Category: Lifestyle

pokemoven minimal

Pokémon Go, A/R & The Emergence of Context

Lifestyle

If the #twittersphere is to be believed, the hottest thing on the planet right now is Pokémon Go. For those of you not familiar with PG, it is a new game that merges geo-location, augmented reality and behavioral gamification to engage users in a unique game environment. There are reports of people walking miles to play the game and find more Pokémon. There are reports of people leaving home at 3am in the morning to find Pokémon. There are even people suggesting that this game brought their family together or got them out of their house for the first time in days or weeks. This thing is blowing up!

Picture1

Pokémon Go utilizes a technology called Augmented Reality. A/R allows them to overlay graphics or data over our ‘real-world view’ through a camera or similar instrument thus ‘augmenting’ your physical environment. In the game you will see a Pokémon identified as a small icon on your game map, when you click on it your camera fires up and you see the Pokémon projected into your field of view, where you have to trap it with a ball by tossing it at the Pokémon on your screen.

Picture2

The Pokemon phenomenon is showing us a small glimpse of what life will be like over the next 10-15 years as Augmented reality starts to enhance our world. The lines between gaming, entertainment and the real world will change. We will start to see the digital and virtual worlds merge.

Picture3

What does this mean for fintech?

 

In this new world, the way you manage your financial health will go through a radical shift. Context will become the single most important element of your day-to-day financial health. No one will budget, but they will have their financial behavior ‘gamified’ every day. The way good banks and financial partners will work is that they will engage you with tools like augmented reality, social engagement and behavioral psychology, to help you understand the choices you make every day. Was that last restaurant you visited good or bad for your financial health? Where should you eat or shop to ensure you save money this month? When are the days you spend the most, and why?

 

Offering you a higher savings interest rate might sound like a good deal if you live in the 20th century, but it doesn’t actually help you save MORE money. The only way to do that is to change your behavior. Reduce what you spend every day, understand how to change your behavior to save, understand the best times to save, etc. The tools we have through mobile, augmented reality, geo-location and other such technologies that operate in real-time to provide you with context and help you modify your behavior are the future of your financial health.

 

Pokémon Go isn’t a banking app, but it does give us a glimpse into how very different the world of banking, investment and financial advice will be in 10 year’s time, and why banking is no longer a place you go, but something you do – on your phone.

 

Welcome to Moven

Smartphone

How the Smartphone Revolutionized Personal Finance

LifestyleSpending

The smartphone revolution is about much more than putting mobile devices into the pockets of people all over the world. It’s largely about giving people access to apps that they can use to simplify their lives.

Through mobile apps, people have taken charge of their personal finances like never before. Consider these three ways that your smartphone can help you take control of your spending:

1. Smartphone Apps Making Banking Easy

According to research from the Pew Research Center, about 57 percent of smartphone owners use their devices for online banking. Apps that connect people to their bank accounts give them more control over their money than traditional bank accounts and paper checks.

Some of the top features to look for in banking apps include options that let you:

  • Pay for purchases with your phone
  • Link all of your accounts to one location
  • Access your account at any time
  • Receive notifications to avoid overdraft fees
  • Deposit checks remotely

Plus, you can track your spending. If you work freelance, then you can use the app to organize your business expenses. That feature comes in handy when you’re figuring out how much you can deduct on your tax forms.

2. Smartphone Apps Encourage Smart Spending

Managing your personal finances isn’t just about accessing your money. It’s also about spending money in smart ways.
Smartphones have become essential for commuters who want to spend as little money as possible, and the Uber app is a perfect example. When you compare the price of using Uber with the price of using a traditional taxi, it becomes obvious that Uber helps you spend less, especially since you don’t tip Uber drivers. In Los Angeles, a five-mile taxi ride costs $19.62 after tip. Using Uber lowers the price to just $9.40.

The effect on “millennials,” or those reaching adulthood around the year 2000, is huge. The myth is that millennials waste money by buying products and services via their smartphones. The truth is that using a smartphone is a responsible way to manage money, spend mindfully and comparison shop to always get the best prices.

3. Improve Productivity to Make More Money

Some smartphone apps can help you make more money, especially if you work freelance or have a job that pays bonuses for meeting goals. Adding a productivity app to your phone can help ensure that you make enough money to finance your lifestyle while you save for the future.
Some useful apps include:

The new financial landscape is all about putting you in control of your money. When you make your smartphone a central part of your financial plan, it will reward you.

