How important is APR? Is it the same thing as interest rates? Understanding APR can get a little confusing. Check out this short, educational video as we talk about annual percentage rates on this edition of Ascentra Making Cents.  To see more videos of our monthly financial education segments like this one, head to our YouTube channel.  … Read More


On May 31, 2018 the credit union celebrated the groundbreaking ceremony of our new home office in downtown Bettendorf.  It was very gratifying to see nearly 200 people come out to celebrate with us – it truly exceeded our expectations. However, more rewarding was the excitement about our project shared by our guests.  As a… Read More


According to the National Retail Federation, the average American household spends $688 on back-to-school shopping — 64% of it is spent on clothing and electronics. Here are a 10 ways to save this fall and throughout the year. 1. Create a checklist of items and stick to it. Before you begin shopping, empty your kids’… Read More


So you’ve found the perfect car. You’ve shopped around, and this car has your name on it. Well, not quite yet. Not if you want the best deal anyway. Here are five simple things that can help you afford the car of your dreams. 1. Go to your credit union and get preapproved for an… Read More


Did you know you can get credit union financing–right at the car dealership? The process is designed so credit union members benefit several ways. First, as a member of a cooperative you reap the benefits of lower rates offered by Ascentra. Credit union members have lower loan interest rates than banks. In 2016, the average interest… Read More


If you want to be the master of your credit card debt load, follow these key rules: 1.  Take inventory. How many credit cards do you have? What’s the balance and minimum monthly payment on each? What’s the total balance? If it’s more than you thought or can afford, it’s time to pare down. 2. … Read More


If you are an experienced investor, you have probably fine-tuned your portfolio through the years in response to market cycles or in pursuit of a better return. As you approach or enter retirement, is another adjustment necessary? Some investors may think they can approach retirement without looking at their portfolios. Their investment allocations may be… Read More


Retirement doesn’t happen by accident; careful planning can help build a nest egg to sustain the kind of retirement you want. Start by creating a spending plan.  Know how much money is coming in, and going out each month. Take advantage of any employer plans like a 401(k). Some employers match a percentage of your… Read More


Think of retirement as a destination. Your plan is a road map that will get you there. Check out this short, educational video as we talk about retirement planning on this edition of Ascentra Making Cents.  To see more videos of our monthly financial education segments like this one, head to our YouTube channel.    … Read More


Many people wonder how they can build an emergency fund when they’re trying to pay off my debts. It isn’t as hard as you might think. The strategy is to start small, change a few habits, and change your mindset. If you’re starting from scratch with your emergency fund, begin by saving one month’s worth… Read More