African-American First Financial relationship manager meeting with young couple in office
African-American First Financial relationship manager meeting with young couple in office

why First Financial?

Because we put you first, and that helps put our whole community first.

Sure, our banking centers are made of brick, but the institution of First Financial is built on a foundation of aspiration and achievement. This is what we see in our clients every day – not numbers, but contributors to a community we have shared and helped build for more than 150 years. Each of us embodies an opportunity to help our community improve and grow.

So yes, at times we may talk tactically about transactions, but what our team strives to do is build life-long relationships. This takes getting to know you and all your at-the-moment needs while also helping to prepare you for the future. We want to earn your trust to help guide you through those big moments, and the small ones.

We achieve this by having a comprehensive and experienced team of professionals who just might live in the same neighborhood as you. And we deliver on it by offering all the financial services you might need, from personal checking to complex lending and investment products, but with competitive rates and terms paired with the highest level of service.

We aim to maintain our focus by seeing the community through our clients’ eyes. Here are three key ways we do that.

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We stay flexible to serve your needs

Not only are we on our toes – we can touch them. Thanks to our strategic growth, technology, and regional roots, First Financial has the combined resources and knowledge to flexibly meet our clients’ needs.

The members of our team know the neighborhoods where our clients want to buy homes and start businesses, because they’re the same neighborhoods where we live and work. So when we look at a loan application, we see more than just the numbers. We see the bigger picture and adjust our offerings based on your needs and our knowledge of the area.

This bigger picture includes the potential of every neighborhood, and the people and businesses that shape its destination. We have, for example, assisted more than 6,500 businesses through the CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program, which issues forgivable business loans of up to $10 million to cover payroll, rent, debt interest, and other expenses.1 We began assisting clients on day one of the program, and have issued nearly $900 million in funding since spring 2020. 

We jump to take advantage of programs like this because they help us fulfill our role as a “say yes” kind of bank. And thanks to our size, heritage, and expertise, we put those programs to work for our clients wherever they are on their financial – and life – journey.

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We invest in the community, financially and personally

We opened our doors in Hamilton, Ohio, in 1863, making us the sixth-oldest bank in America. We’re here for you through ups and downs.  We’ve withstood the worst financial crises our country has seen, managing to support our local communities throughout.  And, we’ve supported you through economic highs as well.

We understand that as a local lender, we play an essential role in helping to build and maintain strong local economies. One way we proudly put this commitment to work is through our ALIVE strategy, which stands for Access, Lending, Investing/Inclusion, Volunteering, and Education.

A main focus of our ALIVE strategy is to help increase financial literacy and education in our communities, particularly within underbanked communities. This includes providing affordable, easy access to the banking and lending services that help all people and communities thrive. Here are some of the ways we do so:

  • Through our partnerships with local nonprofits and community organizations, we help bring affordable housing, jobs, and economic opportunity to the areas that need it most. Our individual development savings and match accounts, for example, help low-income families trying to save for home ownership, post-secondary education, and other goals.
  • We believe dreams should be accessible. Our Credit Achiever Program is a savings-secured loan through which proceeds are deposited into an interest-bearing savings account as collateral. In August 2019, we also created our Dream Builder loans for borrowers with limited income.
  • We invest in emerging markets through our First Financial Foundation, which supports neighborhood and workforce development, education, culture, and the arts. In 2019, our associates completed nearly 18,500 volunteer hours and the Bank donated funds, laptops, and even our buildings to emerging communities.
  • Our commitment to inclusion. We recognize the worth and dignity of all people, so we work hard to provide access to the resources needed to make their opportunities come to life. Our diversity spending represents 17% of our total spending.

In short, we know community development is more than words. It’s action.

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We tailor our services to your needs

Acting on behalf of the community also means offering a variety of services and products so everyone can find a solution to their needs, regardless of the size of their accounts.

We have more than a dozen checking and savings accounts alone to choose from. Our NOworry checking, for example, protects holders from overdraft fees by declining transactions that exceed funds. And our Everyday Student account helps teens prepare to become financially aware adults. Not sure what account to open? We’ll ask the right questions to help you find what solutions best meet your needs.

We also provide specialized mortgage programs for doctors, veterans, and those choosing to buy in low- to moderate-income urban areas. And we have highly specialized business offerings that reflect our regional lineage. Our agribusiness experts, for example, are seasoned professionals who know the complexities of running a farm and maintaining our nation’s food supply chain.

We designed each of our services to help our clients succeed financially, and more is yet to come.

At First Financial, we believe in the way we do things: In building solid relationships, being a good neighbor, and seeking ways to support our community. If you’re ready to venture through life with a team that puts you first, stop by your local banking center to see what we have to offer. We would love to get to know you.


1 “CARES Act Paycheck Protection Program Summary,” By Jeffrey Hamilton, Insights Publications/a, Braun & Martel, May 19, 2020, https://www.fbm.com/publications/cares-act-paycheck-protection-program-summary-updated/#:~:text=The%20Coronavirus%20Aid%2C%20Relief%2C%20and,of%20up%20to%20%2410%20million. Accessed Nov. 4, 2020

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