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FAQ Details

Are there any fees to send money using Zelle®?
  • No, First Merchants Bank does not charge any fees to use Zelle® in our mobile app.

    Your mobile carrier's messaging and data rates may apply.

How can a savings account help me be prepared for the future?
How do I set a savings goal?
How do I create a budget?
I still need help getting started – what steps can I take?
Step 8: What’s Next?
  • Once you’ve reached your goal and have enough to cover the unexpected, it’s time to think about the future. Financial experts recommend having enough cash to cover three- to six months of living expenses. If you’ve managed to save that – and a little extra – in your emergency savings account, you may want to think about further maximizing those funds – because in a year, the amount needed to cover six months of living expenses could change drastically. Your cost of living could increase, a family member could become disabled, you could change careers, or your property taxes could increase. All of these are good reasons to consider a strategy that stretches beyond your initial savings goal.

    For example, you can begin a new emergency savings goal and put the money already accrued into a CD – or choose to invest it. Most CDs require a minimum deposit amount and may offer rates contingent on the size of the deposit. The interest you earn on your deposit depends on the interest rate, the term of the deposit, and the compounding method.

    The higher interest rate of a CD means that you can see a significant boost to your emergency fund, which can help you further down the road. Just make sure you have some funds set aside that you can access quickly in an emergency, as you will not be able to access your CD balance until the term has expired.

    However, don’t be afraid to use the money if you need it. If you spend what’s in your emergency savings, just work to build it up again. Practicing your savings skills over time will make the process easier!

    If you need help building a savings strategy, visit your local, welcoming banking center, or meet with one of our attentive bankers!

    You can use our CD Interest Calculator to calculate your savings at maturity. Having trouble determining which CD is best for you? Compare two CDs.

Step 7: Monitor and Adjust
  • As with any plan, goal, or strategy, it’s important to consistently check your progress. This will allow you to watch your savings grow and correct the course as needed.

    An easy way to keep track of your savings is to set up an automatic account notification, check-in via online banking or mobile banking, or write down a running total of all your contributions.

    Once you start saving, review your progress every few months and check your progress against your goal. If you’re able, gradually increase the amount you’re saving each month – even increasing your savings by 1% can provide significant returns.

    However, don’t be afraid to decrease your savings rate, either, if your check-in shows that you’re having difficulty making ends meet. The important thing is to figure out what works for you and to not be afraid to adjust as you go along – with a little bit of time and effort, you’ll find a savings strategy that suits your lifestyle!

    Want to know more about managing your finances? Check out our Personal Finance blog!

Step 6: Save Gifts, Spare Change
  • Do you always look forward to your tax return? Do you frequently get monetary gifts during holidays and birthdays? While it can be tempting to spend that extra dough, putting at least a portion towards your savings can save you a lot of heartache in the future.

    For many Americans, a tax refund is the largest lump sum they receive all year – and adding all or part of that refund to a savings account is an easy way to boost your emergency fund. When you file your taxes, consider having your refund deposited directly into your designated savings account. You can also adjust your W-4 tax form so you have less money withheld and direct the extra cash into your emergency fund.

    If you usually carry cash, all your spare change can add up faster than you think. So, if you often find your coin purse full, consider designating a special cup, jar, or piggy bank to deposit that extra change. Having a physical storage container can also help you easily set up a routine and build a savings habit – just empty your pockets each day, clean out your purse regularly, or hunt through your wallet. When the jar fills up, take it to the bank and deposit the cash.

    Want to know how much you have? Our Spare Change Coin Counter can help you count your coins.

Step 5: Save Automatically
  • Once you have your goal and budget hammered out, you’re ready to begin! One of the easiest ways to save money is to set up a regular, recurring direct deposit. This means the funds will automatically be deducted from your paycheck and placed in a separate savings account of your choosing.

    Regardless of how much money you can sock away each paycheck, consider placing it in a savings account with a high-interest rate. The higher the Annual Percentage Yield – or APY – the more your savings account will earn. However, not all high-interest savings accounts may be right for you.

    For example, consider how quickly you’ll need to access those funds in an emergency. If it seems likely that your unexpected emergencies may require upfront payments, you probably don’t want to put all of your money into a high-interest savings account that has withdrawal limits and penalties, doesn’t allow check writing, or bars access to funds for certain periods of time.

    While those accounts can be a fantastic savings tool and really boost your balance, when it comes to emergency savings you will want to maintain access to at least part of your fund so that, when the worst happens, you’ll have the freedom to get the cash you need quickly.

