America First Credit Union opens new branch in Brigham City

For Immediate Release:

America First Credit Union opens new branch in Brigham City

Utah’s largest credit union unveils new location inside Kent’s

Riverdale, UTAH (Monday, Nov. 15, 2017) – Utah’s largest credit union, America First Credit Union, opens its newest location on Monday, Nov. 20 inside the Kent’s Market in Brigham City, Utah. The branch, which is America First’s second location in Brigham City, will hold its grand opening beginning Monday, Nov. 20 through Saturday, Dec. 2. The celebration will include daily drawings for a chance to win Visa gift cards and a grand prize drawing.

Randy Christensen will serve as service center manager of the Brigham City Kent’s location. Born and raised in Layton, Utah, Christensen began his career with America First Credit Union five years ago as a teller at the West Jordan location and quickly moved up the ranks most recently serving as service center manager for the Salt Lake Hope Avenue Walmart branch.

The Brigham City Kent’s branch is located inside Kent’s Market at 260 North Main in Brigham City, Utah. Branch hours are 9 a.m. until 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

For more information, visit www.americafirst.com. FindAmerica First Credit Union on Facebook and Twitter or follow @AmericaFirst on Instagram and Pinterest.

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About America First Credit Union:

As the largest credit union in the state of Utah, America First boasts a long-standing history and 78 years servicing members and has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country while remaining a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 125 locations and is the 11th largest credit union in assets in the United States with more than $9.1 billion and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 918,000 members.

Contact: 

America First Credit Union
Nicole Cypers
C: 801-726-9480
ncypers@americafirst.com

Quillin Advertising, Public Relations & Social Media
Cindy Pino
O: 702-256-5511
C: 702-882-1240
cpino@quillinlv.com

America First Credit Union launches annual “Skip a Payment” program to provide shoes for kids in need

Credit Union celebrates 23 years of ‘Warm the Soles of Kids’ project

(RIVERDALE, UTAH) — Nov. 14, 2017 — America First Credit Union invites members to skip a loan payment during the holiday months and provide shoes for children in need. The annual “Skip a Payment” program offers members the opportunity to skip monthly loan payment from November 2017 through January 2018 for $25*. America First will donate a portion of the fee to purchase shoes and ‘Warm the Soles’ of children. Last year alone, America First helped to provide more than 2,000 pairs of shoes for children in need through the “Skip a Payment” program and monetary donations from members.

“We are honored to enter our 23rd year of giving via the “Warm the Soles of Kids” initiative that not only provides shoes to children in need but also gives some relief to our members during the busy holiday months,” said John B. Lund, CEO and president of America First. “We are gracious to our partner, J.C. Penney, who provides the shoes, and to our members for their willingness to participate and give back to our communities year-over-year.”

Children from Brigham City, Utah down to Las Vegas, will receive new shoes for the holidays as America First team members present the gift-wrapped shoes to children from 22 schools and service organizations at special holiday events throughout the month of December.

Monies from “Skip a Payment” will also benefit the America First 501(c)3 volunteer service arm, the America First Credit Union Charitable Foundation. The foundation supports charitable organizations that provide job assistance, training, education, transportation and housing as well as meals, clothing and medical attention to those in need. America First is also seeking monetary donations from its members and the community as part of the initiative.

To learn more about donating through the “Skip a Payment” program, call 1-800-999-3961, visit one of America First’s 124 branches or visit www.americafirst.com.

All contributions are tax-deductible and can be mailed to: America First Credit Union, Attention: Aimee Nelson, P.O. Box 9199, Ogden, UT 84409-0199.

For additional information, visit www.americafirst.com. Find America First Credit Union on Facebook, Twitter, or follow @AmericaFirst on Instagram and Pinterest.

About America First Credit Union:

As the largest credit union in the state of Utah, America First boasts a long-standing history and 78 years servicing members and has become one of the largest, most stable and most progressive credit unions in the country while remaining a member-owned, not-for-profit cooperative financial institution. Today, America First has 124 locations and is the 11th largest credit union in assets in the United States with more than $9.1 billion and the sixth largest credit union in membership in America with more than 918,000 members.

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Contact:

America First Credit Union
Nicole Cypers
C: 801-726-9480
ncypers@americafirst.com

Quillin Advertising, Public Relations & Social Media
Cindy Pino
D: 702-818-1637
C: 702-882-1240
cpino@quillinlv.com

military

Benefits for Members Serving in the Military

From America First’s humble founding in 1939 at Fort Douglas to opening three branches on Hill Air Force Base, our credit union has a long, rich history with the U.S. Armed Forces. And one of the ways we can show appreciation, in small measure, to our veterans is with these offers for those serving in the military.

Join us!

If you’re not a member of America First, gain $100 by becoming one. All you need to do is:

Make the most of your membership

If you’re a military member, receive up to $100 when you:

These benefits are valid for active and retired members of any Armed Forces branch, as well as for veterans. Visit your local branch to start or give us a call: 1-800-999-3961. And finally, America First would like to thank you for your service in the United States military.

