America Recycles Day

Today is America Recycles Day! In an attempt to raise awareness and help you with your recycling efforts, we’ve put together a list of recycling drop off centers across Central Florida. We’ve made it easy for you to find a location that will help bring new life to your recyclable materials.

Citrus County

Citrus County Fairgrounds
US 41, about 1 mile south of the City of Inverness

Citrus County Central Landfill
230 W Gulf to Lake Hwy, Lecanto, FL (SR 44 between Lecanto and Inverness)

Lecanto Government Center
Off Educational Path, at the Lecanto School Complex, about 1 block from CR 491 in Lecanto

For additional information about Citrus County recycling centers visit: http://www.citrusbocc.com/pubworks/swm/recycling/recycling-dropoff-locations.htm

Lake County

Lake County Landfill
13130 County Landfill Road, Tavares

Lady Lake
1200 Jackson St., Lady Lake

Clermont
10435 Log House Road, Clermont

For additional information about Lake County recycling centers visit: https://www.lakecountyfl.gov/departments/public_works/solid_waste/solid_waste_operations/residential_dropoffs.aspx

Marion County

Baseline Landfill
5601 SE 66th St., Ocala

Blichton
13247 N. Highway 27, Ocala

Canal
457 SE 110th St., Ocala

For additional information about Marion County recycling centers visit:
http://www.marioncountyfl.org/departments-agencies/departments-o-z/solid-waste/recycling-centers-location-list

Orange County

Orange County Landfill
5901 Young Pine Road, Orlando

Porter Transfer Station
1326 Good Homes Road, Orlando, FL

McLeod Road Transfer Station
5000 L.B. McLeod Road, Orlando, FL

For additional information about Orange County recycling centers visit:
http://www.orangecountyfl.net/WaterGarbageRecycling/SaveLandfillSpace.aspx#.Wgxxdk2WyUl

Seminole County

Central Transfer Station
1950 State Road 419, Longwood, Florida

Seminole County Landfill
1930 E. Osceola Road
Geneva, FL

For additional information about Seminole County recycling centers visit:
https://www.seminolecountyfl.gov/departments-services/environmental-services/solid-waste-management/recycling/recycling-drop-off-facilities.stml 

Sumter County

Sumter County Solid Waste Dept. Citizen’s Drop‐off Area
819 CR 529 Lake Panasoffkee, FL

If you’d like more information on this location you can visit:
https://sumtercountyfl.gov/222/Solid-Waste

Volusia County

Daytona – Halifax Fire Station 12
1979 Taylor Road, Daytona Beach, FL

Port Orange– Tomoka Landfill
1990 Tomoka Farms Road, Port Orange, FL

Deland – Kepler Road Fire Station 42
1885 Kepler Road, Deland, FL

For additional information about Volusia County recycling centers visit: https://www.volusia.org/services/public-works/solid-waste-and-recycling/recycling/recycling-drop-off-sites.stml

 

Packing For College: What Should Stay and What Should Go?

college blogAre you heading off to dorm life soon or know someone who is? Well, it’s good to make a plan before the packing begins. Don’t waste precious space on stuff that isn’t needed. We’ve put together a helpful post on what to bring – and what to leave at home.

Do not bring: A television.

Chances are, your school will provide internet TV access, so you can stream your favorite shows. On the same note, don’t pack more than a few books to read or DVDs to watch in your spare time. Your schedule will be fuller than you can imagine and space is tight.

Do bring: Noise-canceling headphones.

As considerate as your roommates may be, they’ll sometimes feel like chatting when you most need to concentrate. Noise-canceling headphones will help you create that quiet space you need.

Do not bring: A ton of food and stockpiles of toiletries.

Unless you’re heading into the wilderness, you can fill up on what you need as the year goes on. It also makes sense to wait until you adjust to dorm life and can realistically determine what you will need.

Do bring: Several weeks’ worth of easy-to-prep food and basic toiletries.

