Blog


 

Splash Into Summer With Mobile Wallet

June 05, 2019
 
With summer in full swing, it’s time to take advantage of the warm weather. Many of the activities we try to “soak up” are swimming, barbecuing, tanning, or spending time on the lake. However, there are more than just activities to take advantage of. More and more financial institutions are adopting MOBILE WALLET into their list of features; take a few minutes to learn what it can do for you! 

Mobile Wallet

During the summer months, many of us travel or go to the beach—trying to pack as little as possible. With Mobile Wallet, you can leave your purse or wallet at home because you can use your phone to pay for gas, lunch, souvenirs, and whatever else you come across during your sun-filled days!   
 
Mobile Wallet works on Apple, Android, and Samsung phones. Your debit or credit card, through your financial institution must also be compatible with Mobile Wallet. To get started, download Apple Pay, Google Pay, or Samsung Pay. Then, load your debit or credit card into your app (the app will notify you if your card isn’t compatible). From there, it’s simple to use; just follow the instructions on your app when you’re in the checkout.
 
You may be wondering, “is this really secure?” Mobile Wallet is actually MORE secure than using your physical debit or credit card for purchases because your card information is encrypted and it isn’t shared at the time of checkout! Furthermore, those pesky hackers can’t steal your card information by simply walking past you at the supermarket, because of encryption!
 
By: Collin Stumpf, Marketing Intern
 

 

Travel Smart

May 21, 2019
 
The scent of freshly mowed grass, waves lapping against the shore, and colors filling the evening sky as the sun sets. After a long winter, summer is finally upon us! 
 
Every year the summer months bring a new set of activities to keep us busy while the weather is warm. Maybe it’s tending to the garden or finally getting around to repainting the front door. For many of us, summer is a time to travel new and old destinations.
Travel may be a time to forget about your life at home, but it’s a great time to utilize all the wonderful features your financial institution offers to ensure your finances are secure while you travel.
 
Here are some useful tips to keep in mind next time you pack your bags:
 
1. Notify your financial institution: Before you hit the road, be sure to inform your financial institution of your travels. Doing so will allow them to keep an eye on your finances while you are away, and to ensure the continued use of your debit card in uncommon areas.
2. Use a travel card: A travel card is capable of being issued through your financial institution, for a small fee, to provide worry-free spending while traveling. What makes a travel card different than your debit card? A travel card can’t be tracked back to your personal accounts, and you control how much money is on the card. If you need additional funds, you can transfer money from your personal accounts onto the card.  Keeping a low balance on the card mitigates your risk, in case the card is lost or stolen.
3. Review your finances: When possible, review and confirm your spending history while on the road. This is a great way to ensure none of your financial information has been compromised while traveling. Some great ways to do this are to utilize mobile or online banking. If you don’t have either of those, simply call your financial institution to inquire about your account!
4. Utilize mobile banking: If you’re one who stays somewhere for an extended period of time, you might benefit from mobile banking. Mobile banking allows you to manage your accounts while you’re away from home. It also provides the ability to deposit checks from your phone, even from miles away! Be sure to talk your bank to see if mobile banking is right for you!
 
By: Collin Stumpf, Marketing Intern
 

 

Core Conversion LIVE

On Monday, February 25th, we’ll be LIVE on our newly updated systems!  We’ve been working very hard over the last year to bring you the best-of-the-best… because you’re worth it!  We chose a great system that will meet our needs now, and well into the future.
 
There’s a lot to be excited about; here are some new features to look for:
Online Banking (desktop version)
- Completely upgraded interface with a simpler login process
- Financial management tools for budgeting and trends
- Enhanced alerts
- Instant access to accounts after enrollment
Mobile Banking
- Ability to enroll and manage account without visiting the desktop site
- View eStatements and check images
- Financial management tools for budgeting and trends
- Real-time remote check deposit
Debit Cards
- All new debit cards issued, with enhanced features
- Ability to set your own PIN
- Instant-issued cards available for lost, stolen, or damaged cards
 
These are big changes and we know there will be questions.  That’s why, we’ll have extended phone hours, now through Sunday, March 3rd.  You can call us from 8:00am to 10:00pm and get help from one of the knowledgeable people on our team.  We’ve also introduced a chat feature on our website, which will be staffed during those extended hours!
 
We truly appreciate your patience during this process! We’re very excited about the opportunities this system upgrade gives us and we hope you take advantage of all of the new features!  As always, thank you for choosing, and continuing to choose, Glenwood State Bank!
 
