Archives for July 2021

7 Tips for Retirement Saving After 40

By the time you turn 40, you are more than aware of the importance of saving for retirement.

In fact, it might seem like every magazine and personal finance website, and even chats with friends raise the issue. The problem is that some of the advice out there is less than helpful, and sometimes downright depressing, because it will tell you that you should have started saving in your 20s.

This can lead to a vicious cycle, in which (slightly) older people feel guilty for not planning sooner for retirement, and end up ignoring the issue.

This is a particular problem for women, because according to the U.S. Department of Labor, women are likely to work part-time jobs that don’t offer a retirement plan of some kind. And even if they are working full time, women tend to invest more conservatively than men. And unlike men, they tend to have about twenty years of retirement.

The truth, however, is that there are plenty of people who only start saving in their 40s, and go on to have a comfortable retirement. And, while you may have to make up for a little lost time by boosting your retirement savings, as long as you understand how to save for retirement it’s never too late to start planning for it.

Check out The Penny Hoarder’s ultimate guide to saving for retirement from your 20s to your 60s.

7-Point Plan for Over-40 Retirement Saving

In this guide, we’ll take you through a seven-point plan to start working toward a comfortable retirement, from setting your goals to structuring your accounts.

1. Don’t Lose Hope

First and foremost, let’s get one thing out of the way. At 40, or even at 50, it is not too late to start saving for retirement, no matter what some pension products will claim. To see why, it’s worth running the numbers.

Assume that you are 40 years old, and have no savings. At this age, in 2021, you can save up to $19,500 in a 401(k) plan, and this increases to $26,000 once you turn 50. If you are able to invest the maximum in this account, and get a (more than reasonable) 7% rate of return, by the time you are 63 you will have $1 million.

That’s a lot of money, of course, but when it comes to retirement savings it might be less than it seems. With $1 million, you’ll still have to live frugally in retirement. On the other hand, with a good chunk of capital like this, you’ll continue to see significant returns long into your retirement.

2. Planning to Save

Paying the maximum amount into a 401(k) might, of course, be easier said than done. Ultimately, your ability to save for retirement depends on the amount you can save each month during your working years. Increase this amount, even by a little a month, and you’ll see a big difference in your eventual retirement savings.

Increasing the amount you save can be done in several ways. It might be cutting out an expensive indulgence, shopping in a supermarket that offers better value, or even getting an additional job.

Today, there are plenty of online platforms that will allow you to explore freelance, remote work that can fit around your other commitments, and research shows that 75% of people working remotely make just as much money freelancing as they did when they were working full time. Taking on a second job, and pouring all of your earnings into a retirement fund, can be a neat and effective way of saving.

Looking for a second job to pad your retirement savings? Here is The Penny Hoarder list of the 25 best side hustles for 2021.

3. Open a Roth IRA

If you are in a position where you can save more than the maximum allowed amount in your 401(k), the next logical step is to take out a Roth IRA. These funds allow you to put extra money toward your retirement each year, and come with significant tax breaks. In fact, your contributions to a Roth IRA will grow tax-free, and you can withdraw a certain amount each year tax-free as well.

Roth IRAs are just one option at this point, though, and you should make sure you explore all the options available to you. You can use a retirement calculator to work out how much you will need in retirement, and how much you will need to save to realize this.

4. Make Sure You’re Insured

Many people forget about insurance when they are planning for retirement, but this is a big mistake. Most bankruptcies are caused by unexpected accidents or illnesses, and a disaster of this type can wreck the most carefully planned retirement plans.

In your 50s, it might be too late for whole life insurance to make financial sense. However, you can still reduce your financial risk by making sure you have the best health and disability insurance you can afford. You can also look at term life insurance, which will provide for your dependents should the worse happen.

5. Plan Your Risk

Don’t be tempted to take on extra risk because you feel that time is running out. Most retirement funds will pay about 7% in annual returns, and in your 40s this is an acceptable rate. Younger people can go for riskier options, because they have more time left in which to recover from the inevitable losses, but you really don’t want a stock crash just before your retirement date.

