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Life Is Full of Financial
Questions, and We
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Your Financial Partner for Life.

Regardless of whether you are a financial newbie or a money management whiz, excited about your hopes and dreams or too stressed about money to look past tomorrow, we are here to offer encouragement, support, and practical advice. Below, we’ll dive into some topics that may be important during the early years of your financial journey. If you’re further along in life, visit this page for information that could be a better fit for you.

Let’s begin the journey from where you are today to where you want to be tomorrow. Click on a statement that applies to you.

Chances are, you’ve noticed that the cost of gas, groceries, and other consumer goods has increased a lot over the last year. In an ideal economy, the annual inflation rate is around 2–3%. In 2022, inflation reached a 40-year high according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The increased inflation rate is due to many factors, including after-effects from pent-up consumer demand after the pandemic, increased housing costs, labor shortages, rising energy costs, and supply chain issues. But the bottom line remains the same: your money isn’t going as far as it used to. 

Luckily, you can take a few simple steps to stay ahead of inflation and make sure you don’t live beyond your means: 

  1. Create a spending plan: If you don’t already have one, create a budget that includes your total monthly income and expenses. The 50/30/20 budget is a simple way to get started. With this plan, 50% of your after-tax (or take-home) pay goes to necessities like housing, food, and transportation costs; 30% goes to discretionary spending or “fun” money; and the remaining 20% is reserved for saving or paying off debt.
  2. Review your expenses: Take a look at your last three months of bank and credit card statements to see how your recent spending aligns with the budget you’ve developed. Are your monthly needs taking up more than half of your income? Are you spending too much on unnecessary items or are you falling behind on your debt repayment and savings goals?
  3. Find ways to cut back: Now that you know where your money is going each month, commit to making changes that will give your budget some breathing room. Some easy ways to start are by meal planning, buying generic items at the grocery store, and cooking at home more to reduce spending on take-out and delivery services. You can also cancel some of your streaming subscriptions and monthly memberships to free up some extra cash. If that doesn’t cut it, you may have to make some more drastic changes.  Consider getting a roommate to reduce your housing expenses or trading in your expensive car for one with a more affordable monthly payment.

Rising inflation means your money won’t go as far tomorrow as it does today, so it’s important to protect the value of your money by saving and investing for the future. At Ephrata National Bank, our team is available to help you create a personalized financial plan to reach your goals. Feel free to stop by one of our convenient community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.

Depending on your personal spending habits and goals, it can be useful to have both. Debit cards and credit cards are convenient alternatives to carrying cash. Both types of cards can be used to make purchases in stores and online, but there are a few key differences. Namely, a debit card is linked to your checking account, so every time you buy something, its cost is automatically deducted from your account. You can also use your debit card to withdraw cash from an ATM. Debit cards can help you stay within your budget since your available account balance limits how much you’re able to spend or withdraw on each transaction. 

On the other hand, a credit card is linked to a revolving line of credit that allows you to borrow money to make purchases now and pay it back later. Credit cards typically offer enhanced fraud protection, like zero liability if your card is lost or stolen and used fraudulently. And many credit cards also have rewards programs where you can earn points for purchases and redeem them for cash back, gift cards, and other rewards. Using credit cards responsibly can help you build a positive credit history, which can open up new opportunities down the road (like qualifying for a mortgage). However, if you don’t pay your bill in full every month, you’ll be charged interest – and that can add up and potentially have a negative impact on your credit score.   

At Ephrata National Bank, our friendly team is dedicated to helping you find the best solutions for your personal financial situation. Stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to discuss your options and see what’s right for you.

Ready to make a move? Buying your first home is a major milestone, and it’s probably one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll ever make. To determine if the time is right, there are many factors to consider – especially with today’s rising interest rates. After record lows during the pandemic, national mortgage rates have been returning to historical norms. Meanwhile, home prices have remained relatively high in many areas. This has a lot of real estate rookies wondering if now is the right time to purchase a 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. If you’re currently a renter, you’ll need to remember that homeownership comes with many additional costs (including property taxes, insurance, and maintenance), but that it gives you the opportunity to build equity in an appreciating asset.

If you’re house-shopping on a budget, here are a few tips to consider:

  • Choose a fixer-upper – especially if you’re handy with tools and can put in the “sweat equity” needed to make it the home of your dreams.
  • Broaden your search and weigh the pros and cons of a more out-of-the-way location. Your transportation costs could go up, but a lower purchase price could more than make up for that.
  • Consider a “starter home” – something that meets your current requirements and allows you to trade up as your needs and means grow. (And by then, prices and rates may come down.)

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.

Managing your money is a lifelong journey, and taking the first few steps can be a little scary. But don’t worry. It’s easier than you think, and we can help you get started. Stop by any of our local community banking offices, and you will find a friendly team member who is ready to explain the basics of money management and answer your questions. If you would prefer to talk over the phone, you can call us at (877) 773-6605. If and when you are ready to open a checking account, consider Success Checking if you are 18 to 25 years old or Classic Checking if you are 26 or older.