We’re looking at you, ramen noodles. During those first few crazy weeks, you won’t want to bother with complicated food prep or shopping trips to town. Same goes with toiletries – bring enough to last a few weeks.

Do not bring: A mini-fridge.

Your dorm may have one in the common room.

 Do bring: Energy superheroes.

Think portable power banks, power bars and a nifty gadget called BedPower.

Dorm rooms, especially in older colleges, can be skimpy on outlets. Make sure your technology always has enough juice by outfitting an outlet with a power bar.

Similarly, you never know where you might be when your laptop is suddenly low on battery. A portable power bank can really come in handy.

For a power bar that also saves space the BedPower attaches right to your bed! This can be helpful for freeing up desk space and for providing you with that nighttime charge so your phone is powered up to wake you in time for class.

Do not bring: A lot of wall decorations and furniture.

Contrary to what college commercials will have you think, you cannot decorate your room to your heart’s desire. You’ve got your roommates to consider, as well as what are usually tight quarters. Your dorm room probably won’t be able to fit a futon, chair, end table, ottoman and bean bag. You also won’t have the wall space for 500 photos of your besties.

Do bring: A few photos and things from home, as well as space-saving furniture and necessities.

When homesickness strikes, it’s helpful to have something from home to help ease the ache. Photos are also great – as long as you don’t overdo it.

With regard to furniture, shop smart. An ottoman that doubles as a storage container will help you maximize the space you have. Bed risers that double the available under-bed storage are a smart choice. Huggable hangers will let you fit more clothing into your dorm closet.

Do not bring: Textbooks.

Before you buy any textbooks, find out about your library privileges. Chances are, you can borrow the books you need instead of purchasing them. Renting textbooks has also become a popular option.

Do bring: School supplies!

It may sound obvious, but it’s often overlooked with everything else you need to pack. Some super helpful supplies that you may forget to bring include: adhesive page markers, highlighters, citation style manuals and student planners.

Remember: If you have to ask yourself whether you really need to pack something, then you should probably leave it at home.

 

What do you think is the number one essential when packing for college? Share with us in the comments!

 

Helping Kids Succeed with Back to School Supplies

It may seem like school just ended, but the first day back will be here before you know it. We know school is probably the last thing on your mind, but we believe it’s never too early to start collecting supplies. Here at Insight Credit Union we want to get a head start on giving students the tools they need to succeed for the upcoming school year! Keep reading for more information.

Where can I donate?
Visit any of our branches to drop off supplies.

How long will you be taking donations?
We will be collecting supplies in Orange, Seminole, Volusia, Lake, Marion, Citrus and Sumter Counties until July 29, 2017.

What supplies are needed?

Pens and Pencils Staples
Binders and Dividers Backpacks
Crayons and Colored Pencils Calculators
Markers Paper Clips
Highlighters Index Cards
Glue Sticks Erasers
Scissors And more!


Who will benefit from the supply drive?

Proceeds will benefit Central Florida schools and charities, including United Way of Volusia-Flagler Counties, United Way of Citrus County, Lake County Schools through the Red for Ed initiative, the Marion County Education Foundation, Howard Middle School and A Gift for Teaching.

We enjoy giving back to the community and want you to join us in helping kids go back to school confident and ready to learn!

We’d love to see photos of you dropping off your contributions. Share with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

 

 

Preparing For Hurricane Season

If you’ve lived in Florida for any period of time, you know what comes with summer —hurricane season. Often times Florida residents become a little relaxed with regards to preparing for storm season.  At Insight, we have come up with a few easy tips that will help you get prepared and still leave time to soak in the sun!

