In honor of Community Banking Month, the Independent Community Bankers of America and Heartland Bank are taking the opportunity to remind everyone that their choice of a financial institution matters and could impact their ability to secure a loan, obtain favorable fees or rates, or ensure the high-quality, personal service they desire from their bank.
“Community banks have earned the public’s trust because they have proven to be good stewards of their depositors’ money,” said ICBA Chairman Scott Heitkamp. “Because they live and work in their communities, they have a vested interest in pricing their products fairly and practicing prudent underwriting when extending loans. People like knowing that their money is being put to work in their community—making it a better place for all who call it home.”
With so many choices available, ICBA and Heartland Bank offer the following checklist to illustrate the community bank difference. Community banks offer:
- Local Focus: Community banks channel their loans to the neighborhoods where their depositors live and work, which helps local businesses and communities thrive.
- Relationship Banking: Community bank officers know their customers and consider family history and discretionary spending in making loans.
- Innovative Solutions: Community bankers work hand in hand with customers to ensure they have access to the best innovations possible to meet their needs—including the most secure, reliable and convenient payment options.
- Timely Decision-Making: Community banks offer nimble decision-making on business loans because decisions are made locally. They are also excellent business advisers because they too are a small business and know the market better than anyone.
- Community Engagement and Accessibility: Community bankers are deeply involved in their local communities, donating their time, talents and resources to local causes that make a difference in the lives of residents.
According to Heartland Bank CEO G. Scott McComb, "America's Community Banks are the backbone of small business, community funding, and philanthropy. Doing right by providing much-needed advice, and helping our clients plan for the future one generation after another, is our stated mission."
ICBA and Heartland Bank also offer these tips to remember before switching banks:
- Make sure all outstanding checks have cleared before closing your old checking account.
- Open an account at your new bank before you leave your old bank.
- Do not close the old bank account until you are sure any direct deposits or automatic bill payments have transferred to the new account.
If you haven’t made the switch to a community bank, we invite you to switch to Heartland Bank and see first-hand what makes a community strong and why our 15 Central Ohio locations are in the heart of it all!