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Connections - Winter 2015

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Get More For Your Mortgage At Melrose

your_mortgageWading through the home buying process can be a chore, but the mortgage lenders at Melrose Credit Union make it easy. They can help you find a mortgage package that fits your needs and price range.

Start by visiting the E-Z Mortgage Center at www.melrosecu.org for current rates, mortgage calculators and other resources. Use the calculator to determine what you can afford and what your monthly payment would be. Find out what type of mortgage is best for the property you desire, and how the cost of insurance factors into your monthly expenses.

Melrose CU offers mortgage options to fit every borrower, including:

  • Fixed and adjustable rate mortgages
  • Co-Op & Condo Purchases
  • Jumbo & Commercial Mortgages

Jumbos & Residential Investments Available

Melrose CU is able to provide up to $1.5M in residential financing to help our members secure the home of their dreams. Melrose also offers 1-4-family Residential Investment Property financing.

With great rates, low-to-no fees and multiple options, Melrose Credit Union is your best home loan choice.

Apply Today! Call (718) 658-9800, Option 3
to get started.

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Avoid Fees With Melrose CU’s No-Fee Services

avoid_feesFinancial fees keep rising for consumers. Of the 25 biggest metro markets, the New York area has the eighth highest ATM fees
for using out-of-network machines, according to Bankrate, at $4.50 per transaction, jumping 5% since the previous year. The
area’s overdraft fee is 13th highest, at $33.32. Checking account fees have been on the increase since 2008.

With all these escalating charges that are taking a chomp out of your wallet, it makes more sense than ever to take advantage
of Melrose CU’s no-fee products and services: E-Z Checking, Shared Branches, EZMoneyOnline, and the CO-OP ATM network.
Because Melrose CU is owned by its members, and doesn't answer to stockholders, you won't be charged for convenience
services.

Make The Switch Today And Save

  • Earn Dividends On Average Daily Balances Of $500 Or More
  • FREE Checking With No Minimum Balance Requirement
  • SURCHARGE-FREE Access At Over 5,500 ATMs Through The Co-Op Network
  • FREE Account Access Through The Co-Op Shared Branch Network
  • FREE Money Management With EZMoneyOnline
  • FREE E-Z Bill Pay
  • FREE Co-Op ATM Or MasterCard® Debit Card

If you need help making the switch from your current institution, come see us! Stop by Melrose CU or visit www.melrosecu.org.

EZMoneyOnline

Check your E-Z Checking and your other accounts online, with easy, convenient access 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Simply log on from a computer or mobile device to view your current balances, transfer funds, pay bills electronically with E-Z Bill Pay and more.

Save On ATM Fees With Your Debit Or ATM Card Through The CO-OP Network

Making purchases and getting cash is easy with your MasterCard® Debit Card. Just swipe and sign anywhere MasterCard is  accepted and the funds are deducted directly from your E-Z Checking account. Plus, when you need cash on the go, use your card at over 5,500 surcharge-free ATMs nationwide through the CO-OP Network. Use the ATM locator at www.melrosecu.org. With  CO-OP Shared Branches, you can make many transactions at other credit unions just as if you were at Melrose CU.

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Get Smart About Smart Cards

The Little Chip That’s Helping Make Credit Cards More Secure

Credit Union members around the country will soon be able to use their credit and debit cards in stores with a new layer of protection against fraud in the form of a small microchip embedded in the card. The EMV chip is designed to communicate with  specially outfitted card reader terminals used at the point of sale that will authorize each sale based on various PIN and data  verification processes. This effort to improve payment technology has already been successfully implemented in Europe and Asia  and has been shown to deter most forms of theft and fraud.

The new cards are nearly impossible to duplicate, and they protect against “skimming” machines, which fraudsters use to scan information from magnetic strips. This advanced Cardholder verification helps ensure that the person attempting to make the  transaction is the person to whom the card belongs.

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Scholarship Applications

2015 Statewide Scholarship Program

scholarshipMelrose Credit Union is again offering college-bound high school seniors the opportunity to compete for statewide college scholarships. Scholarships will be awarded in the amounts of $1,000 and $500 and may be used at a two- or four-year accredited educational institution.

Students who are members of Melrose CU can take advantage of this opportunity by stopping in at Melrose to request a scholarship application form, or visiting www.melrosecu.org to download an electronic application.

Return the completed application and supportive materials to the Melrose Marketing department no later than January 30, 2015.

