In this issue How to Shop For Your First Home - Hudson Valley

spring 2011
a q u a r t e r ly p u b l i c at i o n o f H u d s o n va l l e y f e d e r a l c r e d i t u n i o n
In this issue
Spring is here. What better time than now to improve
your finances? Whether it’s shopping for a house or
car, paying bills, choosing a financial advisor, or saving
money at the ATM, HVFCU is here to help you make
smarter choices.
How to Shop
For Your First Home
You should buy a home. That’s what you’ve been
hearing from friends and family, right? So, by
now you have no doubt weighed the benefits and
decided that home ownership is the best decision
for you. That’s a major hurdle now passed. You are
focused and certain, and that’s good.
Defining Search Parameters for a First-Time
Homebuyer. Nearly 80% of all home searches today
begin on the Internet. With just a few clicks of the
mouse, homebuyers can search through hundreds of
online listings, take virtual tours, and sort through
dozens of photographs and aerial shots of neighborhoods
and homes. You’ve probably defined your goals and have
a pretty good idea of the type of home and neighborhood
you want. By the time you reach your real estate agent’s
office, you are halfway to home ownership. Before you
work with a realtor get pre-qualified for a mortgage so
you know how much home you can afford.
How Long Should It Take to Find a Home?
Although it takes the average homebuyer two months
to find the right house, at the right price, in the ideal
neighborhood, you’ll want to shop at a pace that’s right
for you.
The maximum number of homes buyers should view in
one day is seven. Any more than that, and the brain is
on overload. A good real estate agent will listen to your
wants and needs and arrange to show only those homes
that fit your parameters.
Rate Your Home Choices
• Bring a digital camera and begin each series of
photos with a close-up of the house number to
identify where each group of home photos start
and end.
• Take copious notes of unusual features, colors
and design elements.
• Pay attention to the home’s surroundings. What
is next door? Do 2-story homes tower over your
single story?
• Do you like the location? Is it near a park – or
a power plant?
• Immediately after leaving, rate each home on a
scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being the highest.
continued on page 2
How to Shop for Your First Home continued…
View Top Choices a Second Time Before Buying That First
Home. After touring homes for a few days, you will probably know
instinctively which one or two homes you might like to buy. Ask to
see them again and at a different time of day. You will see them
with new eyes and notice elements that were overlooked the first
go-around. This will help you narrow your choice down to the
perfect home.
Once you have made your choice, your agent should find out
more about the sellers’ motivation and double-check that an offer
hasn’t already been made. Once your offer has been accepted,
you’re ready to begin the mortgage process.
We’ve Got What You Need
When you’re ready to finance, come to your
credit union for great mortgages with low rates,
free pre-approval, and no application or
underwriting fees.
Remodeling Trends for 2011
Curious about what home remodeling trends 2011 will bring? Here are a few predictions in home design and
remodeling trends to look forward to as homeowners revive their living spaces:
LED or CFL (Compact Fluorescent) Lighting.
Homeowners are moving away from incandescent
fixtures toward more energy-efficient choices such as
LED and CFL bulbs.
Screened Porches. Homeowners are extending their
living areas with screened porches that allow them to
enjoy the outdoors throughout the year without the
nuisance of insects.
High Quality Synthetic Materials for Home
Exteriors. Synthetic materials such as Hardie Plank
siding and PVC trim pieces mimic the look of natural
materials like wood, but are much more durable and
better able to withstand climate changes.
“Furniture-Like” Detailing in Kitchens. Varied
cabinet and counter heights, distressed finishes and
furniture-style toe kicks provide visual interest and help
eliminate the “component” look of many kitchen cabinet
Large Format Bathroom Tiles. Smaller square
tiles are being replaced with tiles measuring 12” x 12”
or larger, as well as non-square shapes (12” x 18”),
producing flooring and walls that showcase more tile and
fewer grout lines.
Heated Bathroom Flooring. Heated mats underneath
bathroom flooring tiles provide radiant heat that is
proven to keep homeowners warmer than forced-air
heating systems, helping to save on energy costs.
Multiple Finishes on Kitchen Cabinetry.
Complimentary multiple stains and a mix of painted
and stained finishes on cabinetry enables homeowners
to escape the look and feel of a “cookie cutter” kitchen
where all surfaces match.
