If You Have More Than $1,000 in Your Checking Account, Make These 7 Moves

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You’ve done it. You’ve built up a little cushion in your bank account — $1,000! It feels good, right? Those days of checking your account balance in a panic are behind you.

Congrats! You’re on the right path. Now it’s time to think about some longer-term goals. What do you want to accomplish next with your money? Do you need to save more? Do you want to buy a home someday? Invest?

What’s the next step you should take? What are some specific things you can do to take your finances to the next level?

We’ve got some ideas for you:

1. This Savings Account Pays 5.50% APY — Good Luck Finding a Better Rate

Ever wonder what your money does when you’re not looking? Well, the answer is not much if you’re saving money in a traditional bank account. It could be earning you so much more interest.

And you’re probably not going to find a higher interest rate than this. We checked.

We just found the Betterment Cash Reserve account. It’s a high-yield savings account that pays a whopping 5.50% APY (annual percentage yield) for new customers.

And no, they don’t try to take money back from you with fees. You keep everything your money earns you. There are no maintenance fees, minimum balance requirements, or limits on withdrawals.

While people worry over the highs and lows of the stock market, money in your Cash Reserve account will keep growing. And it’s federally protected, FDIC insured up to $2 million ($4 million for joint accounts).

If you’re ready to put your money to work for you, open a free Cash Reserve account from Betterment account today.

2. Get a $200 Prepaid Mastercard For Switching to Cheaper Internet

There are some bills you just can’t avoid. For most of us, that includes our internet bill. You can’t exactly go without it these days, and your provider knows that — that’s why so many of us are overpaying.

But with T-Mobile, you can get high-speed, 5G home internet for as little as $40 a month. They’ll even guarantee to lock in your price.

You’re probably thinking there’s some catch, but they’ll let you try it out for 15 days to see if you like it. If not, you’ll get your money back. You don’t even have to worry about breaking up with your current provider — T-Mobile will pay up to $750 in termination fees.

Even better? When you switch now, you’ll get $200 back via prepaid MasterCard.

Just enter your address and phone number here to see if you qualify. You could be paying as low as $40 a month for high-speed internet.

3. Get Paid up to $360/Year With This Free Debit Card

Wouldn’t it be nice if you got special treatment wherever you went? You can actually get rewards wherever you shop, using this free debit card from Discover.

You’ll earn 1% cash back on every single purchase you make using your Discover® Cashback Debit account, on up to $3,000 monthly.* There’s no impact on your credit score for signing up and no minimum balance requirements ever.

Need groceries? Tap your card for cash back. You can also get paid sooner with Early Pay direct deposit, protect against overdrafts and access to over 60,000 ATMs without fees. You can handle all of your banking needs through the app and connect a virtual wallet like Apple Pay to amplify your rewards. And on top of all that, checking-account deposits are FDIC-insured up to the maximum amount allowed by law.

Does your bank do all that? If not, open a free Discover checking account to get special treatment from a bank that will actually put money back into your account.

*See website for details.

4. Stop Budgeting in Your Head and Get This Budgeting App While It’s Half Off

Most of us can rely on that voice in the back of our heads to tell us right from wrong. But when it comes to money, it’s so easy for numbers and enticing marketing to drown it out.

An app called Quicken Simplifi makes it easier to visualize your money, so you can put more of it in the right places and avoid accidentally overspending.

No, this app won’t tell you to save every dollar and avoid spending money on fun things (unless you want it to). But with Quicken Simplifi, you can set your budget exactly how you want.

The app can also alert you when you’re nearing your spending limits, warn you when there’s a bill coming up and report unusual activity. You can also generate custom reports of your spending, savings, earnings and over a given date range.

Right now, you can get 50% off a Simplifi subscription for 12 months — that’s as little as $2 a month, and it’s so worth it for anyone who’s finally ready to start crushing their financial goals.

Tired of going over your budget? Just download the Quicken Simplifi app and take the first step towards better financial health this year.

5. Let Your Family Inherit $250k or Much More

We never seem to have enough savings or investments. But there’s one particular way to make up for that shortfall: life insurance.

None of us like to think about what happens to your family if you pass, but this is a smart way to free them from a burden – and give you peace of mind.

With NerdWallet, you can get multiple life insurance quotes all in one place and find a plan that’s probably far more affordable than you think.

You can choose whole life plans if you want to do it once, forget about it and have coverage for the rest of your life. Or you can pick from term life plans to get even lower rates with coverage that can last a few decades.*

Is it finally time to get covered? It’s easy to get life insurance quotes from NerdWallet to see just how affordable a good policy could be for you.

6. This Company Pays You Whether You Spend or Save Money (up to 5.07% APY on Savings)

Does your bank pay you to spend and save money? Upgrade does.

