BlueOx Blog

fire up your savings game: saving money at the grocery store


Woman checking the price of an item at the grocery store.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

With prices rising on everyday items, perhaps your savings plan has gone by the wayside. These tips will help you find more money in your budget – starting with saving at the grocery store.

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how to celebrate America Saves Week 2024


America Saves Week 2024 - BlueOx Credit Union

BlueOx is proud to be a participating organization in America Saves Week 2024! Since 2007, America Saves Week has been an annual celebration and call to action for everyday Americans to get a clear view of their finances and commit to saving successfully!

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avoiding probate: the benefits of having a beneficiary on your financial accounts


Couple discussing their financial plan.

Discover the advantages of designating beneficiaries on your financial accounts to bypass probate and ensure a smooth transfer of assets.

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new year, new money habits


Couple budgeting and looking at their finances together.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

The New Year is a time for powerful new beginnings. It also presents an opportunity to look at our everyday habits – whether those habits relate to our health and fitness or our money habits as we manage financial challenges.

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tips for avoiding common holiday scams


Woman online shopping for the holidays.

The holiday season is a time of joy and celebration, but unfortunately, it's also a time when scammers are on the prowl. Understanding the most common holiday scams can help you stay one step ahead and protect yourself.

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holiday budgeting tips: save money and enjoy the festivities


Woman online shopping for the holidays.

It's officially the most wonderful time of the year! Discover effective holiday budgeting tips to help you save money and make the most of the festive season with your loved ones.

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safeguard yourself against student loan scams


College student walking to class.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

As we usher in fall, millions of borrowers are resuming their monthly student loan payments. But unfortunately, students aren’t the only individuals with money on their minds. If you’re a student or graduate, it's crucial to be aware of online scammers who target borrowers with the aim of cashing in.

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everything you need to know about Michigan’s mandatory electronic titles


Man driving his new vehicle.

The Michigan Department of State (MDOS) implemented the Electronic Lien and Title (ELT) program on March 16, 2021. As of October 1, 2023, it will become mandatory that all new titles with a lienholder will be electronic.

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tips for avoiding overdraft fees


Woman online shopping with her debit card.

Overdraft fees can be expensive, difficult to pay off, and may leave you in poor standing with your financial institution. Fortunately, many options are available to protect your account from overdrafting.

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student loan repayment, simplified


Man sitting at his desk, reading about his student loan repayment options.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

After a historical hiatus throughout the pandemic, borrowers now face federal student loan repayment. Evaluating your full financial picture and making a repayment plan goes a long way towards reducing stress and uncertainty. Unsure where to start? Read on!

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everything you need to know about card skimming


Woman using her card at an ATM.

Card skimming is a financial scam that costs financial institutions and consumers more than $1 billion in losses each year. Fortunately, there are many precautions people can take to protect themselves from this harmful crime.

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mid-year money checkup: 5 ways to boost your financial health


Smiling woman checking her finances in her office.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

Summer is in full swing, and so is peak travel season. And while this is a prime time to get outdoors and cash in on any plans you may have — at home or beyond — the reality is that financial concerns (and recent credit interest rate spikes) remain a pain point for many of us. Here are five steps to take to boost your financial health and reduce your worries this summer.

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smart summer travel: 7 ways to save (and still have fun!)


Friends going on vacation together.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

Few things stoke wanderlust like longer days and warmer temps. But before you deep dive into summer travel—and your wallet—check out these tips that can help you have fun in the sun without breaking the bank.

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everything you need to know about our BlueOx iTellers


Woman standing by an iTeller while looking at her cell phone.

Because you're digital, we're digital! Did you know we offer a unique, easy-to-use Drive-Thru iTeller service? Continue reading to learn everything there's to know about our ITMS - including tips, available transactions, and the many benefits they offer our members!

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financial literacy for kids


Mother and daughter putting coins into a piggy bank together.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

Practical money management skills learned at an early age can have a lasting impact on the rest of your child’s life. In fact, this is one of the most important areas where you can truly change the course of their life. 

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IRS de-stress: 5 tips for last minute taxpayers


Couple filing their taxes together.

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

If you've already crossed filing taxes off your list, congratulations! If you're in the company of 25% of Americans who wait until the last minute - don't panic! Here are five suggestions from our friends at GreenPath Financial Wellness for filing in the final hour.

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5 easy ways to spring-clean your finances


Couple spring cleaning their finances together.

Prepare your dust pans and sponges - because spring cleaning season is officially here! For most people, that means tidying up their houses or getting started on yard work. However, this time of year is also the perfect opportunity to freshen up your finances.

