Pay Your Bills Online and Enter for a Chance to Win $1,000

eNews-BillPay

During February and March, make three online bill payments and be entered to win $1,000. To get started, sign up or login to your Online Banking account to pay your bills today. Through Merchants Online Banking Bill Pay you can:

  • Set up individual and business payees easily and quickly.
  • Simply and securely track and manage your finances all in one place through your Online Banking account.
  • View and schedule your online bill payments in advance or on a recurring schedule for added convenience.
  • Set up payment reminders to help keep track of when your payments are due.

Make three bill payments to enter to win. Then, every bill payment after three qualifies as an entry to win. The more bills you pay online, the more chances you have to win.

Get started:

No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited. Click here for complete rules and additional important information.

Which Rewards Card is Right for You?

eNews-CreditCard

Rewards credit cards offer so many features and benefits that it may be difficult to determine which one – if any – is best for you. If you’re looking to maximize the rewards offered by your credit card(s), here’s a primer to help you choose the best card for your lifestyle.

How do rewards work?

It’s simple: the more money you spend, the more rewards you earn. The catch is choosing a card that offers the type of rewards that will benefit you the most.

What types of rewards are offered?

Determining whether you prefer to have cash back or points to redeem for merchandise or travel will help you choose the right card for you.

  • Cash back – Earn cash back for every dollar you spend. For example, with the Merchants Bank Visa Platinum Cash Back Card, you would earn a certain percentage, up to 1%, based on the cumulative purchases made that calendar year (click here to see specific percentages – link). The cash you earn is credited to your credit card balance each year on November 15.
  • Rewards points – Earn points for every* net dollar you spend. For example, with the Merchants Bank Visa ScoreCard Credit Card, you earn one point for every* dollar you spend. Spend $1,000 and earn 1,000 points**. Points can be redeemed for airline flights, car rentals, merchandise and much more.

What else should I know?

Before you apply for a rewards credit card, ask these questions:

  • Do my points expire?
    Rewards points may expire if they are not used. Make sure to shop around to find a points expiration timeframe that makes sense for your spending habits. Points for the Merchants Bank Visa ScoreCard Credit Card don’t expire for five years.
  • How do I redeem my points or receive my cash back?
    Make sure that it’s easy to check your points or cash back balance. For points rewards cards, you also want to review the process for redeeming your points. On Merchants Bank Credit Cards, your current points and cash back balance are available on mycardstatement.com. Points can be redeemed through scorecardrewards.com, both available through the Merchants Bank website.
  • Is there an annual fee?
    Some rewards cards charge an annual fee. Research if the charge can be offset by the value of your rewards benefits or waived completely by spending a certain amount in a month or year. Merchants Bank only charges an annual fee for the Visa Platinum Cash Back Card ($30/year).

Searching for the right card? One of our credit card options may be right for you. Click here to learn more or apply online.

Credit cards are subject to credit approval
*Every net retail dollar spent earns rewards points. Cash advances, finance charges and fees do not qualify for points.
** Points are rounded up or down based on the transaction amount. For example, a transaction of $150.52 would equal 151 points.

Important Changes to Your Online Banking Account

eNews-OnlineBanking

Merchants will be upgrading our Online Banking service on March 1, 2015 and we want you to be aware of a few key of changes and enhancements:

  • Your Online Banking home page will have increased functionality, such as making transfers between accounts or viewing recent transaction history.
  • You will have the ability for more customization through alerts and preference settings.
  • The location of the Logout button will move from the green menu to a smaller menu on the right side of the page. Please take note of this to ensure you securely sign out of your Online Banking account in the future.

More specifics regarding the Online Banking upgrade can be found on our website.

If you have questions regarding Online Banking, please contact our Electronic Banking department at 800-944-6285. Click here to enroll in Online Banking now.

 

Get Ideas for Sprucing Up Your Home this Spring

eNews-Calendar

Our staff invites you to join them at these great events throughout February. Be sure to follow us on our Facebook page for information on these events or pictures from other events you may have missed.

