Friday, September 29, 2017

How Halloween Can Help You Teach Your Kids About Money

Let's face it, there are MANY things to spend your money on when it comes to Halloween; candy, decorations for the house, costumes for your kids, even costumes for your pets! You can use all of these purchases to set a good example for your kids to manage their money efficiently. First Bank of the Lake is here to give you 5 financial lessons you can teach your kids during Halloween.

5 Financial Lessons You Can Teach Your Kids During Halloween

1. Comparison Shopping

Whether you are searching through store after store for the PERFECT Halloween costume for your kids or trolling through the stores online, you can teach your kids the benefits of comparing prices when shopping. Teach them how to use apps such as:

  • ShopSavy
  • RedLaser better compare prices. Give them the chance to see you comparing prices of these perfect costumes. This can help them to know whether or not they are getting a good deal.

2. Never Paying Retail

No matter how bad you want something, there's a pretty good chance you can find it on sale, online or offline at a competitor's store. Teach your kids that they don't always have to pay the sticker price for items. They need to keep their eyes peeled for the latest deals, coupons and special offers using apps. Many stores may run weekly specials and last-minute markdown deals leading up to Halloween. Try apps like Target's Cartwheel app, it allows you to capture mobile barcodes while you shop. Cartwheel enables you to select from hundreds of discounts ranging from 5% to 50% off.

3. Buying in Bulk

Show your kids the value of buying in bulk. Teach them how they are saving money by buying all of the Halloween candy in large amounts, instead of smaller amounts. Try warehouse clubs such as:

  • Sam's Club
  • Costco round up your Halloween candy this year. Warehouse clubs can also be a great place to buy your Halloween decorations such as wreaths, miniature haunted houses, and even character costumes.

4. Fair Trades

The night of Halloween is the perfect opportunity to teach your kids the art of proper trading. A child's desire to have the best candy can enable you to teach them they need to trade more than one piece of less popular candy for a premium brand. This is a great lesson for those kids who have siblings.

5. DIY Projects

Teach your kids how fun it can be to make their own Halloween costumes. Their costumes can not only be unique but also budget friendly.

Need a Bank You Can Trust With Your Family's Money?

First Bank of the Lake has you covered. Our goal is to find the right product or service to meet your financial needs. When you work with a local bank, you put your money to work growing the local economy. We share a common commitment to our community with our customers. We understand your local needs. To speak with one of our friendly bank employees in Osage Beach, call 573-348-2265 today.

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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

Thursday, September 21, 2017

A Natural Disaster Could Strike At Any Time - Are Your Prepared?

You never know when a natural disaster can strike. Hurricanes Harvey and Irma are big reminders of how terrible unexpected disasters can be. You may never know when a disaster can strike, however, you can minimize the risk of harm by being prepared. In this blog, your bank at the Lake of the Ozarks will give you the following tips to better prepare for ANY natural disaster and helpful information regarding insurance coverage for situations such as these.

Natural Disaster Preparation Tips

Have a Family Emergency Plan.

When a natural disaster strikes, you and your family may not be together, which can cause a panic. Try to stay calm. Following a plan of action can help calm your nerves. Your family emergency plan should include the following:

  • How you will contact each other
  • Identify a safe place to gather as an alternative to your home
  • Designate a meeting area both within and outside of your neighborhood 

This plan can ensure the whole family knows where to go, what to do, and who they can stay within the event of an emergency. Check online for road conditions to see if you should drive to get out of harm's way. Also, you can fill your car's gas tank ahead of time if you know a storm's coming, just in case there is a gas shortage.

Make Sure Your Disaster Supply Kit is Ready at All Times.

Keep a disaster supply kit or emergency supply kit ready at all times in your home. Make sure it's easily accessible in case of a disaster. This kit should include the following:

  • Flashlight with extra batteries
  • A first aid kit
  • A crank or battery operated radio with weather radio capabilities
  • Necessary prescription medications
  • An emergency whistle to signal for help
  • A gallon of water per person and pet for at least 3 days
  • Several days of nonperishable food.

It's also a good idea, if possible to include $200 - $500 or more in the case that ATMs are either unavailable or damaged.

Understand What Your Homeowners Insurance Covers.