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protecting your loved ones from elder fraud


Protecting Your Loved Ones from Elder Fraud - Blog from GreenPath Financial Services

By GreenPath Financial Wellness

In 2022, Phyllis Wiseberg, a 90-year-old widow, lost $20,000 when cybercriminals withdrew the money from her account. Her story, shared by the National Council on Aging, is devastating but unfortunately not uncommon. Financial exploitation is a reality many seniors face, especially in the age of online scams. Here are actions you can take to help financially safeguard your loved ones.


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a note from our CEO - your credit union is strong! deposits are welcome here.


BlueOx Credit Union Core Values

The recent news of potential bank failures due to investment in high-risk start-up technology companies is a great reminder why banking with BlueOx Credit Union, and credit unions in general, is the safest place to do your banking.

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how to protect yourself from website cloning


Woman looking at a website on her computer.

Website cloning is one of the most popular scams among cybercriminals looking to steal money and gain sensitive information from their victims.

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everything you need to know about debt consolidation


Woman consolidating her credit card debt at her kitchen table.

Debt consolidation is the process of using new financing to combine multiple debts into a single monthly payment. People typically seek debt consolidation when paying off high-interest debt, such as credit cards.

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savings accounts, money markets, and certificates: what’s the difference?


Couple looking at their computer together and taking notes.

As interest rates continue to rise, the time to start maximizing your savings is more important than ever! However, with all the investment and saving opportunities available, how do you know which option will best fit your needs?

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tips for teaching your kids good money habits


Mother teaching her kids about money.

One of the most essential lessons a parent or guardian can teach their children is how to properly manage money. This is a key factor in helping them develop a solid financial foundation - and the earlier they start learning, the better!

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tips for managing your finances during high inflation


Woman budgeting for inflation while she grocery shops.

Inflation occurs when the prices of goods and services rise in the economy. Unfortunately, an increasing inflation rate typically affects a consumer’s purchasing power. Therefore, reevaluating your finances is more important than ever during these times!

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10 common cyber security attacks and how to protect yourself from them


Cyber security icons next to a computer.

As cyber security attacks continue to rise, learning to protect yourself online is more important than ever! Especially because these attacks often lead to devastating consequences, including loss of important data and access to confidential information.

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how do certificates of deposit (CDs) work?


Woman opening a Certificate of Deposit.

As interest rates continue to rise, you may have heard about various investment opportunities. One available option is opening a Certificate of Deposit (CD). While CDs are considered one of the safest investments, how exactly do they work?

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the top myths about buying a vehicle: debunked


Woman driving her new vehicle.

There are many myths and misconceptions about the car buying process. And while most of them are harmless and easy to ignore, some can end up costing the buyer a lot of time and money!

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budgeting tips for rising interest rates


Woman going through her budget and holding her credit card.

Most people are aware that interest rates have continuously been on the rise. And while the reason for this is to help curb inflation, it’s understandably stressful knowing that the cost of living and borrowing money is becoming more expensive. Fortunately, there are many ways you can navigate this period through slight adjustments to your household budget and financial plan!

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5 signs it's time for a new vehicle


Man driving his new vehicle.

Purchasing a new vehicle is a big decision, and it can be difficult to determine the “right” time to do it. There are endless factors to consider, and the process can quickly become overwhelming! Luckily, these 5 signs that it’s time for a new vehicle can help make your decision a little easier!

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finding the perfect home loan to fit your needs


Couple holding a key to their new home.

The perfect home loan is not going to be a one-size-fits-all option. And while the decision to purchase a new home is exciting, the process can seem overwhelming. Luckily, BlueOx and our partners at Mortgage Center are here to help!

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financial tips for rising interest rates


Woman looking up interest rates on her laptop.

Interest rates are on the rise, and this may affect your personal finances. Fortunately, there are tips for rising rates that will help you remain financially healthy during this time!

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budget-friendly summer activities


Friends canoeing together on the river.

We’ve all been in a position where we need to make saving money our main priority. However, just because you can’t afford a lavish summer vacation this year doesn’t mean you have to miss out on all the fun!

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how to stop living paycheck-to-paycheck


Woman drinking coffee from a decorative coffee mug while looking out the window.

Did you know that 78% of American workers claim they live a paycheck-to-paycheck lifestyle? This means they are spending their entire paycheck before the next one is available. You'd be correct if you think this sounds like a stressful cycle! The good news is you don't have to stay in this situation! In fact, it only takes a few minor changes to your financial plan to get yourself out of the loop. 

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home loans 101


Couple lying on the floor of their new home, with moving boxes stacked behind them.

