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November e-News


Support Local RI businesses this holiday season

As you begin your holiday shopping, don't forget about the local small businesses that make the Ocean State such a great place to live and work. During the months of November and December, www.iluvri.com will be featuring money saving coupons from local businesses in RI.

Click here for a full list of holiday coupons.

 

 

 

 

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Eight Steps to Simplify Your Finances

If time is a precious commodity for you, here are eight ideas to save time and reduce the stress and anxiety of managing your financial affairs. Washington Trust offers you many ways to easily manage your money, anytime, anywhere. Here are just a few tips for simplifying your finances.

1. Enroll for direct deposit. It eliminates trips to the bank and keeps your money working longer. On March 1, 2013, the U.S. Department of the Treasury will require all federal benefit payments to be made electronically Electronic payments eliminate the risk of a paper check being lost or stolen so people who rely on that money for essentials, such as medicine, rent or groceries, can be assured the money will be there when they need it.

2. Sign up for overdraft protection. By linking your checking account to a line of credit you avoid the cost, hassle and embarrassment of a bounced check.

3. Establish an automatic savings plan. Regular, automatic transfers to a savings account will add up.

4. Use electronic bill paying. Eliminate the dreaded task of writing checks.

5. Consolidate your financial relationships. Dealing with one institution makes everything easier.

6. Consider personal finance software. Through online banking, you have free access to FinanceWorks money management tool – an online service that helps you see where you are spending your money, and how you can save. Save Time Tracking Your Finances. Keep track of your spending this holiday season with the free money management tool in Online Banking. See your complete financial picture, all in one place. Washington Trust is proud to offer you FinanceWorks. It's a free online service that simplifies the way you manage your finances from within your online banking account. FinanceWorks provides you with the tools to see all of your accounts from multiple institutions in one place, see where you are spending your money, and identify ways to save. No more multiple URLs or passwords to remember. You can easily track all your accounts—checking, savings, credit cards, loans and investments—from within your online banking account.

7. Build a safety cushion. Be ready for unexpected expenses or use some extra for a special vacation.

8. Review your investments. Make sure your asset allocation matches your time horizon and risk tolerance.

For more information about any of these products, please contact our Customer Service Center at 800-475-2265.

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Holiday Budgeting

As the shortest days of the year approach, we have the inevitable diversion of the holiday season to distract us until the days begin to gradually lengthen. Whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza or the general holiday season chances are you'll be spending money on things that are outside your regular budget. Here are some tips for spending smart.

Remember the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future in Charles Dickens’ classic story, A Christmas Carol? Well, those three ghosts have inspired a timeless strategy for holiday spending.

CHRISTMAS PAST

Look back. Review how much you spent last year and how you spent it. Analyze what you spent money on, over what period of time, and how you paid for it. If you used credit cards, be sure to look at how long it took you to pay them off. If you were still carrying Christmas debt on your credit card while on summer vacation, you may want to rethink how you handle the holidays.

Also consider how the gifts you gave last year were appreciated. Did you spend a lot of money on token gifts that were forgotten before the holiday was over? Reconsider certain gift-giving--agree to not exchange gifts with some people or make a donation in their name to a favorite charity (of theirs, if possible).

CHRISTMAS PRESENT

Make a list. Include not only gifts, but decorations, cards & postage, food & drink, travel and any special stuff you'll need to buy.

Decide how much you have to spend. Set a budget and stick to it. Period.

Comparison shop—use online resources. If you've taken time to make a list of who you'll be buying for, it will be easy to think about what to buy for them. Start shopping at home—or at least start looking at home. Go online for gift ideas and start comparing prices. And don't forget to take advantage of our money saving coupons on I Luv RI

Use cash if possible. Since you've established a budget, done your homework to find the best price and have committed to staying within your budget, shopping with cash will be a cinch. You'll be forced to think about an impulse purchase, perhaps thinking it through to the point of realizing it really isn't worth it. If you do choose to use credit cards, be sure to exercise discipline to stay within your budget.

Track Expenses. Track every dollar you spend--cash, checks and credit cards. It doesn't matter if you use money management software, a spreadsheet or the back of an old Christmas card, but be sure to record how you spend. Not only will this keep you on track, but it will also help with returns and with planning for next year.

Beware of the spirit of Christmas Present(s). Retailers spend a lot of time and even more money to help you "get in the spirit". Their hope is that the more spirit you have the more money you will spend. Hold strong against developing an overly generous heart for the wrong reasons. That happy high in your gut at the register will likely be replaced with a spending hangover when the credit card bill arrives.

Tradition & Creativity. Put more emphasis on family tradition than stuff. Most people remember people and events from years past, not the specific gift they got when they were 10. Consider making gifts like baked goods, a personal scrapbook or even a thoughtfully written card.

Start a new tradition. As family members get older and harder to buy for, encourage traditions that move away from gift giving. "Adopt" a local family in need to provide presents for. Volunteer at a soup kitchen or visit a nursing home as a family event. Or start a tradition of drawing names from a hat or engaging in a swap of some kind. This way everyone buys just one gift that is meaningful or fun, and it is the event that becomes memorable.

CHRISTMAS FUTURE

Shop early. Buy next year's holiday decorations on clearance as soon as the holidays are over. Keep your eyes open for bargains throughout the year and stash them away. Beware though: track that spending and don't lose track of what you've bought.

Save all year. Make holiday saving a year round commitment. Set up an account just for holiday savings. Have a set amount of money direct deposited into this account from every pay check. Or when you pay bills every month, send a check to this account as if you were paying another bill.

With a little planning and some discipline, the holidays can truly be a relaxing time to enjoy family, friends and responsible gift-giving.

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Download Your FREE App Today! Mobile Banking from Washington Trust

Monitor your finances anytime, anywhere.

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I Luv RI Business Spotlight

Learn more about ouR Island Apparel
Click here for our latest segment on the Rhode Show.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Looking for a mortgage?

 

Find out why New Englanders have turned to Washington Trust for 212 years for their home financing needs.

 

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Important Information about FDIC Insurance Coverage
Maintenance

System Maintenance

April 20, 2014
12:30 a.m. until 4:30 a.m.

Due to system maintenance, Online Banking and Mobile Banking will be unavailable on Sunday, April 20 from 12:30 a.m. until 4:30 a.m.