MCALLEN, RGV – IBC Bank-McAllen teamed up with the American Bankers Association Foundation’s Get Smart About Credit programas part of an ongoing effort to teach McAllen-area residents how to effectively use credit.

This program, now in its 13th year, is a national campaign of volunteer bankers who help young people and adults develop responsible credit habits.

IBC Bank-McAllen used the months of October and November as an opportunity to visit with more than 800 adults and teens in the area. Presentations were conducted at the McAllen Housing Authority, Premier High School in Pharr, McAllen Memorial High School, Sharyland Pioneer High School, McAllen Careers Institute and the P.S.J.A College Career and Technology Academy. IBC Bank-McAllen presented lessons on important financial obstacles facing families, using credit wisely and the importance of protecting their identity.

“Access to financial education is critical for our communities,” said R. David Guerra, IBC Bank-McAllen president and CEO.  “Get Smart About Credit gives IBC Bank-McAllen an opportunity to equip local students and adults with the knowledge and skills they need for a financially fit future.”

IBC Bank-McAllen offers these seven tips to give students an edge on mastering personal finance:

  1. Take control.  Don’t let financial planning intimidate you. It isn’t just for the wealthy. Create a realistic budget and savings plan and stick to them.
  2. Hope for the best, plan for the worst. Surprises happen to everyone. Even the most well-maintained cars break down. Expect the unexpected. Living from paycheck to paycheck is a recipe for failure. Tailor your lifestyle to give yourself a cushion for life’s unplanned expenses.
  3. Use credit carefully. Credit is a tool. Use it like one. Shop for the plans that meet your needs. Keep your balance low. Paying the minimum amount due on a loan or credit card is an expensive mistake.
  4. Put your bank to work. Take advantage of everything your bank can do for you. Make the most of services like online banking, balance alerts, direct deposit, automatic payments, transfers and personal loans.
  5. Take advice with a grain of salt. The Internet is full of financial advice, much of it motivated by profit. Make sure the guidance you’re getting is in your best interest.
  6. Ask the experts. Bankers know financial services inside and out. Local experts, making local decisions are a valuable resource when researching and planning your family’s financial future.

IBC Bank–McAllen is a member of International Bancshares Corporation (NASDAQ: IBOC), a $12.1 billion multi-bank financial holding company headquartered in Laredo, Texas, with 208 facilities and more than 320 ATMs serving 88 communities in Texas and Oklahoma. IBC Bank-McAllen has been serving the Hidalgo County community since 1990 and has a retail branch network of 29 locations throughout the area. IBC Bank–McAllen was named “The Best Bank in the Valley” in 2014 and 2015 by McAllen Monitor readers. It also received their readers’ “Favorite Bank” recognition in 2004, 2005, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013. Visit us on our YouTube channel, IBCBankWeDoMore. MEMBER FDIC / INTERNATIONAL BANCSHARES CORPORATION. More information is available at