Friday, December 23, 2016

Ways To Set Yourself Up For Success In 2017

2016 is drawing to a close. It’s been a good year filled with successes, learning opportunities, and things we can use to grow and improve as we move forward into 2017. The New Year holds a lot of great potential, and the team at First Bank of the Lake wishes you nothing but success in 2017. With New Year’s Day literally right around the corner, we want to take this opportunity to share with you some strategies to set yourself up for financial success in 2017. We hope you find your suggestions helpful!

Prioritize Paying Off One Debt At A Time
Getting out from underneath a pile of debt often seems like an insurmountable task, but it can be possible if you create a strategy and stick to it. In addition to making the required payments on all of your debts, we recommend choosing a certain one (either the one with the highest interest rate or the one with the lowest principal balance) to devote extra attention to. Pay a little bit extra towards the principal every month – even as little as $25 or $50 will make a big difference! Once you have paid it off, take the amount you were paying towards it every month and add it to payments on the next loan of your choice.

Go On A “Spending Strike”
In her book “The Spending Strike,” Sarah R. Baker suggests a unique strategy of going on a spending strike for a month – that is, not spending any money for an entire 30- or 31-day period. This may seem a bit extreme (and unattainable), but the point is a good one. Why not shrink it down to make it a bit more doable? Pick a two-week period and vow not to spend any money during that time. Doing this a couple of times per year could be a great way to reduce some of your extra (and probably unnecessary) spending habits.

Don’t Spend Money You Don’t Have
This may seem like an obvious suggestion, but an alarming number of people routinely spend hundreds of dollars they don’t have. Credit cards are all too easy (and often extremely tempting) to swipe, especially when they allow us to purchase something that we would otherwise not be able to afford. Credit card interest and fees rack up quickly, however, and the reality is that by charging extra expenses to your credit card, they will ultimately end up costing far more than the sticker price. A good rule of thumb is to only use credit cards for purchases you would just as easily be able to afford with your debit card or cash.

Build A Budget (And Stick To It)
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: sticking to a budget is the single most effective way to improve your financial standing. In its most basic sense, a budget is simply a plan outlining your total income and your total expenses. You can make it as elaborate and as detailed as you want it to be, but your goal should always be to make your total expenses less – ideally MUCH less – than your total income.

Remember First Bank Of The Lake As Your Financial Resource
Our local bank at the Lake of the Ozarks is here to help you move forward into a financially successful, stable New Year. We offer competitive interest rates on personal loans, CDs, and interest-bearing checking accounts. We also offer free checking and savings accounts to help you and your family with your everyday financial needs. For more information about our bank in Osage Beach MO, visit our website:

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First Bank of the Lake - Striving For Excellence
Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Located at the entrance to the Osage Beach Premium Outlets!

4558 Osage Beach Parkway
Suite 100
Osage Beach, MO 65065

(573) 348-2265

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Protect Your Sensitive Information Online With Kasasa Protect®

Identity theft is the fastest growing crime in the U.S. Cybercriminals are using any means necessary to hack and access personal accounts, stealing sensitive information so they can use it for their own nefarious means. If someone gains access to your personal information, you can be the victim of identity theft, credit card fraud, tax fraud, or any number of other cybercrimes.

First Bank of the Lake is here to help you protect your sensitive information. Keep reading to learn more about Kasasa Protect and how it can benefit you.

Kasasa Protect®

Think of Kasasa Protect as invisible armor for your sensitive information. No matter where you are or what you're doing, it offers round-the-clock protection for your personal information and financial data to help you avoid being victimized by fraud or identity theft. 

Kasasa Protect begins working immediately upon enrollment, so you can rest assured that your sensitive information will be protected within a matter of minutes.

Proactive Advantages of Kasasa Protect®

Kasasa Protect offers multiple advantages to protect consumers like you from cybercrime. Here is a brief summary of the benefits it includes:
  • Comprehensive identity protection and restoration solution
  • Immediate alerts of any suspicious activity
  • Monitors multiple aspects of your credit report round-the-clock, including changes in:
    • Loan data
    • Inquiries
    • Liens
    • Judgments
    • New accounts
    • And more
  • Access and insight into your credit report, including:
    • Annual credit report
    • Regular review of your credit score
    • Insight into what's impacting your score

Kasasa Protect also includes Dark Web Monitoring, a service that constantly scans millions of international websites to quickly find stolen data that may be able to identify you, such as medical identification numbers or social security numbers.

