If You Have More Than $1000 In Your Checking Account, Do These 5 Things
Having a job during these uncertain times is a bonus many people would be happy to have one right now. Having a financial cushion of $1,000 or more in a checking account is icing on the cake.
If you’re working from home and have had the foresight to sock away $1,000, that balance is something to be proud of.
You’re on the path to saving, and it can be an impetus to save more and figure out other financial goals.
After upping your savings, what about investing, managing your money better, and improving your credit score? Or maybe you just want to play a game on your phone during downtimes to possibly earn a little more money.
Having a checking account balance of $1,000 or more can free you up to work toward other financial goals, or you could spend that extra cash on them. Here are 5 really great options:
1. Save money with Trim
The app Trim will help you achieve something that not many people do: Review their bills and find ways to lower them.
This is a basic part of setting up a household budget and is something that should be done monthly.
Trim is a free app that does the work for you by looking through your spending and alerting you to recurring charges that can be eliminated. Forget about that gaming subscription you never use? Trim will remind you of it and can cancel it for you.
It can also negotiate lower bills for your utilities and cable TV. Who else does that for you? We’d bet no one does. Trim can.
2. Check and improve your credit score at Credit Sesame
Looking for a new job when the economy starts improving again — or looking for any job because you’re unemployed — can require going through a credit check by potential employers.
To help improve your score or keep it high, Credit Sesame can help with its free online tools. Without impacting your credit score, Credit Sesame can tell you what your credit score is, monitor for suspicious activity on your credit report, and help you learn how to improve your score.
Some employers run credit checks on job applicants as a way to see how they manage finances or handle sensitive data. A financial history of loan and credit accounts can include how long accounts have been opened and if payments have been made on time.
Employers won’t see your credit score during these credit checks — which you must authorize in writing. They also won’t be able to view your account numbers, birth date, spouse information, or anything else that could violate equal employment opportunity regulations.
But they will see information such as late payments. That could derail you from getting a job as a manager, working with finances, or dealing with confidential information. The credit check could be used to gauge your trustworthiness and aptitude at managing money.
In most states, an employer could decline to hire you due to your credit history. Some states limit employers’ ability to use credit checks in hiring.
Even if you aren’t concerned about your credit score affecting your ability to get a job, improving your credit score can help in other ways. It can allow you to get better loan terms and save you money when buying a home or car, or just make your credit card payments lower. Start improving your score with the help of Credit Sesame.
3. Earn extra cash with Lucktastic
If you’ve got a spare minute or two on your phone — and who doesn’t? — then you could make a few bucks playing Lucktastic.
Having a $1,000 financial cushion could free you up to spend a few minutes a day playing a game that could reward you with a win in a scratch game of $10,000.
Payouts of $2 to $1,500 are more likely on Lucktastic, but every time you play you improve your odds of winning.
It’s simple to play. Download the free app to your phone and play scratch cards for free. Each card has six boxes to scratch, and three matches are needed to win a cash prize. If you don’t match at least three symbols, you’ll still earn at least one reward token that can be used with other tokens for gift cards or magazine subscriptions.
4. Get $100 for signing up for Aspiration
Sign up for an online cash management account at Aspiration and it will give you $100 to link your bank account with direct deposit.
You’ll also get no-fee debit cards that pay 5% cashback on all purchases.
Possibly better than free money is that you’ll never pay fees with an Aspiration account. The first set of checks are free. Its debit card can be used for up to five ATM withdrawals each month for free.
Aspiration has no fees and asks clients to pay what they think is fair. You can set your banking fee at zero and change it whenever you want. If you need extra services such as wire transfers, Aspiration will only charge you the costs it pays to provide the service.
It can also be a great place to put your savings — including the $1,000 you’ve put away. It’s currently paying up to 0.25% APY on deposits, which is more than triple the national average of 0.07% paid on savings deposits, according to the FDIC.
That’s a smart way to jumpstart your savings.
5. Start investing with $5 at Public
You may want to be cautious with the $1,000 you have in the bank. But maybe you can pull out $5 or so and start investing through a new micro-investing app called Public.
Through fractional investing, you can use as little as $5 to invest in the stock market and buy a slice of a share of stock. Public doesn’t charge commissions, so your small investment isn’t being eaten alive by fees.
Public also lets you see other members’ trades. You can follow people you trust on the app and see what they’re investing in. You can use the information for stock tips and research the stocks on your own.
It can be an easy and inexpensive way to start as a stock market investor. And during a downturn in the market, it can be a good time to find deals.
Public disclosure: https://public.com/disclosures