We would like to thank you for joining us Tuesday evening for our 2022 Annual Meeting! We hope you enjoyed hearing directly from Chairman Donald Pinson and President/CEO Nathanael Tarwasokono about your credit union’s progress in 2021, as well as our continued efforts in 2022.
As always, we remain committed to serving you and your family. We appreciate your membership!
We appreciate the opportunity to address the following member questions received in response to our 2022 Annual Meeting.
Q. It was mentioned that Firstmark is working on a ZERO down payment home loan for teachers. Is that only for teachers, or can it be used for other professionals early in their careers that may not have down payment money: Such as young nurses, doctors, police, firemen, military, etc.?
A. The approval of the zero-down home loan from the Credit Union Department of Texas includes a lending limit tied to our asset size. As a credit union established by teachers, the On Your Mark™ Mortgage was originally built with teachers in mind; however, as the credit union grows, the lending limit could also increase, allowing us to expand the program to help more members in the future.
Q. Why did Firstmark stop its relationship with Allpoint® ATM?
A. Firstmark moved from Allpoint® for the following reasons:
- A low percentage of our members were using the Allpoint® network.
- There was a significant cost to maintain the relationship with Allpoint®.
- Most members want to have access to any ATM without incurring a fee.
- Within the newly-launched Power of the Dollar™ checking, members can access any ATM and receive fee refunds (up to 10 times per year with the Power of the Dollar™ or up to 15 times per year with the Power of the Dollar™ Plus).
Q. As a member for 40+ years, I have moved one of my business accounts to Firstmark. My question is why are the limits for ACH transfers for business accounts and personal accounts so low?
A. We increased our external ACH transfer limits in November 2021; however, for fraud prevention purposes, it is best not to publicize these limits. Future enhancements may include automating limits based on a member’s deposit account activity. Until then, you may request a review of your account, and should your account meet certain criteria, your limits may be set beyond current thresholds. For more information about external ACH transfer limits or to request a review of your account, please send a secure message though online banking, contact our call center at 210.442.0100, or send an email to [email protected].
Q. Could Firstmark include the HELOC in the list of services for business owners with years of relationship? (Less paperwork for the line-of-credit and loans.)
A. A home equity line-of-credit (HELOC) provides members access to the equity in their homestead property; as a result, business members are not able to access their home’s equity for business purposes.
Additionally, the HELOC program is currently inactive; however, as we continue to grow our mortgage program, we hope to offer the HELOC in the future.
Q. Will you be closing any more branches? The Bandera Rd and IH-10/Dezavala were 2 branches I was surprised were closed.
A. Between 2016 and 2021, Firstmark closed or consolidated locations within a five-mile proximity of one another. We continually analyze our locations based on several factors, including visibility and accessibility; and although there are a few branches in less-than-ideal locations, we have no immediate plans to close any of our 11 financial centers. If you would like to discuss this further, please email us your contact information, including the best time to reach you, at [email protected] and our CEO would be happy to contact you.
Thank you again for attending the 2022 Annual Meeting! If you have any additional questions, please email us your contact information, including the best time to reach you, at [email protected] Someone will reach out to you within 48 hours. This email address will remain active through the end of April; after this date, please reach out to our call center at 210.442.0100 for additional support.