Sources:

http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/04/01/us-smartphone-use-in-2015/

https://www.moven.com/

http://www.businessinsider.com/uber-vs-taxi-pricing-by-city-2014-10

Freelancing

Finding Financial Services to Fit a Freelance Lifestyle

FinancesLifestyle

Just as you think, dress and speak differently from previous generations, chances are you also earn your living differently. More and more people are bringing home the bacon by working freelance jobs in addition to their primary occupation to help make ends meet or to build up savings. Whether you’re a freelancer, an Uber driver, a dog walker or all of the above, if your income is coming from multiple sources, managing those streams can quickly become a complicated mess. Thankfully, there are many tools out there now to help you navigate your finances with ease so that your budgeting stays on track. What’s left up to you is figuring out which option fits you and your lifestyle best!

Web Management

Accounting websites such as Bill.com are fantastic tools for those with multiple income streams. They allow you to receive all your money in one place, organized according to who paid you and when. This is especially helpful when tax season rolls around so that you don’t have to go back through a year’s worth of bank statements to figure out how much you received and where it came from! The money goes straight into your PayPal account, it’s all itemized for you, and you can even write electronic invoices to send to customers. Easy, right? The great part is that Bill.com offers these services for free; you pay a monthly fee only to upgrade to an account that allows you to receive credit card payments or to have payments go directly to your bank account.

Take Advantage of Free Checking

Does your bank offer free checking accounts? Take advantage of it! Sometimes adding a second checking account can make navigating your finances that much easier. Have all of your income deposited into your primary account and pay your monthly bills out of it, then transfer money to a secondary account for your weekly expenses (gas, food, spending, etc.). Not only does this help you budget better, but it also brings a good degree of order to your accounts. This will make it easy to see all your revenue streams when you look at your bank statement, as your weekly debits won’t be cluttering up your main account ledger. If your bank doesn’t offer free checking, you may want to think about shopping around for a new bank. There are plenty of banks out there that offer free checking, and there’s no reason to pay for something when you don’t have to.

There’s an App for That

It’s true that there’s an app for everything nowadays, and money management is no exception! Many of these apps are free or inexpensive, but they’re invaluable when it comes to getting control of your finances. BillGuard is a great free app that allows you to link your bank accounts directly so that your transactions are automatically imported into the app, then sorted for you. This saves you the hassle of having to input information every time you swipe your debit card. It also shows all your deposits, so you can itemize your income sources easily. Getting your hands on an app that syncs up all your financial info, sorts it for you, and even helps you create a budget is one of the best moves you can make as a freelancer. You’re essentially pooling all your revenue streams into one app, where you can see everything at a glance and make changes as you need.

Whether you’re just getting started with managing multiple income streams or simply trying to find a better way of handling your complex finances, try one of these methods to help you gain control of your money. You may love one method or you can create your own combination; budgeting is all about finding what works for you and sticking with it!

 


 

Want to hear more? Tune in to our livestream with the Freelancers Union and General Assembly today (Wed, March 30th) at 2:00pm EST!

Living big on a budget

Living the 1% life on a 99% budget

LifestyleSpending

With New Advances in Technology, Luxury Services are Just a Click Away

We live in an incredible time where luxury goods and services once reserved for the elite are available at the push of a button. Apps like Uber, BlueApron, and AirBnB offer anyone with a smartphone and a little extra cash the chance feel like a VIP on a budget. With sleek design, reasonable prices, and great service, these apps particularly appeal to millennials still making their way through entry-level jobs.

The avalanche of on-demand apps hitting the market every week have ultimately simplified how we go about our days. It’s much easier to press a button and request an Uber than it is to wait for the subway after a night out. And who hasn’t thought about calling for an on-demand massage through apps like Zeel after a long day at work? If you’re willing to pay a small premium, these services will allow you to live the 1% life on a 99% budget. Here are a few things to consider before Uber-fying your life.
Saving Time

A lot of the value in these on-demand services lies in their ability to save users time. You can outsource your household chores through apps like Washio and TaskRabbit, leaving you free to get some extra work done or spend time with friends. Meal delivery apps like Seamless and Postmates save you the hassle of picking up a meal at your favorite take-out spot or (the horror!) using your own kitchen. Ultimately, your time is worth a lot, and by paying for these services, you’re buying yourself a few more minutes in your day. What you choose to do with that time is totally up to you.