That’s not to say that you can’t get creative. Online trading can be relatively safe as long as you don’t put your entire retirement fund into high-risk stocks. An acceptable risk level when it comes to investing in stocks is to subtract your age from 120, with the resulting figure being the percentage of your portfolio that you invest into the stock market.

6. Pay Down Debt

Another often-forgotten aspect of saving for retirement is making sure that you are not carrying undue debt. Though credit and store cards can seem pretty inconsequential in comparison to the sums you are looking to save for retirement, most experts recommend that you pay off all your debts before you start to save.

The reason for that is the same reason why a small contribution to your pension can grow to $1 million in 20 years – the miracle of compound interest. And in fact this advice goes beyond saving for retirement, because getting into the habit of paying down debt is also one of the top money saving tips for a frugal retirement.

Check out how this Penny Hoarder writer paid down $12,000 in debt in 12 weeks.

7. Set Your Priorities

Last but definitely not least, be honest about what your retirement savings are for. Don’t be tempted to use them to send your kids to college, for instance, because ultimately your kids have more opportunities, and more time to save for their own retirement, than you do. You should, in other words, be a little selfish. When you’ve worked hard for your retirement savings, you should be able to enjoy them.

New York contributor Kiara Taylor specializes in financial literacy and financial technology subjects. She is a corporate financial analyst who also leads a group affiliated with the University of Cincinnati that teaches financial literacy to Black students and helps them secure employment and internships.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

Home-Based Social Media Agent Jobs with LiveWorld

Work at Home Mom Revolution - Work at Home Jobs for Moms

LiveWorld is hiring home-based social media agents in the U.S. These are part-time, hourly work at home positions. All applicants for these home-based social media agent positions must be fluent in English. From the company: “At LiveWorld, our social media agents provide social customer service, engagement for marketing purposes, adverse events management, and/or protection of […]

The post Home-Based Social Media Agent Jobs with LiveWorld appeared first on Work at Home Mom Revolution.

Use Sesame to See a Doctor for $25 — With or Without Insurance

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No wonder doctors get paid the big bucks – have you seen what they bill your insurance after a visit? $600 to listen to your lungs and peek into your ear canal is nuts.

If you have insurance, you might end up only paying a $50 copay. But if you have a high deductible, or no coverage at all, you could be stuck with a discounted rate of “only” $400. 

If you had known how much your visit would cost, you might have skipped your appointment, right? Having to choose between taking care of your body and going into debt just doesn’t seem right. 

The good news is you don’t have to choose. A website called Sesame makes it possible to save a ton of money on your doctor’s visit. You can find a doctor online — or in your area — and know exactly how much you’ll pay without involving insurance (hint: it’s going to cost you a lot less).

For as Little as $25, The Doctor Will See You Now

Sesame is an online marketplace that will help you find an in-person or online doctor or specialist and understand your costs up front. With no need for insurance, you can see a doctor for as low as $25 and get medications delivered to you for only $5.

By cutting out the insurance middleman, Sesame can help people save an average of 60% when they go to the doctor. Having to choose between medical debt and your health isn’t a problem anymore. 

Do you need to see a general practitioner? How about a dentist, dermatologist or psychiatrist? Whatever kind of care you need, you can find a doctor to see today and only pay an affordable out-of-pocket price. 

It’s a great option for freelancers, business owners, people with high deductibles and especially the uninsured. 

Find a Doctor (And Know Their Prices) in Minutes

If you need to see a doctor, Sesame makes it easy to get to them. Follow this link to see who is available today and how much it will cost you — standard appointments are between $30 and $60. 

Select a doctor and choose a time to see them. Fill out your name, phone number and credit card information to pay and book. You don’t even need to create an account and your information is protected by the most trusted third-party payment processing platform in the world. 

Sesame doesn’t take insurance, but you can pay for your visit with your HSA or FSA. If your insurance has out-of-network benefits, you can submit your receipt for reimbursement. 

So, are you ready to take better care of yourself without shelling out hundreds of dollars? Book your first appointment on Sesame and use code TPH15 to save 15% on your first appointment.

Kari Faber is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. She’s still paying off the most expensive doctor’s bill for a bad case of diaper rash. 