  • If you own property, take a weekend or a week day evening to trim the trees and bushes, and clear clutter from the yard. When a hurricane comes, you don’t want to worry about an overgrown tree meeting you in your bedroom or your bicycle meeting your car windshield.
  • Consider investing in hurricane shutters or purchasing window-sized wood panels with all the necessary hardware to hang them so that you’re ahead of the game if a hurricane approaches.
  • Purchase water now! You know how it is when we hear that a hurricane is coming, don’t you? Everyone waits until the last minute and then boom! Chaos. Get your water now, and while you’re at it, pick up flashlights, batteries, non-perishable foods, candles, and matches. Do you have pets? Better get some extra food for them too.
  • Stock up on medications. The last thing you want to be worried about after a hurricane hits is when the pharmacy will be open again. It’s best to stock up on some of your must-have medicines so you have peace of mind!
  • Create your emergency plan now. Have one point of contact outside of the home that you can call and update. This person can then assure your family that everything is okay if phone lines are too busy to handle the load of incoming calls. Make sure this trusted friend or family member has the contact information for those you want informed of your situation. Additionally, plan an emergency route in case you need to evacuate on short notice. Make sure everyone in the family knows it. It also helps to have a rendezvous point in case you’re taking multiple cars.

We know that living in Florida has its perks. With all this sunshine there is the threat of hurricanes and we want you to be prepared.

Do you have any tips to add to this list? Share them with us in the comments below.

 

 

April is Financial Literacy Month!

iStock_000016288401_Large.jpgIn the United States, April has been deemed Financial Literacy Month.  The goal of FLM is to help Americans understand the importance of managing their money and credit.  During the month of April, you will notice articles, blog post, workshops and community challenges focused around how we can improve our own finances.  In a moment, close your eyes and think about all the things you require in life and consider which of these do not require money.  Then think about all the things you want in life and consider what you can get without money.  Money touches every aspect of our lives, yet we put little focus on it in one way or another.

This month, no matter how intimidating it may seem, be bold and make a decision to improve at least one area of your financial life.  Each person’s goal may be different.  Maybe you want to become debt free. Your goal is to build the budget that helps you get there – a road map to financial freedom.  Maybe you want to better understand how to manage your bank account. You can learn how to manage your money by signing up for a workshop, purchasing a book or doing research on the internet. Maybe your goal is to finally open an account for your child so you can start saving for his or her future. Whatever your goal, there are tons of resources out there to help you achieve all of your financial goals. Check out some of the resources below:

You can also stop by any of our branches if you need help or have questions.  The point is taking control of your finances begins and ends with you, but you have to start somewhere.  Just know, we are rooting for you and we are happy to help you in any way we can!

 

4 Ways to Reduce Your Vulnerability to Identity Theft

iStock_000012554417XSmallThe holiday season is upon us, and with the holidays comes a spike in identity theft. Are you taking the necessary precautions to minimize your risk? Here are some questions and tips to make sure you protect yourself.

Q1. Do you check your credit report every four months? If not, there could be fraudulent accounts on your report that you’re unaware of.

T1. Get your free credit report every four months and dispute any suspicious activity! Use the guideline below:

  • October – Equifax
  • February – TransUnion
  • June – Experian

Q2. Do you shred all incoming junk mail and outgoing garbage that includes your name, address and any other identifying information about you? If not, identity thieves could be collecting your mail and gathering information on you.

T2. Consider getting a Cross Cut shredder and a secured mailbox that only opens with a key. You can purchase one at your local home improvement store.

Q3. Do you reconcile your bank and credit accounts monthly? If not, you aren’t going to catch identity theft as quickly as you could!

T3. Reconcile your account statements every month. This will ensure you’re the only one spending your money. Catching fraud early can help you catch the perpetrator and stop the theft before you’re put in a really tight spot. Not sure how to do so? Click here to learn how to reconcile your bank statement.

Q4. Do you carry your Social Security card in your wallet? If so, you’re certainly at risk! Identity thieves only need three or four pieces of information to get going. A social security number with your name and date of birth or address can go a long way for a thief.

T4. Keep your Social Security card somewhere safe and locked rather than in your wallet. This way you’re not handing someone who steals your wallet everything he or she might need to steal your identity.