It can be very difficult to think about the possibility of losing your home, but it's important to know what your homeowner's insurance covers and doesn't cover. Policies vary by insurance company, you should never make any assumptions as to what is covered. Most homeowners insurance policies cover the following:

  • Fire
  • Lightning
  • Explosion
  • Smoke
  • Damage by the weight of ice, snow, or sleet

Perils of hail, windstorm, vandalism, theft and water damage may be excluded by many policies. Flood is typically always excluded and must be purchased through the Federal Flood Insurance Program. Other perils that may be excluded include earthquake, water damage, (if related to flood or otherwise excluded peril) sewer backup, and nuclear accidents. 

Safely Guard Your Important Documents.

In order to safely guard your important documents during a natural disaster, options include:

  • Store them in a safe deposit box at your local bank at the Lake of the Ozarks
  • Store your documents in a waterproof and fireproof container in a safe place in your home
  • Scan and store these documents in a cloud-based application

Important documents and items you will want to guard can include, irreplaceable photos, birth and marriage certificates, mortgages, proof of vaccinations for pets, bank account records, and/or insurance policies.

Prepare for the Worst and Hope for the Best 

Being prepared for a natural disaster can help you and your family stay calm and rational when a disaster strikes. Being prepared can also save lives. Having your family emergency plan and disaster supply kit ready is essential. Also, know your available resources, such as FEMA and the American Red Cross. Being educated on your homeowner's insurance can help you make better decisions on what to purchase to ensure you are covered for everything needed. The important thing is that you and your family are prepared at all times for a natural disaster. First Bank of the Lake hopes these tips help you become better prepared in the case a natural disaster strikes.

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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

Thursday, September 14, 2017

5 Helpful Tips That Can Help You Save When Having a LARGE Family

You're at that point in your life where you are married with kids and happy, but struggling to afford it due to the large size of your family. With each child you have, your expenses increase and at times it can be hard to keep up. Believe it or not, there are things you can do to help with this struggle. Your bank at the Lake of the Ozarks would like you to know the following 5 helpful tips you can implement into your daily, hectic life to help you better financially handle having a LARGE family.

5 Helpful Tips That Can Help You Save When Having a LARGE Family

1. Recycle, Recycle, Recycle!

Recycle the items that you can reuse, such as:

  • Bunk beds
  • Cribs
  • Books
  • Toys
  • Cars
  • School Textbooks
  • Clothes

If you can't recycle these items, you can often find these products for cheaper prices online, on sites such as Craig’s List or eBay or even on clearance, in garage sales, or sidewalk sales.

2. Only buy what you need.

This one may sound obvious, but it’s important. It can be very tempting to buy unnecessary items when there is a new baby or for the first day of school, but it’s ok to resist. You will most likely receive many new things for your baby during the baby shower.

3. Save on medical and dental bills.

Teach your children the importance of dental hygiene, healthy eating and exercising. Feed your kids good, healthy food. Child obesity is a huge problem in the U.S. and these all are good ways to help prevent that from happening to your kids. Teach them to floss, brush their teeth regularly, get lots of fresh air, and to participate in fun, active activities with one another. This alone can help prevent costly dental and medical bills.

4. Consider various school options.

When you consider everything a child needs for school, supplies, sports equipment etc., it can get quite expensive. Private schools can be even more expensive. Consider public school or homeschool. Both options can be much cheaper than private school.

5. Change your mindset.

It’s ok for kids to share rooms. Children can work hard without elaborate birthday parties or fancy gadgets. When you teach your kids to be hard workers without over the top, materialistic things, they can be better for it in the long run. You can teach the true value of the dollar and your kids can then, hopefully, grow up into hard-working adults who support themselves rather than into spoiled, entitled people.

You Can Do It!

Again, we know the financial struggle is real, but you can do it. First Bank of the Lake is your local trusted bank at the Lake of the Ozarks. We understand how hard it can be to save, especially in rough times, but just by changing a few daily habits, you could possibly make a HUGE difference in your savings for your LARGE family. If you ever have questions about saving money, please call our bank at 573-348-2265.