If you already know the basics of banking and now want to focus on saving time, you’ve come to the right place. At Ephrata National Bank, we have convenient local community banking offices and even more convenient Online Banking and Mobile Banking tools. These easy-to-use tools allow you to bank 24/7 from virtually anywhere. You can check account balances, transfer money between accounts, set up one-time or recurring digital payments, make mobile deposits, and make digital person-to-person (P2P) payments, plus much more. If you need help getting started or have a question, 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.

Getting out of debt can be hard. We find that those who are most successful make a promise to themselves that they will be committed to reducing debt and follow these simple yet effective steps.

  1. Track all your payments and where you are spending money by writing it down, using a spreadsheet or personal financial management software. You’ll see that your spending fits into categories: housing, transportation, food, entertainment, loan and credit card payments, etc.
  2. After you know where your money is going, create a weekly or monthly budget. Set limits for yourself, which will allow you to have enough money at the end of the week or month to increase payments on your debt. Start small, and don’t get discouraged.
  3. Once you have your spending under control, consider ways to earn more money. Could you work more hours or take on additional responsibilities for your current employer? Could you get a side hustle?
  4. Consider consolidating your higher-interest debt, such as credit cards and student loans, with a lower-interest loan to reduce your interest expense. If you own a home, you may be eligible for a home equity loan. Otherwise, consider a personal loan. With a lower interest rate, you should be able to find a shorter loan term with a payment comparable to your current longer-term loan. This will allow you to pay off your loan faster without the strain of a significantly higher payment. If you are paying off a credit card with a fixed-rate loan, resist the urge to run up your balance again. Only use the card for purchases you can pay off right away.

If you have questions or need more advice about finding ways to reduce your debt, please stop by one of our community banking offices and speak with one of our team members. You can also call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment. We look forward to speaking with you and are always happy to share our knowledge

You’re not alone. In fact, a recent poll said that more than a third of Americans are regularly losing sleep over money. The good news is that there are some actions you can take – starting today – to reduce your stress and regain control.

The first step is to take inventory of your finances. We all tend to fear the unknown, so simply evaluating your income, spending habits, and debts can help to ease your mind right away. Create a basic budget by noting your take-home pay and listing out all your purchases over the course of a month. Find out how much you owe on credit cards and loans and what you’re paying in interest. Collect all this information in one place and take a good, close look. Once you have a handle on your current situation, you’ll be able to set specific, practical goals – so you can stop worrying and start looking ahead.

At Ephrata National Bank, we’re here to help you determine your priorities and stay on track. Whether you want to build your savings, better manage your debt, or start planning for retirement, we have the experience and the solutions you need. Feel free to stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.

We can help you with that. Whether you want to prepare for emergencies or plan for a specific purchase, the key to savings success is being able to put aside money regularly and access it infrequently. Starting small is OK – what’s important is getting in the habit of “paying yourself” on a set schedule and not just when you happen to have extra money.

Here at Ephrata National Bank, we have a number of tools to help you establish a good savings plan. We can set you up with automatic transfers from your ENB checking account to your saving 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. 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) (HSA) can help you with copays and prescription costs.

When it comes to savings, the most important thing you can do is simply get started. We’re here for you. Just stop by one of our community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment.

That’s a really good question. There isn’t just one right answer – it’s a personal decision that depends on a variety of individual factors, including your age, your income, and your personal priorities. Paying off debt reduces costly expenses, but putting off retirement saving reduces the time you have to accumulate wealth. To determine what’s best for you, we recommend talking to a professional. Our friendly team members will discuss your situation and goals to guide you to a plan that reflects what’s best for you. To get started, stop in any community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605.

Congratulations on making a great decision. A fund that’s set aside for unplanned expenses or a loss of income is a key part of a solid financial plan. Many experts say that you should have enough in savings to cover three to six months of basic living expenses – but it’s good to set a smaller, achievable goal at first. If you’re daunted by the prospect of setting aside a big chunk of your very next paycheck, you could try a ramp-up plan: Start by saving just $1 your first week, and then double it to $2 the next week and $4 the following week. If you continue doubling your savings each week for a year, you’ll have almost $1,400 saved.

Here at Ephrata National Bank, we have all the tools you need to start your emergency fund and keep it growing. Our Statement Savings account lets you earn interest on your emergency savings while keeping them easily accessible. And, you can use Online Banking to set up automatic transfers from checking to savings, so you can put your saving on autopilot.

What questions do you have? Our friendly local team members are always happy to share their knowledge. Drop in or call us at (877) 773-6605 whenever you’re ready.

We understand. When it comes to borrowing money for a car, house, or anything else, your credit is an important consideration. The first step is to know what your credit score means and how you can improve it.