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

How to Approach Your Landlord If You Can’t Pay Rent Next Month

If you’ve been out of work and can’t pay rent, the end of the federal moratorium on evictions is guaranteed to dredge up a ton of stress. But now’s not the time to bury your head in the sand.

By exercising your negotiation muscle, you may be able to strike a deal with your landlord that prevents the worst-case scenario: getting kicked out of your home.

Negotiating a Deal With Your Landlord If You Can’t Pay Rent

When you think you can’t pay rent for the upcoming month, it’s best to talk to your landlord sooner rather than later. Even if you’ve been letting late payment notices stack up, coming to a fair agreement with your landlord can help alleviate some of that financial stress.

Here’s what you should do.

First, Know Your Rights

Matt Koz, finance director for the Tenant Resource Center in Madison, Wisc., recommends that renters do their due diligence to research the eviction laws in their area and see if their city, county or state has a moratorium on eviction proceedings during the pandemic.

There may be an eviction moratorium in your local area that extends past the federal moratorium. For example, New York City’s rental eviction moratorium is in place through the end of August.

Pro Tip

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development has a page on its website with crucial housing information for each state.

Being educated about the tenant laws in your state doesn’t just give peace of mind about whether or not your landlord can evict you during this crisis. It can also help you decide how to best proceed when reaching out to your landlord.

For example, Koz said there could be laws where you live that make it disadvantageous to pay partial rent, if you were thinking of suggesting that to your landlord.

“In some cases, it may be better not to offer terms and wait to see what recourse is available to you,” he said.

Approach Your Landlord with Empathy

You may just think of your landlord as a faceless entity that takes the biggest single chunk of your money every month. But a little kindness can go a long way.

“Lead with empathy,” advises Michael Thomas, an accredited financial counselor and faculty member at the University of Georgia. “It’s very easy to become self-absorbed when we’re experiencing a financial shock.”

He says taking the time out to ask how your landlord is doing and working to establish a relationship can make them more willing to work with you. Understanding where each person is coming from can lead to a resolution that’s best for both parties.

Provide Realistic Solutions

Offering up a solution to your situation can show your willingness to work with your landlord.

You might propose to make a partial payment with a promise to pay the remainder of the rent by a certain date. If you don’t know when you’d be able to make the remaining payment, Koz said it’s reasonable to make an agreement based upon a specific occurrence.

For example, you might ask if you can pay the remainder once your kids’ school starts and you can pick up more hours at work.

Instead of suggesting a partial payment, you could ask to skip paying for one month and spread that payment over the remainder of your lease if you think you’ll be able to pay the following month. Or you could negotiate for an overall reduction in rent given that you sign a new lease locking you in for a longer term.

Another option: Ask your landlord to apply your security deposit to the upcoming rent payment, agreeing to replace it at a later date. Or if you paid your last month’s rent upfront when you first signed your lease, you could ask to apply that money to next month’s rent.

Pro Tip

When trying to come up with a rent solution for the upcoming month, make sure you’re not creating a worse financial situation for yourself later on.

Something else you might consider is bartering. For example, you could agree to do landscape work for your landlord’s properties in exchange for a break on rent.

When trying to strike a deal, Thomas suggests coming up with at least three plausible solutions that work for your budget.

“Go with your best-case scenario first,” he said.

If your landlord won’t agree to that, ask for their input on mitigating the situation before presenting your other options.

Get Agreements in Writing

If you and your landlord are able to agree on an alternative plan for paying rent, make sure to get that deal in writing.

“If [your landlord] were to come back and say we didn’t agree to that, [you can say]: Actually we did and here’s proof,” said Pamela Capalad, a New York-based Certified Financial Planner and founder of Brunch and Budget.

Putting things in writing also helps eliminate misinterpretations of your agreement, she said.

However, when signing a lease addendum or other paperwork, don’t rush into a contract with terms you don’t understand.

“If you’re not sure what you’re signing, you can always try to contact a tenants rights organization or an attorney,” Koz said. “Whatever you sign is something that you’re held to. If you don’t meet the terms of that agreement, you’re back where you started.”

