Savings

Coming Soon: MyE-Rewards Cash Back Program

Gas prices…up. Food prices…up. Utility prices…up. The only thing going down these days is our discretionary spending. Budgets are taking a real beating. Who isn’t looking for ways to earn and/or save money? Well, Vantage is here to help with our new MyE-Rewards program, where the saving is easy, automatic and FREE!

The program
MyE-Rewards is available to all Vantage members who use a Vantage check card and manage their Vantage checking account using MyVantage online banking. You’ll receive targeted offers for cash back or percentage discounts based on purchases you make at places you already shop. There’s NO LIMIT to the amount you can earn; simply, the more you use your Vantage check card, the more offers you’ll receive and more opportunities you’ll have to earn money. It’s Click, Shop, Earn!

Post-Holiday Budget Backers

Back in November, we shared with you some products that were known to offer pretty good deals for consumers right around the holidays. Well, wouldn’t you know it, the post-holiday retail lull offers some nice deals, too, as merchants try to shake the retail hangover left over from all the holiday spending sprees. So because we’re all about saving, let’s once again take a look at some items that could help ease your budget.

Warm Clothing, Hot Deals 
Hey, it’s January in the Midwest…we still have a few months of cold weather to muddle through, right? And you need warm clothes, right? You’re in luck! By January, most people have competed their winter wardrobes. That means retailers are looking to shrink their inventory, which means deals on all those hats, coats, gloves, even flannel pajamas. Experts say you could see price cuts of 40%-70%. Bingo!

There’s a Hole in Your Budget

10:00 a.m. Here come the stomach growls, time for a mid-morning snack.

Today it’s a bag of chips and a diet soda. Total cost: $1.75. That won’t break the bank … but how about your budget? Have you ever thought about how all those easily forgettable little expenses can add up? Let’s take a look at just a few you may view as trivial at the time of purchase. You’ll soon see they add up to very real amounts over the course of a year.

Football’s Financial Follies

Are you ready for some football?!

It's crunch time for the professional football season. The play-off picture is shaping up, although our hometown Rams have had better seasons (understatement of the year!).

What does football have to do with your credit union? Personal finances, of course! While most of us can’t begin to imagine life with the salary of professional athletes, we can see that they have many of the same financial problems we do, just on a much grander financial scale. It’s true. Just take a look at a few NFL players and former players who’ve had a tough time with finances for various reasons.

Home Economics for the Holidays

Ah yes, there’s no place like home for the holidays, especially when you’re a college student. The food is free, the bed linens are fresh, and alarm clocks are simply clocks with no alarms. But after all the gift exchanges and jello-mold binges, school will call again. After all, there are classes to take and social functions to attend! So when you’re back in the Ramen noodles groove, taking notes on Steinbeck and creating imaginary business plans, here are some tips on saving money. Because as well all know, money seems to be in short supply in college after all the bills are paid.

Cash to Carry On with the Holidays

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Stuffing the holiday stockings comes with the reality that you likely need to stuff your pockets as well, with holiday cash. Who couldn’t use some extra money around the holidays? With that in mind, thewisdomjournal.com has some part-time ideas that may allow you to add to your household income.

Vigilante Holiday Vigils

Remember last year when you were looking for the perfect holiday gift for your niece, the one who loves astronomy? You saw an ad that allowed you to name a star after her.  Far out … literally. The problem was, only the International Astronomical Union can officially name stars. The company you paid just chose a random star, named it Kourtney, and sent you a bogus certificate of registry. YOU could have done that yourself … for free.

The point is, you should always be on the lookout for scams, but it’s especially important around the holidays. With our giving mindsets, we are more prone to falling for less-than-truthful claims or deals. And it’s even more difficult to pick up on a “scam” when the set-up is perfectly legal. Ugh. We know, right?

With that in mind, let’s take a look at a few areas that are perfectly legal, but may prey just a bit on our trusting natures.

Free Puppies!

“Please mom, oh please, please, puuuuuhlease!”

Who hasn’t heard the desperate plea for pet ownership? A free puppy, a displaced kitten … a cute addition to the family? Pretty hard to resist, we know. While we’re not advocating a no-pet policy here, we do want you to consider the costs associated with pet ownership before caving to the cuteness factor. What costs? Here’s what Americans spent on their pets in 2010 …

A Time to Buy

As a financial institution, we usually preach the practical side of money, which often manifests itself as save, save, save! BUT, there are times when spending makes sense. With the holidays approaching, we’ll all be out there spending, trying to make this holiday season the best ever … on a budget. So finding good deals on what we buy is a smart idea. With that in mind, the peeps at MSN Money have highlighted a few items that are often priced best in November. Let’s take a look …

Breaking Up (With Your Bank) Isn’t So Hard To Do

So your checking account is at a bank—like the U.S. MegaBank of Wealthy Stockholders… That’s okay, we won’t hold it against you. But your bank keeps adding more drama (and cost) to your relationship with more fees. Again? Well, keeping their stockholders happy is job one. Unfortunately, keeping YOU happy is job two … maybe even three or four. Don’t keep playing second fiddle to those huge entities out there in financial space. Break up with your bank! That’s right, cut the ties. Ditch the deviance. Move on to someone who will appreciate you and treat you with respect. And hey, we know just the credit union!

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