7 Ways a Credit Union Is Different from a Bank

credit-union-vs-bank1There are many differences between credit unions and banks, and sometimes it can be quite confusing. In fact, many people don’t realize the important differences between the two, which can directly impact their financial health. For instance, an individual who opens an account at a bank becomes a customer of that bank, while an individual who opens an account at a credit union becomes a member of that credit union. In general, credit unions promote the financial well-being of their members and are not-for-profit, while banks promote the organization’s bottom line and are for profit. Here are a few other differences you may not know about:

  1. Ownership
    • CU: Credit unions are not-for-profit organizations that are owned directly by the members of the credit union.
    • B: Banks are owned by investors/stockholders.
  1. Focus
    • CU: Credit unions are focused on helping their members.
    • B: Banks are focused on generating a profit.
  1. Profit
    • CU: At a credit union, members reap the profit in the form of higher dividends on deposits, lower interest rates on loans, and fewer fees.
    • B: At banks, any profit made by the bank goes to the owners or investors/stockholders.
  1. Decision Making
    • CU: Credit unions elect their board of directors who represent the members of the credit union. Credit union boards are volunteer boards.
    • B: Banks employ a board of trustees who is responsible for making decisions on behalf of the bank. The customers have no official say in decisions regarding the bank.
  1. Fees/Rates
    • CU: Credit unions charge lower fees and interest rates on loans than traditional financial institutions. Some credit unions even offer accounts with no fees. In addition, many credit unions offer low or no minimum balance requirements on checking and savings account with higher earnings on deposits
    • B: Banks charge multiple monthly fees that can add up to hundreds of dollars annually. These fees include ATM fees and monthly fees on interest bearing accounts.
  1. Insured Savings
    • CU: Credit unions are insured by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA).
    • B: Banks are insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).
  1. Taxes
    • CU: In 1937, Congress voted to make credit unions exempt from paying federal income tax because they are not-for-profit organizations. Credit unions pay payroll, property and sales taxes.
    • B: Banks pay federal income taxes.

We hope this helps everyone understand the important differences between credit unions and banks!

5 Tips to Prepare for Hurricane Season

If you’ve lived in Florida for any perhurricaneiod of time, you know what comes with summer: Hurricane Season. Often times, Florida residents become a little relaxed with regards to preparing for storm season. At Insight, we have come up with some easy tips that will help you get prepared and still leave you time to soak in the sun!

  • If you have property, take a weekend or week day evening to trim up the trees and bushes and clear out the clutter in the yard. When a hurricane comes, you don’t want to worry about an overgrown tree meeting you in your bedroom or your bicycle meeting your car windshield.
  • Consider investing in hurricane shutters or purchasing window-sized wood panels with all the necessary hardware to hang them so that you are ahead of the game if a hurricane is approaching.
  • Purchase water now! You know how it is when we hear that a hurricane is coming, don’t you? Everyone waits until the last minute and then boom! Chaos. Go get your water now, and while you’re at it, pick up some flashlights, batteries, candles and matches. Do you have pets? Better get some extra food for them too.
  • Stock up on medications. The last thing you want to be worried about after a hurricane hits is when the pharmacy will be open again. It’s best to stock up on some of your must-have medicines so you have peace of mind!
  • Create your emergency plan now. Have one point of contact outside of the home that you can call and update. This person can then assure your family that everything is okay if phone lines are too busy to handle the load of incoming calls. Make sure this trusted friend or family member has the contact information for those you want informed of your situation. Additionally, plan an emergency route in case you need to evacuate on short notice. Make sure everyone in the family knows it and you have a rendezvous point in case you’re taking multiple cars.

We know that living in Florida has its perks! However, these tips are not all-inclusive and we want to make sure you are safe this hurricane season. We also recommend you do some extra research online to get 100% prepared for storm season.

We wish you a safe and sound storm season!