Reactive Advantages Of Kasasa Protect®
If fraud should occur, Kasasa Protect offers a quick, hands-on process for restoring your information. For example:

  • Helpful advice and resolution services the minute fraud occurs
  • One point of contact in the event of a lost or stolen wallet, so you can easily handle cancellation and replacement of:
    • Credit cards
    • Licenses
    • Passports
    • Insurance cards
    • Social security cards
    • Military IDs
    • Travelers Checks
  • Certified Specialists to resolve, dispute, and refute credit issues, including:
    • Placing credit freezes at different bureaus
    • Filing fraud alerts
    • Notifying authorities

Enrolling In Kasasa Protect® Is Easy AND Affordable

We all hope that identify theft won't happen to us, but unfortunately there is no way to truly predict when cybercriminals may strike. It is always best to be prepared in the event of an attack. Its attractive prices and easy usage makes Kasasa Protect is an excellent option for young adults who wish to protect their sensitive information.

Kasasa Protect is available for just $12.99 per month - or just $7.99 a month for Kasasa account holders! If you have (or open) a Kasasa Cash, Kasasa Cash Back, or Kasasa Savings account, you'll have the opportunity to sign up for Kasasa Protect for only $7.99 per month.

Contact Us For More Information About Kasasa Protect®!

Interested in signing up for Kasasa Protect or learning more about its services? Contact one of the specialists at our Lake of the Ozarks community bank by calling (573) 348-2265. We look forward to working with you!

Want More Awesome Finance Tips? Sign Up For Our Newsletter!

First Bank of the Lake - Striving For Excellence
Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Located at the entrance to the Osage Beach Premium Outlets!

4558 Osage Beach Parkway
Suite 100
Osage Beach, MO 65065

(573) 348-2265

Friday, December 16, 2016

Banking Basics Can EARN YOU REWARDS

First Bank of the Lake is excited to announce a new line of products designed to help young adults (like you!) manage their finances easily, efficiently, and successfully. Kasasa is an elite line of banking products designed specifically for Millennials who are diving headlong into the world of adult finances and responsibilities. Kasasa products are exclusively available at community banks like our local bank in Osage Beach MO. Keep reading to learn more about these exciting products and the benefits they offer.

Free Kasasa Cash® Checking

When you open a Kasasa Cash® checking account, we'll basically pay you to bank with us. This free checking account offers two primary benefits: it yields high interest rates and offers refunds on ATM withdrawals nationwide. Here is a quick glance at the advantages this account type offers:
  • 2.00% APY* on balances up to $10,000
  • 2.00% to 0.41% APY* on balances over $10,000 (depending on balance amount)
  • 0.05% APY* if qualifications aren't met
  • Refunds on ATM fees nationwide (up to $25 monthly)
  • Minimum $25 balance to open (NO minimum balance to earn rewards)

What's more, this awesome account offers free e-statements, free online banking, free debit card, and NO monthly service fee. The only thing you have to do to qualify for the awards is be enrolled and log into our online banking portal and have at least 12 debit card purchases post and settle every month. If for some reason you don't meet these requirements one month, you'll still have a free account - and you can get straight back to earning your rewards next month.

Shopping just got more fun! Our new Kasasa Cash Back® checking account offers a lot of the same benefits as the Kasasa Cash® account, but with one awesome perk: you'll get cash back on your debit card purchases! There aren't any category restrictions, so you have endless opportunities to earn big:
  • Earn 4.00% cashback on your everyday debit card purchases, up to $250 in purchases monthly.
  • That means you can earn up to $120 cash back per year ($10 per month)!

This account also offers many of the benefits offered by the Kasasa Cash® account, including no monthly service fees, free e-statements, free debit card, $25 minimum deposit to open, and - of course - refunds on ATM fees nationwide.

Building a strong savings account just got easier. You can link your Kasasa checking account to this savings account, enabling your savings to build up effortlessly. With high interest rates earned monthly, you can let your money work for you!
  • Earn up to 0.75% APY* on balances up to $25,000
  • 0.75% to 0.35% APY* on balances over $25,000 (depending on balance amount)
  • 0.05% APY* if qualifications are not met on Kasasa Cash or Kasasa Cash Back
  • Automatic transfers of Kasasa Cash or Kasasa Cash Back checking
  • NO minimum monthly balance
  • NO monthly service fee
  • $25 minimum deposit to open account

Like the other Kasasa accounts, the Kasasa Saver® savings account offers free online banking, free e-statements, and a free debit card. 