By: Peter Nelson, President
 

 

Core Conversion Reminder

You should have recently received a letter from us regarding some exciting changes coming to Glenwood State Bank.  At the end of February, we’ll be undergoing a “Core Conversion”, which simply means we’re implementing a major system upgrade!

 

We’ve spent the better part of a year preparing for this upgrade; it’s been a major investment of dollars and staff time.  We’re confident, however, this investment will pay off through happier employees and happier customers!  As with all change, there will likely be some bumps along the way but know we’re doing everything we can to provide a smooth transition.

 

Included with this letter, you’ll find a timeline of events, which will give you a better idea of what to expect over Conversion weekend.

 

For more information about this upgrade, please visit www.glenwoodstate.bank/conversion.  We’ll be updating this page as we get closer to our “live” date (February 25th), which will allow you to stay informed on the changes coming and how they affect you.

 

Should you have any questions in the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact us.  During and after Conversion, we’ll have knowledgeable staff available, by phone, for extended hours to answer any questions or concerns you may have.

 

IMPORTANT MESSAGE ABOUT HISTORICAL DATA:
Due to the large volume of data conversion required, there will be a delay in the accessibility of historical transactions and images.  If you anticipate needing data older than 90 days, please take time prior to Conversion to download or print your statements in Online Banking.  Historical data may take up to six weeks to appear in Online Banking.  You may also contact the Bank, at any time, to acquire copies of your statements. 

 

By: Peter Nelson, President

 


 

Core Conversion Introduction

Over the next couple of months, we’ll be undergoing some very exciting changes!  We’ve spent the better part of a year preparing for a “Core Conversion”, which essentially means we’re replacing many of our existing systems with new, cutting-edge technology!  We’re rolling out the best of the best—because you’re worth it!

 

So, what does this mean for you?  It means you’re going to have access to better products and services from Glenwood State Bank, which we’re very excited about!  We’re introducing a brand new Online Banking platform, adding new features to Mobile Banking, updating our statements, refreshing debit cards, rolling out new services, and a whole lot more!

 

This conversion will take place over the weekend of February 22nd.  On Monday, February 25th, we’ll be “live” on our new systems and will begin serving you from there!  In preparation for the Conversion, you’ll start receiving different pieces of information over the next month or so; please be sure to read these communications, as they are very important.

 

If, in the meantime, you’d like to learn a little more, visit www.glenwoodstate.bank/conversion.  We’ve devoted a page on our website to highlight the exciting changes coming, and to provide more detail on how it will impact you.

 

We’re doing everything we can to pave the way for a smooth transition; however, nothing is perfect and there will be some bumps along the way.  We’ll ask for a little patience and grace over the next few months as we all adjust to these changes.  Please know, this change is for YOU and we’re confident you’ll be happy with the end result!  Should you have any questions in the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

 

By: Peter Nelson, President

 


 

Teaching your young child about money

August 03, 2018

 

At some point in life, your child will learn money management skills.  However, it’s up to you, as parents, to make sure that happens soon enough!  Many think the appropriate time is when your child gets their first job.  The reality is, there’s a lot to learn before then!

 

Receiving Money
Long before they collect their first meager paycheck, your child will likely have many opportunities to receive money.  Birthdays, holidays, tooth fairies, and grandparents all tend to dish out the “dough”. It’s also common for children to earn money through allowances.  Some allowances are given for completing chores around the house, others are given with no strings attached.  Regardless of how your child receives their money, you should set guidelines early on about how much can be spent and how much should be saved.

Saving Money
Though a piggy bank is a simple instrument for your child to save money, opening and using a bank account paves the way for far more learning opportunities!  As adults, we don’t throw our savings into ceramic figurines, so why would we teach our children that?  By taking them to the bank, helping them make deposits and withdrawals, and interacting with the staff; they will be much more equipped for those real-world experiences later on in life.

 

Plus, most banks already have a fun children’s program that incentivizes saving money!  Typically, each time your child makes a deposit into their account, they’ll earn a small gift from the bank.  By rewarding good behavior (saving money) they’ll want to keep doing it!

 

Spending Money
It’s a fact of life: money burns a metaphorical hole in our pockets, no matter our age.  This is why it’s important to teach your child to be a wise steward of their bank account early on.  When your child wants something, have them set a savings goal for that item.  Once they reach their goal, bring them to the bank to make a withdrawal and then encourage them to work with the cashier at the store.  By giving them ownership of their money, they’ll come to understand the value it has.

 

Don’t wait; teach your child about saving and spending money now!  All it takes is one great role model—you!!

 

By: Jordan McMahon, Marketing Manager

 


 

Avoiding Identity Theft

May 15, 2017
 
Over 50?  You may be at an increased risk of Identity Theft!  Thieves and scammers prey on groups of people who are considered to be more vulnerable than others; they assume older generations are more trusting and have assets worth stealing.
 
