We're Blogging About It

Read what Banner Bank experts have to say about financial topics for businesses and consumers. From commercial real estate lending and agriculture loans to fraud prevention and interest rate sweeps, we're sharing our knowledge to help our clients be financially successful.

Recent Blogs

Read the latest blog topics from Banner Bank employees. 

Paying College Tuition & Expenses

Five options for parents and students to explore

There are several options to explore when trying to figure out how to pay for college. Here are several different routes to consider before making the collegiate education journey.

Cyber Hygiene…What Is It? And 5 Things to Know About It

More and more often the term cyber hygiene shows up in technology blogs and business articles. But what does it mean? And why should you care? If the term is new to you, this blog provides five things you should know to keep your online information safe.

What is a HELOC and What You Should Know to Use One

If you are a homeowner, a source of funds that may be available is a home equity line of credit, or HELOC. A HELOC allows you to borrow up to a specified dollar amount using the equity built up in your home as collateral.

Past Blogs

Understanding Your Digital Wallet - and Six Ways To Keep It Safe

Confusion about how digital wallets work is among the top reasons U.S. consumers are not adopting this new payment method. Learn how digital payments work and how to protect your digital wallet.

The Digital Factor: Four Ways To Boost Your Company's Cyber Security

As much as most of us enjoy digital convenience, it carries the potential for others to access our personal and financial information with criminal intent. Banks are always on high alert to protect clients’ data, but you play a vital role in preventing unwanted access.

The Human Factor: Six Ways to Boost Your Company's Cyber Security

If you own or manage a business, the best way to avoid becoming a victim of a cyber-heist is to keep would-be criminals out of the computer you use for online banking. In addition to your bank's safeguards to protect client data, good security only works in partnership.

10 Steps to Safeguard Your Identity Online and Off

Identity theft remains the fastest growing crime in America. Protecting your personal information is more imperative than ever, and these 10 simple steps can help safeguard your identity online and off.

Four Tips to Enhance Your Company's Agility

Whatever your company’s goals and strategies are for the year, it’s smart business to always be prepared for the possibility of change. Even positive changes, such as a new client or a project opportunity, can strain businesses of any size. The key is to be proactive, not reactive.

Four Travel Tips for Financial Ease On The Go

It’s wise to plan for financial agility when traveling. Carrying a blend of cash, foreign currency and credit or debit cards adds safety and convenience —but it has to be the right combination for you and your destination.

Five Money Management Tips When Heading Off To College

Students who learn good money management skills in college are way ahead of their peers in the game of life. In fact, the habits you develop now will lay the groundwork for achieving financial goals throughout your life. If you’re currently in college or heading there, check out these tips.

Four Tools to Support and Simplify Your Export Business

If your company exports goods or services, you know international commerce offers its own challenges and opportunities. Navigating those avenues gets a lot easier when you have the right tools and expertise to guide you. 

SBA Financing Tips When Buying or Selling a Business

If you’re looking to buy or sell a business, it’s worth considering if your change-of-business transaction qualifies for a Small Business Administration (SBA) loan.

Need-To-Know Savings Habits for Children

However you approach the topic of savings with your children, remember to stay focused on the goal: to raise a financially savvy child who can go into the world with the basic knowledge about saving and spending so he/she avoids the temptations of excessive spending.

Tips on Financing a Home Build or Remodel

Building or remodeling a home is an exciting project, yet it can be daunting. Here are some great ideas for getting started on building your dream home or remodeling your current home to make it perfect. With the right financing in place your project will have a solid foundation.

How To Build Success Into Your Business Succession Plan

 Business owners work hard to start and grow a company. But what happens when you want to retire? Who will lead the company? How will you get your equity out of the business? If you’re like many of your peers, you know you need to prepare for the endgame.

Understanding the Security Behind Mobile Wallet

Mobile payment technology solves many of the security issues retailers have experienced with traditional credit or debit cards. Read what makes them so secure.