Helping in the Long Run

Much of the appeal of many of these new apps lies in instant gratification. Why walk or take public transportation when you can have your own black car drive you around town for a nominal fee? Why cook when you can order gourmet food straight to your door? Some services may save you time and money in the long run, by helping you learn a new skill or travel on a budget. BlueApron, for example, gives new chefs the tools they need to start cooking healthy meals. Ideally, after some time using this service, you’ll have the confidence and skills to shop and cook on your own.

Unlocking New Experiences

One of the best things about these services is that they offer users access to new experiences. Advances in technology combined with the millennial generation’s embrace of the share economy has made services like vacation rentals and personal styling more accessible to all. AirBnB, for example, makes it easy for users to rent a luxury home for a few nights, often for less than a night at a standard hotel. The site often lists unique accommodations, as well – users can treat themselves to a weekend getaway in a decked-out tree house or a retro airstream trailer. These new low-cost housing options have made travel more affordable (and memorable) for all.
With new apps and services launching every day, anyone can feel like a rock star on an entry-level budget. On-demand services can save you time and money while giving you access to unique experiences once reserved for a select few. Who says private cars and luxury accommodations are just for the elite? With these new services, almost anyone can hack their way into a luxury lifestyle.

Freelancers Union and Moven

Three things banks need to learn about Freelancers

Lifestyle

There are over 53 million people in the US working as Freelancers in some way, shape, or form. That’s more than one third of the US population! What does this tell me about how changing jobs and careers will subsequently alter the way we manage our money and finances?

1.       The old rules and assumptions of “moving up in life” by seeking employment through a single job that ideally transforms into a long term career may no longer apply. More than ever, we are empowered and rewarded if we view “careers” as a series of great projects and entrepreneurial activities. Not only has this become a great way to gain an income, but the real benefits have become flexibility, accelerated learning, and the ability to quickly grow a network of diverse business colleagues that would have taken decades to create in the past. And as large corporations push for more remote work locations and telecommuting, the concept of a traditional 9-5 job will quickly become a thing of the past. 

2.       The tools to conduct business and earn secondary streams of income are only growing, making living “a freelance lifestyle” an easier and potentially preferred path for many. Programs and apps like Gmail and Squarespace allow you to have an online presence that is both affordable and highly effective for marketing. If you want to start your own business and need funding, sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo have reinvented going to market, making the process seamless and simple. On top of that, you can earn income “on the side” while you pursue your projects and passions in any number of ways. Even the “traditional” benefits, which one would normally rely on, have been made available to us by other means  (Healthcare through Freelancers Union, for example). 

3.       What was once considered a population of moonlighters, or free-birds in search of a career path, is now a legitimate movement. As freelancers, you’ve already figured this out and everyone else is trying to catch up to meet your needs.  

 

And how is the financial services industry reacting to the above? Simple. Most are doing absolutely nothing and, as a result, banking SUCKS for freelancers.

This is why I am excited for the Moven and Freelancers Union partnership. We want to meet your financial needs, where big banks have failed. I encourage you to check us out. Use Moven as the convenient way to get paid quickly or as a way to bank without the constraints of tellers and branch hours to meet the needs of your lifestyle. This is what we envisioned when we started Moven: our product was built for you. You don’t rest, so we don’t rest (we’re digital, open 24/7). We have no overdraft fees, monthly fees, usage fees, or minimum monthly balances because you earn your money, and we think you should keep as much of it as possible. We have an industry leading app that intelligently helps you make smart spending and savings decisions every day, without needing to fuss with maintaining a budget that you don’t have the time or energy for.

 

This is just the beginning. Moven wants to join you, and create the future together. #getmoven

Check it out here.

— Alex Sion

How Much to Spend

1 in 4 Millennials Are Looking for Financial Advice on Google

FinancesLifestylePersonalitySpendingUncategorizedWellness

Moven Research Reveals the Frustration Behind Americans’ Money Woes

It’s no secret Americans today are facing a challenging financial landscape and paying close attention to their finances is a priority moving into 2015, but money anxiety and limited resources have them looking for help in all the wrong places. New research from Moven, the first spending app and debit card that provides real-time behavioral feedback and instant receipts to help customers spend smarter, shows that 1 in 6 (17%) Americans are actually turning to the Internet or Google for financial advice. That number is even higher among millennials (ages 18-34), with 1 in 4 (24%) reporting they would seek out advice via Google or the Internet.

