November 2013 eNews

Catch up on the latest Starion news in our November 2013 Starion Financial eNews.

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Protect your finances while vacationing this winter

Are you planning to escape the cold Midwest for a sunny destination? Winter getaways are a great way to get out of the cold, but you should be aware of the risks that come with traveling. Before you pack your bags, here are a few tips to help ensure your finances and identity remain secure:

  • Call your bank ahead of time to let them know you’re planning a vacation. Letting them know where and when you’re travelling helps you avoid having your accounts frozen
  • Always bring a backup form of payment, such as a credit card. You should also bring some extra cash with in case you get in a bind
  • When paying with your Starion card, choose the debit option. Entering your PIN number is a more secure option than signing

If you’re like many snowbirds who take an extended winter getaway, you may want to consider following these additional precautions as well:

  • Set up online and mobile banking before you leave, allowing you to monitor your finances and pay bills quickly and easily from anywhere
  • Sign up for e-statements. Many identity thieves get access to account information by stealing mail, such as bank statements which have your account number. Avoid this by viewing your statements electronically
  • Consider setting up Bill Pay for your regular bills to avoid the hassle of writing checks and mailing them on time
  • Review your travel insurance.

Vacations are all about having fun and relaxing! No one wants to spend their time dealing with financial complications. By properly preparing ahead of time, you can help protect your finances and identity.

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Starion supports TNT Kids Fitness and Gymnastics

Check presentation to TNT Kids Fitness and GymnasticsStarion Financial is proud to support TNT Kids Fitness and Gymnastics, based in Fargo. A $25,000 donation made by Starion will help fund TNT’s facility and program expansion.
TNT Kid’s Fitness is a children’s training and development center that works with all children and all abilities. It is an inclusive setting that not only trains elite athletes, but also works with children with special needs, serving more than 1,200 students per week. The need was brought to Starion Financial’s attention by Starion board member, Tammy Miller, who also serves on the TNT board.

“Craig Larson, president/CEO of Starion Financial, and I toured the facility together and we both left with a strong appreciation for what they do,” said Dan Staller, Fargo market president. “And not just the number of kids served, but also the wide spectrum of abilities. We saw how important it is to support a special organization like TNT.”

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Fall fix-up: Keep your home warm and cozy this winter with these tips

Performing routine house maintenance is not only important for upholding the value of your home, but it can also save you money in the long run. Before the cold weather is here, consider following these tips to ensure that your home is ready for winter.

Programming a thermostatGet with the program
Switch out your old manual thermostat for a programmable one, which will be more convenient and accurate. Programmable thermostats contain no mercury and are better for the environment because using less energy reduces greenhouse-gas emissions associated with energy production. It can also save you money on your utility bills -about $150 per year - when used properly.

Clean your carpets
If your wall-to-wall carpeting harbors dirt and musty odors, consider renting a steam cleaner to get out ground-in stains and odors.

Windows and doors
Constant exposure to sunlight and moisture requires that windows and doors receive a little care, or deterioration, leakage and heat loss will result. Start outside and take a look at the trim above each window and door. Next, examine the caulking between the sides of the window trim and siding, and also between the storm window and the primary window. Check the trim and windowsills for finish failure and signs of decay. Take note of any peeling putty, broken glass or storm window problems and fix each as needed before winter arrives.

Take time to also examine your basement windows. See any rust or decay? Are the window wells clean? Most metal clad basement windows only come with a factory primer coat of paint and you are required to apply a finish coat of rust inhibitor paint. If the old basement windows are wood, make sure they are not in ground contact and that there are no signs of decay or pest infestation. If your windows are old, dried out, drafty and require numerous maintenance repairs, then perhaps you should seek several bids for new energy efficient insulated replacement windows. What makes a window energy-efficient? Look for low-E glass, multiple glass panes, warm-edge spacers between the panes and gas fills such as argon or krypton.

If you discover some major repairs need to be done while doing your winter preparations, your Starion personal banking experts can help! Talk with a banker about a home equity line of credit today.

Sources

  • Allsafehomeinspection.com
  • Bhg.com

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E-statements

These days, almost everything is done electronically. We conveniently pay our bills, read the news and email our friends online, so why not receive bank statements online, too? Here are a few of the reasons that e-statements are a great alternative to traditional paper statements:

  • Save paper
    E-statements consume far less paper and space than paper statements
  • Convenience
    With e-statements, you don’t have to wait for your statement to arrive via “snail mail.” Just login to your account and view them any time!
  • Archive
    Having files of paper statements can take up a lot of room. With e-statements, you can keep years of check and statement records on one thin disk
  • Reduce fraud
    The number one way identity thieves steal information is by stealing mail from unlocked mailboxes. One of the first things they look for is bank statements, which contain your bank account number. Receiving your statements electronically can help minimize this risk
  • It’s free
    There is absolutely no charge for receiving your statements electronically.

By signing up for e-statements, you can add simplicity, convenience and safety to your life. If you’re ready to make the switch, talk with your personal banker today!

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Trivia

Couple relaxing on beachWhere is the most popular snowbird destination in the U.S.?

Key West, Florida. With white sand beaches, turquoise waters, and waving palms, Key West is an absolute treat. It’s a great winter destination for people who love water sports like fishing, sailing, and beach combing.

Courtesy of rvparks.com

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