Date: Event:
2/20-2/21 St. Charles Area Home and Business Expo: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
At the St. Charles Elementary School
Stop by and see us at the Merchants Bank booth for your chance to win a patio warmer.*
2/20-2/22 Chippewa Valley Home and Garden Show
At the Eau Claire Indoor Sports Center
Stop by and see us at the Merchants Bank booth (#76) for your chance to win a tree and planting (installation).*

Show Hours
Friday, February 20: 1:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 21: 9:00 a.m. – 5: 00 p.m.
Sunday, February 22: 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

2/25-3/1 Minneapolis Home and Garden Show
At the Minneapolis Convention Center
Stop by and see us at the Merchants Bank booth (#3120).

Show Hours
Wednesday, February 25: 12:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Thursday, February 26: 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Friday, February 27: 10:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Saturday, February 28: 9:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m.
Sunday, March 1: 9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

 

*No purchase or customer relationship necessary to enter to win. On person per entry. Drawings will be held the first business day after each Home Show. Winner will be notified by telephone. Employees or Merchants are not eligible to win.

Meet Deb Kemp, Credit Card Manager at Merchants

Deb and her husband, Sam

Deb and her husband, Sam

How long have you been with Merchants?

Deb: I’ve been here 23 years. Originally, I was hired to help with customer data clean up and sat next to the person in charge of Premier Club (now Events and Adventures). I’ve worked in a lot of different areas of the bank including Premier Club, Loan Servicing and as a Lending Assistant. In 2001, I started working in Credit Cards. I’ve worked in banking all my life. It’s all I know how to do! It all started when I was in high school and worked as a part-time Proof Operator.

What is your top banking tip?

Deb: Paying your bills on time helps keep your credit score up. You don’t want to wreck your credit score…it takes longer to fix a bad score than establish a good credit score. If you don’t have a credit score, a credit card is a good way to establish credit.

What’s one thing your mom or dad taught you about money?

Deb: My mom was very frugal and she didn’t waste money. I remember when graham crackers were kept in our oven because they were a treat. She was really budget conscious and taught me to think about my purchases. When I’m in a store, I ask myself if I really need something. Sometimes I even leave the store, walk around and come back to the store to give myself enough time to decide if I really wanted something.

If you won the Powerball (currently estimated at $194 million) what’s the first thing you would buy?

Deb: I would buy a new boat. Our boat broke this year and we go fishing as much as possible…so we really need a new boat. I would also take flying lessons and travel a lot.

Besides money, what’s your favorite green thing?

Deb: Plants. I have probably about 50 house plants – really! I also like spinach.

Click here to learn more about Credit Cards at Merchants Bank. Credit cards are subject to credit approval.

Sweetheart Pie

BlogRecipe-SweetheartPie

Ingredients:

  • 3 oz. package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup whipped topping
  • 21 oz. can strawberry pie filling
  • 1 graham cracker crust pie shell

 

Directions:

In a medium bowl, mix cream cheese and powdered sugar until smooth and creamy. Stir in whipped topping and pie filling. Mix well. Pour into pie shell. Refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.

Merchants Family Cookbooks are available at all Merchants Bank locations for $15. Proceeds benefit local food shelf programs.

Manage Your Business’s Money with These Helpful Tools

ModernFinancesWould you like to better manage your businesses money and make it work harder. With three areas of focus – Tools for Collection, Tools for Disbursement and Tools for Management – Merchants Bank’s Cash Management area – what some banks call Treasury Management – is worth exploring.

Learn more about Tools for Management:

Online Banking – Conveniently view account balances, check images and transactions, transfer funds between your Merchants Bank accounts, create Bill Payments and ACH transactions (subject to Agreements), submit requests for Stop Payments and more.

Positive Pay – Give yourself peace of mind. Positive Pay can help detect fraudulent checks that are being issued on your account.

ACH Blocks and Filters – Control your accounts by ensuring your business checking account isn’t used for unauthorized ACH transactions.

Financial Electronic Data Interchange (FEDI) Reporting – The computerized exchange of payments between your business, your customers and vendors ensures

For more information on Cash Management services, visit our website.