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Queens Is Top U.S. Tourism Destination

According To Lonely Planet's Annual Survey

The world's most diverse county was selected as the best tourism destination in the United States for 2015 by Lonely Planet, the world's leading travel media company, on December 10.

Queens drew praise for its exploding eating and drinking scene (including the four microbreweries that opened over the last 18 months), amazing diversity, high-quality hotels, exciting events and unique, enchanting neighborhoods, such as art-filled Long Island City and surfboard-friendly Rockaway.

"Nowhere is the image of New York as the global melting pot truer than Queens. Browse New York's biggest Chinatown in Flushing, shop for brilliantly colored saris in Jackson Heights and inhale the heady aromas of coffee and hookahs in Astoria," reads Lonely Planet's editorial in its Best in the US list for 2015. "The incomparable array of world cuisines makes Queens a destination for food lovers from all parts of New York City."

Borough President Melinda Katz has made tourism a priority of her administration since she took office last year, launching a marketing plan aimed at increasing visitation. "The World's Borough" is her slogan, and it's emblazoned on road signs at major thoroughfares entering the borough.

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What To Expect From A Financial Planner

Hiring a financial planner can be a wise move for your long-term future. Whether
you make a little money or a lot, most people can benefit from having the objective
viewpoint of a financial planner, one who can help define and achieve your goals.

financial_plannerBut how do you choose the right person to trust with your money, and what can you expect your planner to do once they are hired? Here are a few tips to get you pointed in the right financial direction.

Choose Wisely

Getting a referral from a reliable friend is a good start, but looking for a planner with the right credentials is key. A certified financial planner (CFP) is a designation most people look for, since it requires a minimum of three years experience and a pledge to a strict code of ethics.

Ed Huttick, CFP, Melrose Credit Union’s financial planning representative at (718) 523-1300 ext. 1136, is someone who will listen to your concerns and find compatible solutions for your goals.

Determine Your Goals & Evaluate Your Status

Your planner should help determine your financial goals, priorities and needs, as well as gauge your expectations and attitudes and assess your risk tolerance. Ed Huttick can advise you on a variety of investment options, including: budgeting, retirement, wills, life insurance, long-term care, estate tax planning, annuities and more.

Develop & Implement A Financial Plan

Mr. Huttick will help you develop a plan tailored to your needs and objectives. Then he will assist you in implementing your plan.

Observe, Review &  Evaluate

Once your financial plan is in place, you should meet with Ed periodically to review the investments. If any changes have occurred, like tax laws, your personal or economic circumstances, or you have encountered health issues, the plan should be reevaluated and possibly altered to address Begin your future today by those changes.

Begin your future today by contacting Ed Huttick, CFP, at (718) 523-1300 ext. 1136.

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Stay Cyber Secure – Protect Your Information

The Internet can be a scary place to do business, which is why you need to be diligent about protecting your personal data from fraudsters. Wednesday, January 28 is Data Security Day, and the National Cyber Security Alliance suggests following these tips to keep your identity safe.

cyber_secureThe Internet can be a scary place to do business, which is why you need to be diligent about protecting your personal data from fraudsters. Wednesday, January 28 is Data Security Day, and the National Cyber Security Alliance suggests following these tips to keep your identity safe.

Keep A Clean Machine – Protect against viruses, malware and other online threats by being up to date on the latest security  software, web browsers and operating systems. This holds true for mobile devices as well.

Delete If It Looks Suspicious – Links in email, social media and online advertising can lead to you downloading viruses or getting caught in phishing scams. If it looks suspicious, even if you think you know the source, delete or mark as junk mail, and don’t click on links you don’t know.

Scan External Devices – USB drives and other external devices can contain viruses. Make sure you scan each device before using.

Think Before You Click and Send Information – Don’t reveal personal or financial information in an email, and don’t respond to email solicitations for this information. Before sending sensitive information over the Internet, check the security of the website, and pay attention to the website's URL to make sure it’s one you trust.

Change Passwords Often – Make passwords long and strong. Combine capital and lowercase letters with numbers and symbols to create a more secure password. Creating separate passwords for every account helps to thwart cybercriminals.

Shop Safely – Check out online sellers, make sure the site is legitimate, and use secure forms and payment options when buying online. Look for secure sites with “https://” or “shttp://”, which means the site takes extra measures to help secure your information. Also, turn off your computer at night. Having it on gives fraudsters 24/7 access to hack into your private information.