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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

Thursday, September 7, 2017

5 Tips for Saving for College in 2017

Getting a college degree is more expensive than ever. Student debt is growing and may be a real problem for recent graduates. According to the Federal Reserve Board, students in the USA now hold a whopping $1.4 trillion dollars of student debt. This means on average, that each graduate owes $30,000 or more just when they are joining the workforce! Another recent report shows that more than 11% of graduates default on these student loans by their third year of repayment. Don’t let student debt start you off on the wrong foot. Here are some tips from the best bank at the Lake of the Ozarks to help you prepare financially for college!

5 Tips for Saving for College in 2017

1. Choose the right college for YOU.

As the time to choose your college approaches, you may feel pressure from fellow classmates, friends, or even your parents to choose a certain college. It’s important to choose the best school for YOU because you are most likely the person that will end up paying for your education. Certain colleges are more expensive than others, especially if you are considering attending college out of state. Out of state tuition typically runs higher than in state tuition. Schedule some college visits, speak to advisors, current, and former students. They can give you a better perspective on whether that school is good for your major. You can also receive an inside look at how financially realistic that college is for you because they themselves are either paying for their education or advising students who are paying for their education.

2. Apply for scholarships and grants early.

Certain students are eligible to receive federal grants once they complete their FAFSA application. There are thousands of scholarships available as well and not just within your school. Check with local churches and charities, you may qualify for more scholarships than you think.

3. Save early on.

From the moment, you get that first part time job in high school, start putting a little away each month. It is never too early to start putting away money for college. You will be happy that you did when you are older.

4. Try “crowdfunding.”

Crowdfunding has become a popular source for college financing these days. Crowdfunding requires visiting a site such as:


These sites are designed to help students raise money for college. You simply set up an account, upload a photo of yourself, add your personal story and then share this with your friends and family on your social media platforms.

5. Earn college credit, while still in high school to maximize your savings.

Some high schools offer college credited classes and they tend to be much more budget friendly than the classes in college. Take courses such as these when you get the chance. It can not only save you money, but also shorten the amount of time it takes to get your bachelor’s degree.

Need a Savings Account to Get You Started?

Stop by First Bank of the Lake and ask one our friendly banking staff members in Osage Beach about opening a savings account. They can recommend which type of savings account will work best for your needs.

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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

Friday, September 1, 2017

3 KEY Ways to Protect Against Debit Card Fraud!

Debit card fraud can happen to anyone at anytime. You may even know someone who has been affected by debit card fraud, whether it be a family member, friend, or co-worker. First Bank of the Lake feels it's extremely important that you know ways to try and prevent debit card fraud from happening. In today's day and age, it can be very easy for someone to get ahold of your debit card or private information. In this blog, our bank at the Lake of the Ozarks is going to list some ways to prevent debit card fraud from happening.

Ways to Prevent Debit Card Fraud From Happening

1. Let the card issuer know your travel date and where you are going. 

If your card is stolen while you on vacation, the card issuer may decline the suspicious transaction before it actually goes through. This can save you a lot of trouble and possibly allow for you to have a much better, more relaxing vacation.

2. Only Use ATMs located at banks and protect/cover your pin number. 

When using an ATM, consider only using ATMs at banks during business hours. Banks have bright lights and cameras and are at a much lesser risk for debit card fraud. Also, when you are inputting your pin number, make sure you use your hand to cover the number pad as you enter it. Doing this can help prevent people nearby from snapping a picture of your number.

3. Keep as little cash as you can in your checking account.

There are so many opportunities to access money from your checking account, which means the greater the chance the culprit can steal your money. Checking accounts have many ways to access money such as debit cards, of course, checks, and automatic debits. 

  • Checks - If someone knows your routing number and checking account number, which are both written at the bottom of your check, they can possibly hack your online banking account and access your money.
Try keeping as small amount of money as possible in your checking account. You then can transfer money from your checking to your savings every month. This will provide you a higher interest rate on your savings but also allow you to save for emergencies or special occasions better and give those potential fraudsters less of a chance to access/steal your money.

Need a Bank You Can Trust to Help You Protect Your Debit Card Against Fraud?

First Bank of the Lake has a few Kasasa checking or savings products your can try. The Free Kasasa Cash Checking, Free Kasasa Cash Back Checking, and Free Kasasa Saver are all great options to invest your money. Also, the Kasasa Protect allows you to keep your information yours and yours alone. Kasasa Protect is affordable and comprehensive fraud PROTECTION, that you can add to your First Bank of the Lake checking account. 

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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