Regardless of whether you watch your finances casually or closely, are excited about your hopes and dreams or are too stressed about money to look past tomorrow, we are here to offer encouragement, support, and practical advice. Below, we’ll explore some topics that may be important if you are further along on your financial journey. If you are just starting your journey, visit this page for information that could be a better fit for your stage of life.
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Buying a home is among the largest investments people make in their lifetimes, and there are a lot of factors to consider, especially with today’s rising interest rates. After record lows during the pandemic, national mortgage rates have been returning back to historical norms. Meanwhile, home prices have remained relatively high in many areas. This has a lot of people – including experienced homeowners – wondering if now is the right time to purchase a new home.
First, it’s important to identify your needs. Do you have to relocate for work or family reasons? Have you outgrown your current living space? Do you require accessibility features or other specific amenities?
Then, determine your purchasing power. You can use our handy loan calculator to estimate your monthly mortgage payment and compare it to what you’re paying now.
If you’re house-shopping on a budget, here are a few tips to consider:
If you’re in the market for a new home and have carefully considered these questions, don’t let higher interest rates stop you. Our experienced team can help you review your options and find the best loan for your budget. Stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to get started.
Proper estate planning is vitally important to ensuring that, in the event of your death, your affairs are handled and your loved ones provided for in accordance with your wishes. If you have already created a living trust, you may be wondering if you also need a will. Although living trusts and wills are similar in many ways, there are a few key differences – and it might be in your best interests to have both.
Living trusts and wills are both legal documents that allow you to name beneficiaries for your property and assets. With a living trust, you appoint a trustee to carry out your wishes after your death. Assets placed in the trust can avoid the probate process, which can help save your loved ones time and money during a difficult period. Although a will does go through probate court, you can name an executor to oversee that your assets are distributed as intended. The executor can also handle paying off any outstanding debts or tax obligations from your estate.
The main advantage of adding a will to your estate plan is that it gives you the opportunity to name a guardian for your minor children, dependents, or pets; designate a power of attorney for your healthcare and/or financial decisions; and clearly outline your end-of-life wishes, including funeral plans. If you don’t have a will, the courts will appoint a legal guardian (who may not necessarily be the person you’d choose) to care for your minor children and manage their finances until they reach adulthood.
In summary, a revocable living trust is a valuable estate planning tool that can provide privacy and a smoother transfer of assets. However, you will also want to have an updated will in place, especially if you have children under age 18. Putting your preferences in writing can help protect your family and provide more peace of mind.
Regardless of the size of your estate, it’s important to work with professionals you can trust – like our knowledgeable team at Ephrata National Bank. If you need help getting started or have questions, you can call us at (877) 773-6605 or stop by one of our local community banking offices. At Ephrata National Bank, you’re never on your own.
The U.S. stock market closed out 2022 with the largest yearly drop since the Great Recession. That had a lot of pre-retirees worried – but there’s no need to panic. If retirement is still several years away, short-term market events don’t have to derail your plans. If retirement is right around the corner, you may need to make a few careful course corrections in order to stay on track.
Here are some tips to improve your chances of future financial security in a downward market:
For personalized advice on retirement savings and investment strategies, stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
We’re here to assist you in this stressful time. As hard as it may seem, there are ways that you can stay on top of your personal finances even after an unexpected job loss:
It’s also crucial to avoid taking out high-interest short-term loans, which have been known to trap borrowers in a cycle of debt. If possible, avoid tapping your retirement account early, which can come with a costly early withdrawal penalty and jeopardize your financial health down the road.
At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly team members are always available to offer dependable advice. Stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605.
You’ve come to the right place. Whether you want to build up your emergency savings or plan for a big-ticket purchase, the key to successful saving is being able to set aside money on a regular schedule. We have all the tools you need to establish a good savings plan and keep it growing.
We can set you up with automatic transfers from your ENB checking account to your savings account. If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, customers with Online & Mobile Banking can set up recurring transfers from checking to savings on their own. To maintain the discipline of saving for a specific purpose without the temptation of spending what you’ve put away, our EZSave Club is a smart, simple way to get started. Each month, funds are automatically transferred from your checking account to your EZSave Club account. Withdrawals are only available on a payout date you choose to guarantee they’ll be there when needed. And if you’re concerned about medical expenses, a Health Savings Account (HSA) can help you with copays and prescription costs.
