Save money if your mortgage is upside down Did you know the government has a way to help homeowners who are currently upside in their mortgages? Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP-2) is a federal program of the United States, set up by the Federal Housing Finance Agency in March 2009 to help underwater and near-underwater homeowners refinance their mortgages. Unlike the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), which aims to assist homeowners who are in danger of foreclosure, this program targets homeowners who are current on their monthly mortgage payments but are unable to refinance due to dropping home prices in the wake of the U.S. housing market correction. The HARP-2 mortgage refinance is a great way to try and save some money or time off your existing conventional mortgage. There are a few stipulations when it comes to this new mortgage option. You must be upside down in your current mortgage but have 12 months of consecutive on-time payments, and your mortgage must also be held through Fanny Mae or Freddy Mac. Not sure if you qualify for this program? The mortgage consultant for Rockford Community Federal Credit Union, Ed Ross, said, “This program is an excellent opportunity for people who cannot take advantage of today’s rates. We have had a chance to help many members of the credit union live more comfortably by adjusting their mortgage. You do not need to be a current credit union member for us to take a look at your mortgage. It’s worth the phone call, as we can quickly find out if this HARP-2 mortgage is a good fit for you.”
Rockford Community Federal Credit Union
Aunt Candy of Aunt Candy’s Toy Company was thrilled with the turnout during the last weekend of Harvest Festival, especially the tons of kids in the annual costume contest. Cars lined the streets of Rockford right up past the business district for Saturday’s events, which included free horse-drawn hayrides, a petting zoo, mascots and more. The Heart of Rockford Business Association organized the third weekend of Harvest Festival, which was a great success. A petting zoo at Garden Club park with pony rides drew children. Mascots, such as Roo Bucks from the Rockford Community Federal Credit Union, spread cheer among the crowd.
by ANA OLVERA Placed outside of Rockford Community Federal Credit Union, at 3 N. Monroe St., are five Cedar Sapiens. They were created by Georgia Donovan, a member at the credit union. Donovan entered the Cedar Sapiens in the Art Prize 2009 contest. Her entry placed in the top 50 out of 1,218 entries. Her artwork, titled “Cedar Sapiens—Dance of the Tree People,” was placed at The B.O.B. “Now they’ve planted their roots in Rockford,” said Cassandra Chartier, a staff member at the credit union. The Cedar Sapiens were moved to Rockford at the end of October. “Rockford is all about uniqueness and we wanted to get people talking around town,” said Josh Fortuna, another staff member. The Cedar Sapiens will keep the public up to date on the upcoming events at the credit union. “We love them. They’re great conversation starters,” said Chartier. One of the Cedar Sapiens, “Pat,” was dressed as a witch for Halloween. Currently she is dressed as a Rockford Ram cheerleader while the marquee sign reads, “Go Rams!” Rockford Community Federal Credit Union will take ideas from the public on how to dress the Cedar Sapiens. The credit union can be contacted through their website, rcfcumember.com, by phone at (616) 866-8570, or one can stop by.
Rockford Community Federal Credit Union donated a check for $500 to Rockford Public Schools for their participation in the Rockford Rams Check Program. The check was presented at a recent Rockford Rotary Club meeting, following a profound speech from Superintendent Dr. Michael Shibler on the desperate financial situation the Rockford school district is facing. The program is simple: for every box of Rams checks ordered, a $3 donation is made back to the school district. For more information contact Rockford Community Federal Credit Union at (616) 866-8570.
This Student Run Credit Union is the “reel” deal! Red Carpet Events will be held in three Rockford area schools. Rockford Community Federal Credit Union is making savings fun in schools through a movie and celebrity themed, fully functioning “reel” Student Run Credit Union. Schools participating in programs are Belmont, Roguewood, and Our Lady of Consolation School. The schools recognize the need to teach students how to save for the future. In a partnership with Rockford Community Federal Credit Union the Student Run Credit Union was established. This program is now in its 6th year of operation. “By partnering with the schools, it provides the students an opportunity and a first hand experience with money management and financial education. Students learn as employees and as members who make deposits and withdrawals. Good habits learned early are more likely to last a lifetime,” said Connie Taylor, CEO of Rockford Community Federal Credit Union. These Credit Unions are now fully functional and run once a week for students to be able to make deposits, withdrawals and learn how to save money. The students get rewarded for good savings through games and prizes. As an added bonus, students in 5th grade have the opportunity to become an employee of the Student Run Credit Union. Lisa Smith, the Educational Coordinator for Rockford Community Federal Credit Union, oversees the Student Run Credit Unions. She says, “in these tough economic times our goal with the all Student Run Credit Unions is to provide a “reel” life financial literacy-based program that teaches students about saving money, decision-making and critical thinking while they are young.” The Credit Union hopes that by having the Credit Union, students will be more responsible with their money management and finances in the future. The Red Carpet was rolled out February 9, at Belmont Elementary, February 11 in Roguewood Elementary, and February 12 in Our Lady of Consolation School. These super star celebrations had snacks and Emmy pictures with celebrities for all student members.