If You Have More Than $1,000 in Your Checking Account, Make These 5 Moves
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. Let This Finance App Surprise You with up to $1,250
If you’re like a lot of us, you just never get around to saving money. Hey, we know what that’s like. After all, roughly 45%1 of Americans haven’t really gotten around to saving any money. It’s just a fact of life.
So how can you save money, really?
The online finance app Chime offers automatic savings features that help you tuck away money without even thinking about it. We interviewed Samuel Demeny, who regularly uses his Chime Savings account. According to him, in just nine months, he saved up $1,250 — without even thinking about it.
Chime has two automated savings options: One feature rounds up your purchases and saves the change every time you spend, and the other lets you save a percentage of your check2 every time you get paid. (Both features require you to sign up for a Chime Spending Account first, but it’s quick and easy to do.)
The money adds up quickly, and it’s completely automatic.
It takes just five minutes to open an account and see how much you could save.
2. Spend $1 to Own a Piece of Amazon, Disney or Apple
We all know we should probably be investing. But it can feel complicated and expensive to get started — especially if you want to invest in some bigger-name stocks. But if you know where to look, you don’t need tons of money. You could get started with just $1.
Whether you have thousands to invest or just $1; you can get started with an investing app called SoFi. SoFi is great for both beginners and more experienced investors, because it lets you buy and sell stocks and exchange-traded funds (bundles of stocks) without paying any commission fees at all. It even lets you start a retirement account, like an IRA or a Roth IRA.
It even lets you buy fractional shares of big-name stocks, like Amazon, Disney or Apple. This lets you invest in companies you believe in, but that you might not otherwise be able to afford.
You can open an investment account with as little as $1. It only takes minutes to sign up, link your bank account and drop a little money in there to invest. Then you could be part-owner of a company you believe in.
3. Leave Your Family up to $1 Million
Oh, to be a millionaire. Look, not all of us have the money to set up trust funds for our loved ones. But you could still leave them up to $1 million in life insurance — and you don’t even need to have the money in the bank.
You’re probably thinking: I don’t have the time or money for that. But this take minutes — and you could leave your family up to $1 million with a company called Bestow.
We hear people are paying as little as $16 a month. (But every year you wait, this gets more expensive.)
Begin by entering your birthday, heigh and weight to get a free quote and see how much life insurance you can leave your loved ones — even if you don’t have seven figures in your bank account.
4. Cancel Your Car Insurance
Here’s the thing: your current car insurance company is probably overcharging you. But, who has the time to look around for around a new company?
A company called The Zebra will do it for you for free in just two minutes. It gets people an average of $670 back in their bank accounts a year — and you can get the same coverage you already have.
It doesn’t matter when you last renewed; you can get a check from your old company for the time left on your previous policy. (Read: They probably owe you money.)
You don’t have to make any calls or fill out any forms. It takes two minutes to see how much The Zebra can put back in your pocket. And the best part? Because we’re driving less, some insurers are slashing prices this month.
5. Invest in Real Estate (Even if You’re Not a Millionaire)
The stock market can be a scary place. Stock prices shoot up and down like a roller coaster ride, and who knows when the whole thing might crash?
It would be nice to diversify and invest some of your money in real estate, but don’t you have to be wealthy to do that?
Now you can invest like the 1% does, and all you need to get started is $500. A company called DiversyFund will invest your money in commercial real estate — specifically, in apartment complexes that it owns — and you only need $500.
Real estate can potentially earn you more money than the stock market. Over the long term, investing in the stock market will earn you an average annual return of 7%, adjusted for inflation, according to a number of studies. DiversyFund can’t guarantee how its investments will perform in the future — no one can — but historically, it has earned an annual return of 17% to 18%.
So you don’t need a fortune to invest in real estate. All you need to get started is $500.
1According to a GOBankingRates savings survey
2Round Ups automatically round up debit card purchases to the nearest dollar and transfers the round up from your Chime Spending Account to into your savings account. Save When I Get Paid automatically transfers 10% of your direct deposits of $500 or more into your savings account.