At Ephrata National Bank, our team members can empower you to make the smartest choices for your individual goals. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
We’ll help you figure this out. There isn’t just one correct answer to this question – it’s a personal judgment that depends on a variety of factors, like how much you currently earn, at what age you plan to retire, and what kind of lifestyle you want in retirement. However, as a general guide, some financial experts recommend that you aim for these savings goals:
If these milestones seem beyond your means, don’t give up. Taking a more strategic approach to saving may help you catch up over time. At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly team will help you explore all your options. Stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
We’re always delighted to hear this. Parents can play a vital role in empowering the next generation to make smart money choices throughout their lives. Here are some tips that can pay big dividends in the future:
At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly local team is always here to support the financial goals of your whole family. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
College tuition and related expenses can add up to tens of thousands of dollars per year at many schools, and the price keeps climbing. Figuring out how to pay for a child’s education is a major concern for parents. Fortunately, there are ways to provide support without risking your own financial stability.
Some parents choose to put bonuses, tax refunds, and other windfalls toward college savings. We also know of parents whose children have “graduated” from daycare redirecting that monthly amount into an education fund. This money can be easily and safely stored in an interest-bearing account, or you can speak with an investment professional about other education savings strategies.
When college decision time draws near, you’ll want to look into state and federal loans (including parent PLUS loans). If your student’s financial aid package leaves any funding gaps, turning to a reputable lender for private student loans can be a helpful option. Some parents choose to tap into their home’s equity to help with education costs as well, although this approach comes with certain risks and requires some additional scrutiny.
At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly local team will guide you through all of life’s big moments. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
That’s a good question. The issue of how to prioritize these two important savings goals is on many parents’ minds. The good news is that it doesn’t have to be an either/or proposition – there are ways that you can ensure that both needs are being met.
You may have heard the saying, “Nobody is going to lend you money for your retirement.” It’s good to keep in mind that there are many options for financing education expenses – including state and federal loans, private loans, grants, and scholarships – that aren’t going to be available to you in your retirement. That’s one of the reasons that many experts suggest that you make sure you’re on track with retirement savings first.
If your retirement savings is currently below the recommended amount for your age (as discussed above), you should almost certainly focus on building up your IRA and other retirement accounts. If your retirement savings are on track, consider diverting more funds to an education savings vehicle like a 529 Plan, which can have tax advantages down the road.
At Ephrata National Bank, our knowledgeable team members can help you work toward all your financial goals. Stop into one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 for an appointment.
We’ve got you covered. When it comes to homebuying, you may have heard of the 28/36 rule – spend no more than 28% of your gross income on PITI (principal, interest, taxes, and insurance) and no more than 36% on total debt (PITI plus any other debt like car loans). If you’ve been dreaming of a bigger home, you could start by checking out our handy online loan calculator to see what your monthly payments might be for mortgages of different sizes and whether they fit into your budget based on the 28/36 rule.
Then, you can set up a meeting with a Mortgage Expert to discuss financing options and prequalification. This free, no-obligation process involves a closer review of your credit history, income, and assets to determine the amount of home loan that you can comfortably afford.
At Ephrata National Bank, our team is always happy to share our expertise and help you consider all the options. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
You’re not alone. Many people experience a great deal of stress about their finances when going through a separation or divorce. A lot of that stress can be from a fear of the unknown, so it’s important to take the time to carefully evaluate your financial situation. You may find that getting solid, specific answers to these questions can help ease your mind right away:
When we get informed, we can get in control. At Ephrata National Bank, our experienced customer relationship team is here to provide support and guidance throughout the entire process. Feel free to stop by one of our nearby community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
We can lend you a hand. Making your home truly your own and keeping it in good repair is important for your quality of life and for protecting one of your largest investments. We offer a variety of financing options that can help you pay for construction and renovation projects, and our friendly local experts will help you choose the best one for your particular goals.
If you’ve got your sights set on a major renovation like a mother-in-law suite, an outdoor pool, or a complete kitchen makeover, you can tap into the equity you’ve worked hard to build with a HomeLine. Combining the flexibility of a home equity line of credit with the certainty of a home equity term loan, this financing option lets you withdraw cash as needed to pay for your project and lock in today’s low rates on outstanding balances. Or, if you plan to refinance your property, our E-Z Renovation Loan can provide a simpler alternative to a full construction loan to help you pay for smaller renovations. Perhaps you are looking to make smaller repairs that would be better financed using a personal loan or credit card. You may even be asking yourself whether or not you should take money out of savings to pay for some or all of the renovations.