Pro Tip

Local legal aid organizations or pro bono lawyers may provide free counsel to low-income individuals.

Remember, You’re Not Alone

You may experience shame over not paying rent or fear over potentially losing your home, but try not to let that lead you to making drastic decisions.

“The thing I would recommend, if you can avoid it, is to not take out loans to pay rent,” Capalad said.

It can be comforting to put things in perspective and realize you’re not the only one who can’t pay your rent right now, she said.

4 Additional Solutions If You Can’t Pay Rent

In the event that your landlord won’t budge on requiring you to pay your rent in full, it’s good to have a backup plan. Here are a few ideas.

1. Seek Housing Assistance

Look into local housing assistance or eviction prevention programs for emergency funding to help keep you in your home.

The United Way’s 211 network is a great way to connect to resources in your community. Other charities, like Modest Needs, may also be able to help. Your landlord may even know of housing assistance options in your area.

2. Bring In a Roommate

If you can find a good roommate, you can split housing expenses and lower your financial obligation. Just make sure you properly vet the potential roommate and your landlord approves of the new tenant.

Subleasing your place could be another route to take, provided your landlord allows it and you have somewhere else you can crash in the meantime.

3. Sell Something

Make some extra dough by selling unwanted items around your home. Put that money toward the rent.

You can even make sales while practicing social distancing. Check out these 14 websites for selling things online.

4. Get Another Gig

Get money for rent by landing a new job — or securing a second source of income.

Consider a side gig, like a food delivery driver or a pet sitter, where you’re paid based on how much work you take on. These jobs often pay faster than traditional jobs that run on a biweekly schedule.

Need some money now? Here are 35 ways to make money fast.

Many retailers and restaurants are hiring to make up for a shortage of workers. Some are even offering sweet sign-on bonuses.

Now is also a great time to find a job where you can work remotely. There are several gigs that are perfect for doing virtually, like freelance writing. Check out The Penny Hoarder’s work-from-home job portal for new job opportunities posted every weekday.

Feeling overwhelmed? Create a budget that works for you with our budgeting bootcamp!

Nicole Dow is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

Make Money – The Penny Hoarder 2021-08-09 10:00:12

It’s tough to make any meaningful return on your savings right now.

But you probably already knew that.

Interest rates for bank savings accounts — you do have a savings account, right? — have been notoriously low for years. Don’t expect these low rates to change anytime soon, either: In a recent statement, the Federal Reserve announced plans to keep interest rates low until certain economic conditions have been reached.

At this moment, the average interest rates paid on checking and savings accounts are 0.15% and 0.73%, according to BankAround. And the biggest banks often offer worse rates. In fact, if you put $5,000 in a regular Bank of America savings account (0.01%), in a year, you’ll only have collected 50 cents in interest.

So, what are your options for making more money on your money?

Check Out High-Yield Savings Accounts

High-yield or high-interest savings accounts are a vehicle for you to save money you don’t use for everyday expenses. For example, you might open this type of account to build an emergency fund. In exchange for not using this account often — and typically saving a good amount in it — you’re rewarded with a higher interest rate.

This isn’t your regular ol’ savings account that earns pennies on the dollar. While the average savings account has a 0.06% interest rate, per the FDIC, you can expect to earn more with a high-yield savings account. Sometimes up to 25x more.

Now, rates aren’t bonkers-good like they were just a couple years ago. In 2019, an account with My Savings Direct, an online banking division of Emigrant Bank, earned a cool 1.25% annual percentage yield (APY). That rate is now 0.25%.

But hey, more money is more money.

What to Consider When Looking for a High-Yield Savings Accounts

While you’ll bring in more than you would in a traditional account, you’ll often need to adhere to strict guidelines. So keep that in mind before you sign up.

For instance, you may experience the following:

  • A required opening deposit.
  • A minimum required balance at all times.
  • A cap on how often you can move money out of the account.
  • Monthly maintenance fees.
  • Fees for going over the allotted amount of withdrawals a month.
  • A high interest rate — but only for X months or Y years for a certain amount of money AND if you follow all the rules. A particular rate may only be available for new account holders, too.

