If You Have More Than $1,000 in Your Checking Account, Make These 6 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. Let This Finance App Surprise You with up to $1,250

a woman logs into her bank account on her cell phone.
Tina Russell/The Penny Hoarder

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. Invest Like a Tycoon (Even If You’re Not Rich)

Take a look at the Forbes Richest People list, and you’ll notice almost all the billionaires have one thing in common — they own another company.

But if you work for a living and don’t happen to have millions of dollars lying around, that can sound totally out of reach.

That’s why a lot of people use the app Stash. It lets you be a part of something that’s normally exclusive to the richest of the rich — buying pieces of other companies for as little as $1.*

That’s right — you can invest in pieces of well-known companies, such as Amazon, Google or Apple, for as little as $1. The best part? When these companies profit, so can you. Some companies even send you a check every quarter for your share of the profits, called dividends.

Become a tycoon by entering your email address to create a Stash account. They’ll even give you a $5 sign-up bonus once you deposit $5 into your account!**

3. Leave Your Family up to $1 Million 

Young rich couple travel on the new white convertible
GaudiLab/Getty Images

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. Let This Company Pay Your Credit Card Bill This Month

No, like… the whole bill. All of it.

While you’re stressing out over your debt, your credit card company is getting rich off those insane interest rates. But a website called Payoff could help you pay off that bill as soon as tomorrow.

Here’s how it works: Payoff can match you with a low-interest loan you can use to pay off every credit card balance you have. The benefit? You’re left with just one bill to pay every month, and because the interest rate is so much lower, you can get out of debt so much faster. Plus, no credit card payment this month.

If your credit score is at least 640, Payoff can help you borrow $5,000 to $40,000 with fixed rates starting at 5.99%.

Payoff won’t make you stand in line or call a bank. And if you’re worried you won’t qualify, it’s free to check online. It takes just a few minutes, and it could save you thousands of dollars — and raise your FICO score by up to 40 points. Totally worth it.

All that credit card debt — and the anxiety that comes with it — could be gone by tomorrow.

(Payoff operates in every U.S. state except Massachusetts, Mississippi, Nebraska and Nevada.)

5. 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.

6. 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.

*The Penny Hoarder is a Paid Affiliate/partner of Stash. This material is not intended as investment advice and is not meant to suggest that any securities are suitable investments for any particular investor. Investment advice is only provided to Stash customers.

**You’ll also bear the standard fees and expenses reflected in the pricing of the ETFs in your account, plus fees for various ancillary services charged by Stash.

*** Financial investment involves the risk of loss

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.