Kitchen Cabinet Accessories. With drawer inserts
for cutlery, spices or dividers, homeowners are making
better use of every available space within their kitchens.
With spring here it’s time to get inspired and
decorate or remodel your own space.
Call or Stop by Today
for options on how you can finance these home
improvements with an HVFCU home equity loan,
home equity line of credit, or Visa credit card.
New Lower Auto Rates!
Visit us at for current auto rates,
auto shopping help with AutosMArT, and a
free online insurance quote.
Before You Get Your Next Vehicle
Auto dealers are counting on you to make their sales goals this spring.
Before you purchase, do your homework to get the best deal possible.
What is the value of the vehicle you want? Check
pricing guides like NADA and Kelly Blue Book so you
know how to negotiate the purchase price confidently.
What will insurance cost? Call your insurance
representative and ask for a quote on your policy if you
change cars or add a vehicle to your policy. You’d be
surprised at the impact of certain makes and models. Be
sure to ask about options that could qualify you for a rate
Mileage? With gas prices continuing to rise, what
will the impact be on your monthly gas costs? If you’re
upgrading from a small car to a sedan or SUV, the
additional costs could be substantial.
What will it actually cost? Consider your options
before you walk into the showroom. Getting preapproved gives you the bargaining advantage so you’re
negotiating PRICE and not payment amount.
Get Smart. Go to the AutoSMART link under the
“Loans” menu at for the compare vehicles,
vehicle history, JP Power ratings, consumer advice,
calculators, and more to help you shop smarter.
Once you’ve found your vehicle, you can apply for lowrate HVFCU financing online at or right at the
dealer (see participating dealer list at
Bill Pay Can Make Your Life Easier
It’s true! Using Bill Pay to help manage your finances
takes less time, saves you money, and puts you in control.
With Bill Pay, you can set up your recurring bills like
utilities and loans so they are always paid on time. No
more mail delays or tricky posting times means you can
avoid late fees and missed payments—a great bonus
when you’re traveling.
your monthly bill are an environmentally-friendly and
secure alternative to paper.
If you’re not comfortable with automatic payment for
your bills, Bill Pay has a reminder option that will alert
you when a bill has arrived or is due to be paid. You can
then review the bill first before you pay it electronically.
Bill Pay also gives you the option of arranging for
eBills—where available. These electronic versions of
The Best Part of Bill Pay—it’s FREE. Once you’re
enrolled in our FREE Internet Banking service, you can
log on and sign up for FREE Bill Pay in minutes. What
are you waiting for? Visit or call us at
845-463-3011/800-468-3011 to get started.
Easy 24/7 access to Bill Pay puts you in the driver’s seat
to manage your money. Now, from anywhere you have
internet access, you can manage your cash flow, monitor
payments, and make adjustments in emergencies.
How to Reduce ATM Fees
and Surcharges
We all like to save money however we can. Here’s how to
reduce ATM fees and surcharges when withdrawing cash
from your checking account.
Use HVFCU ATMs. Transactions are free for members
withdrawing from their HVFCU accounts. ATMs are
available at all our branches throughout the Hudson Valley.
Use surcharge-free ATMs. Use our ATM location
finder at to find over 72,000 surcharge-free
ATMs nationwide in the Allpoint, CO-OP, Presto!, and
SUM ATM networks.
Avoid gas station and independent ATMs. Most
have high fees and surcharges added on to cash. If the
fees seem excessive (you will be prompted to accept
the fee), decline the fee, cancel the transaction, and go
Get cash at the grocer. Instead of using an ATM and
incurring an ATM fee, use your check card to get cash
back in a grocery store. Swipe your check card for a
debit transaction and select the desired cash back amount
when prompted.
Withdraw larger amounts of cash at a time. The
fees are the same regardless of the amount of cash you
withdraw. Obviously it makes more sense to withdraw
eighty dollars at a $2.50 surcharge, then $20 four times
with the same $2.50 per transaction surcharge.
Stay within your free network transaction limit.
Be conscious of your checking account free transaction
limit to avoid unnecessary fees.
A Worldwide Check Card
get up to $500 cash daily from over 1.7 million Visa
ATMs in more than 200 countries and territories with
your HVFCU Visa Check Card. Visa/plus global ATMs
provide cash access to funds, generally 24 hours a day,
seven days a week. Visit us at for a link to the
Visa international ATM locator.
