Posts Tagged ‘ Credit ’

Preserving a Precious Commodity – Your Credit Report

We all have seen commercials on TV or in the media regarding identity theft and how that impacts you and your Credit Report.  Due to our busy schedules, many folks ignore the importance of checking their credit reports on an annual basis.  Credit reports contain your personal information and history on how you pay your financial obligations.  Obligations reported about you may vary; they could include your credit card activity, payments on your car loan, your home mortgage, student loans, etc.  More importantly, they include information about “bounced checks” written by you, that have been turned over to an agency for collection, unpaid medical bills or any other account you have incurred that has been converted to judgments against you. The report also shows if you have filed for bankruptcy protection in the past.

You may ask, “Why is this important to me?” This information is used to assist a lender in determining your credit worthiness when you apply for a loan, credit card or any other credit request you may have.  It will be used to determine if you get a preferred interest rate or if you are considered a higher risk, thus demanding you to pay a higher rate.  Your credit report may be reviewed by a potential employer when you apply for employment. A poor report certainly could negatively influence their opinion of you and the possibility of being passed over for the job.  Insurance companies use a credit report to determine how you will pay your bills – the higher your credit score, the cheaper your insurance premium may be.

It is widely recognized that a great percentage of credit reports contain incorrect information or information that is not yours.  Your credit report is yours alone. You need to monitor it closely and make sure that it accurately states your history.  If there are inaccuracies, it is your responsibility to get them corrected. The reporting agencies are Equifax, Experian or Transunion. Contact any one of them for the procedures to make corrections.  You may access your credit report online at www.annualcreditreport.com.

By: Bill Brennan, Sr. Vice President

Equal Housing Lender - larger

 

 

Investment and insurance products:

  • Are Not Insured by the FDIC or any other federal government agency
  • Are Not deposits of or guaranteed by a Bank or any Bank Affiliate
  • May lose value

Could you use $4,000 for College?

Citizens Bank Minnesota has paid out $104,500 in awards since 2000 with their Scholarship Program. 

Citizens awards two or more scholarships each year to local graduating seniors who will be attending post-secondary education. Scholarship Management Services, a division of Scholarship America of St. Peter, performs the selection process and administration. This program was instituted at Citizens as a way to show our commitment to the community and our belief in today’s youth. Citizens plans to continue this tradition for years to come!

Applicants for the scholarship program must be high school seniors, who plan to enroll in a full-time undergraduate course of study at an accredited four year college or university in the fall following graduation. This program’s requirements include that the student be a customer of Citizens Bank Minnesota with an open and active checking account. The applicant must also attend the required educational banking classes before applications are distributed.

Students applying for the scholarship are required to attend the ‘Real Life 101’ seminar. This seminar focuses on teaching valuable lessons in banking. The classes include Personal Finance, Loans and Credit, Investments, Insurance and Online Banking tools. The classes include lecture as well as real life examples, such as how to work a budget, what is needed to apply for a loan, and various investment options to name a few.

Scholarship awards are $1,000.00 each. Awards may be renewed for an additional three years, on the basis of satisfactory academic performance and maintaining full-time enrollment. Applicants not selected for the scholarship awards will be entered into a drawing to win some fun prizes. Not all applicants will be selected to receive an award.

Interested students must complete the application they receive after meeting the bank’s requirements. Applicants are responsible for gathering and submitting all necessary information. Applications are evaluated on the information provided; therefore, the applicant must answer questions to the fullest extent possible. All information received is considered confidential and is reviewed only by Scholarship America. Applications must be completed and postmarked by the deadline set by Scholarship America.

Scholarship recipients are selected on the basis of academic record, potential to succeed, leadership, participation in school and community activities, honors received and work experience. Students are also asked to complete a statement of educational and career goals, and submit an outside appraisal from a teacher or counselor. Financial need is not considered. Selection of recipients is made by Scholarship America. In no instance does any bank or school official play a part in the selection. All applicants agree to accept the decision of Scholarship America as final.

If you are interested in this program contact Scholarship Coordinator Missy Marti (mmarti@citizensmn.com). Our first Real Life 101 seminar for 2010 will be held Tuesday, December 28th in New Ulm. 

Missy Marti, Assistant Marketing Director/eWorld Coordinator

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