Catholic Federal Credit Union Financial Fitness Blog

Back to School Shopping Hacks

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on Aug 8, 2018 1:08:42 PM

You may be deep into your summer routine of lazy afternoons at the beach, family day trips and bedtimes postponed in favor of firefly-chasing, but back-to-school season is already in full swing. And, any way you slice it, it’s going to be expensive! Between new backpacks, textbooks, a long list of supplies and a fresh autumn wardrobe, most parents are looking at a bill of close to $700 for school-related expenses this season.   

Be proactive and save big! Read on for our handy list of back-to-school shopping hacks that will help you keep more money in your wallet. 

1.) Plan to shop 5 times 

To take full advantage of the sales and clearance events throughout the summer, don’t buy everything at once. Plan on making 5 shopping trips this season, and you’ll get the best prices out there. 

2.) Stock up 

No, your child doesn’t need a 6-month supply of No.2 pencils for the first day of school or five spare pocket-folders. But, if you buy enough school supplies while prices are low to last through the first half of the year — or even all the way into June — you’ll save big. 

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How to Recover from a Financial Setback

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on Jul 26, 2018 3:55:11 PM

The financial trajectory in our life is full of ups and downs. As the saying goes, “That’s life.” We are all going to experience times when we feel like the wind is at our back, and other times when we feel like our financial world is caving in on us.

If you find yourself in the second category, it will be okay. First, know that you’re not alone. Many people have been in your shoes before and have come out on the other side.

Second, know that there are tangible steps you can take today to get yourself back on the path to the financial wellness. So dust yourself off, take a deep breath, and read on for some strategies to get you back on your feet.

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How Many Credit Cards Should I Own?

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on Jul 17, 2018 3:17:21 PM

The importance of maintaining a good credit score is old news. As you likely know, the higher your score, the more attractive you will be to potential lenders, making larger loans and the best interest rates more accessible. 

Hopefully, you’re working hard at keeping that score high by using your cards and paying your bills on time. You may be wondering, though, if more is better. Should you open a few more and get more available credit? Or, are too many cards a liability to your score?  

Read on for the answers to all your questions. 

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Don't Drink Your Wallet Dry

Posted by Bethany Dutcher, VP Marketing on Jul 9, 2018 1:32:09 PM

You probably already know water is the best beverage choice for your health and for your money. But did you know bottled water may be costing you a fortune? 

It’s true: Many people pay exorbitant amounts of money for bottled water without even realizing how inflated the price is. 

So, let’s take a look at the costs of bottled water when compared to ordinary tap water. 

For 1,000 gallons of tap water, it will cost you approximately $11. With that amount of water, you could fill 7,570 bottles of water at 16.9 fluid ounces each, with each bottle costing you just $0.0014! 

Assuming you drink three 20-oz bottles of water a day, you’ll need 1,095 bottles a year. If you’d fill those bottles with tap water, you’ll only pay $1.53 a year! 

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Topics: Budgeting, health

7 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Making A Large Purchase

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on Jul 9, 2018 11:30:15 AM

You're convinced: You really want that Coach handbag. Or maybe you just know that gigantic entertainment center will transform your weekends. So you swipe your card and the dream item becomes yours. You're thrilled!

That is, until a few weeks later when the credit card bill comes, and buyer's remorse hits. You can't help wondering: Was it really worth the price?

Don't get sucked in again! Before you say "yes" to a large purchase, ask yourself these 7 questions:

  1. Do I have cash to pay for this item?

This question will help you determine if you can really afford the purchase. You need to have liquid funds that can cover the cost of your item. Putting it on credit means you'll be hiking up the price once interest is tacked on, and you'll be reminded of a possibly regrettable purchase for a long time to come.

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Topics: Shopping, planning, Saving

How To Buy A Boat

Posted by Sue Hale, Loan Representative on Jun 21, 2018 10:24:53 AM

Get ready to set sail this summer! Read on for the ultimate boat-buying guide.