Remember the Meaning ‘Mail Call’ Has for our Veterans this Holiday Season

By John B. Lund, President & CEO

In November, we celebrate two national holidays, Veterans’ Day and Thanksgiving. As citizens of this country, there is much for which we are rightly grateful, not the least being our veterans, who served and sacrificed to preserve our freedoms, lessen tyranny & oppression all over the world, and provide hope to millions.

We at America First Credit Union recently had the opportunity & privilege to support and take part in an effort that benefits World War II veterans. The Honor Flight Network is a non-profit organization created solely to recognize veterans for their immeasurable contributions. The network’s mission statement, in part, reads: To transport America’s Veterans to Washington, D.C. to visit those memorials dedicated to honor the service and sacrifices of themselves and their friends. To quote from their web site, Top priority is given to the senior veterans–World War II survivors, along with those other veterans who may be terminally ill.

Of all the conflicts in recent memory, it was the Second World War that truly threatened our very existence as a nation—and as a culturally diverse, free society. According to the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, an estimated 640 veterans of WWII die each day, meaning the time to share our gratitude with these brave men and women is running out.

This year, 26 veterans participated in the Honor Flight. I had the privilege of writing a letter on behalf of America First and from me personally that expressed appreciation for their service. This correspondence was included in a “mail call” the veterans enjoyed on their way home from Washington. Tears came to my eyes when I received and read the following note from one such hero:

Dear Friend/John,
I have just returned from one of the most memorable experiences in my life, an Honor Flight…This trip to Washington, D.C. included seeing the WWII Memorial, The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and the Lincoln Memorial. Also, it was a very moving experience to visit Arlington National Cemetery. Although there were many enjoyable things that happened during this trip, one surprise stands out: MAIL CALL! Yes, mail call, just like we had during the war, with welcomed letters from home. One letter I received with great enjoyment was from you. I can’t tell you how much this meant to me, that you would take the time to send this note of appreciation for my service. Thank you so much! With Warm Regards,
Sgt. Charles “Fritz” Dolehi, U.S. Army Air Corps

Throughout the year, but perhaps most importantly during the holiday season, I hope we can all take the opportunity to give our veterans a cherished mail-call experience and thank them for their service. I and our entire team thank you for your membership in America First. We look forward to a lifelong relationship with you and your family.

4 tips to protecting yourself from online fraud

Aside from the interest rate, what are the most important things to look at when evaluating choices for a credit card?

When choosing a credit card, you need to consider the following:

  1. Interest Rates: Low interest rates that help you minimize the amount on interest you pay each month.
  2. Cash Back and Rewards Incentives: Whether it’s cash back or rewards points, getting rewarded is crucial to making your credit card work for you. Getting rewarded for your transactions is a must.
  3. Added benefits: Looking for those extra perks? Look no further because with every America First Credit Card you get the benefits of top notch card security through Card Guard, great deals and discounts with ABC Deals, and Identity Theft Recovery….which are all free!

How do I protect myself from the risk of fraud or ID theft when shopping online?

Fraud is something we need to be aware of these days, unfortunately. It’s important to know about free tools available to keep your personal information safe. Some things to keep in mind:

  1. Create smart, strong passwords. Incorporate capital letters, numbers and symbols.
  2. E-mail wisely. Be cautious about what you’re disclosing in e-mail messages. Never send your credit card information, social security number of other private data via e-mail.
  3. Shop safely. If ordering online, be sure the site is secure.
  4. Take advantage of online tools. America First holds member security as its upmost priority and offers services like Card Guard, which allow you to turn your card on and off and of course Apple and Android Pay

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grocery

Shop Smart & Cut Your Grocery Bill

Everyone knows you’ll save money by making lunch & dinner instead of eating out. However, it’s still important to shop smart when you go to the grocery store. Here are some ways to spend less.

Save By Planning

You can definitely save money with proper preparation. Creating a weekly meal plan, for example, will focus your efforts and prevent impulse buying. You can even check online for coupons or in your mailbox for supermarket circulars and use sale prices to set your menu. Get on a schedule, too, so you don’t find yourself grocery shopping every day.

Once you decide what you want, write it down—a physical list keeps you on track and you won’t forget the important items. Make sure to check your pantry before you go & take inventory so you don’t end up with something you already have. Learn common costs so you know a good deal when you see it. Be sure to compare stores and find the best deals on canned goods, meat and dairy.

Save While You Shop

Never shop hungry—eat a snack or two before going out or you’ll be grabbing things because the packaging looks delicious or you’ll get more than you need. Also, limit your available shopping time. Leisurely aisle strollers usually spend more.

When it comes to produce, buy what’s in season because prices go up when supply is down. Cut items yourself instead of purchasing pre-sliced veggies & fruits that are sometimes twice as expensive. And never pick up the first thing you see. Double-check prices and ingredients to see if you can pay less for the same thing. Get the store brands when possible & always look high and low. The pricey groceries often appear at eye level and sometimes the best bargains are at the bottom.

