Aspiration Cash Management Account Review – Forbes Advisor

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Aspiration is a socially responsible financial company that offers alternatives to traditional banking and investment services. Launched in 2013, Aspiration Financial, LLC is a registered brokerage and aims to make the world a better place through its sustainable and responsible account options. The online investment company offers two cash management accounts, as well as investment and retirement accounts.

This Aspiration review focuses specifically on its cash management accounts, how they stack up against those offered by competitors, and whether an Aspiration cash management account is right for you. Account details and Annual Percentage Returns (APY) are correct as of November 18, 2021.

Account Basics

Spend and Save

The Aspiration Spend & Save account is the company’s primary cash management account. This hybrid cash account offers many of the features found with checking and savings accounts, allowing you to spend and save in one place. It is an account divided into separate balances for spending and savings.

The account comes with a free debit card and access to over 55,000 toll-free ATMs across the country. Opening an account only requires a minimum deposit of $ 10. The Spend and Save accounts come with check writing privileges and a free first set of checks.

The Spend and Save accounts have a monthly fee structure that can cost you as little as $ 0. This is because Aspiration allows its customers to choose their own monthly fees, known as the “Pay What Is Fair” policy. When you open a Spend & Save account, you can choose whatever monthly fees you think are fair, with the option of paying nothing at all.

The Spend & Save Basic Plan pays a very competitive APY of 3.00% on the first $ 10,000 in your Save account each month, as long as you are able to meet certain requirements. You must spend at least $ 1,000 with your Spend account in a calendar month and have an open and active Aspiration Save account on the date interest is paid. Balances over $ 10,000 do not earn interest.

The basic plan also saves money for purchases made at certain merchants. Aspiration customers can earn 3-5% cash back for debit card purchases at its Conscience Coalition merchants, merchants “who put ‘doing the right thing’ at the heart of their business,” including most are certified B companies. On the Aspiration mobile app, the Aspiration Impact Measurement (AIM) feature shows the lasting impact of the places you shop.

As part of Aspiration’s commitment to green business practices, it ensures that customer deposits will never be used to finance fossil fuel exploration or production. You can also choose to round your purchases to the nearest dollar, with the rounding change helping to plant trees. Planting enough trees also earns additional cash rewards.

Suction Plus

For customers looking for a cash management account with even more income, there is Aspiration Plus. The subscription service add-on comes with a monthly fee of $ 7.99 ($ ​​5.99 / month if paid annually) and provides access to several additional benefits not included in the Basic Cash Management Account. Aspiration.

Aspiration Plus, for example, comes with enhanced interest income based on your balance and whether you’ve met monthly spending requirements. You can earn 5.00% APY on the first $ 10,000 of your Save account if you spend $ 1,000 or more on purchases each month and have an active and open Aspiration Save account. If you cannot meet these requirements in a given month, the interest rate drops to 0.25% APY on balances up to $ 10,000. You also earn 0.10% APY on the portion of the balance over $ 10,000.

Upgrading to Aspiration Plus increases your ability to earn money. You can earn 10% cash back on purchases made at member companies of the Conscience Coalition. While this is a very high cash back rate, keep in mind that it is only beneficial if you plan to make purchases from the program’s partner retailers. In addition to the same access to free ATMs, Aspiration Plus comes with reimbursement of off-grid ATM fees each month.

Other suction accounts and services

In addition to its cash management account, Aspiration also offers:

  • Credit card
  • Invest
  • Sustainable impact services

Aspiration investment and retirement accounts

Redwood Aspiration Fund. The Aspiration Redwood Fund is a fossil fuel-free mutual fund that invests exclusively in socially responsible companies. Aspiration takes into account three factors when choosing companies for the Redwood Fund:

  • Environment
  • Social
  • Governance (ESG)

Aspiration created the Redwood Fund to enable clients to build their portfolios through businesses focused on sustainability.

The Redwood Fund has a minimum initial investment requirement of $ 10, with additional investments as low as $ 1. There is no cap on the amount you can invest. UBS Asset Management manages the fund. The funds are subject to tax consequences which vary from investor to investor.

Sequoia IRA. Opening a Redwood IRA through Aspiration allows you to save for retirement while saving the planet. Similar to the Redwood Fund, its IRA invests in companies that promote sustainability. Aspiration only offers a traditional IRA. Contributions to a Redwood IRA may be fully or partially tax deductible. IRAs through Inspiration are subject to penalties and taxes if you decide to withdraw money early.

Access on the move

As an online financial company, Aspiration does not have any branches. Customers can rate their accounts online or through the popular Aspiration mobile app, available for iPhone (4.7 out of 5 stars on the App Store) and Android (rated 4.0 out of 5 stars on Google Play) . The app allows customers to deposit checks, pay bills, and send checks to friends and family.

Aspiration customers can also get support through the Aspiration customer service hotline, which is open seven days a week for your convenience. Support is live with a real person, not an automated system. There is also an option to send secure messages through the Aspiration website.

Advantages

  • Socially responsible company
  • Earn money
  • Very competitive APY on savings if you meet specific requirements
  • “Pay What’s Right” Fee Structure for Basic Membership
  • FDIC insurance up to $ 2.5 million

The inconvenients

  • Superior APY only available with a paid Aspiration Plus account
  • Higher cash back rewards only available with Aspiration Plus
  • Cash Back offers only apply to purchases at certain retailers
  • No cash deposits
  • The use of international debit cards is blocked in some countries

How suction is stacked

Aspiration presents a cash management model different from that of its competitors. You can earn high yield interest by meeting spending requirements, whether you have a basic account or opt for Aspiration Plus. Keep in mind that Aspiration Plus has a monthly fee, as do the basic Spend and Savings accounts if you decide to pay one with Pay What Is Fair. For people who care as much about sustainability as they care about their own future, Aspiration is a chance to invest in both.

The account has certain limitations which could be a hindrance for potential customers. There is no way to deposit money and you will have to use the paid Aspiration Plus account to get high cash back. And while the option of paying what you want with a Basic Aspiration account, even if it’s $ 0, is appealing, you can find other cash management accounts that bypass the monthly fee altogether.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the Aspiration card legitimate?

The Aspiration Debit Card is a real debit card that can be used online, in stores and at any Allpoint ATM without charge in the United States. International use is subject to an ATM fee and is not available in some countries.

Is Aspiration a Good Investment?

Aspiration can be a good choice for people who want to build savings, invest in their future, and support sustainability all in one place online. You can find better investing, retirement and banking solutions individually elsewhere or through another cash management account.

How does Aspiration cash back work?

Aspiration customers can earn up to 5% cash back on debit card purchases at retailers with a high Aspiration Impact Measurement (AIM) score, which Aspiration calls Consciousness. Coalition. Aspiration Plus members can earn up to 10% cash back for purchases made from Conscience Coalition members.

Can you find out with Aspiration?

Aspiration limits the processing of certain transactions if your funds are insufficient, including checks, ATM withdrawals, wire transfers, and debit card purchases. Aspiration does not charge a fee for accidental overdrafts.

Is FDIC suction insured?

Deposits held in an Aspiration Spend & Save account are FDIC insured up to $ 2.5 million through Aspiration’s 10 partner banks, which provide insurance up to $ 250,000 each.

Is Aspiration a real bank?

Aspiration is not a bank. It is a financial company that provides investment and cash management products and services. Aspiration partners with other banks to provide FDIC insurance for customer deposits.


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