With that said, these accounts are a great way to earn more on money you don’t plan on touching for sometime — just read the fine print (and maybe brush up on your organizational skills) first.

How to Open a High-Yield Savings Account

Typically, the same rules will apply as for opening any other type of bank account. You’ll likely need to be at least 18 years old and need identification, for example. Pretty standard stuff.

You have options on where to open a high-yield savings account, too. They can be found at traditional brick-and-mortar institutions, credit unions and online-only banks. In fact, the latter may offer you higher interest rates since there’s less overhead (i.e. no physical location to pay bills for, so the savings get passed on to you). The interest rate may vary depending on where you live.

Bonus: Many companies offer various banking products (loans, checking, etc.), too. So if you want additional services on top of a high-yield savings account, you’re in luck.

Our Criteria for Finding the Top High-Yield Savings Accounts for You

We looked at accounts that offered a high APY by today’s standards — that means around the 0.50% interest-rate-mark — and low (or no) fees. We included a variety of online-only and big-name accounts to choose from as well.

You don’t have to transfer all your banking needs to an institution that offers a high-interest account. You can hang on to your primary bank and have a separate, high-earning savings account elsewhere. But note: Some accounts may require you to open other products with them, so keep that in mind.

The 5 Best High-Yield Savings Accounts

Of course, “the best account” will be determined by your individual wants and needs. If you’re highly organized, a stricter but high-paying account could be a good option. And if you’re more of a “set it and forget it” type of person, another one on the list might better suit you.

Here are some of our favorite accounts right now.

1. Axos Bank: A High, High-Interest Account

Axos Bank offers an FDIC-insured, high-yield online savings account. You can earn up to 0.61% APY on your money. Here’s the lowdown:

  • You need $250 to open an account.
  • You can live anywhere in the U.S. (another bonus — you’re not tied to any one location).
  • You can earn up to 0.61% APY on accounts with $0 to $24,999.99 in it (and then it dips to 0.25%)
  • You can get a free ATM card upon request.
  • A big one: No monthly balance requirements or maintenance fees.
  • Axos offers other banking products, such as rewards checking (with a 1.25% APY!), business CDs, small business banking services,commercial lending and more.

Axos is a digital-only bank, so if you prefer a physical branch, see what’s available at the big banks and your local credit union.

2. CIT Bank: Low Opening Deposit to Get Started and No Monthly Fees

CIT Bank is another online financial institution. It offers an FDIC-insured Savings Builder account where you can earn up to 0.40% APY. Here’s what you need to know:

  • You only need a $100 minimum opening deposit.
  • It’s a digital bank you can access anywhere online.
  • You can earn up to 0.40% APY by maintaining a balance of $25,000 or more — or, by making a monthly deposit of $100.
  • No maintenance fees.
  • CIT also offers CDs, money market accounts and more.

You can also make six money moves in this account per statement cycle, which is the industry standard.

3. Citi: A Familiar Name with a Top Rate

Citi or Citibank (not to be confused with CIT Bank) is prominent in major cities such as New York City and Chicago. The over 200-year-old financial services group offers an Accelerate High-Yield Savings account. Here’s the lowdown:

  • There’s no minimum to open the account.
  • This account is available in most states and in select markets.
  • You can earn 0.50% APY on your money with no limit on how much you can earn.
  • You’ll pay a monthly fee of $4.50 unless certain requirements are met.
  • Citi also offers basic checking and savings accounts, CDs, home lending, IRAs and more.

There are several accounts listed under the Accelerate High-Yield Savings umbrella — from the Citi Elevate Account Package to the Citibank Account package — with slightly different fees and requirements. However, they all share a 0.50% APY.

Worth pointing out: You can only open this high-yield account within an “account package.” This means you can’t have it as a standalone and will need to open another Citi account.

4. PenFed Credit Union: Membership With Benefits

If you prefer to bank with credit unions, PenFed’s Premium Online Savings account could be a good choice for you. This account is federally insured up to $250K by the National Credit Union Administration, or NCUA (basically the FDIC for credit unions). Here’s what else you need to know:

  • You only need $5 to open the account.
  • There aren’t branches in all 50 states, but there are over 85,000 ATMs and anyone in the U.S. can apply for membership (which you need in order to get this account) and access it online.
  • You can earn 0.45% APY.
  • No monthly maintenance fee.
  • PenFed also offers auto loans, credit cards and more.

