Over four MILLION dollars – Isn’t that crazy?? From just linking up our accounts w/ Digit and literally doing nothing else?
Either we all suck with our money or we’re incredibly brilliant ;) And I’m going to go with the latter – hah.
It’s been a while since I’ve updated y’all on my savings with them, but after seeing this note from the founder I couldn’t help jump in and start writing. He had their tech guys track all the referrals attached to my name the past two years to see how much everyone’s saved in aggregate, and to say we were both surprised is an understatement. Not that we didn’t believe it, it’s a killer app!, but it’s just so wild to see how fast money can add up like that over the years. And even crazier to wonder about where it would have all gone had it *not* been saved??
Anyways, in my original review two years ago I stated “this is going to be big,” and I’m proud to say that for once I was right :) They’ve gone from 0 people saving $0.00 to GOBS of people saving over $350 million (!!!). That’s a lot of freakin’ savings.
Here’s a snapshot of my own accumulations so far:
This is after 24 months, and on top of everything else I’ve saved/invested over the years. So it’s not just for people who need help with saving money – it can be a great side pot too! One year I used it to help max out my Roth IRA :)
Here’s a look of the progression over time:
- Savings after month #1: $199.04
- Savings after month #3: $750.37
- Savings after month #7: $1,398.84
- Savings after month #12: $2,628.20
- Savings after month #15: $3,284.70
- Savings after month #18: $4,495.83
- Savings after month #21: $6,733.72
- Savings after month #24: $8,266.49
Perhaps what I like the most though is logging into my account and always seeing the $$$ go UP!! Unlike other accounts, haha… Even with the beloved Mints and Personal Capitals you never know what you’re going to see, and even then you still have to *take action* as they don’t do anything for you!
So What is This Digit Thing?
In a nutshell, it’s an app that analyzes your checking account, and then moves over small amounts of money every few days that it knows you won’t miss right into savings for you. Thereby helping you automatically save without having to lift a finger.
You can check them out here: Digit.co
Interactions with them are all through text messaging, and you’re able to check the balances of your savings anytime you want, as well as the balance of your *checking account* at all times (I actually have it set up for them to text me every morning so I always know what it is!), and a whole bunch of other things. Like speeding up the rate they save for you, or slowing it down, pausing it, getting recent bank transactions, and even one-time pushes when you want to save extra, say if you just saved $5.00 using a coupon somewhere and want to quickly FOR REAL save it ;)
You also have the option to withdraw your savings anytime you want via text ‘cuz IT’S ALL YOUR MONEY!, though hopefully you apply it to something *good* or else all that saving was for nothing.
Every now and then they surprise you with random gifs too:
(Note: You miss out on the gif goodness if you rock Republic Wireless like me, *tear*)
It’s all stored in an FDIC insured account, and the security and everything else involved with it are maxed for ultimate protection. Because obviously giving a robot access to your banking doesn’t come without concerns :)
So that’s it, really! I’ve been using them for two years straight now and have saved way more than I would have otherwise.
Jay, You Seem Biased? What’s The Deal?
Hell yeah I’m biased! And not just because I’m on their board of advisors now either (true story: I was asked to be on their board of advisors when they found out how obsessed I was with them :)).
I genuinely think what they’re doing is helping out so many people. Not everyone of course, they certainly have their list of haters (see below), but for those who *do* end up using them it’s like a world of a difference. And mainly because it takes the action right out of their hands because what most people *say* they’re going to do, and what they *actually* do are usually quite different. Digit was set up to help these people connect their wants with their doings.
Here’s a message I got from a “Lynn R” about her experience so far with ’em:
“I signed up for Digit several months ago and love it! I’m working in Japan and had trouble signing up with my Japanese cell phone number. They were quick to respond to my emails and helped me get set up. So far, I’ve saved over $1,200 without trying and didn’t even feel it! Even though I know I can withdraw money at any time, it’s easier for me to leave it in there since it’s separate from my normal checking and savings account with Navy Federal. For the first time in my life, I feel like I have the ability to build up an emergency fund. Oh, and I’m able to see my Digit balance in Mint just fine! I had no problem connecting the accounts.”