    The important thing is to explore your options and figure out what will work best for your situation – and for the “unexpected” scenarios you’re likely to encounter. For example, if you feel unexpected home repairs are a distinct possibility, you can probably rest easy with a Certificate of Deposit (CD) and its withdrawal hold. But if you have family in another state – a child in college or an aging parent – that could require you to purchase a last-minute plane ticket in an emergency, a Money Market account or plain old savings account may be the better option.

    Set up Direct Deposit with Your First Merchants Account.

Step 4: Don’t Over Save
  • How much emergency fund is too much? It’s often best to not be too ambitious. A savings goal should be realistic, achievable, and have a time limit. For example, let’s say you want to save $5,000 within six months – do you make enough to put that amount in savings without compromising your ability to pay for necessities? If not, you may want to extend your timeline or reduce your goal amount.

    If your goal is too high, or your timeline too short, you may not achieve it, which can be discouraging and make future saving difficult. Set a goal you are certain you can reach so that you are able to build your confidence along with your savings.

Step 3: Start Small
  • Remember that an emergency savings account should ideally contain enough money to cover three-to-six months of living expenses, or enough to cover your most common “unexpected” emergency; so if you start by saving a small amount of money each month, you may want to gradually increase that amount as time goes on and you gain confidence in saving.

    To help determine how much to have in your emergency fund, use our emergency fund calculator.

Step 2: Create a Savings Habit
Step 1: Set a Savings Goal
  • Saving money can be hard, especially if finances are already tight. But, like any journey, saving money is easier if you have a goal in mind.

    Before you chart your course, you’ll need to know what resources you have at your disposal. To start your savings journey, begin by tracking your income and expenditures – in other words, how much money you make, versus how much money you’re spending. Pay particular attention to how much money you need for necessities: groceries, rent, utilities, medication, etc.

    Then, set limits on how much you’ll spend on non-necessities: eating out, movies, non-necessary clothing, or toiletries, and other “wants.” By setting limits, you can not only wrestle your spending back under control, but you can free up extra money to divert to your emergency savings.

Important Dates For July Transfers
  • When a loan transfers to a new servicer there is a brief window of time that is needed to set up and audit all the information that is transferring to the new servicer.

    • July 1: Your loan transfers to DMI
    • July 3rd to July 7th: The DMI team uses this week to review all the details of your loan and load the data into their system (This is called the “blackout period”.)

    a. *The blackout period is a window of time when your loan data is not visible to customer service agents.  Once this period of time is over, the DMI team can assist you with any questions you may have.  Thank you for being patient during this window of time.  

    • July 11th:  Your loan is now visible online and to all customer service agents at DMI, this is also the date you can register your loan online.
    • July 11th, all payments that were sent to FMB, dropped off at the branch or mailed, and mailed to DMI will be posted to your account as of the date received.


What about partial payments and short payments?
  • If a payment is received that is less than the total amount due DMI will apply your payment as described below.

    • If your mortgage payments are current or paid ahead and a payment less than the scheduled mortgage payment is received:
      • If the payment amount received is within $25 of the total amount due, the escrow on the loan can be shorted in order to make the full payment. Please note that escrow shortages may impact the amount of required escrow payments in the future. 
      • If the payment amount received is not within $25 of the total amount due and there is no indication as to how the payment is to be applied, the payment will be applied first to any outstanding fees or escrow advances, and then to principal. 


Are U.S. Treasury Checks accepted via mobile deposit?
  • No. Checks or items that are drawn or otherwise issued by the U.S Treasury Department are not accepted through mobile deposit. You will need to go to one of our nearest banking center locations to deposit a U.S. Treasury Check.

How can I contact DMI?
  • Beginning July 8th for July 1st transfers, if you have questions or need assistance with your loan, please call DMI I at 855-745-4338, Monday-Friday, 8:00 AM – 7:00 PM, or email

Does DMI have a website?
What if my payment is late as a result of this change?
  • Payments received within 60 days after the loan servicing transfer will not be treated as late; no late fees or negative impact on credit if payment is received by your prior servicer (First Merchants Bank) or your new servicer (DMI) within 60 days following the effective date of your loan servicing transfer.

How do I set up my account with DMI?
  • For loans transferring to DMI on July 1, 2023, your welcome packet from DMI will provide instructions for setting up your account. Online registration with DMI will be available beginning July 11th for July 1st transfers.