By RUTH CAMPBELL

rcampbell@gctelegram.com

Valley State Bank, 511 N. Campus Drive, is now officially a full-service branch, offering everything from checking accounts to home and agricultural loans.

"We offer all the services of any and all banks. We primarily do agricultural and commercial loans. However, we do now offer full-service and home loans," Senior Vice President Jim Randall said.

The conventional home loan financing has "attractive rates," Randall said.

"Decisions are made locally, and we offer local servicing. People can make payments here," he added.

Home equity lines of credit, construction loans, traditional checking accounts, certificates of deposit and individual retirement accounts (IRAs) are also available.

Randall said the bank has had "good success" with its agricultural and commercial loans. It also offers free online banking available on computers and mobile devices, such as iPhones, iPads and Droid smartphones.

The mobile bank application launched about a month ago.

"It's been very popular," Randall said.

An online home loan application, which has been available for about two months, is another service line.

If all the necessary information is filled out, customers may receive pre-approval the same day. A typical home loan takes 30 to 45 days to close.

"We're in the process of providing parameters, so a decision can be made online based on the information (customers) provide," Randall said.

The bank currently is finishing a new drive-up window and features an image-enabled automatic teller machine, which is able to handle multiple transactions.

"You can deposit multiple items at one time, and it will sort them and print check images. We nicknamed the ATM R2-D2," Randall said.

The bank is not adding any more square footage at this time, but is considering other options in the future that could include working with the existing location, or possibly another location in Garden City, Randall said.

The bank president is Tom Kohart and the staff includes Assistant Vice President Patty Ketterling, Agricultural Loan Officer Jeff Conway, Assistant Vice President Jimmy Deal and customer service representatives Roxie Sperry, Lissette Valles and Marlene Chairez.

Sperry, Chairez, Ketterling and Valles are all mortgage loan specialists, as well, Randall said.

"We've had a presence in this location for a year and a half. The main bank is in Syracuse, Kan. We've been in Syracuse for over 100 years. This is our first branch from the main bank," Randall said.

"We were looking to grow in a community where there were some opportunities, and we are very excited to be in Garden City and (serving) Finney County and surrounding counties," Randall said.