Contact information


Phone: 202-482-1082

Mailing address:

P.O. Box 14720

Washington, DC  20044-4720

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Two spectacular Indian food recipes

Hi Everyone,

I'm crazy about Indian food but until just recently I'd never tried cooking it.  I want to share the two recipes I tried out.  One is saag paneer, spinach and cheese.  The recipe calls for making your own cheese.  Try it, it's super easy to do and super yummy.  The second recipe is for curried cauliflower and tofu.  I substituted chickpeas for tofu.  I soaked chickpeas overnight and then boiled them with some bay leaves.  I liked them better than canned chickpeas.  They were firmer and seemed to have more taste.  Enjoy, Evan



My quinoa salad recipe


Hi Everyone,

Over the summer I created an amazing quinoa salad recipe.  I combined two recipes I found and then added sweet corn and black beans to them.  Enjoy, Evan


Evan’s Quinoa Salad

(Serves two to fifteen depending on appetites)



One yellow onion, diced medium to fine

One granny smith apple, cored, diced medium to fine

One third of a cup of butter or olive oil

2 cups quinoa, rinsed

1 ¾ cup water

1 teaspoon low down dirt seasoning (see URL below for purchasing details)

15 ounce can black beans

One red pepper, cored and diced medium

1 ½ cups sweet corn, cooked

¾ cup golden raisins

½ cup nuts, pine nuts or pecan pieces or a mix

¼ cup finely ground cilantro



¼ cup olive oil

¼ cup fresh lime and clementine juice, (one lime, two clementines reamed)

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 clove garlic, grated  If you do not have low down dirt any herb mix will do as a substitute, preferably no sodium.


Why do I have to pay Private Mortgage Insurance, (PMI), on my mortgage?

In the lending world the lender is looking for two things.  First and foremost, they are looking for the borrower to pay them back.  That’s why they check out your credit worthiness in many different ways.  The second thing they look for is collateral just in case the borrower doesn’t pay them back.  In the case of a real estate loan the house or other property is the collateral.  If the loan amount is more than a certain percentage, (typically 80%) of the property value the lender will have the borrower purchase Private Mortgage Insurance, (PMI).  There are many ways to avoid PMI.  Here are two of the ways: 

-          Purchase a home that costs less. 

-          Come up with more down payment for your home purchase.

If you are currently paying PMI here are two ways to eliminate it:

Pay down your mortgage to 78% of the original purchase price and have no late payments in the past twelve months.  The Homeowners Protection Act of 1998 requires the lender to remove your PMI.

Contact your servicer about how to eliminate mortgage insurance.  Mortgage lenders may permit you to drop mortgage insurance if the property has reached 80% loan to value.  You normally would need to pay for a new appraisal of your property.  Please note this is at your lenders’ discretion.  If you have late payments or your credit has deteriorated your lender may not remove your PMI.  If your property has appreciated get it reappraised to see if the loan to value on your home is under 80%.  Then notify the lender and they may take the PMI off of your loan.

Beware of lenders who say they will make you a mortgage loan with no down payment.  The lender is likely buying PMI behind the scenes and they are probably charging you a higher interest rate to compensate for their paying of the insurance.  Ask them what the interest rate on a loan where you have to pay PMI would be. 

PMI is tax deductible through 2013 if your adjusted gross income is less than $100,000.  If your adjusted gross income is more than $100,000 but less than $110,000 than a portion of your PMI is deductible.  Remember, this tax deduction goes away after 2013 unless the government extends it.  As always talk with your tax consultant about your specific circumstances. 

Want to know how much your PMI will be?  MGIC is one of the big PMI providers and here’s their website: .  This will give you at least an idea as to how much your PMI could be.  Remember that your borrower may be using a different set of criteria to evaluate PMI but the two biggees are your credit score and the value of your house.  (MGIC also has a pretty cool website for homebuyers including a test to see if you’re ready to buy a home.)

 If you have more questions about PMI or mortgages call Jeff Banyas.  He’s our VP of Lending and he knows as much about mortgages as anyone I’ve ever talked to.  His phone number is 202-482-3749.  Or drop him a line at



Should I pay a point to lower the interest rate on my mortgage?