Contrary to some information online, you do not need to be a member of the military to join.

If you’re comfortable banking largely online and want to take advantage of other member benefits from discounts on home security to flower delivery, check out PenFed Credit Union.

5. Marcus by Goldman Sachs: Best for Those Who Don’t Want to Touch Their Money and Watch it Grow

Goldman Sachs is a well-known name in financial services. And the bank also offers a solid high-yield savings account known as Marcus (fun fact: Marcus Goldman founded the company). Here’s the deal:

  • You don’t need a minimum opening deposit.
  • The account is open to U.S. residents and easily accessible online or via the Marcus mobile app on the Apple and Google Play stores.
  • You can earn a competitive rate of 0.50%.
  • No monthly fees.
  • Marcus also offers debt consolidation and home improvement loans, the opportunity to manage investment portfolios and more.

With this service, you’ll need to fund it with an external account, mail a check, set up a wire or establish direct deposit. Marcus by Goldman Sachs is a solid account if you’re looking for a recognized leader that won’t ding you with extraneous fees.

Here’s a breakdown of these high-yield savings accounts.

Bank or Financial Institution Minimum to Open Account APY Other Fees
Axos Bank $250 0.61% No monthly balance requirements or maintenance fees.
CIT Bank $100 Up to 0.40% No monthly maintenance fee. You must have a minimum balance of $25K or a $100 monthly deposit to earn the 0.40% APY.
Citi Bank None 0.50% You'll pay a monthly fee of $4.50 (and up, depending on the account type) unless certain qualifications are met.
PenFed Credit Union $5 0.45% No monthly maintenance fee.
Marcus by Goldman Sachs None 0.50% No monthly maintenance fee.

Overall, while these types of accounts don’t pull in the rates like they used to, they’re still a worthwhile avenue to store and safely grow your money.

young woman checking accounts on tablet

Additional High-Interest-Earning Accounts That Can Help You Make More Money

On top of high-yield savings accounts, we found two other types of accounts that will help you bring in more money: rewards checking and debit-card-linked savings accounts.

You’ll need to meet a few requirements to qualify for these rates as well, but they’ll still give you more bang for your buck.

Rewards Checking Accounts

Rewards checking accounts pay higher interest rates (usually between 1.5%-4%) on your money up to a certain amount. For example, a bank or credit union might offer a 2% APY on accounts capped at $15,000.

Even though they pay higher interest rates, you usually won’t find rewards checking accounts on a typical list of the best checking accounts. They’re in a category of their own, and you can’t simply deposit your money and forget about it; these accounts require a little work and organization.

To take advantage of rewards checking accounts, you might be required to do any of the following:

  • Have a minimum deposit to open the account.
  • Keep a required minimum balance at all times.
  • Pay a monthly maintenance fee.
  • Hit a certain number of regular deposits or ACH transactions.
  • Make a fixed number of debit card purchases per month.
  • Opt into e-statements (paperless statements) or other agreements.

Your interest rates may fluctuate or plateau depending on the amount in your account, as well. But the maximum APY can be pretty significant — more than the current 0.03% average rate for checking accounts in 2021, anyway — so these accounts may be worth it.

For example, Solvay Bank in upstate New York offers 4% APY for its high-interest checking account. Here’s the deal:

  • You must be a new customer.
  • You must live in specified counties in the State of New York.
  • You earn this rate for only 12 months.
  • This rate is available on balances up to $15,000.

You must also follow certain guidelines during each monthly statement cycle:

  • Enroll in and receive e-statements.
  • Have at least one direct deposit or ACH transaction.
  • Make at least 12 debit card purchases.

A minimum deposit of $15 is required, and there’s a $5 monthly maintenance fee for the account, though it can be waived.

It’s easy enough to click the button to enroll in e-statements, and once you set up direct deposit for your paycheck, it’s automatic. If you follow the rules, you can earn a cool $200 a year on a $5,000 balance.