Whether you're a first-time home buyer or looking to move to another property, you'll likely need to take out a home loan. Unfortunately, researching and comparing options can start to get overwhelming. However, homeownership doesn’t have to be complicated! With the help of a financial expert and some basic home loan knowledge - you can be prepared and relaxed throughout the process! 

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eco-friendly ways to save money


Woman living eco-friendly by happily gardening in her backyard.

It's a common myth that becoming more eco-friendly is a costly process. In fact – most of the time, living green actually saves you money! In honor of Earth Day, check out a few ways you can protect the planet and your bank account.

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5 easy tips to help you meet your financial goals


Couple meeting their financial goals by finalizing the purchase of their new home with a handshake from their mortgage broker.

We've all heard about the benefits of setting financial goals. What we don't hear as often is how many people never end up achieving their goals. Why is this? Especially considering how essential these goals are to our financial health. Well, the answer is simple – changing your financial habits is difficult! Luckily, there are some helpful and easy tips you can utilize to help you stick with your goals!

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how to help your children build their savings


Save Small. Dream BIG! National Youth Month.

Saving money is difficult for all ages, that's why it's so essential to teach our children the importance of saving money while they’re young! Every parent desires to see their child succeed and live a healthy life – that includes healthy financial habits! Read on to see some easy, fun, and practical ways that you can help your child build their savings account.

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the 5 key components of financial literacy


A couple becoming financially literate together by reading informative articles on their laptop and taking notes.

When was the last time you sat down to evaluate your overall financial plan? Or took the time to freshen up your financial literacy knowledge? If it has been a while, don’t worry! It’s never too late to start. In fact, the perfect time is right now as April kicks off National Financial Literacy Month!

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employee spotlight - youth banking


Employee Spotlight: Youth Banking  - BlueOx Credit Union Blog

Today’s youth are never too young to start learning good financial habits! It’s crucial to educate our children on saving money and preparing them for their future finances. Read on to hear how one of our valued employees, Adele Garcia, has implemented good financial habits in her own children over the years!

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how do credit cards really work?


Man using his credit card to make an online purchase.

It’s understandable why many people are hesitant to open a credit card. They're often associated with long-lasting debt, high fees, and a negative impact on credit scores. However, if used properly, credit cards can be very beneficial to a person’s financial wellness!

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introducing - Portage iBranch!


Introducing Portage iBranch - BlueOx Credit Union Blog

BlueOx Credit Union is excited to announce the upcoming changes to our Portage Branch location! Effective April 4, 2022, the Portage Branch will be revamped into the new Portage iBranch with the addition of an iTeller Machine (ITM) in our lobby.

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creative ways to save money


Woman drawing at a desk, surrounded by creative pictures and art supplies.

We can all agree; it's responsible and necessary to save money. Yet often, instead of being excited about a growing savings account, we focus on everything we'll have to give up to make it happen. Fortunately, there are ways you can save money or stay within your budget and still have fun doing it! Change your perspective on what it means to save by checking out the following money-saving activities.

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key benefits to digital banking


Woman benefiting from digital banking by checking her bank account while she walks to school.

Digital banking is a fast, easy, and convenient alternative to the traditional style of banking. You can perform most financial transactions remotely from your computer or smartphone with this service. Learn more about digital banking and how you can benefit from it! 

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how to save money


Parents teaching their kids how to save money with a piggy bank.

Whether you're hoping to pay off debt, looking to purchase a new home, or planning for retirement, we all have reasons to save money! Unfortunately, it can seem like an overwhelming task at times.

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don’t fall victim to this popular mortgage scam


Don’t Fall Victim to This Popular Mortgage Scam - BlueOx Credit Union Blog

Did you recently purchase or refinance your current mortgage? If so, keep your guard up, as you could be a target of this new popular mortgage scam!

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what you need to know about tax identity fraud


Couple using the computer to research tax identity fraud.

Ready or not, tax season is coming up! Unfortunately, this also means it’s prime time for tax identity fraud. Nobody wants to become a victim of this heartless crime, so we’ve provided some helpful tips and information you should keep in mind as you file this year.

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top 10 cyber security tips


Woman checking her cell phone.

October is Cyber Security Month, and with the ability to practically carry our lives around in our pockets, it’s obvious that we live our lives digitally. Regardless of if you use your digital devices for work or for play – protecting your data is crucial. As we bring Cyber Security Month to a close, please check out these 10 tips to keep you and your family safe from digital scams or breaches.

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everything you need to know about credit card balance transfers


Woman shopping with her credit card.