Before I answer that questions let me tell you what a point is.  A point is one percent of your mortgage balance.  If your loan amount is $250,000 then one point is $2,500.  Now let’s dig into that question.  Let’s say your loan amount is for $250,000 and your interest rate if don’t pay points is 3.50%.  That would make your payment of principal and interest $1,122.61.  And let’s assume that paying a point lowers interest rate to 3.25%.  Your payment is $1,088.02.  So you’ll save 34.59 per month on your mortgage payment.  That means it will take you 72 months – six years to break even on the discount point you paid.  So there’s really only three reasons you’d want to pay discount points: 

- You are going to be in your house for more than six years. 

- The seller you are buying your house from is giving you concessions on your closing costs and your total closing costs are less than the amount of concessions they are willing to provide.  Huh?  Okay here’s an example.  Let’s say the seller is willing to pay $10,000 of your closing costs but your closing costs are only $7,500.  Then paying a discount point on your mortgage of $2,500 would make a lot of sense because it would lower your interest rate and your loan payment. 

- You have to have the lowest mortgage rate in your neighborhood.  I don’t really get this one but Jeff our VP of lending says there are folks out there who want to have the lowest mortgage rate in their neighborhood.  Okay, whatever floats your boat I guess. 

With regards to points when you’re comparing mortgage rates always ask the lenders you’re talking with to quote you their rate with zero discount points.  That way you’re comparing similar products from one lender to another.

Here’s a calculator you can use to calculate your mortgage payment.  If you have more questions about discount points or mortgages call Jeff Banyas our VP of lending.  His phone number is 202-482-3749.  His e-mail address is .  Our call Traci Cummings our mortgage loan processor.  Her phone number is 202-482-1924 and Traci’s e-mail address is .  Both Jeff and Traci are happy to answer any questions you may have.



The Most Selfish Christmas Present of All

This is a story I told at the credit union's Board and staff at our recent holiday party:


I would like you to consider giving yourself the most selfish of all Christmas presents.  This gift is so wonderful that it will give you returns of happiness and pleasure long after its purchase.  The gift I am speaking of is forgiveness and reconciliation.  Think of someone who in the past you have loved but no longer love or now hold a grudge towards.  Now think about and consider reaching out to that person with forgiveness and reconciliation.  I want to share with you my own personal story of forgiveness and reconciliation to illustrate this point.  Many years ago when I was in college my Mom and Dad went through a bitter divorce.  As so often happens in these instances us kids sided with one of our parents, our Mom.  For over 20 years I did not speak with my Dad.  They were 20 good years filled with many things and happenings but I knew there was something missing.  After much thought I realized what that missing thing was.  I needed to reconcile with my Dad.  I decided to write my Dad a letter.  A couple weeks after I sent him my letter I got a letter back from him.  I was a little fearful of opening his letter.  But when I did I found that he was just like me, a regular guy pursuing many of the things in his life that I was pursuing in mine.  The next Fathers’ Day I called him.  Then, a couple years later on his 70th birthday I showed up on his doorstep.  He asked why I was there.  I said to help him celebrate his 70th birthday.  I had a great fun time that weekend sharing with my Dad and his wife.  We didn’t do anything all that special but we had loads of fun just being together.  At the end of the weekend when Dad dropped me at the airport there were tears in his eyes.  He told me it was the most wonderful birthday he’d ever had.  Since that time my Dad and I have developed a wonderful loving relationship.  What that forgiveness and reconciliation did for me has been truly amazing.  Forgiveness and reconciliation with my Dad has freed me of hatred and anger.  In their place I now have happiness and joy.  And the energy I was using up with that hatred and anger I have used to do many good and great things in my life.  None more great than marrying my wife, (I love you Luda.), and raising our wonderful daughter.  Some words of warning about forgiveness and reconciliation.  They take enormous courage.  They take the ability to look inside yourself and realize that you were probably a big part of the reason for the past problems.  Second thing, when you are even considering forgiveness and reconciliation don’t think about those past problems.  Forget them because all they are now are hindrances to your freeing up lots and lots of energy that will be given to you when you go through forgiveness and reconciliation.  Energy you can use on good and great things in your life.  Energy that can give you great happiness and joy.  And one final warning, all the little things that used to drive you crazy about the other person?  They’re still there and they will probably still drive you crazy.  But that probably says more about you than it does about the other person so just get over it.  In conclusion, Dad and I share so much in common that I am overjoyed that I took the time to reconcile with him.  Now I ask you to consider forgiveness and reconciliation with someone you love.  It will be the most selfish Christmas present you ever give yourself.