Being financially responsible isn’t as hard as it used to be. The most future-ready financial services make sure that it’s actually faster (and better) to get an account easily up and running online. So if you’ve got a second to scroll through social media, you’ve got no excuses to take a moment to give your money management plans a needed boost.
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One of the most important financial planning steps you’ll ever take is also one of the most commonly avoided: a will. We get it – nobody wants to spend time thinking about some of the worst things that could happen. But being properly prepared if those things do happen is one of the smartest financial moves you can make for yourself and your family.
Canadian startup Willful makes estate planning as painless as possible. In just 20 minutes they’ll guide you step by step through creating a thorough, legal will without having to visit a lawyer or even get off the couch.
Strategic investing with trained financial advisors used to be tedious and intimidating. It involved several trips to the bank to sign paper documents, then waiting for monthly or quarterly paper reports to be mailed to you to track performance. And if you wanted to change anything, you guessed it – more documents for you to sign. Basically, there was a whole lot of paperwork.
Wealthsimple is a leader in making robo-investing accessible for all with its simple digital sign-up process and easy-to-understand account management steps and fund predictions. Not only can you sign up for and fund your account directly in the mobile app, but you’re also able to seamlessly transfer existing accounts, like TSFAs and RRSPs, from your existing accounts to Wealthsimple with just some account information and a screenshot. A week later, your investments magically appear in the Wealthsimple app, and you’re able to start managing them on the go from day one.
At some point, even the most frugal among us will use our debit or credit cards to buy something. And if you’re a frequent shopper, ride-sharer or food delivery fan, you might as well get a little something back for what you’re spending. That’s where Drop comes in.
Earning Drop points is the ultimate “set it and forget it” situation. Download the app, hook up the cards and accounts you spend with the most often, and Drop automatically tracks all of the eligible transactions that you’ve signed up for. You can feel a little bit better knowing that you’re getting a percentage back to use on rewards that are as good as cash for many purchases.
Like Wealthsimple, Koho is a Canadian pioneer in open banking and bringing a greater diversity of financial services to consumers. An alternative to traditional banking, every step of using Koho - from signup to funding to paying with your digital card - can be done on your phone.
One of Koho’s key benefits is that it works like a debit card but is accepted everywhere that Visa is. For anyone looking to avoid the pitfalls of high interest fees, Koho gives you the power to shop in-store and online like a credit card, but only with money you actually have. (Imagine that.) It’s a perfect solution for students, people who are newer to using credit cards, or those that just know themselves well enough that they shouldn’t be relying on credit.
At the same time, Koho members get to cash in on a list of traditional credit card perks, like automatic cash back on purchases and lower foreign exchange rates for travelling.
And lastly, now that we’ve talked about a bunch of ways that you can spend your money:
No, seriously. You need a budget. And the (very directly named) budget app You Need A Budget is one of the top-rated apps to help you get started. YNAB is a pro at not just financial management, but educating on budget basics and showing why it’s important to track where every single dollar is going each month. If you don’t have the money, YNAB simply doesn’t let you allocate it.
Designed especially to focus on common sense advice for people and households that can really benefit from budgeting for the first time, YNAB believes in the power of budgeting and wants to make you a convert. Custom tutorials, in-app pop-ups and gentle helping points (like the automatically included “Everything I Forgot To Budget For” category) take the complexity out of budgeting so that you can truly discover how its the first step towards taking greater financial control.
Make sure you have your home and auto protected –
Jeremy Elder is a paid Sonnet spokesperson.