When was the last time you checked your credit card’s interest rate? Odds are, depending on when you got the card, your interest rate could be drastically lower! This depends on the state of the economy, local rates, as well as your current credit score. It could be time for you to investigate a credit card balance transfer for a lower rate to save you money.

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when should you refinance your car?


Happy couple driving together after they refinanced their car.

Are you looking at your monthly Auto Loan statements and wondering how you could be saving more money? Refinancing your vehicle may be a great option for you, but there are a couple of factors to keep in mind when making this decision.

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Budgeting 101


Couple working on their effective budgeting plan.

Did you know that 60% of Americans spend with no budget? Maybe you think it’s too early to start budgeting, or maybe you think it’s too late. We’re here to tell you there’s no such thing! A budget is the key to a financially healthy life and can help you plan for your goals as well as for the unexpected events life may throw at you.

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new BlueOx online banking experience!


New Online Banking Experience - BlueOx Credit Union Blog

We're excited to announce our new and improved Online Banking! Featuring a more user-friendly navigation, a fresh design, really cool new features, and so much more.

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top five places to visit in michigan this summer


Family on a road trip in Michigan with their RV.

Looking for a family getaway this summer? Have you been saving up for some relaxing time off? Michigan is full of beautiful spots to vacation and explore! From beaches to vineyards, the Great Lake State has a little something for everyone. Grab the family, pack up the RV, put on your favorite road trip playlist, and hit the open road!

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everything you need to know about how auto loans work


Happy couple driving in their new or used vehicle. Get your Auto Loan with BlueOx Credit Union.

Purchasing a car is a big decision. There are so many variables that you need to consider when deciding which vehicle will be the best fit for you or your family – not to mention how you’re going to pay for it. What all goes into getting an auto loan? Let’s take a moment to break it all down for you!

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inexpensive ways to improve your home's curb appeal


Couple gardening to improve their curb appeal.

Whether you're trying to spruce up your home to get ready to sell or just want to make your house a home that you can take pride in, some simple updates to improve your curb appeal can work wonders on a home.

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five things every first-time home buyer should know


Young and happy couple moving into their new home as first-time homebuyers.

Buying a house is an exciting event, but if you're a first-time home buyer, this is uncharted territory for you! Before you jump in headfirst, we recommend you develop a realistic budget that comfortably fits your lifestyle. What you can afford and what you may be approved for could be two completely different numbers. Keep in mind that household expenses, such as groceries, gas, utilities, cell phone, cable, vacations, higher education, and other wants and needs, are not typically included by lenders when determining your debt-to-income ratio. Once you've developed your budget and are comfortable with the Mortgage payment you can afford, read on to learn about five other important things every first-time home buyer should know.

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10 steps to buying a new home


Couple rolling out a carpet together at their new home.

Purchasing a new home is an exciting event, but it can also be a bit overwhelming! There's so much to do when buying a new house, and you want to make sure you don't miss a single step. Fortunately for you, there's always help along the way. Check out these important steps to keep in mind as you make your way to purchasing your dream home!

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how do home equity loans work?


Couple planning out their home construction project.

A home equity loan — also known as a second mortgage, term loan, or equity loan — is when a homeowner borrows money against the equity in their home. A home equity loan is usually in a “second lien position” to your primary home mortgage loan; hence, the commonly referred to term "second mortgage." However, even if your primary home mortgage loan is paid off, you may still obtain a home equity loan.

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what is required when opening a checking account?


Family signing up for a checking account.

Opening a checking account is a fairly simple process, but you'll need to ensure you bring the right documentation with you. Keep in mind that the requirements may vary depending on the financial institution that you choose to bank with. Read on to learn about what a checking account is, the benefits of a checking account, and what you’ll need to have with you in order to get your account up and running right away.

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everything you need to know about construction loans


Family standing together in a construction site.

With a shortage of homes for sale on the market, you may be looking to build your new dream home. Building your own home can be a tremendously rewarding experience. You get to make choices about everything from location and floor plan to colors and landscaping. At the end of the process, you have a truly special place to live, something uniquely yours. But how do you pay for it? And how do new construction loans work?

While a project like building your home can be both exciting and fun, there are many things to consider before you begin building. Probably the most important consideration is how this type of project gets paid for.

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advantages of using a credit card for everyday payments


Smart phone displaying BlueOx Credit Union Credit Card on mobile wallet.

If you’re not using your credit card for your everyday expenses, you may want to change your ways. There are benefits to using credit cards responsibly for regular purchases. Credit cards are powerful financial tools. They allow us to pay for expenses that we need without having to carry around cash. They also make it less stressful to pay for emergency expenses. But do you still find yourself reaching into your wallet to use cash or a debit card when you’re in the checkout line? If so, you may want to change your ways because getting into the habit of using your credit card regularly can have its advantages. Here’s why you should use a credit card for almost every payment.