Making the Foreign Familiar

 If your company imports merchandise or supplies, you know the goods have to arrive on time and in the proper condition. Many importers don’t realize there’s a tool that lets you facilitate payment, ensure your items arrive on time and control other aspects of delivery: commercial letters of credit.

3 Benefits of a Business Savings Account

 Saving for the future is not only a good idea for individuals, it’s a smart strategy for businesses. Having a savings plan in place can help your business avoid paying interest when making major purchases, provide a financial cushion during economic downturns or enable you to expand your business when the time is right.

College Scholarships, Grants and Loans - What do they cover?

 Students and their families have plenty of options to consider when it comes to paying for college tuition. From scholarships to grants to loans, filling the gap can be a confusing proposition. Before deciding what options are right for you, there are a few important tips to keep in mind.

3 Myths Dispelled... And Why Your Business Should Consider Exporting

 Many business owners would like to expand their business to international markets, but often fear the complicated or unknown issues that surround rules of export and international trade finance. This blog identifies three of the most common reasons business owners avoid expansion to international markets and how to overcome those issues.

3 Ways to Fully Utilize a Business Line of Credit

 A business line of credit is a very specific lending product designed to bridge the gap between a company’s buying and selling cycle. It is a powerful tool businesses can use to support their operating expenses, finance inventory or accounts receivables. Ultimately, a line of credit can be a tool to help growing or seasonal businesses reach the next level.

Key Considerations for Agricultural Lending Partnerships

 Let's face it. Agriculture is a risky business, but one that is vital to our Northwest economies. When looking toward expansion, finding the right lending partner can help farmers weather any eventuality. 

Key Decisions Business Owners Should Know When Purchasing Equipment

 Let’s face it. If your business requires equipment, odds are it’s expensive. Deciding to replace, upgrade or add new equipment is a big decision that could affect profits and cash flow. In this blog, we’ve identified a few key decisions business owners should keep in mind when considering major equipment purchases and financial options that may be available to you, as a business owner.

5 Tips to Prevent Online Fraud

 Consumers aren’t the only ones at risk of online fraud. From recent data breaches at major retailers to increasing incidents of fraudulent emails, businesses are increasingly at risk of email and online fraud.  Many online safety precautions that apply to consumers can also protect businesses.

5 Tips When Considering an SBA Loan

 Over the past few years, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) rose to the challenge of rebuilding the American economy, helping facilitate $19.2 billion in loans to small businesses during the last fiscal year alone. If your business is in need of cash to start or grow, here are a few tips when considering an SBA loan.

How to Master the 5 C's of Business Bank Loans

 Business loans are back in play. The economy is on the upswing, businesses are again interested in investing and banks are eager to lend to qualified candidates. This adds up to a borrower’s market.


Banking changed, but Banner didn’t. They stayed true to their values.

Mark Watkins, Seattle, Wa

Mark Watkins

Business and Personal Banking

Banner Bank helped Mark go local.

Seattle resident Mark Watkins had always banked with the big guys because he thought they had the services he needed. When business was good, everything was fine. But when the market turned in 2009, the big banks didn’t seem to want his business.

As the owner of a cabinet manufacturer, Mark felt the joy and pain of the housing bubble. “When things were going well, it seemed the banks couldn’t give you enough money,” he recalls. “When things changed, the doors slammed shut.”

Finally, when delays at Mark’s bank nearly caused him to lose an investment property, he decided to make a change and go local. And Banner Bank was there.

Banking changed, but Banner didn’t,” says Mark. “They stayed true to their values.

“I went in, told them my situation, and they said, ‘No problem,’” he says. “They don’t send loans to somebody in New York, they look at them right here. So we got the loan and saved the property. After that, I moved all my accounts to Banner.”

In Mark’s business, relationships are important. That’s why he values his relationships at Banner where they’re on a first-name basis. “I love being able to call my branch and just say, ‘Hi, it’s Mark,’ and they know me. It’s a great feeling.”

Mark knows he can count on Banner when he needs them, no matter what the other banks are doing.

“I don’t see myself banking anywhere else but Banner,” he says. “We’ve got projects down the line, and I plan to work with Banner on all of them.”

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