Step 1: Choose your boat type

Like automobiles, boats should be purchased with their intended uses in mind. Determine which water activities are most important to you. Also, research different boat types and ask your boat-owning friends to share their own impressions and tips.

Also decide where you’ll keep your boat. If you’re choosing to self-store your boat, you’ll need to purchase a trailer-able boat.

Step 2: Decide if you want to buy a new or used boat

Visit boating sites like Boats.com and Discoverboating.com to check out what kind of used boats are on the market. You might be pleasantly surprised!

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Topics: loans, Summer

4 Ways to Bring Your Dream Kitchen to Life

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on Jun 12, 2018 10:25:52 AM

The kitchen is the heart of the home. It’s where we spend many hours whipping up delectable dishes to please every palate and food plan. It’s where we catch a quick morning chat over coffee and linger over dinners together in the early evening. 

The kitchen is where it’s at. 

It’s also the area of the home that sees the heaviest usage. All that food prep – and all that eating! – has your countertops, table, floors and appliances pulling full-time duty for hours each week. It is these reasons, beauty and practicality, that make kitchen renovations incredibly popular among homeowners. Give your kitchen a makeover, and you’ll almost feel like you’ve got a brand-new home. 

Wondering how to make that happen? We’ve got you covered! Whether you’ve still got an avocado-green fridge, circa 1978, or your kitchen looks like it sprang out of a magazine and just needs a quick touch-up, we’ll show you how to give it a face-lift on a budget. 

Here’s 4 ways to bring your dream kitchen to life. 

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Topics: Home Improvements, budget

15 Incredible Grilling Hacks

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on May 31, 2018 9:14:06 AM

Nothing says “summer time” like the mouthwatering smell of a flaming barbecue blowing through the neighborhood. Whether you churn out the best burgers on the block from a modest charcoal grill or your Weber’s been squatting on your deck all winter, we’ve got you covered!

Here’s 15 genius grilling hacks that will take your BBQ to the next level. 

  1. Use a muffin tray for condiments

This grilling season, skip the condiment chaos by keeping all your barbecue trimmings in one neat place: a muffin tray! The 12 sections are perfectly suited for housing your ketchup, mustard, relish, BBQ sauces, pickles, tomatoes and any other toppings to douse your hot dogs.  This also works great if you have several different basting sauces in use. Your guests will know exactly where to find anything they need, and best of all, you’ve only got one condiment serving dish to wash!

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Turn Your Dream Vacation into a Reality

Posted by Bethany Dutcher, VP Marketing on May 17, 2018 10:19:55 AM

Everyone has their own version of a dream vacation. But, for most of us, it never becomes a reality. Read on for six ways to make that dream vacation come true.

1.) Start saving 

Give your getaway a jumpstart by planning for it all year long. 

  • Set up a “Trip jar.” Whenever you’ve got loose change, plunk it in a jar earmarked for your vacation. Use the money you’ve saved to fund one part of your vacation.
  • Brown-bag it. The average American buys lunch twice a week. By brown-bagging it just one more day a week, you can save hundreds of dollars a year for your vacation.
  • Open a vacation club account. Here at Catholic Federal, we’re all about making dreams come true. Call, click or stop by today to learn how to painlessly save for vacation all year.
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Saving On Mother's Day

Posted by Melissa Pashak, Marketing Specialist on May 7, 2018 11:22:07 AM

Q: I love showing Mom how much she means to me, but with the money spent on a pricey bouquet, a nice gift and dinner out, I'm looking at an awful lot of spending! Is there any way to give Mom a Mother's Day to remember without it costing a small fortune? 

A: If you find yourself overspending on Mother's Day, you're not alone. The average American will spend close to $200 this month, all aimed at making Mom feel special. It's wonderful to show your love and appreciation, but you don't need to blow your budget to make that happen.

Read on for some low-cost ways to show Mom how much you care. 

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