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To combine finances or not to combine finances? It’s a question most couples consider as their relationships get more serious. The answer; however, is not so simple.

“In the not-too-distant past, couples didn’t think much about combining their finances. After marriage, they would open joint bank accounts, take out a mortgage and share all the income and expenses,” said Mike Sullivan, director of education for Take Charge America, a national nonprofit credit counseling and debt management agency. “Yet things have changed. Today, it’s more common for both partners to earn incomes and to bring debts and assets to a relationship, making the process much more complicated.”


Overlooked deductions may cost you thousands

Millions of Americans face a challenge in meeting their budgets every month – not just financially, but also in their time budgets, says investment advisor Reid Abedeen.

“Knowledge is power and time is often money, but what if you don’t have the time to empower yourself with knowledge? For many households, that often means losing out on thousands of dollars through tax deductions,” says Abedeen, a partner at Safeguard Investment Advisory Group, LLC (


U.S. Cellular continued to invest in the wireless experience for its customers in 2014 with upgrades to its network and store environment throughout North Carolina.

In an effort to provide a high-quality network that works where North Carolina residents live, work and play, U.S. Cellular invested $4.4 million in network enhancements across the state. This was a combination of 4G LTE enhancements and upgrades to the company’s existing highspeed network.

Shopping for a wireless device should be a positive experience, so U.S. Cellular also invested $3.4 million in its stores across North Carolina to be welcoming places that show off the latest devices, accessories and technology. These newly-designed stores make shopping for wireless easier, and in 2014 the company built or renovated 21 of these hands-on, experiential store locations in North Carolina, including those in Asheville, Hendersonville and Weaverville.


Entegra Financial Corp. has announced that its banking subsidiary, Macon Bank (the “Bank”), plans to rebrand itself as Entegra Bank. The rebranding is expected to occur on or about Sept. 30, 2015, at which time all locations will begin to operate using the Entegra Bank name.

Roger D. Plemens, president and CEO, commented on the rebranding.

“We are pleased to announce the rebranding of Macon Bank to the new Entegra Bank name. The Bank’s roots date back almost a century to 1922 when it began as one location serving customers in Macon County, North Carolina. Today, we operate 11 branches and a loan production office across seven North and South Carolina counties. We concluded that, as we continue to grow, the Entegra Bank name would best allow us to serve new markets, in addition to promoting the values of integrity and trust that the Bank was built upon. The Entegra Bank name will also better align the Bank with our holding company name of Entegra Financial Corp,” said Plemens.


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