Five Ways to Spend Your Tax Refund

April 20, 2015 by

tax refundTax day has come and gone. Did you get a refund this year? Should you save it or spend it? What should you buy? If you’re asking yourself some of these questions, read on. Here are five ideas for spending your tax refund wisely this year.

1. Make a plan.
Before you do anything with that refund, evaluate your financial situation. Do you have debts that you need to pay off? If so, allocate a certain percentage of your refund to pay down that debt. Using eighty percent of your refund to pay down a credit card balance or loan will put you in a much better place financially, and still leave you 20% of the refund to treat yourself.

2. Invest It.
From investing in yourself by building an emergency savings fund, to saving for college or retirement, there are lots of options to make that money work for you.

3. Give your home a facelift.
Tax refunds can vary. Luckily, it can require very little money to give your home’s value a major boost. Here are some inexpensive but major ways you can easily liven up your living space:
• Under $100: Give your interior rooms a fresh coat of paint.
• Under $200: Replace your old kitchen and bathroom fixtures with shiny, new ones.
• Under $300: Replace the lighting in dark spaces with bright and efficient light fixtures.
• Under $400: Replace bathroom laminate floors with tile.
• Under $700: Add major curb appeal with fresh outdoor landscaping.

4. Buy a car.
Maybe you’ve been dreaming of a shiny, new car. Or, maybe your old clunker is on its last legs. Either way, your tax refund could make a great down payment. And, with auto loan rates very low, now is a great time to buy. For rates as low as 2.99% new and used, check out your credit union!

5. Donate it.
Making a donation to charity is a great way to serve others, help those in need, and improve your own sense of self. And, donations to qualifying charities are tax deductible, which can help you save more on next year’s taxes.

Happy saving, spending and sharing!

Build Credit While Saving Money

April 6, 2015 by

Piggy BankDo you need to build or repair your credit? How about boosting your savings? Building a positive credit history safely takes time and a financial partner who believes in you. Our Credit Builder and Savers Loan helps members do just that, without applying for high interest rate credit cards or going to a payday lender or finance company. This loan is ideal for members with no credit, or members who are recovering from previous credit problems, bankruptcy, or other difficult life circumstances. Satisfactory repayment will result in favorable consideration for future NWGACU loans. The loan proceeds must be deposited into a regular share account and a permanent hold placed on those funds until the loan is paid in full.

Quick facts about the credit builder and savers loan:

  • Safe way to build credit or help repair damaged credit – 14% APR
  • $500 loan to kick start your savings with affordable monthly payments
  • Financial education on credit provided with each loan
  • A report of your favorable payment history will be sent to the credit bureau

Qualifications to receive the loan include:

  1. Member at NWGACU for at least 12 months.
  2. Currently employed with the same employer for at least twelve months.
  3.  Current on all loans at the credit union.
  4. Member must have a checking account with NWGACU.
  5. Payments may be made through payroll deduction, auto-transfer, mail or in person
  6. Capacity to make payments, as indicated by your debt-to-income ratio
  7. No negative balance in any account with us, as well as having caused us no previous unresolved losses

Additional information:

  1. Qualification will not be based on current credit bureau report.
  2. Score enhancement action plan must be completed.
  3. Direct deposit/payroll deduction is strongly encouraged.
  4. There is a $20 application fee.

Ready to get started? Apply here.

Kids Club Easter Egg Hunt 2015

March 27, 2015 by

Our annual kids club Easter egg hunt is down in the books, and it was a huge success! Children were gathering eggs like egg-hunting professionals, finding candy, toys, and even money inside! If that wasn’t enough, we kicked it up a notch this year, giving out free Kaleido Sno snow cones to everyone that came out! It was a beautiful day, and we are so glad everyone had so much fun!




Lining Up_Blog-01


Looking at eggs_Blog-01

Sno cones_Blog-01

Get to Know the Unbelievable NWGACU Team: Lisa

March 24, 2015 by

LisaIt’s time again to get to know more about your friends at NWGACU. This week you get to  learn more about one of our unbelievable Financial Service Officers, Lisa! She lives in Rome and first began working at the credit union in 2010. We all know you love Lisa, so why not get to know her a little better? Here are some fun facts:

What do you like about working at NWGACU?: Helping people with their needs and helping them achieve their financial goals.

Favorite movie: Grease


What do you like to do with 30 minutes of free time?: …What’s that?! :)

Favorite ice cream flavor: Mint chocolate chip

Favorite food: Pizza

When you were 5 years old, what did you want to be when you grew up?: Dog groomer

Need $1,000 For College?

March 9, 2015 by

You may have already noticed that NWGACU loves education. We serve educators and we teach financial literacy whenever we get the chance, and one of our favorite ways to help in education is to offer scholarships to brand new college students. We know how hard it is to save for college, so we want to help where ever we can.

The Tom Nunn Memorial Scholarship is given in honor of late Director Mr. Tom Nunn, a gentleman committed to excellence in his work and service the Greater Rome community.

