• Banking Basics

    Banking Basics: What You Need to Know

    Your success with personal finance includes understanding banking basics. Sure, you can keep your money in your wallet or a jar, but the most effective way to manage money is to use a banking service. What is Banking? Banking is a form of money management using products and services related to savings and loans. Banks take deposits from people like…

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  • How to Write a Check

    How to Write a Check in 6 Easy Steps

    At some point, you’ll need to write a check. It’s less common to write personal checks, but sometimes, like a landlord who wants a rent check, it becomes necessary. For instance, I recently had to send a check to renew my passport. I hadn’t written one in years. As I wrote the check, I realized this was an educational opportunity…

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  • Credit Unions are Better

    101 Reasons Why You Must Join a Credit Union

    I’m a member of a few credit unions and support the financial cooperative movement. As a disclosure, many credit unions have supported my mission by sponsoring the Road to Financial Wellness events. I’ve compiled a list of 101 reasons to be a credit union member. You can learn how to join a credit union here. I want to spotlight two…

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  • Know Credit Union

    15 Things You Should Know About Credit Unions

    A study of 10,000 millennials showed that banks were the four most hated brands. This is probably why many of us have turned to alternative nonbanks and startups. However, credit unions are the original banking alternative that shares many of your values. I’m sure you’ve heard about credit unions but still don’t understand what makes them unique. Credit unions are integral…

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  • Giving Credit to Credit Unions

    Giving Credit to Credit Unions: A Millennial’s Perspective

    I became a member of my local credit union back in 2008. I joined primarily so I would have a physical place to deposit cash and checks. Mobile deposit doesn’t work too well for depositing cash. I also understood opportunity cost too well to leave much cash depreciating in my sock drawer. Beyond the need for a physical institution, I…

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  • Dispute Information in Your ChexSystems Report

    How to Dispute Information in Your ChexSystems Report

    The information in your Chexsystem report may prevent you from opening a new checking account or debit card. You may be denied an account because a bank or credit union reported an account abuse for too many overdrafts, non-sufficient funds, or uncollected deposits that left your checking account in the negative. What’s Chexsystems? Chexsystems is a consumer reporting agency that…

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  • Join a Credit Union

    How to Join a Credit Union and Become a Member-Owner

    I believe everyone should join a credit union. Why? Credit unions are excellent. And I think everyone should have a credit union as part of their financial portfolio. I am a fan of any financial institution with a mission greater than profit. Credit unions fit the mission-focused criteria. Over 130 million United States credit union members belong to nearly 5,000…

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  • Jason Vitug’s Favorite Money Apps (What I Personally Use)

    I’m often asked about my financial toolkit and the specific apps I use. The reality is I’ve tried so many and learned the best apps that work for my situation. I want you to know that many of these apps do have monthly service fees. I am okay with paying for a service that does the work I need it…

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  • How to Open an Online Checking Account

    While banks and credit unions may offer an online checking account and mobile banking, online-only banks could offer additional incentives, like higher interest rates or rewards, and better features. A checking account with an online-only bank or neo-bank may be a better option for you but you’ll need to make some considerations. What to Consider Before Opening an Online-Only Bank…

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  • How to Find Free ATMs

    Need to find free ATMs to access your cash? One of the most wasted fees I’ve paid was accessing my own cash through an ATM with a surcharge. I’ll withdraw $20 and get hit with a $3 fee at the low end. That’s a 15% fee. I understand why fees are charged because it costs money to run and operate…

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