GET MORE BANK FOR YOUR BUCK
HOW TO TAKE FULL ADVANTAGE OF YOUR FINANCIAL INSTITUTION
1. GET CLICKING Even for someone with plenty of internet savvy, bank websites can be intimidating. Most are filled with tabs and portals that overwhelm customers, causing them to limit their interactions to plugging in a username and password to check their balance. Don’t fall into that trap! If you want to get a complete picture of what your bank has to offer, its website is the place to start. Next time you log in, set aside an hour or two to explore the site tab by tab. Take note of products and services you might not be using, like mobile banking apps, 24-hour hotlines, continuing education, and additional account options and their interest rates. Schwab, for example, offers a free online learning center complete with seminars, one-on-one financial advice, and more than 300 informative articles and videos. Not only is Michelle Christensen one of the most hardworking, dedicated insurance agents I know but she has also been a great client over the years. Michelle got her start in insurance working with her father, Chuck Christensen, at his State Farm agency in Kenosha. She eventually got her own State Farm agency in Racine. Michelle’s father was one of my first tax clients when I started my accounting and tax business in 2004. I started doing Michelle’s tax returns when she realized her accountant was missing things. For example, he neglected to talk to her about important considerations like retirement planning and money-saving strategies for people who are self-employed. In my time working with Michelle, I’ve saved her over $100,000 in taxes by taking those things into account. Taking away that stress has helped her focus on building her business, which regularly gets five-star reviews. One customer wrote on Google, “Her staff is so professional and friendly, and they take time to explain any questions you may have. Michelle covers most of our insurance needs, from
2. SCHEDULE A SIT-DOWN If your bank has a brick-and-mortar location near you, make a point to visit it. While there, take the time to learn about the latest updates from the reading materials on offer, make an appointment with a financial analyst, or speak with a bank teller. It’s in your bank’s interest to see your accounts grow, so representatives are happy to help. If you’ve already explored your bank’s website, this is the time to ask follow-up questions on what you found or make a financial move in a new direction. Whether you’ve decided on a 529 plan or a high-interest checking account, your banking representative can make it happen.
Whether you’re banking with a credit union or a national giant, your financial institution likely offers more resources, account options, and saving plans than you’re using — or even aware of. As one NerdWallet article puts it, “Banks and credit unions continue to find new ways to both delight and confound customers.” If you focus on the delights, you can get more bang for your buck out of the financial institution you’re already using. Plus, there’s a good chance you’ll pick up new ways to stretch your retirement fund, grow your investments, and pass nest eggs to your grandkids along the way. Take these two easy steps to get started.
CLIENT SPOTLIGHT: STATE FARM AGENT MICHELLE CHRISTENSEN
A Second-Generation Customer and Friend
auto to homeowners, and we are very satisfied with her team,” and another wrote, “Michelle is just the best agent I know.” Over the years I’ve known her, Michelle has become a friend as well as a client. I offer house calls to make the lives of my busy clients a bit easier, and I’ve often stopped by Michelle’s home to drop off tax returns. Her daughter, Kinsley, who’s a star in gymnastics, has treated me to a balance beam routine in their dining room converted into a gymnastics room! I always appreciate being welcomed into my clients’ homes and value building relationships with them that go beyond the numbers on the tax returns. While some tax accountants try to shuffle people in and out as fast as possible, I’ve found that when I know my clients well, I can better tailor my advice to their circumstances. To learn more about Michelle’s insurance agency, visit MyRacineAgent.com. If you’re self-employed and want to save money on your taxes, give me a call at 262-752-6992. I’d be happy to help you just like I’ve helped Michelle.
WWW.FRANCETICTAXRESOLUTION.COM | 262-752-6992
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