Save Big With Kasasa At First Bank Of The Lake!

Learning to manage your successfully finances can be a little overwhelming at first, but with Kasasa at First Bank of the Lake, it doesn't have to be hard. Our local bank at the Lake of the Ozarks is here to help you make sense of banking and position yourself for financial success. Check for our blog next week to learn more about Kasasa Protect®, which is like an invisible shield of armor for your sensitive information. In the meantime, check out our website or give us a call at (573) 348-2265 to learn more about what Kasasa can do for you!

Qualifications and rewards may vary by account.  Account approval, conditions, qualifications, limits, time frames, enrollments, log-ons and other requirements apply.  
Contact institution’s service representative for additional information, details, restrictions, rate calculations, processing limitations and enrollment instructions.

* APY = Annual Percentage Yield      Member FDIC

Want More Awesome Finance Tips? Sign Up For Our Newsletter!

First Bank of the Lake - Striving For Excellence
Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Located at the entrance to the Osage Beach Premium Outlets!

4558 Osage Beach Parkway
Suite 100
Osage Beach, MO 65065

(573) 348-2265

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Help Us Raise Money For Christmas For Kids!

How do you plan to celebrate this Christmas season? In addition to office Christmas parties and family celebrations, many people at the Lake of the Ozarks extend the Christmas spirit to those less fortunate by participating in charity events and/or donating to non-profit organizations. First Bank of the Lake is proud to join in the Christmas spirit by donating money to local kids this year, but we need your help to make it happen!

Lake Area Christmas For Kids ~ Event Information

Lake Area Christmas For Kids is a huge annual fundraiser hosted by Ozark Coast Kiwanis and several local businesses. It is designed to help kids directly within the Lake of the Ozarks community. Without the dedication of the people who host and support the event, Christmas would not be possible for 1,600 children in our area. 

The event features a cocktail party, dinner, silent auction, hors d'oeuvres, cash bar, and live entertainment from talented entertainers Shawn C, Elite Lighting & Sound, and KC Groove Therapy! This year's party is scheduled for Saturday, December 10th. Here is a sneak peek at the schedule of events:
  • 5:30 PM ~ Cocktail Party
  • 6:30 PM ~ Dinner 
  • 7:30 PM ~ General Admission

The cocktail party and dinner require reservations, but the general admission does not require any advance notice. The event is open to everyone ages 21 and up. General admission is a $20 donation plus a brand new, unwrapped toy. (If you choose not to bring a toy, admission is $40.)

For more information about this year's event, visit

Lake Area Christmas For Kids ~ Recipients

The toys and money raised at Lake Area Christmas For Kids will benefit 1,600 children right here at the Lake of the Ozarks. The children aren't the only planned recipients, however. In addition to the kids, funds raised at this event will benefit Wonderland Camp, Hope House, Big Brothers Big Sisters, LOSA, Share The Harvest Food Pantry, Kids' Harbor, Lake Regional Pediatrics, and the YMCA.

Help First Bank Of The Lake Raise Money For Christmas For Kids!

Our local bank at the Lake of the Ozarks is proud to support this fantastic event and all of the local children and organizations it benefits. In honor of the giving season, we are calling upon you to help us raise funds for Christmas For Kids 2016. For every new newsletter subscriber we get in December, we will donate $1 to Lake Area Christmas For Kids. You don't have to donate any of your personal funds or time to make a difference - simply sign up for our newsletter on our website, and we will make sure your act is represented in our donation check at the end of the month.

Great Financial Tips ~ Even Greater Cause

At the start of the new year, our bank in Osage Beach MO will be introducing a new e-newsletter campaign which will offer a myriad of financial tips, advice, and other helpful information for anyone looking to set themselves up for financial success. Better yet, you'll get access to this insider information while knowing that your subscription made a difference in a local child's life.

Subscribe on our website today!

First Bank of the Lake - Striving For Excellence
Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.

Located at the entrance to the Osage Beach Premium Outlets!

4558 Osage Beach Parkway
Suite 100
Osage Beach, MO 65065

(573) 348-2265