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First Trust Credit Union’s specialty accounts help members focus on saving

By: Beth Ireland Last Updated: May 22, 2020

One of the many advantages of being a member at First Trust Credit Union (FTCU) is their specialty accounts. From youth saving clubs to their senior Golden Apple club, the opportunities to save and earn are plenty. In addition to these unique savings accounts, FTCU offers both their Christmas Club and Vacation Club savings accounts that help members tuck aside money for holiday expenses, travel, or even a rainy day.

“We value the credit union philosophy of  “People Helping People”, and we spend time maintaining ways that we can help our members financially - in whatever stage of life they may be in,” said Dorene Martinson, Marketing Director at First Trust Credit Union.

Christmas Club

If you’re looking for a great way to set aside money for the holidays, consider First Trust Credit Union’s Christmas Club. Members can easily enroll in the club by depositing into this separate savings account. Then in October, the money saved will then be transferred to the members’ regular checking or savings account, just in time for some serious holiday shopping.

According to FTCU, saving even just $20 a week for a year will provide you with a tidy sum of $1,040 plus dividends received on your savings.

“We are one of the few that offer Christmas Club accounts,” Martinson said. “Christmas can be a large financial expense for many people and if you wait until the last minute sometimes you end up being overwhelmed with all the holiday expenses:  the gifts you need to buy, the dinners and food you need to purchase, or travel to see family and friends. This club account encourages our members to start saving over time so that when the holidays arrive, they have a little nest egg to ease financial stress.”

Vacation Club

Similar to the Christmas Club, FTCU’s Vacation Club is a great way for members to focus their savings so they can take that much-desired vacation. Members can deposit as little or as much as they would like throughout the year and then in June, those funds will be deposited into their regular checking or savings account.

“These special savings accounts are basically sub-accounts that hopefully help our members save for an upcoming trip or venture,” Martinson said. In reality, the money can be used for anything the member wishes to use it for.

For both these specialty accounts, the money is, of course, available to members if a rainy day should arrive. Funds can be pulled at any time for a small fee.  “The point of that small fee is to give members an incentive to keep their money in that special account and help them commit to building that savings,” Martinson said.

In addition to the Christmas Club and Vacation Club accounts, members can also set up a specialized savings account as a rainy-day fund for anything they want to focus on saving for. These accounts operate as regular savings sub-accounts with no fees and are another great way to commit to building their savings. “There are no fees associated and members can take funds from these accounts whenever they need. They follow our regular savings account rules and regulations,” Martinson said.

Golden Apple Club

The Golden Apple Club is for any FTCU member 55 or older. Being a part of the Golden Apple Club includes many added perks such as a free box of checks each year, free money orders, free cashiers checks, free notary services, and much more. Members are automatically enrolled when they turn 55 and they meet the requirements to be enrolled in the Golden Apple Club (click here for more details).

“As we know, sometimes in retirement age, seniors need a bit of extra income and this is a little way for them to save some money through the extra perks of this club,” Martinson said. “It’s another way we can partner with our members to provide financial needs .” 

For young savers, FTCU has two options with their Tree House Kids Clubs (ages 0-12) and E-Teen Club (ages 13-17). Because it’s never too early to start learning about saving and healthy banking habits.

“We try to partner with parents and guardians to teach kids how to be good savers. Hopefully, we help kids to start thinking about finances in a fun way and from a young age,” Martinson said. “As a credit union, community involvement is really important for us and is one of our core values. These accounts are one of the big ways we can partner with the community and teach financial literacy skills to our young members.” 

When you’re looking for that extra-special banking experience, First Trust Credit Union is a great option. From individual attention to specialty savings accounts, there are plenty of options to help you achieve your saving goals.

“We take the time to really get to know our members. You’re not just a number here. We want to help you, we know your name, and it’s the special member service touch that sets us apart,” Martinson said.

First Trust Credit Union wants you to know that they are still operating throughout the COVID-19 shutdown. Drive-thrus are open regular hours and lobbies are open by appointment only. They’re also running a free gift giveaway for new members who join and open a free checking account, as well as for any members who refer a new member. The gift changes every six to eight weeks and currently, FTCU is giving away a 142-piece Ironworks® Tool Set now through June 14th.

For more information on how to become a member, stop by any First Trust Credit Union branch today, or visit their website at https://www.firsttrustcu.com/.