Small Business Loans Resources

4 Must-Have Resources For Small Business Loans

Small Business Startup Meeting

Support Your Community On Small Business Saturday

Small Business Saturday is key to our success as a community bank. Our customers are local, small businesses, and we patronize them because they are the backbone of our community. Without small businesses, the local economy grinds to a halt.

Small Business Startup MeetingDo the right thing. That’s our philosophy at Sentry Bank, and every small business we’ve worked with believes the same. As a small, local business, it’s important to treat every customer with dignity and respect, and to make sure the customer receives the best service possible.

We hope we live up to that standard with our customers, like Simonson Lumber and PAM’s Auto of St. Cloud and Granite City Motor Car of Waite Park.

True Community Banking

As a true community bank, we work hard to serve our neighbors. Our four area branches – St. Stephen, St. Joseph, St. Cloud West and St. Cloud Downtown – and the nearly fifty local people we are lucky enough to employ are key to our continued and personal relationships with local small businesses.

Our goal is always to be small enough to know your name as you walk in the door, but large enough to give your small business what it needs to be competitive in today’s economy.

We also give back to our local community by supporting youth baseball, Joetown Rocks, the United Way of St. Cloud, the St. Cloud YMCA, the Great River Regional Library and the Greater St. Cloud Development Corporation, a key ally in promoting and supporting local small businesses.

Small Business Saturday

Small Business WoodworkingIf you’re a small business owner, you can find information how best to prepare for Small Business Saturday at the Small Business Administration’s blog. There is quite a bit of information on subjects such as how to host a Small Business Saturday event as well as how to market your business on a limited budget. Also, let us know if there is anyway our highly experienced business bankers can help.

As a consumer, the day after Black Friday (and anytime of year) be sure to stop in at some of your local businesses to find your holiday gifts. You can find a locally owned small businesses through the American Express Shop Small map.

United Way Activities at Sentry Bank

While raising money for United Way, we’ve had a few fun dress up days at Sentry Bank. Yesterday was sports team day, and last week everyone got to wear tie dye!

Sports Day 20160926_144640_resized 16910 20160922_130754 20160922_145556_resized

Food Drive

There is still time to bring in your donations for the food drive! Drop off your non-perishable items at any Sentry bank location. This food drive is open to employees and the public!

IMG_1741 IMG_1743

Food Drive

Beginning today and going until September 30th, Sentry Bank will be collecting non-perishable food from employees and the public. All donations will go to a local food shelf. Feel free to drop off your donations at any Sentry Bank branch


5 Reasons First-Time Home Buyers Should Start Looking This Fall

As a first-time homebuyer, the amount of information out there can be overwhelming. As your local mortgage lender, we want to help you make sense of it all, and make the right decision for your future.

At Sentry Bank, we believe 2016 has been a great year for home buyers, and that, in general, fall is a great time to buy a house. Download our handy eBook, How To: Buy A Home, to help you navigate the home buying process!

When you’re ready to start the paperwork or need some additional advice, let us know!

1. Mortgage Rates Are Still Low . . . For NowFirst-Time Home Buyer

Mortgage rates have been falling since about 2007. Rates were expected to raise rates in 2016, but haven’t changed much from 2015. However, the Federal Reserve is widely expected to begin increasing interest rates soon, which means mortgage rates may be rising soon, so purchasing before the end of 2016 might be in your best interest.

While rates tend to rise slowly, higher rates do push up your borrowing costs and monthly mortgage payments, which can add up over time.

2. Sellers Are Serious

During the fall and winter months those sellers who remain on the market are likely more serious and more ready to make a deal than in the spring and summer. And those who first put their house up in the fall are very motivated, otherwise they would have waited until spring! THis puts you at a huge advantage!

3. There Is Less Competition

While the majority of other buyers probably rushed to get into a home before school started, you’re in a good position with less competition now. This means you have more time to look as well as time to negotiate a great deal. You’re also less likely to be in a multiple-offer situations, where multiple buyers are trying to outbid each other.

In the fall, more people are likely to concentrate on sports and holidays, and stay inside due to the deteriorating weather, which also contributes to lower competition for houses.

4. Negotiating Is Easier

When a buyer lists a home in the fall, they have to comply with showing times, open houses and everything else which can complicate their lives further, especially if they need to squeeze it in around holidays and other commitments. You can cash in on this stress and urgency and use it to your advantage during negotiations.

The fact that there is less competition and the seller is probably more serious will also help you.

5. Inventory Is Low

While it might seem like low inventory is a bad thing, really it just helps you narrow down your choices. You’ll spend less time on houses which don’t fit your needs, and be more economical with your time with fewer distractions.

For more advice, as well as help with your mortgage, get in touch with your local mortgage team at Sentry Bank! Don’t forget to download our handy eBook, How To: Buy A Home, for extra help with the home buying process.

Easy Access to Account Balances

Did you know that you can get the balances to your accounts through mobile banking without always having to log in?

All you need to do is log-in to Touch Banking, click on the “more” option on the lower left corner of the screen, select the “Instant Balance Settings”, turn on Instant Balance, select the accounts you want to see balances for and then save. Once this is complete close mobile banking. Now, open your mobile banking app. At the very top right corner of the log-in screen you will see a $ inside of a circle. Push the dollar sign. Tadah, the balances of your account pop up. It’s a very handy feature for someone who just wants to see what their current balance is!

Sentry Bank Raises Money for United Way of Central Minnesota

Artboard 1

September 19th-30th Sentry Bank employees will be raising money for United Way of Central Minnesota. A series of fun events will give employees the chance to raise and donate money. Here are some of our upcoming events:


September 14th-29th Eat It or Wear It – By donating money, employees will get to vote to see which of our officers must “eat it or wear it”. Bowls with delicious food printed on them are located at each branch for the designated officers. This is where employees will donate their money to vote. Unfortunately, the officers with the most money in their bowls will not be eating or wearing the delicious foods that are printed on the bowls. Through a game of punch-a-bunch, officers will choose a disgusting food to eat or wear (have dumped on them). Bring on the sardines!

Eat It Or Wear It

September 19th-30th – Food Drive – Non-perishable food collected from employees and customers will be donated to a local food shelf. Feel free to drop food off at any Sentry Bank branch to help a good cause.


Tuesday, September 20th – Ice Cream Day – Each Sentry Bank branch will have ice cream for their employees!

Thursday, September 22nd – Tie Die Day – Woodstock at Sentry Bank?! No, it’s just tie dye day! Employees have a chance to show off their best tie dye attire for one day. Groovy!

Monday, September 26th – Sports Team Day – Have a favorite sports team? Swing in to see which teams our Sentry Bank employees will be representing and rooting for!

Tuesday, September 27th – Word Find – All employees who complete and turn in their word find by Friday will be entered in to a prize drawing.

Thursday, September 29th Party Events: Officers “Eat It or Wear It” finale, chili cook-off, bank lottery scratch offs, food, games, and fun for the employees!

Website Scavenger Hunt

Here’s your chance to win $100!

The answers to the following questions can all be found somewhere on our website. Once you find the answers, simply enter them into the form below and we will randomly choose one person with the correct answers to win a $100 gift card.

Good luck!

Website Scavenger Hunt