Identity Theft begins when criminals get their hands on your personal, confidential information.  Social Security numbers, birthdates, and bank account numbers are extremely valuable pieces of information and, in the wrong hands, can lead to Identity Theft.
 
If a criminal obtains personal information about you, they may…
• drain your bank accounts;
• incur charges on your credit cards for items you never receive;
• bill your Medicaid or insurance company to receive benefits on your behalf;
• file tax returns, under your name, to receive refunds;
• take over your military benefits; or
• collect and cash your Social Security checks.
 
So what can you do to prevent Identity Theft?
Be cautious.  Criminals may impersonate people you trust, like family members, government officials, charities, or companies you do business with.  If they ask for information or money, be sure to verify they are legitimate before doing anything.
Be aware.  Stay up-to-date on common Identity Theft and fraud schemes.  Visit www.consumer.ftc.gov to learn more and sign up for alert emails.
Be watchful.  Always check your bank and credit card statements for accuracy; if there is a discrepancy or something you can’t account for, start asking questions immediately.
Be prompt.  Collect your mail promptly; criminals may remove bills and statements from your mailbox to obtain your personal information.
Be smart.  Get rid of old bills and statements; shred anything you don’t absolutely need and keep current documents in a safe place.
Be proactive.  Register for Identity Theft protection or restoration programs at your financial institution, or with organizations like AARP.  It’s simple, inexpensive, and will give you peace of mind and a lot of resources if something does happen.
 
You and your actions play a large role in your susceptibility to Identity Theft; protect yourself.  If you ever suspect you’re a victim of Identity Theft, contact your local law enforcement, your financial institution, or visit www.identitytheft.gov for step-by-step recovery information.
 
By: Jordan McMahon, Marketing Manager
 

 

Spring Cleaning: Focus on your Finances

April 04, 2017
 
Spring is finally here!  Most of us get a “fever” to start doing things around the house and yard; we get the urge to clean out that closet that’s been too full for too long, or we’ll start planning a garage sale to de-clutter the basement.
 
We often forget, however, about the “non-traditional” types of cleaning that everyone should focus on from time to time; one of those types being financial cleaning.  Here are seven practical tips you can implement today to clean up your finances:
 
1. Close out unnecessary or unused accounts.  You may think that small balance isn’t hurting anything; however, those unmonitored accounts open up the door to identity theft.  Consolidate your accounts to protect your financial assets.
2. Go paperless.  Sign up for electronic bank statements and utility bills to cut down on clutter.  Be sure to keep reviewing them for accuracy, however, even when they’re out of sight, out of mind!
3. Use automatic payments.  When possible, take advantage of online bill payment systems; this will save you from writing out a check and it will ensure it’s always paid on time.  Go through your payee or financial institution for online bill pay.
4. Bring your budget up-to-date.  You may follow a monthly or yearly budget to plan for expenditures… but when was the last time you updated it?  Has anything changed?  Are you making more or spending more?  Be sure to you’re using up-to-date numbers to make financial decisions.
5. Cancel unused services.  For a “small” monthly fee, you can stream music and videos, subscribe to magazines and news, and use advanced apps on your phone… but do you actually use these services enough to justify the cost?  If not, cancel them!
6. Review your investments.  Many of us have an investment account that’s been around for (seemingly) forever; be sure your beneficiaries are up-to-date and make changes to portfolios that aren’t performing how you expected.
7. Check your credit report annually.  You’re entitled to a free credit report every 12 months through the three nationwide credit reporting agencies.  Take advantage of this opportunity to ensure everything is correct and what you expected.  Visit www.annualcreditreport.com to request your free credit report.
 
By: Jordan McMahon, Marketing Manager
 

 

Falling asleep on your finances

January 25, 2017

 

Your financial institution goes to great lengths to protect your bank accounts every day, however, they can’t always protect you from fraud or identity theft.  This is where “falling asleep” on your finances becomes dangerous.  If you don’t check your accounts for weeks or months at a time, fraudulent charges could be racking up on your account without your knowledge!

 

Scammers use many different tools and techniques to gain access to your bank accounts or convince you to send money—they get smarter every day!  One of the most common types of fraud occurs when scammers impersonate someone you trust, like a family member, government official, a charity, or a company you do business with.  They may call or send an email, asking for personal information or money; if you weren’t expecting this request, do not respond until you are absolutely certain of their identity and intentions.

