January/February '22 Blog


4 Ways to Lower Your Rate when Processing Credit Cards

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What is the Best Rate?

While there are many things that separate one credit card processor from another, pricing is a huge factor that has an immediate impact on you, the merchant.  However, with over 1200 separate interchange rates, the age-old question of “What rate do you offer?” requires a much more detailed response.  Several factors affect the actual cost of accepting payment with a credit card – industry, customer card type, processing method, settlement time, etc.  Many variables impact what your customer’s card actually costs you.  So, how do you lower your rate when processing credit cards?

4 Ways to Lower Your Rate when Processing Credit Cards

Just because there are over 1000 different rates, and numerous factors that impact the cost of accepting any given credit card, doesn’t mean you are helpless in reducing your costs.  There are definitely best practices that can help you reduce costs, and improve your bottom line.  Here are 4 ways to lower your rate when processing credit cards. 

  1. Swipe or Dip – If you have a customer in front of you, swiping or dipping the card will get you a lower rate than manually keying in the same card. Interchange rates are closely related to risk – the more risk a transaction holds, typically the more expensive it is.  By keying in a card manually, the card-brands (Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express) see that as card-not-present.  Any time a card is considered to be away from the point of sale, higher risk is implied, thus a higher cost for that transaction.  Long story short: if you can see the whites of their eyes, swipe or dip the card.  Do everything you can to avoid manually keying in a transaction.

  1. Data, Data, Data – If you operate in a card-not-present world (e-commerce or mail / telephone orders), the more customer information you can provide, the lower your rate will be. With every transaction, providing the AVS information, which is the customers’ street address and zip code, will help qualify your transactions at the lowest possible rate.  Even greater savings can be achieved with Level III interchange.  This is unique to business and purchasing cards.  Lowering the rate to this level requires a substantial amount of data to be submitted, usually from a specialized gateway like the one offered by BASYS Processing.

  1. Settlement Times – Setting your terminal up for auto-settlement is a quick update to any piece of equipment and can help improve your situation immediately. Many merchants have not been taught that leaving transactions un-settled in a terminal for more than 24 hours actually makes those transactions cost more!  Except for very unusual circumstances, your processor should set your equipment to auto settle at the same time every day. 

  1. Right Tool for the Job – While the credit card terminal is still the standard means to accept a card payment, there are numerous other solutions, frequently unique to an industry. There are systems designed to accept credit cards specifically for e-commerce businesses, and systems that are designed just for restaurants.  Other systems are designed to operate in a business-to-business (B2B) environment, or for companies whose primary sales are recurring monthly payments.  Just because the terminal you’ve been using for the last 5 years technically works, that doesn’t mean it’s the best fit for you right now.  We recommend continually working with your credit card processor to learn what options are available to you, and ensure you’re using the solution that can offer you the lowest rate qualifications and other helpful functionalities.

Stay Engaged

While these are some general way you can lower your rate and control your costs, the most important thing is to stay engaged.  Just because you’ve always paid certain fees, doesn’t mean those are fees you should still be paying.

Farmers Bank would be happy to provide you with a FREE SAVINGS ANALYSIS to show you how we can drive down your rates, ensure you are using a processing system that is the best fit for your business, and improve your overall credit card processing experience.

Contact Us Today!

Farmers Bank Home Loans: Everything You Need to Know

 The median home price in Idaho real estate is a whopping $460,000, up 24.3% over a year ago. The days a house last on the market is 9 days less than a year ago. 

All the signs point to a housing market that remains robust for Idaho residents. So, if you're in the market to buy, you need to enter the market ready to make your purchase. 

One important part of buying a house, buying land, or even refinancing an existing home is finding the right financing. A Farmer's home loan can help expedite the whole process for you. 

Read on to learn more about the home loan and agricultural loan options available through Farmers Bank. 


Home Loans

Without a doubt, getting a loan when buying a house can be one of the most stressful parts of the homebuying process. There's finding the right house in this competitive market, worrying about inspections, and most importantly getting the home financed. 

Farmers Bank offers a variety of home loan options to help residents of Idaho make their dream a reality. While there are plenty of financial institutions competing for your business, you want to work with someone who has a reputation for caring for their community and the people they serve. 

Farmers Bank works hard to establish itself as a local expert of home and agricultural financing. Let's take a closer look at some of the financing offered through Farmers Bank.


Buying a Home

As you entertain buying a house, sooner is better than later. Use the experience of Farmers Bank mortgage experts to find you the best home loan package for your needs. 

Home prices continue to rise. As the market tightens, interest rates can potentially rise. You want to take advantage of the low and better rates while you can still get them. 

Farmers Bank can create a mortgage with terms that best meet your unique needs. 


Refinancing a Home

Ideally, you want to choose to refinance your mortgage so you can save money both in the short term and in the long term. 

You might choose to refinance because you can secure a better interest rate than you currently have. This can both lower your payment and save you in interest over the long term. 

You might also opt to tap into the equity you already have in your home and use the money to pay down debt. 


Construction Loans

If your plan isn't to buy an existing home, but instead have a home built, we can help with a construction loan. 

At Farmers Bank we have a unique construction loan program that allows you to get your construction loan while you're building, then transition the same loan into a fixed-rate mortgage once the home is complete. 

There's no need to secure a construction loan, then do a second loan for the mortgage, paying off a loan from construction. 

This one-time loan feature makes building a home that much easier.


Bridge Loans

While today's market is hot, sometimes you can't wait for your own home to sell before purchasing your next home.

If you find the perfect home in this competitive market, you don't want to miss out because your existing home isn't sold or even listed yet.  

A bridge loan helps you to make the purchase of the new home and still have financing while you wait for the old home to sell.


Agriculture Loans

Magic Valley is no stranger to agriculture and the American farmer. At Farmers Bank, we have extensive knowledge of Magic Valley and the agriculture that makes the region thrive. 

We are proud to say, we've been a part of it since 1917. We offer the farming community a variety of loan options to help them sustain their farms.

Let's take a closer look at some of the agricultural loans we offer at Farmers Bank.


Operating Loans

You already know that running a working farm means funding is cyclical. You may need to take out an operating loan to help with financing while you wait for crops or livestock to be sold. 

Our operating loans have competitive interest rates and terms that work for you. You might opt to secure an operating loan to be prepared. Yet, know that at Farmers Bank there's no interest until you actually draw and use the funds.


Term Loans

Sometimes it's necessary to spend money to make more money. A term loan for your agricultural needs would help you finance things like equipment with terms and an interest rate that's not only competitive, but that also works for you.


Real Estate Loans

The cornerstone to any farm is land. We believe in getting any farmer started on the path to their local farm or the opportunity to grow their existing farm by purchasing additional land. 


FSA Guaranteed Loans

For those farmers who might need a little more help with financing, either because of lack of credit or collateral, Farmers Bank also offers FSA Guaranteed loans. This can help them get the financing they might need without losing an opportunity.


Benefits of Choosing a Local Bank for Your Borrowing Needs

There are many benefits to choosing a local family-owned bank for your financing needs. You get personalized customer service and the safety and security of a local quality financial institution.

You won't ever feel like just a number or that your business doesn't matter when you work with the people at Farmers Bank.


Farmers Home Loans for Whatever Kind of Property You Wish to Buy

Farmers home loans offer you options that can be set up to meet your unique loan needs. Whether you need some kind of financing for a home or for land and materials for agriculture, we have a program for you.

Contact us today to get more information on our different loan programs. We want to help you make your homeownership dreams a reality.