Use cash whenever possible so you don’t shell out more than you allotted. Additionally, scan the receipt afterward, making sure there aren’t errors, then take note of what cost the most so you can find a way to save on those items in the future.

Save At Home

Instead of making a trip to the grocery store because you’re missing one ingredient, see if you can create something else with food you already have. Use what’s in your inventory instead of letting it go to waste. The same goes with leftovers—plan on using them for a meal or two instead of throwing them out.

If you have the space, grow your own produce and freeze what you can’t eat to extend its life. And always watch for specials when you’re shopping. For a limited time, America First is offering to pay for $100 in groceries when you open a savings and checking account in one of our convenient in-store branches. Head to americafirst.com for details.

Security Update: Safety for the Season

Protecting yourself online is important to maintain financial health, no matter where we are on the calendar. But as we look toward the holidays, it’s a good idea to be aware of & avoid these pitfalls.

  • Malicious messages: Emails from family and friends invite recipients to click on cards, videos, and animations. While some are harmless, cybercriminals can imbed viruses and spyware—open all attachments and URLs with care.
  • Phishing with friends: Many on social media will use the upcoming downtime to network. Unfortunately, these sites are often where phishing attacks take place. Think twice about adding those you don’t really know and never divulge personal data to anyone on the internet.
  • Where’s my phone: Thousands of travelers will lose their smartphones & laptops this year, so it’s wise not to leave a boarding gate, vehicle, or security checkpoint without taking a mental inventory of your electronics.
  • Downloading danger: Apply common sense when you get games, file-sharing tools, streaming services & other third-party apps. Deploy anti-virus software to detect malware.

For more information, please visit us here.

Save Some Cash & Do Some Good

Everyone knows it’s better to give than receive, but as a member of America First, you can do both!

Apply to skip a loan payment* for only $25 and, when you take advantage of this option during the holidays, we’ll contribute $5 to the America First Charitable Foundation, assisting the less-fortunate.

Then you’ll be free to go shopping, get caught up on your bills—anything you see fit. Plus, you’ll be helping someone in need. To see if you qualify, log in here, then click the Other Services tab.

*Terms and conditions apply. Not all loans are eligible. The America First Credit Union Charitable Foundation is a Utah-based, non-profit corporation organized for charitable purposes.

 

Assistance in Achieving Financial Health

America First Financial Solutions, provided through CUSO Financial Services, LP (CFS*), makes available a variety of products that complement those offered by the credit union.

Dedicated CFS advisors work with you to develop an economic roadmap that includes:

  • 401k and thrift savings rollovers
  • Life insurance & long-term care
  • Higher education planning
  • Retirement planning

Call 1-800-999-3961 for a no-cost, no-obligation appointment or send your request to affsolutions@cusonet.com.

*Non-deposit investment products and services are offered through CUSO Financial Services, L.P. (CFS), a registered broker-dealer (Member FINRA/SIPC) and SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Products offered through CFS are not NCUA/NCUSIF or otherwise federally insured, are not guarantees or obligations of the credit union, and may involve investment risk, including possible loss of principal. Investment representatives are registered through CFS. The credit union has contracted with CFS to make non-deposit investment products and services available to members.

 

5 tips to help you stick to a budget

America First recently concluded its 13th Annual Community Food Drive. The food drive, held at all branch locations throughout Utah and southern Nevada, collected 18,400 pounds of food. This equates to over 15,000 meals for those in need. Nicole Cypers from America First Credit Union talks more about it:

Our employees loaded all food donations into trucks which were then distributed to local food pantries and food banks. Thanks to all the America First Credit Union employees that participated.

The holidays are upon us and as Utah’s largest credit union, they know the importance of giving back to others. They’ve recently launched their Skip a Payment program, which is a great opportunity for members to skip a loan payment during the holiday months and simultaneously provide shoes for children in need.

The annual Skip a Loan Payment program offers members the opportunity to skip monthly loan payments from November 2017 – January 2018 for $25. America First will then donate a portion of the fee to purchase shoes and ‘warm the soles’ of children.

To learn more about donating through the Skip a Loan Payment program, call 1-800-999-3961, visit one of America First’s 124 branches or visit www.americafirst.com

Tips for Sticking to a Budget:

  1. Calculate expenses. Your first order of business is finding out exactly how much you’re spending each month.
  2. Determine your income.
  3. Set savings and debt payoff goals.
  4. Record spending and track progress.
  5. Be realistic.

America First has great free budgeting tools in our online banking and mobile banking applications. This is a great tool to track and manage your spending.

Viewer Question: Is it smart to use my credit card just to get the points/rewards if I’m paying it off every month?

If you are paying your credit card off each month, then yes it is smart to use your card for the points/rewards. You earn one point* for every dollar you spend, and with Visa Rewards you can redeem your points for a variety of rewards including:

  • Gift cards for restaurants and merchants
  • Merchandise such as iPods and Blu-Ray™ players
  • Tickets to events
  • Activities like amusement park visits, spa excursions, sightseeing & outdoor adventures

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