Set a Goal For The
Experience of a Lifetime
VisaВ® Platinum & Visa Check Card
ScoreCard Points. Discover a world of possibility
with an Experience Award. Simulate an astronaut
lift-off mission, fly-fish in Montana, or attend an NFL
Pro Bowl Tailgate Party and game in Hawaii. These
unique experiences and many others are possible
through the ScoreCard Bonus Point Rewards program
and your HVFCU Visa Point Rewards Platinum Credit
Card and Visa Check Card.
Set a Goal. Obviously, rewards like the experiences
above require a large number of points. But who saves
for vacation in just a day? Setting a points goal is the
first step toward achieving them. Use your card as
often as possible to keep growing your points, always
remembering to use your card for credit purchases
whenever possible.
Here’s how it works. Enroll your cards at (or link from the loans/credit
cards section at to track your points and to
see all that is available. There are literally hundreds
of items, experiences, and travel options listed from
which to choose. There’s no special trick to redeeming
your points. When you’ve finally accumulated your
goal points, simply make your choice and follow the
purchase instructions.
Enroll your card at today to see
all that’s available, and start planning ahead for your
great experience!
Get to your goal faster. Did you know you can
combine your Platinum and Check Card points,
or points with others in your household? Find out
how at
You Deserve a Financial Advisor You Can Trust
You want to invest with someone who puts your financial goals first—and provides you with personalized
options and exceptional service. HVFCU Financial Services is a locally based organization dedicated
exclusively to helping HVFCU members meet their financial goals.
HVFCU Financial Services at Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union can help you build, recover and protect
your investments. One of our experienced Financial Consultants will be glad to meet with you in person to
review your portfolio, discuss your options and help you to plan for a better financial future.
Schedule a no-cost, no-obligation consultation with an HVFCU Financial Services Consultant today. To get
started call 845.463.3366 or go online to and select Financial Planning.
$75 VisaВ® Gift Card*
Open your new investment account
with $5,000 or more before April 15, 2011
and receive a $75 Visa gift Card.
Securities, advisory services and insurance products offered through LPL Financial and
its affiliates, a registered Investment advisor, Member FINra/SIPC. hudson Valley
Federal Credit Union and hVFCU Financial Services are not registered broker/dealers
and are not affiliated with LPL Financial.
Not NCUA Insured
No Credit Union Guarantee
May Lose Value
*Offer valid for members who open a new investment account with HVFCU Financial
Services through LPL Financial between 1/20/11 and 4/15/11. Must be a new account with
an opening value of $5,000 or more. Limit one gift card per member. Void where prohibited.
You will receive your Visa gift card no later than 30 days after account is funded.
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Protect Yourself
From Identity Theft
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Our free eNews and Investor Quarterly newsletters keep
you up to date on promotions, seminars,
credit union events and
important consumer and
investment news via email
each month. Go to the
eServices menu at
to register.
Helping members protect their identity is a priority with
Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union. According to
the Federal Trade Commission, you can deter identity
thieves by shredding documents and paperwork with
personal information before you discard them. If you
don’t have a personal shredder at home, or if you have
a large amount of documents you no longer need to
store, Hudson Valley Federal Credit Union can help you
safely destroy them. Throughout the year, we provide
shredder trucks at our branches and invite members
to shred up to two boxes of confidential materials free
of charge. Following is our upcoming shredder truck
schedule. Please visit our website at for a list of
acceptable materials.
Get an Online Insurance
Quote from IAHV
With access to multiple insurance carriers, it’s no wonder
the Insurance Agency of the Hudson Valley has been
able to save credit union members so much money. By
comparing carriers side by side, we can find an insurance
policy that’s both affordable and customized to meet all
your needs.
Online quotes are available for Homeowners and
Renters insurance, Vehicles (Auto, Motorcycle,
Recreational Vehicles, Watercraft), Business, as well
as Accidental Death, Identity Fraud Protection, even
Pet Insurance.
Go to the quick quote tools under the “Insurance” menu
at and try us out.