Another example is Guardian Credit Union in Alabama, which offers 4% APY — on balances up to $30K. To qualify for the Guardian Ultimate Checking account, you’ll need to:

  • Live, worship, go to school in or be retired or active Alabama Army or Air National Guard personnel in specified counties in Alabama.
  • Have 15 posted “swipes” (purchases) a month.
  • Enroll in e-statements.
  • Have a minimum payroll deposit of $500 a month.

If you don’t meet the requirements (check the website for all of them), you won’t receive the perk — and you’ll also be hit with a $10 fee.

You can find a list of rewards checking accounts in your state along with current interest rates here.

Savings Accounts Linked to Prepaid Debit Cards

A prepaid debit card allows you to load money onto a card without needing a bank account. It can be a helpful budgeting or learning tool (some parents get them for their kids). Others may prefer using this financial service over a traditional bank account. However, these cards typically come with their own set of rules and fees.

Some prepaid debit cards come with savings accounts. Mango Financial is one such example — and you can earn up to 6.00% APY with Mango Savings.

Here’s an overview of how it works:

  • First, you need to activate and load your Mango debit card.
  • Then, you can open a savings account with $25.
  • To qualify for the 6.00% APY, you’ll need signature purchases of $1,500 or more and a minimum balance of $25 at the end of the month.

Cardholders are entitled to up to six transfers each month. Also, you can only have one savings account with Mango. You can view a list of fees (for balance inquiries and ATM withdrawals, etc.) here.

Netspend is another prepaid debit card with a savings account option. You’ll have to load the card account and then transfer the money to the savings account. From there:

  • You can earn up to 5.00% APY on $1,000 or less (the APY drops to 0.50% on any higher amount).
  • You can set up an auto-save function to transfer money every time you load your Netspend card account with funds.
  • You can transfer money from your savings account to your card up to six times per month.

Again, you want to be mindful of associated fees.

Frequently Asked Questions about High-Yield Savings Accounts

1. Can You Lose Money in a High-Yield Savings Account?

No. As long as your money is in an FDIC-insured high-yield savings account, it’s safe.

2. Are High-Yield Savings Accounts Worth It?

If you’re looking to save money and have semi-flexible access to it, all while earning a little more interest on it, then yes, a high-yield savings account is worth it. These accounts are ideal places to store an emergency fund, for example — a place where you can safely grow your money, yet access it (typically, via a debit card or transfer it to another bank account) relatively quickly when needed.

3. Where Can I Get 5% Interest on My Money?

High interest rates are harder to come by these days. Rates tend to fall between 0.10% and 1.00% APY. Your mileage — depending on where you live and how much you can put in a high-yield savings account — may vary. If you have a lot of money saved and are open to online-only high-yield savings accounts, then you might get more bang for your buck.

If you’re looking to make more on your money regardless of the account type, check out rewards checking accounts and savings accounts linked to prepaid debit cards for more options.

4. Which Bank Has the Highest Yield Savings Account?

Axos Bank, an online-only institution, offers a solid 0.61% APY. Another online bank, CIT Bank, has a 0.40% APY. If you’re looking for a more traditional, big-name bank, Citi offers 0.50% APY on your money.

Rates can change, so look around every now and then to see the latest, highest offers.

Earn More Interest on Your Accounts

Of course, it can be tricky to keep track of numerous accounts and their requirements (and to avoid fees). But, that’s just the way it is in this low-interest-rate environment.

Pro Tip

Start with the accounts that have simple requirements and options for avoiding all fees.

You have to exercise your organizational skills to make some extra money on your high-yield savings accounts. But the end results can be worth it.

The Penny Hoarder Shop is always stocked with great deals, including technology, subscriptions, courses, kitchenware and more. Check it out today.

Steve Gillman and Kathleen Garvin are contributors to The Penny Hoarder.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, which helps millions of readers worldwide earn and save money by sharing unique job opportunities, personal stories, freebies and more. The Inc. 5000 ranked The Penny Hoarder as the fastest-growing private media company in the U.S. in 2017.

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