 

Similarly, if someone asks you to pay for something in advance, use extreme caution!  If they claim you won a prize or qualify for debt relief, but you must pay taxes or fees prior to taking advantage of it, it’s likely a scam.  It’s also becoming increasingly common for scammers to ask you to cash a check for them—sending most of the cash back to them and keeping some for yourself; these checks are fraudulent and will be returned against your account.

 

If a company or organization asks you to pay using an uncommon type of payment method, like a wiring service or reloadable debit card, ask more questions!  Real and honest businesses should accept cash, credit cards, or personal checks.  When in doubt, however, always use a credit card to pay; they have the most fraud protection built-in and it’s much easier to recover lost funds if it does turn out to be fraudulent.

 

Unfortunately, we live in a world where fraud happens every minute of every day.  We have to put up our defenses when it comes to our finances; don’t share your personal information with anyone until you are confident their identity and intentions are true.  To learn more about current scams, visit the Federal Trade Commission’s website at www.consumer.ftc.gov. 

 

By: Teri Etienne, Treasury Management

 


 

Maximize Your Money!

January 27, 2015

 

I would venture to guess that everyone has a bank account.  Nowadays, people can’t live without their checking accounts and debit cards.  I would also venture to guess that most people have a savings account (because that’s the usual setup at a financial institution).  But do people really maximize their savings account, and therefore, their money?  There are a multitude of products and services out there, offered by your financial institution, that will put your money to work for you and grow your savings…without even putting in extra hours at work!

 

General Savings
Savings accounts typically have higher interest rates than checking accounts so it’s recommended to keep most of your dollars in savings so it can earn interest (aka free money!).
In other words, don’t stockpile too much money in checking or you’ll miss out on earning more interest (again, free money!)—only keep what you need in checking and transfer over from savings, when necessary.

 

Certificate of Deposits
A Certificate of Deposit (CD) is an investment that earns a premium interest rate and is used on money that you don’t anticipate needing in the near future.  CD’s can generally be for any dollar amount and the length of time, or term, can be from 6 months to 10 years, with the interest rate being higher as the term lengthens.  The interest rate is determined at the time of the investment and is locked at that rate for the life of the CD, which makes this a very safe investment because you can easily determine return.

 

Individual Retirement Accounts
Though your retirement may (or may not) be a long ways off, it’s inevitable and therefore, should be prepared for ahead of time—an Individual Retirement Account, or IRA, is a savings account designed to do just that!  The key feature of an IRA is the ability to make contributions on a tax-free or tax-deferred basis, which can make you a lot more money because they typically hold higher interest rates as well.  The beauty is anyone can start an IRA, regardless of your age or salary.  Talk to your local financial institution to find out what’s right for you.

 

By: Jennifer Guderjahn, Personal Banker

 


 

Start saving for Christmas NOW (your wallet will thank you!)

December 02, 2014
 
The holidays have come and passed and though we have fond memories of the time spent with family and friends, it’s likely we all feel the hit our checking accounts took to celebrate this joyous time.  If only money weren’t an object!!  There are ways, however, to counteract extra spending for the holidays by preparing for it ahead of time with a Christmas Club bank account—and you should get one started soon!
 
Christmas Club Accounts
Though Christmas Club accounts can be found at many financial institutions, they’re not always a well-known product or overly advertised.  A Christmas Club account is a type of savings account designed to help you tuck away money throughout the year to save up for buying Christmas presents, or to treat yourself to some other gift (travel, entertainment, etc.).
 
There are a couple of features about Christmas Club accounts that make them more beneficial than an average savings account.  First, there may be a higher interest rate offered with a Christmas Club account so you can get a little more bang for your buck without contributing anything extra!  Second, because a Christmas Club is designed to help you save money, there are generally restrictions on withdrawing from the account before a certain date (don’t worry—usually funds are released before Black Friday!)—for those of us who feel money burning holes in our wallets, this is a great feature!!  If an unplanned expense or emergency arises, you can withdraw your money ahead of time; however, you may forfeit the interest accrued or pay a fee.
 
This isn’t a complex idea, but we sometimes forget how money can add up (whether we are spending or saving).  Take a look at the table below—this is assuming you open up a Christmas Club account at the beginning of the year and deposit into it every week (besides the week of Christmas):
Amount Deposited

 Amount Accumulated 

(after 51 weeks)

$5.00 / week $255.00
$10.00 / week  $510.00
$20.00 / week $1,020.00
$30.00 / week $1,530.00

 

Without even adding interest, you can see how a little commitment each week can make a big difference by the holiday season!  Start saving now—ask your local financial institution about a Christmas Club account and take advantage of all that saving money has to offer.
 
By: Jennifer Guderjahn, Personal Banker