They’ll pay you 2% cashback on qualifying purchases with Rewards Checking Plus1, and a hefty 5.07% APY on your savings with an Upgrade Premier Savings Account.2

To start earning 2% cashback today, direct deposit $1,000 into your Upgrade Rewards Checking Plus account each month. Anything short of that will still generate 1% cashback.1

You can also earn 5.07% APY (annual percentage yield) on savings with an Upgrade Premier Savings account. All you have to do is make a deposit (at least $1,000) and let it earn more money for you.2

There are no annoying monthly fees, hidden service charges or petty overdraft fees for Rewards Checking Plus3 or Premier Savings.2 And no, there are no minimum balance requirements to keep your accounts open.

Upgrade has a TrustPilot rating of “Excellent” with about 40,000 reviews giving them 4.5/5 stars — their app even has a 4.5 rating on the Apple App Store.

Ready to get more out of your money? It’s free and easy to open a cashback account with Upgrade today. Upgrade is a financial technology company that partners with Cross River Bank to keep your money secured with FDIC or NCUA insurance up to $250,000.

7. Cancel Your Car Insurance

Here’s the thing: Your current car insurance company is probably overcharging you. But don’t waste your time hopping around to different insurance companies looking for a better deal.

Use a website called EverQuote to see all your options at once.

EverQuote is the largest online marketplace for insurance in the US, so you’ll get the top options from more than 175 different carriers handed right to you.

Take a couple of minutes to answer some questions about yourself and your driving record. With this information, EverQuote will be able to give you the top recommendations for car insurance. In just a few minutes, you could save up to $610 a year.


*NerdWallet believes everyone should be able to make financial decisions with confidence. And, while our site doesn’t feature every company or financial product available on the market, we’re proud that the guidance we offer, the information we provide and the tools we create are objective, independent, straightforward – and free. 


1 Rewards Checking Plus customers who set up monthly direct deposits of $1,000 or more earn 2% cash back on common everyday expenses at convenience stores, drugstores, restaurants and bars – including deliveries – and gas stations, as well as recurring payments on utilities and monthly subscriptions including phone, cable, TV and other streaming services, and 1% cash back on all other debit card purchases. 2% cash back is limited to $500 in rewards per calendar year; after $500, customers earn 1% cash back on all eligible debit card purchases for the remainder of the year. Rewards Checking Plus accounts with less than $1,000 in monthly direct deposits 60 days after account opening will earn 1% cash back on common everyday expenses and 0.50% cash back on all other eligible debit card purchases. Some limitations apply. Please refer to the applicable Upgrade VISA® Debit Card Agreement and Disclosures for more information.

2The Annual Percentage Yield (“APY”) for the Premier Savings account is variable and may change at any time. There is no minimum balance to open your account, but you will only earn the APY on days when the closing balance of your Premiere Savings account is or exceeds $1000. On days where the account closing balance drops below $1000, the APY will be 0%. There are no monthly account fees associated with Premier Savings accounts. Upgrade is a financial technology company, not a bank. Premier Savings accounts are provided by Cross River Bank, Member FDIC

 3 There are no overdraft fees or annual fees associated with Rewards Checking Plus accounts. Rewards Checking Plus charges no ATM fees, but third-party institutions may charge you a fee if you use their ATM/network or if you use your Upgrade VISA® Debit Card internationally. For Active Accounts, Upgrade will rebate ATM fees charged by another institution for debit card withdrawals in the United States, up to five times per calendar month. To be eligible to receive third-party ATM fee rebates in any calendar month for eligible ATM withdrawals made during that month on a Rewards Checking Plus account, the account must be an Active Account in the prior calendar month. See the Active Account page for more information. As a courtesy to new customers, Upgrade will provide third-party ATM fee rebates for 60 days after account opening regardless of account user status. 

Some limitations apply. Please refer to the applicable Cross River Bank Checking Deposit Account Agreement and Upgrade VISA® Debit Card Agreement and Disclosures for more information. 3Early direct deposit requires set up of recurring electronic direct deposit from your employer, payroll, or benefits provider and is limited to direct deposits under $5000. Early access to direct deposit funds depends on the timing in which we receive notice of impending direct APY N/A Minimum deposit to Open $0 Rewards Rate Up to 2% cash back on purchases. Atm Fees $0 Account Fees $0 Overdraft Fees $0 Annual Fees $0 Debit Card Available Yes Mobile Banking Yes for Active accounts Name Rewards Checking Plus deposit, which is generally up to two days before the scheduled deposit date. 4Active Accounts with a monthly direct deposit of $1000 are eligible for additional benefits on Rewards Checking Plus such as additional cash back rewards, ATM fee reimbursement, and more. See the Active Account page for more information.