The Progressive Leader Scholarship was created in honor of the credit union movement, which was founded by innovative leaders who strongly believed that the banking industry was not serving people as it should. This scholarship honors the entrepreneurial, progressive student leader who believes in her or her own cause and does something about it.

These two $1,000 scholarships are awarded to two graduating high school seniors with plans to attend college in the fall. I can imagine that an extra $1,000 seems pretty exciting with all those college expenses already starting to roll in.

Download the 2015 Tom Nunn application package here.

Download the 2015 Progressive Leader application package here.

Applications are due Thursday, April 30. Good luck!

Calling All Kids: Annual Easter Egg Hunt

March 2, 2015 by

Kids Club Easter Egg Hunt

Our Little Sprouts and Acorn Clubbers are due for some fun at the credit union! We’ll be gathering kids club members (ages 0-12) on the front lawn of the Redmond Road Office for an Easter Egg Hunt in a few weeks.

Thursday, March 26

5:30 p.m.

Redmond Road Office

Mark your calendars now and join us for an awesome Easter Egg Hunt. There will be refreshments, eggs, prizes, eggs, fun, and plenty of eggs!

Do your kids want to participate, but aren’t members of our Kids Clubs? It’s easy to join!  Find out more about our Little Sprouts (ages 0-4) and Acorn Clubs (ages 5-12).

The branch gets a makeover!

February 23, 2015 by

At this point, it’s no secret we’ve been doing some work on our beloved Dean Street office.

Branch Roof

After being closed all last week to finish up everything, we are very excited to unveil the new look of the branch! We hope you love it as much as we do!

After Collage-01

53rd Annual Meeting

February 17, 2015 by

One of the ways we demonstrate our uniqueness in the financial services world is by holding our annual meeting with our member-owners. Everybody knows that being a member-owner is better than being just a customer, right?

On Thursday, February 12, we held our 53nd annual meeting at the Rome Civic Center. Members had a great time celebrating their credit union with delicious food by Harvest Moon, a cool gift and, best of all, cash prizes!

Harvest Moon appetizers

Harvest Moon appetizers

2014 Annual Reports are available at both NWGACU locations

2014 Annual Reports are available at both NWGACU locations

If you missed it this year, we missed YOU. We also want you to know what’s been happening at the credit union, so there are copies of the 2014 Annual Report available at both offices. We hope to see you there next year – you never know, you could be the big winner!

Annual Meeting 2015 Prize Winners

Annual Meeting 2015 Prize Winners

Get to Know the Unbelievable NWGACU Team: Daniel

February 9, 2015 by

Daniel It’s time to get to know another staff member a little better, and what better person than the newest edition to our team, Daniel! Daniel just joined our team as a teller in January 2015. He currently resides in Rome, GA. Here’s a little more about Daniel:

1. What’s your favorite food? Tamales

2. What’s your favorite ice cream flavor? Cookies and cream

3. When you were 5 years old, what did you want to be when you grew up? A firefighter

Toddler Firefighter

4. What do you like to do with 30 minutes of free time? Listen to music

5. What’s your favorite movie? The Hobbit trilogy

The Hobbit

Now that you know a little about him, we hope you’ll stop by our Redmond Road office and say hi!

Personal Finance at Any Age

February 2, 2015 by

learn.growlearn. grow. is a financial literacy program created and taught by a trained staff member at Northwest Georgia Credit Union (that would be me!). It features a series of lessons on various financial topics that gives kids from Kindergarten to 12th grade the opportunity to learn basic financial skills. Each lesson is connected to Georgia Performance Standards and teachers even have the option to customize lessons for their students.

Teaching financial literacy at the College & Career Academy

I taught College & Career Academy students all about personal finance for the real world.

I have had the pleasure of teaching financial literacy at several schools in Rome and Floyd County, and it is such a rewarding experience. Whether I’m teaching second graders about wants vs. needs or teaching high schoolers how to write a check, I find great joy in helping students see a glimpse of the real world. Lots of parents have a hard time teaching their children about money and teachers often just don’t have the time amidst all of the other important information they are teaching their students. Luckily, we are more than happy to step in as the “guest speaker.” I love working with children, and I know teachers sometimes just need a break.

Grace Rush's class at Pepperell Middle

Mrs. Rush’s special education class learned about personal finance and won lots of fun prizes!


Pepperell Middle 7th graders learned how to write checks

Pepperell Middle 7th graders learned how to write checks and fill out transaction registers.

Like I said, each lesson we teach is connected to the Georgia Performance Standards, and teachers are more than welcome to customize lessons to fit their needs. I have combined lessons and even added in new topics (I researched Opportunity Costs specifically for one class!). We are very flexible and just want to do all we can to help students get the most out of each lesson.

If you are a teacher or a parent, please feel free to check out our learn.grow. curriculum here. Teachers: please feel free to schedule your lesson today. I’m looking forward to teaching your students about money!


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