I get emails like this every single month. It’s awesome.
Okay I Get It, On With The Cons Please!
Okay, so the cons? There are a few of them, but actually a much smaller list than when I first reviewed them two years ago as they’ve been busy upgrading. Let’s start with that list first:
Old Con: Digit didn’t pay you any interest on your money. This was by far the biggest concern people had, though it was also pretty ironic that missing out on *pennies* were more important than actually SAVING HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS, haha… But hey, that’s the way our brains work :)
The fix: They started implementing “Savings Bonuses.” Every 3 months you will automatically receive a 0.20% bonus in your account based on your average balance over the last 3 months. It won’t make you rich of course, but at least now you don’t have to feel bad about “not getting any interest” any more!
The Con: They didn’t actually have any apps – it was all web and text based.
The Fix: They got apps! For both iPhone and Android now (*bows in thanks*)
The Con: They don’t work with every single bank in the U.S. or internationally – not even Canada.
The Fix: Oh wait… that’s still a problem (Come on guys!!! The world is waiting! ;))
Other Cons/Questions/Things to Consider:
Here’s a smattering of everything else I can think of before wrapping up…
You have to give out access to your checking account. No way around that if you want them to pull out money for you to save. They do have protections around it all, but if you’re uncomfortable with this – just like any other apps or services where this is required — then Digit is definitely not for you.
You have to be okay with them literally taking out your money for you and putting it elsewhere. It’s really weird in the beginning, not going to lie, and takes some getting used to. Once you learn that the robots don’t take off and never return though, you start feeling better about it all :)
***You have to have money to be saved!!!*** If there’s no money in your account, ain’t no one going to be able to help you out. No money = no savings.
It takes a business day to withdraw your savings. You text in “withdraw $100” and you have to wait a full biz day to see that $100 show back up in your checking account.
It’s TOO automated and might make you even lazier. But to which I always reply, what’s better: being lazy with no money or being lazy WITH money? :) But in all seriousness, yes – it’s always good to be *conscious* of where your money is at all time whether you’ve automated things or manually move things around yourself. Just like anything else you automate in your finances (bill pay, savings, investments) you need to have an eye on it all.
Digit is FREE to use.
Digit has a “no-overdraft guarantee” that will reimburse you if they ever bounce your account by accident. (Something they are VERY careful of, and constantly monitoring/tweaking their algorithms to make sure this is not a problem).
You can also do what I do and set a threshold for them to STOP pulling money from once it hits a certain amount – again, all via texting. I have mine at $1,000 which tells them to never go below that whenever my checking account hits $1,000 (I like always having a padding in there. And I know for others there’s sometimes a bare minimum you need to keep in your account so your bank doesn’t fine you (those bastards))
You don’t have to set up any accounts of your own – they automatically set up (and manage) your new account for you for all your savings. (This is how they make their money)
All savings are FDIC insured up to $250,000.
All personal info is anonymized, encrypted and securely stored using state of the art security measures.
Okay – Anything Else, Lay It on Me :)
In summary, Digit can save you a butt ton of money and is perfect for anyone really struggling to find a good way of doing so, as well as those others (like me) who are good at saving but want to amplify it even more. They are not for everyone – especially those who want to be 100% in control – and they don’t work with every bank or around the world (yet).
But I will tell you this. The savings part is only the beginning. Imagine once they move on to other things like bill pay or crushing debt or even investing for you? And the ability to have it all automated AND optimized??
I can’t go into it much more than that, but let’s just say I still stand firm with my original statement that they are “going to be big” :) And it’s a pretty cool thing to see when it means millions of people will be effected in a positive way like that.
If you want to try Digit out, you can do so here: Digit.co
Now where all my Digit users at? Let us know how much you’ve personally saved so far, and what you’ve been able to do with it! (Or tell us if you now hate it – it all helps future readers :))
Yes, all links here are my refer-a-friend links which means I’ll get paid $5.00 for anyone who signs up to it through this blog.. Of which I will then owe you one beverage of your choice in the event we ever meet up in real-life :) But seriously – only sign up if you think it could help you! Never try something you’re uncomfortable with just because someone on the internet said it was a good idea.