Westmark Credit Union
We are a full-service financial institution, owned by our members & committed to the development of their financial future. We have 12 convenient locations.

Exploring the Different Types of Mortgages to Finance Your Home Purchase

When you’re ready to purchase a home, it’s important to review all of your options carefully.  Discuss the terms of each mortgage option with your lender and consider whether your finances are likely to change in the future.  Here are three of the different types of mortgages to consider:

Mortgage Loan Application

Fixed-Rate Mortgage

A fixed-rate mortgage means that the interest rate will never change, regardless of future inflation.  Your monthly payments will also hold steady until the loan is repaid.  This provides stability; you’ll know exactly what to expect, and there will be no surprises.  However, it also means that when interest rates fall, you’ll need to refinance to take advantage of lower rates.  A traditional fixed-rate mortgage has a term of 15, 20, or 30 years.

Adjustable-Rate Mortgage

An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) features fluctuating interest rates.  The borrower may enjoy lower payments at first; however, those payments will later increase or decrease with every adjustment period.  An adjustment period can occur every month, year, or other time period, depending on the loan.  If you’re considering this type of loan, think about whether your finances will allow for larger payments in the future.

Interest-Only Mortgage

With this type of loan, you’ll only be required to pay toward the interest at first, not the principal.  These payments will be quite low and will last for the first few years of the loan.  After that, the payments will increase significantly when you begin to pay toward the principal.  An interest-only mortgage might suit you if you’re starting out in a profession in which your income is expected to rise substantially in the next few years.

Are you thinking of buying a home? The knowledgeable representatives at Westmark Credit Union located in Idaho Falls, Blackfoot, Pocatello, Rigby, Rexburg, Meridian, Nampa and Eagle can help you explore your options.  Visit our website to learn more or call us at (208) 552-1035.

Get to Know Your Mortgage Options

When you’re shopping for a mortgage, you’ll read through plenty of different options to finance your home.  It’s important to work closely with a lender who can explain exactly what your options are.  Many borrowers choose a fixed-rate mortgage because the payments will never increase. The term of a fixed-rate mortgage may be 10, 15, 20, or 30 years.

Watch this video to learn more about your mortgage options.  The expert in this video explains the benefits of a fixed-rate mortgage and discusses the definition of a balloon payment.

At Westmark Credit Union located in Idaho Falls, Blackfoot, Pocatello, Rigby, Rexburg, Meridian, Nampa and Eagle, we work closely with every borrower to help them realize their dream of home ownership.  Give us a call at (208) 552-1035) to discuss your mortgage options.

Click Through These Links For Tips On Making The Most Of Your Money

Retirement Fund

While financial planning may often be overlooked in the bustle of daily family life, it is one of the most important parts of family security. Learn more about budgeting and saving with these financial resources.

Making a budget can get your family moving in a positive financial direction. Learn more with this article from CNN.

Use this guide from Kaboose.com to create a household budget that keeps your family finances in check.

A Roth IRA may be a great way for you to save. Learn more about this type of IRA here.

Find out more about IRAs with this article from Investopedia.com.

A Coverdell Education Savings Account is something every parent should be aware of. Find out more on this page from IRS.gov.

Get your savings and finances on track with help from Westmark Credit Union. We help Idaho residents save and plan for the future. Call us today at (208) 523-1071 to learn more about our credit, loan, and savings services.

Retirement Planning: All about IRAs

Did you know that the majority of Americans near retirement age have less than $60,000 saved for retirement? If you want to avoid being unprepared for retirement, you could start stuffing money in a shoebox under the bed, but taking advantage of a retirement savings account will let you actually increase your savings over time. These three types of retirement and savings accounts will help you get your financial planning moving forward:

golden autumn

Traditional IRAs

Traditional IRAs are a common option for saving for retirement. They offer tax advantages over non-IRA savings plans. Once you reach 59 ½ years old, you can withdraw your money without tax penalties and create a disbursement system that helps fund your retirement. You can even take out money at a younger age, though you will likely incur tax penalties. An IRA is a great savings option, and a financial advisor can help you maximize your tax advantages and contributions.

Roth IRAs

If you don’t already have a Roth IRA, you should consider starting one now. A Roth IRA offers the opportunity for tax-free retirement income. While contributions are strictly limited each year and eligibility is based on total earnings—high earners are not able to open Roth IRAs—a Roth IRA is one of the most advantageous ways to save. Roth IRAs also offer more flexibility about when you can withdraw money and how long you are able to contribute.


Coverdell Education Savings Accounts go towards your children’s education, rather than your retirement, but using this method of saving can help you fund a large expense that may otherwise require some of your retirement savings. CESAs limit contributions to $2,000 per year, but both you and your child can contribute, and the money grows and is distributed tax-free as long as the savings are less than the cost of schooling.

Do you want to start investing for retirement now? Westmark Credit Union can help you start one of these three accounts today, or help you with credit, mortgages, and loans. We offer Idaho residents paths to sound financial planning. To find out more, visit our website, visit one of our 10 conveniently located branches (Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Blackfoot, Rigby, Rexburg, Meridian, Nampa or Eagle), or call us today at (208) 523-1071.

Tips for Creating a Manageable Budget for Your Household

If you aren’t keeping track of household spending, little purchases and indulgences can quickly add up and spiral out of control. A budget is the most reliable way to keep these expenses in check. Use these tips to make and maintain a budget for your household:

Budgeting your Money

Do a Budget Assessment

Before you can make a budget, you need to consider your goals, needs, and current spending habits. Determine which items are necessities; generally, this includes food, transportation, clothing, insurance, and housing expenses. You may have other expenses, like medications, that are necessities specific to you. Do you have financial goals to consider, like setting up a savings plan for retirement or paying off a credit card? If so, factor those goals into your budget. You should also assess how you spend money now. You may want to keep a spending diary for a week or two to get a good idea of where your money goes.

Create Your Budget Outlines

Taking what you now know about your needs and goals, create a draft of your household budget. If you are spending more than you bring in or want to set aside more for savings, look for unnecessary purchases in your spending diary and cut them out. For example, are you eating out frequently? If so, making food at home may help you save.

Track Your Spending to Keep your Budget Manageable

Now that you have created your household budget, use it! Keep track of how much money you have allotted for categories like food, transportation, and indulgences, and compare that to how much you are spending on those items. You may find that you need to adjust your original estimates slightly, but keep in mind that where one category expands, another must shrink to keep your budget balanced.

For all your financial needs, Westmark Credit Union is here to help. We offer credit cards, mortgage loans, and car loans to Idaho Falls residents who are working to manage their money intelligently. To find out more, visit our website,  visit one of our 10 conveniently located branches (Idaho Falls, Pocatello, Blackfoot, Rigby, Rexburg, Meridian, Nampa or Eagle), or call us today at (208) 523-1071.

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2520 Channing Way
Idaho Falls, ID 83404

Hours of Operation:

  • Closed Sunday
  • 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM Monday
  • 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM Tuesday
  • 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM Wednesday
  • 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM Thursday
  • 9:30 AM to 6:00 PM Friday
  • 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM Saturday