Insurance Agency
Hudson Valley at
Hudson Valley В®
Federal Credit Union
866.397.3319 | Monday through Friday, 8 am – 8 pm
Confidential Shredding
Truck Schedule
Hyde Park Branch
April 8, 2011, 11:00 am – 2:00 pm
Carmel Branch
April 11, 2011, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Pleasant Valley Branch
April 29, 2011, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Hopewell Junction Branch
May 5, 2011, 3:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Fishkill Branch
May 6, 2011, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Beacon Branch
June 3, 2011, 10:00 am – 1:00 pm
Middletown Branch
June 10, 2011, 9:00 am – 12:00 pm
Hollowbrook Branch
June 10, 2011, 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Kingston Branch
June 24, 2011, 2:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Insurance products are not deposits, obligations of, or guaranteed by Hudson Valley
Federal Credit Union and are not insured by the National Credit Union Share
Insurance Fund (NCUSIF), or any other agency of the United States, Hudson Valley
Federal Credit Union, or CUSERVE, Inc.
Directors & Officers
T. S. Jones, Chairman
Takao Inouye, 1st Vice Chairman
Joseph E. Eppich, 2nd Vice Chairman
David S. Bagley, Treasurer
Henry J. Rodgers, Jr., Asst. Treasurer
Larry J. Prescott, Secretary
Misty Decker, Director
Noreen Hennessy, Director
Gabriel B. Roy, Director
Jan. B. Mahar, Director Emeritus
Ralph E. Plant, Director Emeritus
Supervisory Committee
Nancy Kappler-Foster, Chairman
Kathleen A. Dispensa, Secretary
Stephen M. Caswell, Member
Noreen Hennessy, Member
William J. Mulvey, Member
Jeffrey S. Battistoni, Associate Member
Elinor Speckman, Associate Member
President & CEO
Mary D. Madden
Monday-Friday 8:30-7:00 and Saturday 9:00-5:00
4 Tucker Drive, Arlington
324 Main Street, Beacon
449 Route 9, Fishkill
101 Tillson Avenue, Highland
415 Route 376, Hopewell Junction
4011 Albany Post Road, Hyde Park
1639 Ulster Avenue, Kingston
Route 211, Fairgrounds Plaza, Middletown
953 Route 300, Newburgh
265 Windsor Highway, New Windsor
12 North Avenue, Pleasant Valley
159 Barnegat Road, Poughkeepsie
11 Marshall Road, Wappingers Falls
Monday-Friday 8:30-5:30 and Saturday 8:30-12:00
1620 Route 22, Brewster
1995 Route 6, Carmel
Monday-Friday 8:30-5:30
1 Civic Center Plaza, Poughkeepsie
Monday-Friday 8:00-4:00
IBM Buildings 320, 330, 416, 705*
*Employee accessible. Closed 1:30 pm to 2:00 pm.
All HVFCU Branches
Adams Fairacre Farms, Route 44, Poughkeepsie
Blue Cross/Blue Shield, Middletown*
Gap/Old Navy Distribution Center, Fishkill*
Kent Shopping Mall, 1100 Route 52, Kent
Putnam National Golf Club, 187 Hill Street, Mahopac
Mohonk Mountain House, New Paltz
1810 South Road, Nine Mall, Wappingers Falls
Poughkeepsie IBM Bldg. 052
Putnam DMV, 1 Geneva Road, Brewster
Putnam County Office Bldg, 40 Glenieda Avenue, Carmel
East Fishkill IBM Bldgs. 300, 323*
Vassar Brothers Medical Center, Poughkeepsie
*Employee accessible.
24-Hour Drive-up ATMs
Arlington, Fishkill, Highland, Hopewell Junction, Hyde Park,
Kingston, Middletown, Newburgh, New Windsor, Pleasant
Valley, and Poughkeepsie Branches
Bridgeview Plaza, Route 9W, Highland
1810 South Road, Nine Mall, Wappingers Falls
Online Services
TDD (for hearing impaired)
Supervisory Committee
P.O. Box 1624, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
[email protected]
Mailing Address
159 Barnegat Road, Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
Holiday Schedule
Branches will be closed:
Monday, May 30, Memorial Day
Monday, July 4, Independence Day
Branches within IBM will also be closed Friday, July 1
Your savings federally insured up to
$250,000 and backed by the full faith and
credit of the United States Government
National Credit Union Administration
a U.S. Government Agency