We’ll be at the PA Auto Show – will you?


2018 Auto Show Giveaways!

Join us at the PA Auto Show and enter for your chance to be part of the Live Car Giveaway, a Samsung® 55″ TV or a Yeti Tundra® 45 Cooler!

If you’re thinking about buying a car, think of us first for your financing. Apply for our pre-approved auto loan and lock in your rate for up to 30 days while you shop
Click here for details and to apply.

New to taxes? We’re here to help!


What do you know about filing your taxes? You hear about people waiting for their refunds and most everyone knows you have to file by Tax Day (it’s April 17 this year) or you’re in trouble with the IRS. Before you file, you should become acquainted with some of the tax lingo so you and your tax preparer are speaking the same language. Below we’ll quickly talk about some basic tax terms.

Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) – The modified version of your total income from various sources such as wages, salaries, dividends and capital gains. This can affect your deduction amount as many states base your tax liability on your AGI.

Tax Credit – A direct reduction of taxes owed. This is a way to reduce your owed taxes based on your situation. Considerations include Low-income earner, Child and Dependent Care, American Opportunity, etc.

Tax Deduction – Come in two basic styles: Standard or Itemized. These lower your taxable income which lowers your tax liability.

Standard Deduction – This is an amount set by the IRS that all tax payers are expected to pay depending on their filing status. It is regularly adjusted for inflation.

Itemized Deduction – It can take extra effort to file this way but it may pay off if you have larger deductions like mortgage interest. If your total amount of itemized deductions exceeds the standard deduction, this will typically give you a greater refund.

Filing Status – You must choose the one that applies to your situation. This determines which tax bracket will be applied to your return. The options are: single, head of household, married filing jointly, married filing separately, or qualifying widow(er) with qualifying child.

Tax Refund – This is based on how much extra tax you paid over the year.  Some people use this to make large purchases and pay off bills while some put this towards retirement.

Withholding – This is the amount you have deducted from each of your pay checks through as the year as you earn income. If you over-deduct from your paychecks you will end up with a refund. This over payment through out the year can be looked as like a loan you are extending but not collecting any interest on.

While filing taxes can be a daunting experience for most of us, there are many options available to help you, especially if you’re a beginner. You can make an appointment with a qualified tax preparer or you can opt to purchase one of the various programs available such as TurboTax.

Note: Members 1st members can purchase TurboTax at a discounted rate. Click here for details for our current offer.

 

Tort & It’s Importance in Your Auto Policy


Navigating your way through an auto insurance policy can be a whirlwind. There are many pieces to consider when customizing your policy to fit your needs. We wanted to take a minute and help explain what Tort is and why it comes in two options: Limited-Tort and Full-Tort.

Both options allow for you to sue for economic damages such as unpaid medical bills, unpaid wages lost and out-of-pocket expenses. Your selection of tort applies to your ability to sue others for non-economic damages under your policy. Should you be at fault in an accident, the other person’s choice in tort determines their ability to sue you. The premium on other parts of your auto policy, like comprehensive and collision, will not be affected by your choice of full- or limited-tort.

CarAccident

Full-Tort This option does not limit your right to sue and does not come with a reduced premium.

Limited-Tort This option qualifies you for a reduction in your premium.  Choosing limited-tort means you give up the right to sue for non-economical damages. This is more commonly known as pain and suffering. One of the only times you could sue for non-economical damages with limited-tort would be in the case of serious injury, defined by the law as death, serious impairment of body function or permanent, serious disfigurement.

It is important to pick the policy that best fits your needs and budget. Our Insurance Services team is available to help explain your options and find the policy that is best suited for your lifestyle. Call today for your free quote at (800) 283-2328, ext. 5245!*

*Insurance services are available in Pennsylvania and Maryland only. 

New Year, New Career?


Is 2018 going to be the year of a new career for you? Often times a change in jobs or careers is accompanied by a change in salary but that isn’t the only form of compensation you should look at. What kind of health and retirement benefits does your potential new employer offer? Keeping in mind your long term goals should help keep you from making an impulsive move.

  • Health Coverage – Will there be any lapses in your health coverage if you decide to make a change? There are options if you do find yourself in a lapse. Depending on the health coverage your spouse receives, you may qualify to join their plan. The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act, or COBRA is another option you can look into.
  • Retirement – Don’t be so focused on this moment to forget about maintaining your retirement plan! If your previous employer offers 401(K) plans you have several options; cash it out, roll it over into your new 401(K) plan (if offered), or roll it into an IRA.
  • Prepare for timing – Timing doesn’t always work the way we think it will. Make sure to have some cash (aka emergency fund) on hand to help out in case the transition takes longer than anticipated and your mortgage comes due.

university students on a work placement .