 

lockMelrose Credit Union uses the most updated technology available to protect your accounts on our end. If you ever see suspicious activity on any of your accounts, please contact us  immediately – we are here to help.

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Ideas To Beat The Winter Blues

winter_bluesThe cold and gloomy days of winter are upon us, but instead of hibernating, invigorate with these five tips to keep you moving and keep the winter doldrums at bay until spring thaws us out.

Exercise

Sure, it’s tempting to pull up the blankets and sip hot chocolate by the fire all winter, but getting your blood pumping for at least 30 minutes a day is better for your well-being. It helps you feel better by releasing endorphins to improve your mood, gives you more energy and also helps keep those extra calories in check.

Get Outside In The Morning

This might involve bundling up, but getting fresh air and natural daylight can improve your mood. Getting that sunlight in the morning – within two hours of waking up – can help regulate your body clock.

Get Enough Vitamin D

If you live in a warmer climate, this is as easy as stepping outside and catching some sun for about 15-20 minutes. For those in the cold and gray, taking a multivitamin or supplement of Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) with at least 600 IUs is a good idea. D3 also occurs naturally in fish like salmon or tuna, eggs, cheese and fish oils, as well as in vitamin-fortified orange juice, milk and cereals.

Get A Light Box

Light therapy has been reported to work in roughly 80% of all cases of Seasonal Affective Disorder. Some research has shown that blue light may be slightly more effective at reducing SAD symptoms than other types of light. It is recommended that you sit near your light box for 30 minutes each morning.

Eat Healthy

“Comfort” foods may tempt you, but refined and processed foods like white breads and sugars can zap your energy levels and  negatively affect your mood. Try to incorporate more complex carbohydrates like whole grains, fruits and veggies, and make sure you take in plenty of water.

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CO-OP Shared Branch And ATM Network Makes College More Affordable

co-opIf you have a college student or a child getting ready to head off to university, watch that they don’t get overcharged for their college banking. When they get to campus they will be bombarded with credit card offers that can skyrocket their debt if they’re not careful, and fees from on-campus banks could leave them without enough to spend on the things they need most.

A better option to help students manage their money better is an E-Z Checking Account with MasterCard® Debit Card. They’ll have surcharge-free access to over 5,500 ATMs through the CO-OP Network, free access to their accounts through EZMoneyOnline, and free Shared Branches, so they can bank without the fees.

For more information about E-Z Checking Accounts, call (718) 658-9800, visit www.melrosecu.org or stop by and visit the Melrose Financial Center to get started.

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melrose_placeMelrose Place

Making Melrose Credit Union A Better Place

We invite all members to send us your service experiences at Melrose Credit Union.

Please note that letters may be edited or summarized.

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NY Tidbits

Melrose CU highlights some facts about New York City you might not have known.

Subway Tokens – Sure, the wallet-friendly Metro Card has taken over from the lowly, and easy to drop, token, but the MTA still has a cache of 1.6 million “Y” cutout tokens stored away in a warehouse.

Colonial Horse’s Tail – New Yorkers stormed into Bowling Green, NYC’s first public park, on July 9, 1776 after hearing news of the Declaration of Independence. There they toppled the statue of the equestrian statue of King George III. A 19-inch remnant of the tail ended up at the New York Historical society. The rest of the statue was melted down and used to make musket balls for the Continental Army. The head was taken away by British loyalists.

Berlin Wall – The wall fell in Germany 25 years ago, but a section of it made it back to New York City and it now resides in Paley Park, at 520 Madison Ave., at 53rd St., complete with graffiti.

*Sources: A History of 101 New York Objects, by Sam Roberts; Thrillist NYC.

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Plan For A Better Future

Are you feeling confused about investing and what your future holds when it comes to retirement?

MBS is another trusted service brought to you by Melrose Credit Union. Our insurance experts will be happy to listen to your needs and help you make the right financial decisions for you, your family and your business.

MBS offers valuable, Money-Saving Assistance with:

  • Automobile Insurance
  • Homeowners & Renters Insurance
  • Disability Insurance
  • Long Term Care Insurance
  • Life & Health Insurance
  • And Much More

For more information, call an MBS representative at (718) 523-1300 or stop by our office at Melrose Credit Union.

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Holiday Closings & Important Dates

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

Saturday, January 17 & Monday, January 19, 2015

Presidents’ Day

Saturday, February 14 & Monday, February 16, 2015Christmas Eve

Annual Meeting

Sunday, March 29, 2015

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ATM/Shared Branch