they won’t be able to pay it off until they’re 70 or older! That’s a long time!

credit-card-debt

Of course, there’s nothing wrong with loans and credit cards. In fact, there are many benefits to using them when building a strong credit history. But it’s important that you pay them back in a timely manner in order to keep your credit in good standing and to save some money.

Your best investment is to pay off high-interest debt. Since the average loan has a higher interest rate than the average savings or investment account, this will allow you to save more money in the long run. By paying off your highest interest-rate debt first (usually credit cards), you’ll be able to take an entire bill off your monthly list and have more money to contribute to other loans or savings. Just think of how much better your paycheck will look with one less bill to take out of it!

Use EECU’s “Paying Off Loans” Worksheet to keep a list of your loans’ interest rates and begin working more aggressive debt repayment into your monthly budget. When you’re 70 and your loans are long gone, you’ll be glad you did!

Current apps will be deactivated January 15!

We’ve made some upgrades to our mobile offerings to bring you new applications for iPhone and Android devices, and a brand new app for iPad!

In order to take advantage of the new features and continue accessing your EECU accounts anywhere and everywhere, search for “EECU Mobile Banking” in Apple’s App Store or Google Play and download our new app today!

In addition to functionality for iPad users, all versions of EECU’s Mobile Banking app will work more smoothly with each device to make navigation simpler and account management easier.

EECU’s smartphone apps allow members to access and manage accounts anywhere, anytime.

  • Access Accounts
  • Transfer Funds Between Accounts
  • Pay Bills
  • Deposit Checks
  • Find Branches and ATMs

For smartphone users who don’t have an Apple or Android device, you can access many of the features you enjoy in Online Banking by visiting m.eecu.org on your mobile Web browser and logging in with your Online Banking credentials.

Be sure and download EECU’s new app in order to continue accessing your accounts!

Each year, we have the honor of presenting six $5,000 scholarships to deserving applicants within the communities we serve. Three scholarships will be awarded to students intending to enter the field of education, and three scholarships will be awarded to students selecting a career other than the educational field.

EECU’s scholarship committee will consider those students who meet the following eligibility requirements and proof of intent: Continue reading