If you’re looking for a new career but aren’t sure where to start attend our Job Fair today, Tuesday, January 16 at our Linglestown location! If you’re unable to attend you can always visit www.members1st.org/about-us/careers to see what positions we have available! We want our associates to get up every morning and have something to look forward to other than a paycheck. In addition to excellent benefits, competitive salary, opportunities for professional development and career advancement, we offer a pleasant, fun, and family-friendly working environment.

 

How to Decide Whether to Buy or Lease a Car


Considering a new car? You’ll probably need some type of financing to make that happen. Find out whether it makes more sense to lease than to buy your next ride.

Leasing a car

Car on money road

The basics:

Leasing is basically a long-term rental. Lease payments only cover the difference between the car’s price (minus a down payment) and its estimated value when the lease ends. Upfront costs can include a refundable security deposit, first month’s payment, registration, taxes and fees. You also pay for a set number of miles to drive. Financing is generally done through a dealer.

Pros of leasing:

  • Because you’re not financing the full price, leasing a more expensive car might cost less per month than buying the vehicle.
  • Cars are usually under a manufacturer’s warranty through the entire lease.
  • Basic maintenance is often fully covered.
  • Sometimes no down payment is needed.
  • You don’t have to worry about selling the car.
  • A lease may lock in a purchase price if you prefer to keep the car when the term ends.
  • A lease can provide tax advantages.

Cons of leasing:

  • You must return the car at the end of the lease, unless you prefer to buy it outright.
  • Any major, irreversible car modifications usually aren’t permitted.
  • Miles driven are typically limited — often to no more than 12,000 a year — and costly fees usually apply to any excess.
  • Stained or torn seat coverings, paint scratches or dents could result in charges for excessive wear and tear.
  • Ending a lease early may cost almost as much in early-termination fees as finishing the term.
  • Insurance can be more expensive since coverage of the difference between the car’s value and the amount owed on it is required.

Buying a car

The basics:

If you finance a car purchase, you’ll start building equity in the vehicle as you make payments. Equity is the car’s market value minus the amount owed on it. Once the loan is paid off, your equity interest will equal its resale value. A lender may require a down payment, and other upfront costs may be steeper than for a leased car.

Pros of buying:

  • Once the loan is paid off, you can drive for years with no payments.
  • There’s no financial penalty for driving too many miles a year.
  • You can customize or modify the car as desired.
  • No concerns about charges for every spill or ding.
  • Insurance costs may be lower.
  • You can sell the car any time without a penalty.

Cons of buying:

  • You may not be able to afford as much car for your financing dollar.
  • A larger down payment may be required.
  • Long-term resale value is uncertain, and the amount you owe could at times be higher than the car’s value.
  • The eventual hassle of selling is your responsibility.
  • Maintenance expenses are all yours.
  • Any wear and tear or excessive use reduces the car’s resale value.

Dream Car Key1944861compressedThe bottom line

Those who don’t mind never-ending car payments and crave a new ride every few years might prefer leasing. On the other hand, buying suits those who don’t want to make payments forever, those who log more miles on their car than a lease would typically allow and those who don’t mind driving an older car after a few years. Ultimately, whether it’s best to buy or lease depends on your personal preferences and financial situation.

© Copyright 2016 NerdWallet, Inc. All Rights Reserved

Job Fair & Open House


Tired of the same old, same old? Consider a new career with us!

 

We're Hiring!

Visit with our managers and other team members as we search for our new Halifax branch team and fill various Harrisburg area positions.

View our available positions here!

Build Your Future Here

We are an Equal Opportunity Employer.

New Year’s Resolutions


SocialMedia-Holidays-Facebook2

Now’s the time for #newyearsresolutions. You probably hear everyone around you saying “In 2018 I’m going to…” with goals ranging from health, to materials, to financial achievements. No matter what it is you want to achieve there are a few fundamentals to being successful.

  • Don’t stress yourself! Resolutions can be completely customized to fit your lifestyle and your goals. If something is too stressful you won’t want to do it, so think of a resolution that you will want to incorporate into your life. That’s not to say don’t push yourself, but it’s important to stay realistic.
  • Break your resolution down into short-term goals! Creating short-term goals, or check-in points, can help you stay on track to achieving your resolution. For example, if you want to have a $1,000 emergency fund by 2019 plan to have $250 saved by April 1. This is the end of the first quarter of the year and is the first quarter of your goal. By July 1, aim to have $500 saved and so on.
  • Don’t go it alone, join a team! Recruit friends and family members that have the same or similar goals. Having others to encourage and encourage you can make it fun instead of feeling like a chore. At the end of the year you can do something together to celebrate your success!
  • Reward yourself! Focusing on a goal too hard can deter you. Celebrate your small successes. Did you hit your first quarter goal for that emergency savings? Give yourself a pat on the back because you did it! Be your own cheerleader and be proud of each step you take in the right direction.

 

Before you know it you’ll be planning your 2019 New Year’s Resolution.

%d bloggers like this: