Last month, we touched on how to prepare your finances for a buying a home this spring or summer. Today, we’re still talking about home purchases, but this time we are looking at things you can’t and shouldn’t do if you want a smooth home buying process without extra fees or worse, buyer’s remorse.
Whether you are buying your first home or are trying to find your sanctuary for retirement, these tips will help.
- Forgetting about all the costs– this is especially true if you are buying your first home. When purchasing, there’s your down payment, principal with interest, property taxes, homeowners insurance, utilities, appraisal fee, credit report fees, escrow fee up front and then any maintenance costs once the home is yours. Plan wisely.
- Falling in love with a house– it’s easy to get caught up in all the great things a house has to offer. Stick to your budget and prioritize your needs to keep from straying off course.
- Buying a home you can’t afford– a no brainer, right? Then why do so many people do it? Take time to crunch the numbers, and don’t forget those additional costs we talked about!
- Making a down payment that is less than 20 percent– do this, and you’re looking at the additional cost of private mortgage insurance.
- Skipping an inspection– we know it’s another thing to pay for, but you’ll be thankful if the inspector points out some serious issues you couldn’t see and saves you from a investing in a money pit.
Buying a home is complicated enough. Following the above tips can help prevent it from becoming more stressful than it needs to be. Another thing that can help reduce stress and anxiety is working with the right mortgage lender.
Putnam Bank’s mortgage lenders know the area and are experienced in working with home buyers in Windham and New London counties. Get in touch with them through our Online Loan Center to start the conversation about your mortgage needs today.
Putnam Bank, Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender
Celebrating Putnam! Can You Say Summer, Please!
Putnam Bank continues its tradition of co-sponsorship of two of Putnam’s premier summer events. Putnam Bank will join major sponsor, Price Chopper, in supporting the annual Putnam Fireworks display on Sunday, July 11. This year’s al fresco concert “Beatles Symphonic Rock”, featuring Beatles Tribute Band (Hey Jude) accompanied by the Seven Hills Symphony, planned for Saturday, July 18th, will be co-sponsored with Wheelabrator Putnam, Inc. Both events will, as in previous years, take place in Rotary Park on Kennedy Drive. In addition this year, Putnam Bank is co-sponsoring all of the River Fire Series.
“Putnam Bank is pleased to co-sponsor these events, including the River Fires which have become a part of the fabric of summer in Putnam”, said Thomas A. Borner, President and CEO of Putnam Bank. “Community Banks are community to the core and we support providing quality family entertainment to our communities”, Borner continued.
Saving money isn’t all about accumulating as much wealth as you can by counting pennies and using coupons. It can help you achieve short and long-term goals. Saving can also help you ensure you are prepared for emergencies.
For our purposes today, let’s focus on what it takes to create an Emergency Fund so that you have enough money saved for “rainy day.”
Step 1- Open a Savings Account (If You Don’t have One Already): by opening a savings account you are separating this money from what you’ll use for purchases. Choose your savings account based on the following factors:
- Fees and limitations– most savings accounts of restrictions on minimum balances and withdrawals. Be sure you know what these are.
- Interest- this allows your money to work for you. A general rule is that the higher the interest rate, the higher the minimum balance you’ll have to keep in the account.
- Accessibility- can you withdraw or transfer your money at any time, or are there limitations?
- Benefits– can you access your money through ATMs, Online Banking or Mobile Banking?
Step 2- Set Your Savings Goal: an Emergency Fund should cover three to six months’ worth of expenses in the event you lose your job or become temporarily disabled. Once you have your overall goal, set smaller goals to better gauge your progress and to make the task of saving seem less daunting.
Step 3- SAVE! Transfer your set amount from your checking account to your savings account every time you get paid. Better yet, use Online Banking to set up a recurring transfer for this amount to occur every payday. This helps in two ways: 1) it ensures you are actually saving, and 2) it eliminates the chances of you deciding to use that money for something else.
Putnam Bank makes it easy for anyone to save their way by offering multiple savings accounts. This ensures you will find a savings account that closely matches your needs. If you have any questions or would like to open a savings account with us, simply come by any of Putnam Bank’s locations today.
Putnam Bank, Member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender
Putnam Bank Foundation Awards $2,500 Grant to
The Performing Arts of Northeast Connecticut
It’s a sure sign that spring has arrived in Northeastern Connecticut with the return of the Children’s Educational Opera and Symphony Programs sponsored by Performing Arts of Northeast Connecticut. Thomas A. Borner, President & CEO of Putnam Bank and President of the Putnam Bank Foundation along with Lynn Bourque, SVP & Branch Administrator, recently presented a $2,500 grant to Lindsay B. Paul, Chairman, of the Performing Arts of Northeast Connecticut and Paula K. Schimmel, Vice Chairman. Thomas A. Borner commented; “We are pleased to support this organization and program which enriches and inspires young minds as part of our mission and responsibility as a community bank.”
The grant will help to fund upcoming children’s educational programs. This seasons programs include local 3rd graders who will participate in the New Haven Symphony Orchestra’s Red White and Brubeck, and 5th graders who will engage in the educational opera program of Mozart’s’ The Magical Flute. Additionally, a new music and literacy program targeted at kindergarteners will be launched in collaboration with the New Haven Symphony, called Creating Musical Readers. Over 154,000 children have participated in the programs through the Performing Arts 41-year history.
Do you know someone who is good with money, or who is always on top of their finances? How do they do it?
People who are good with money all have at least one thing in common: they take the time to manage their accounts. Most likely, they never let a week go by without examining their checking account balances and transactions at least once.
Managing your money helps prevent overspending and the resulting credit use because it forces you to confront the facts about your money. While it does take some work, it doesn’t have to be hard. Here are a few ways to keep an eye on your checking account:
- Use your checkbook’s ledger- record any purchases you make with a check in the ledger that came with your checkbook. This is easiest to do as you write the check. Simply fill out the check, then record the date, amount being paid, the check number and any other information you have space for in the ledger.
- Use online or mobile banking if available- if you have access to an online banking or mobile banking account, you will be able to track your transaction history. Online and mobile banking can help you track your spending by category. This helps prevent overspending and ensures what money you are spending is going to the right places.
- Check your monthly statements- you should be receiving monthly account statements, either through the mail or through an electronic delivery system like eDocuments. These allow you to see all purchases and deposits for your checking account for the last billing cycle.
- Use a telephone banking service- many checking accounts and financial institutions offer a telephone banking system. You may be able to check account balances, review checks and transactions over the phone.
- Call your bank and ask- if you ever have questions about your account, you are well within your rights to call and ask your financial institution about them. As your bank, they have the responsibility to help you with any issues you run into.
Again, managing your checking accounts does not have to be hard work, but it is an ongoing task.
Putnam Bank offers online services such as Online Banking, Mobile Banking and eDocuments to help you stay on top of your checking account 24/7. To learn more about these services or our checking account offerings, take a look at our Personal Banking Services.
Putnam Bank, member FDIC and Equal Housing Lender
Margaret Bond, Assistant Vice President & Loan Officer of Putnam Bank was awarded the President’s Award
Thomas A. Borner, President and CEO of Putnam Bank, commented that the award is given to an employee who exemplifies unwavering commitment and dedication to the bank and community.
Ms. Bond was selected this year to receive this honor. Borner said, “Maggie is the go to person for retail loan compliance. She is an individual who cares about everyone and always does what it takes to get the job done.” Maggie was also recognized for her 40 years of service and dedication to Putnam Bank.
She is very active in the community and serves as a board member for Northeast Placement Service (NEPS).
Maggie was happily surprised and thankful. When asked what this award meant to her, she stated, ”When I began my career with Putnam Bank, we were located in what is now the Shopper’s Guide building. We only had the Main Office and about 12 employees. I have seen so many changes since then with the growth of the Bank to 7 additional branches and the Loan Center, changes in staff, management, technology and regulations. One thing hasn’t changed is my pride in being part of an organization that exemplifies outstanding service to the community it serves. I thank the president and the Board of Directors for recognizing me for my service and commitment to the Bank.”
Also on that evening the following individuals were recognized for their length of service to the bank:
- 5 Years of Service: Lauren LaBelle, Rebecca Rogers, Krishna Patel.
- 10 Years of Service: Pauline Audette, Jonathan Demers, Angelica Gallegos, and Raymond Perry.
- 15 Years of Service: Linda Brule.
- 40 Years of Service: Margaret Bond.
Most teens learn their financial habits from their parents, so now is the time to set a good example.
Your child’s teenage years are a time of great change. They are maturing, growing and getting a better idea of who they are and who they want to be. As they grow older, teens also receive more and more financial responsibilities. They enter the workforce and get their first part-time job. This means they have more disposable income.