A FICO® credit score is a number that represents how creditworthy a person is by representing their credit history – and, by extension, their creditworthiness – with a single number between 300 and 850. The average score in America is around 700. A higher score signals to lenders that you’re less of a risk, which can help you get approved for larger loans at better rates. If you’re worried about your credit score, make sure to:

  1. Monitor your report: You’re entitled to free credit reports every year. Although credit reports don’t contain credit scores, you can see what’s impacting your score positively or negatively and catch any mistakes or fraudulent activity.
  2. Pay your bills on time: This is a big part of your score, because lenders want to know that they can expect regular loan payments.
  3. Pay down your debts: You don’t need to be free of debt to qualify for a mortgage or other loan, but keeping your debt payments as a low percentage of your income can help to boost your score.
  4. Avoid taking on too much credit at once: Resist the temptation to apply for many credit cards or other loans over a short time, which can negatively affect your credit score.

Regardless of your current credit score or your future goals, our friendly local team members at Ephrata National Bank are here for you. We’re always happy to discuss lending options for those who are in the process of improving their credit, including our secured loans and secured credit cards. And if you’re looking for the convenience of a credit card without the need to pay off a balance each month, consider ENB’s Debit Mastercard®. Stop by your nearest community banking offices or call us at (877) 773-6605 to schedule an appointment at your convenience.

You’ve come to the right place. If you’ve already set up your emergency fund, building up your long-term savings will help you get closer to big life goals, like buying a home, traveling the world, or creating a financially secure retirement. If you won’t need immediate access to some of your savings, choose an account that earns a higher rate of return, so you can grow your funds faster. We’re happy to help you explore ENB’s options, which include Certificates of Deposit (CDs) and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs), as well as access to investments and financial planning through ENB Investment Services.

If you’re ready to look at the big picture, our friendly and knowledgeable customer relationship team can help you to develop a personalized plan that can take your financial health to the next level. Drop in or call us anytime at
(877) 773-6605.

We’ll help you figure it out. There are lots of financial benefits to homeownership – building equity, potentially getting tax breaks, strengthening your credit – but there are also additional costs. If you’ve been dreaming of your own 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. Then you can set up a meeting with a Mortgage Expert here at Ephrata National Bank to discuss prequalification. This free, no-obligation process involves a review of your credit history, income, and assets to determine how much financing you may qualify for. You’ll want to get a few things ready for the first meeting:

  1. Government-issued ID: So we can verify who you are.
  2. Proof of employment: A list of the places where you were employed for the last two years.
  3. Proof of income: Typically, your two most recent pay stubs will work.
  4. Tax documents: You’ll need your W-2s for the past two years – or two years of tax returns if you’re self-employed.
  5. Bank account information: You will need to show your lender how much money you have in the bank.

After reviewing all your information, your Mortgage Expert will help you understand your options and see if there’s a first-time homebuyer product that’s right for you. We have a variety of programs for low- to moderate-income borrowers looking for a lower down payment, like our FHA-Guaranteed Home Loans, GreatStart HomeLoan , or our First Front Door program, where buyers can receive $3 for every $1 they save toward a down payment.

Getting started is easy – just stop by or give us a call at (877) 773-6605 or reach out directly to one of our Mortgage Experts.

This is an exciting time. Homeownership is a major life milestone and one of the biggest financial decisions you’ll make. With a knowledgeable real estate agent and a trusted lender, you’ll have all the support and sound advice you’ll need throughout the entire homebuying process.

  1. You can count on your real estate agent to:
  2. Show you a range of homes that suit your needs and budget.
  3. Negotiate the best deal for you.
  4. Help you pick a home inspector.
  5. Communicate with the seller’s agent and other professionals involved in the transaction.
  6. Finalize all details for the closing.

You can count on our Mortgage Experts at Ephrata National Bank to:

  1. Help you get prequalified, so you know how much house you can afford ahead of time.
  2. Assist you in selecting the best loan for you.
  3. Inform you of special programs with lower down payment requirements.
  4. Keep you and your agent informed of your loan status.
  5. Personally and promptly answer any further questions you have – now or in the years to come.

Ready? Stop in at any of our community banking offices or give us a call at (877) 773-6605.

We’ve got you covered. Making your home comfortable and keeping it in good repair is important for your quality of life and for protecting your investment. At Ephrata National Bank, we offer a variety of home improvement financing solutions, and our friendly local experts will help you choose the best one for your particular situation.

If you’ve got your sights set on a major renovation like an addition, a game room over the garage, a pool, or a kitchen makeover, you can tap into the equity you’ve worked hard to build with a HomeLine, which combines the flexibility of a home equity line of credit with the certainty of a home equity term loan. Another option would be to refinance your current mortgage and borrow extra to cover the improvements. 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.

Let us remove the guesswork and help you decide on the best way to upgrade your home. Call us at (877) 773-6605 or stop in your neighborhood ENB Community Banking Office.

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.