At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly team members can help to get your big plans underway. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605.
There’s nothing like spending your hard-earned money exactly how you want to spend it – like using it to hit the open road or the high seas. You’ll want to ensure you have enough cash on hand to cover the vehicle’s long-term maintenance costs. Boats, for instance, may require maintenance that runs you about 10% of the purchase price per year.
When it comes to financing a luxury purchase, it’s important to make sure that your debt-to-income ratio doesn’t go too high. A good rule of thumb is that your total debt (including your mortgage, auto loan, and whatever “toy” you have in mind) doesn’t exceed 36% of your gross (pretax) monthly income. You can experiment with our handy online loan calculator to see what your monthly payments might be for loans of different amounts. When you’re ready, we offer a variety of vehicle loans with competitive rates and flexible repayment terms.
At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly customer relationship team can help you get to where you want to go. Stop into one of nearby community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 for an appointment.
This could be a smart choice. There are many reasons that homeowners consider downsizing, and financial considerations are at the top of the list. Downsizing can improve your cash flow, reduce your utility bills, and cut the time and money you spend on cleaning and maintenance. Plus, if your current home is worth substantially more than what you’re in the market for, and you’ve built up a lot of equity, you may also be able to pay cash for the new home and have enough left over to put in a CD, money market account, or other investments.
Sellers often ask whether they should sell their existing home before buying, or the other way around. Generally, it’s better to sell first, but it depends on market conditions. Discuss your strategy with a trusted real estate agent. For all your financial questions, the local experts at Ephrata National Bank are ready to help. Stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 or reach out directly to one of our Mortgage Experts.
After decades of hard work, you deserve a happy retirement. To make the most of it, you need to determine what you want your lifestyle to look like in retirement and whether you have enough saved up to comfortably afford it.
What do you envision for your retirement years? Do you want to travel around the world in style or spend time with nearby family? Do you want to stay in your current home, downsize, or upgrade? The possibilities are endless, but each option will have different demands on your retirement income and savings. Some financial planners recommend having a plan to replace about 80% of your pre-retirement income, but with more free time, some retirees end up spending more than they did in their working years.
It’s also important to keep Social Security in mind. If you were born between 1943 and 1959, the age at which you can receive full Social Security benefits is 66 (plus or minus some months). If you were born after 1959, the age is 67. You can claim benefits earlier, but your monthly payments will be reduced substantially. You can also hold out until 70 and receive a bonus in every check.
To start off, try out our online retirement calculator to determine your projected savings. When you’re ready for a deeper dive, the team of LPL Financial Advisors at ENB Investment Services is ready to assist with your retirement planning needs.
We hear that a lot. It’s a common worry among American workers – in fact, many say it’s their top concern.
It’s important to have a clear understanding of what your living expenses would be in retirement, as well as your “income floor.” This term refers to the income streams you can count on in your retirement, such as pension and Social Security benefits. Such guaranteed income should be bolstered by your long-term retirement savings to help you meet your monthly expenses and enjoy a comfortable lifestyle.
However, these days, many people’s retirements last approximately 20 years, which may stretch these combined income sources thin. If you are approaching retirement, finding ways to maximize your retirement savings and investments now is wise. Try using our online retirement calculator to estimate your potential retirement savings and compare it to your anticipated basic expenses in retirement.
When it comes to retirement planning, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution. Consider connecting with the LPL Financial Advisors at ENB Financial Services for a free financial consultation. Together, you can look at your current portfolio, discuss your needs for retirement, and explore strategies and financial products that could support your financial security later in life.
We understand that you want to provide for your loved ones in the future, and take steps to protect the legacy you’ve worked hard to build. There are many different options for transferring assets to the people and causes you care most about. Here are some estate planning strategies that the team at ENB Wealth Solutions can help you explore:
Establishing a financial legacy is a highly personal process that depends on a unique array of factors. At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly team members are here to provide support and information all along the way. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.
Hopefully the information provided above was helpful. If you want more information on a specific topic, have a question we didn’t address, or would like to discuss your specific financial needs and objectives with one of our team members, we are here for you. You can start by visiting our customer support page, where you can search for more information on our website, find a phone number to call, or send us your question or help request. You can also stop by one of our local community banking offices and speak with one of our team members.
Getting you from where you are now to where you want to be is our goal, because we want to be your financial partner for life.