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iTeller – a new, enhanced service experience!


Easy and persona.l iTeller Live Interactive ATM. The way banking should be.

getting to know the BlueOx iTellers

As part of our ongoing commitment to enhancing the member experience, as well as providing additional choices that fit your lifestyle, BlueOx Credit Union encourages you to use our easy-to-use banking technology, iTellers! iTellers are now available for your convenience at each of our branch locations! Interactive Teller Machines (ITMs) or iTellers are innovative and interactive “I do my own banking” ATM machines with a personal touch. They provide face-to-face assistance from a knowledgeable iTeller specialist using live video chat technology – all the convenience of an ATM with the personal service of a live teller PLUS more convenience and functionality! Picture an ATM that comes to life, much like Skype, FaceTime, or Zoom.

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why it’s a good idea to check your credit


Woman checking her credit on her laptop.

You may regularly check Online Banking to ensure you're sticking to your monthly budget, but what about doing the same for your credit? Because your credit is used to gauge your financial well-being, it's important to make sure it remains stable. The best way to do this is through credit monitoring. If you've ever questioned the importance of credit, these three reasons highlight exactly why you should keep an eye on it.

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know your mortgage forms: what you should understand about Good Faith and Loan Estimates


Family moving boxes in the kitchen.

Applying for a mortgage to find your dream home can be an exciting yet long process. BlueOx Credit Union strives to simplify financing and servicing your home. However convenient our local, hometown superior service has made the mortgage process for you, it can still be challenging to understand some of the information in the standard documents.

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credit vs. debit


Coffee shop employee handing a credit card back to the customer.

We’ve all done it. We’re out shopping, ready to use our Debit Cards, and the clerk asks, “debit or credit?” We really don’t know what the difference is. It’s a Debit Card, so we say “debit,” right? Wrong.

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what to do if you can’t pay your bills


Couple on the computer creating a budget

Living paycheck to paycheck can get you caught in a situation where your monthly expenses exceed your monthly income, leaving you wondering how to make ends meet and worrying over how to pay your bills. Here are a few helpful tips and some of the best ways to pay bills each month to improve your financial wellness.

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preparing for future home ownership or refinancing your current mortgage


Couple unpacking boxes at their new home.

A good budget plan begins one or two years before a buyer makes an offer. Here are four tips for anyone who plans to become a homeowner:

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why obtaining a credit card from a credit union is a smart choice


Couple using a BlueOx Platinum Rewards Credit Card.

You have many options when it comes to finding the best place to apply for a credit card. Credit unions tend to have lower rates and fees and have great rewards as well. Read on to find out whether a credit union card is right for you.

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advantages of securing a home mortgage with a credit union


Family walking into their new home together.

Buying a new home is an exciting event, and it's also a big expense for any budget. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the average mortgage balance is $244,000 for new homeowners. Though many people turn to banks out of habit, taking out a credit union mortgage may be the better choice for many homeowners. Wondering which financial institution should handle your home loan? Read on to explore five distinct advantages of choosing a credit union mortgage.

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advantages of opening a checking account with a credit union


Couple looking at bank statement and using the phone.

Credit unions and banks offer many of the same products and services, such as checking and savings programs. However, credit unions are quite different in their approach to serving their member-owners. Their dedicated employees also make the difference. Civic-minded, they live in the same communities as you. They shop at the same stores and attend the same schools and churches. Like you, they have a stake in your communities and in your personal success.

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five tips to save money on back-to-school shopping


Family shopping for back-to-school items online.

Back-to-school is the second-biggest shopping season for retailers. According to the National Retail Federation, families with children in elementary through high school plan to spend an average of $696.70 on school supplies. That's up from $684.79 last year! So parents: don’t break the bank this school year, and save with our five back-to-school savings tips!

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five ways to establish good credit


Couple holding shopping bags and walking down the street.

Whether you're new to credit or are trying to “clean up” past issues to re-establish a favorable record, you may encounter a frustrating paradox: many financial institutions are reluctant to extend credit to someone without an established record. Yet the only way to build a credit record is to have and use credit. Here are some ideas on how to create and build your credit history.

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how to improve my credit score


Couple making a purchase on their laptop with their credit card.

If you find that you aren’t getting approved for credit cards or loans, or aren’t getting favorable rates for financing, then you may need to make some improvements to your credit score. Building credit isn’t a particularly quick or simple process, but there are a few tips that can help.

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