Moven commissioned accredited research firm YouGov to study the financial behavior of a representative sample of 1,178 American adults. The findings indicate that money anxiety is causing Americans to actively seek out financial information, but they lack the tools and resources needed to truly be successful. Given the upcoming holiday shopping season its likely many Americans will overspend in the coming months and Moven’s research suggests most will be unprepared for the inevitable shock once it’s time to pay the bills.

“For most people, sticking to a budget is nearly impossible because monthly expenses never stay the same and unexpected expenses can easily throw consumers off track,” said Alex Sion, President of Moven. “In reality, budgets are an outdated way of managing expenses and consumers would be better served finding resources that help them understand how fast they spend and where they are spending. With real-time feedback they can focus more on changing their behavior instead of tediously updating a budget,” he added.

Additional key findings from the research include:

Financial Wellness a Concern, But Tools are Sorely Lacking

  • Financial wellness is a major concern moving into 2015: Half (50%) of Americans are planning to discuss financial wellness with their families in the next 12 months. This is significantly more than plan to discuss their physical health (46%), career/ the job market (34%), education (26%), or mental health (19%).
  • Americans don’t think they have what they need to be financially successful in 2015: 1 in 5 (19%) Americans think they would keep a financial resolution in 2015 if they had better resources to do it. 1 in 6 (18%) think that if they had real-time feedback on their spending habits it would help them keep a financial New Year’s resolution.

 Money Matters When It Comes to Love

  • Talking financial wellness could save a romantic relationship: 1 in 4 (26%) of Americans said financial wellness caused the most stress in their relationships. In fact, it was listed as the number one stressor in romantic relationships across all age groups.This was at least doublethe amount of Americans that listed physical health (12%), their career (11%), mental health (10%) and their geographical location (8%) as number one.

 Keeping Track is Too Much Work, Especially For Millennials

  • Americans don’t take budgets seriously: A third of Americans (33%) that keep a budget found it frustrating just because they couldn’t stick to it. More than a quarter (26%) were frustrated because it was too stressful or overwhelming. And, in today’s digital age, a surprising 1 in 3 (36%) Americans are keeping track of their monthly expenses on a piece of paper.
  • Americans would rather someone else do their work: Consumers know they can’t keep a budget on their own and are turning to other people or services to track their monthly expenses. Technology is becoming increasingly important in this regard, as almost a quarter of Americans (24%) are relying on services from their bank and 1 in 10 (10%) are relying on a personal finance app.
  • Men are lazier than women at keeping budgets: Men and women are both equally terrible budgeters, 23 percent don’t keep a budget at all. Men that do keep a budget are more likely to be frustrated with it because they are lazier (22%) than women (19%). Men (11%) that keep budgets are much more likely to keep track of their expenses with a personal finance app than women (8%). More than 1 in 3 women (42%) that keep budgets are actually doing so on a piece of paper, compared to just 31 percent of men.
  • Americans are obsessed with checking their bank accounts: Despite the fact they can’t stick to their budgets, Americans are trying to monitor their spending. Nearly a quarter (23%) of Americans check their spending accounts once a day or more. 1 in 4 women (24%) check their spending accounts once a day or more, compared to 1 in 5 (21%) of men.
  • There’s no cure for millennials’ financial anxiety: 1 in 11 (19%) millennials check their spending accounts multiple times a day, more than any other age group, but a third of millennials (31%) don’t even keep a budget at all. They are most likely to benefit as technology evolves and provides resources beyond just budgeting services for money conscious consumers, yet just 1 in 6 (18%) has turned to a personal finance app to track their monthly expenses.

“Financial health, like physical health, is about understanding your current situation, behaviors and trajectory so that you can make changes to improve your ability to live your life and survive unexpected shocks,” said Sion. “The upcoming holiday season is a great time to step back and take stock of your finances and reflect on whether your daily habits and behaviors are empowering or endangering your long term money goals which is much more effective than trying to stick to a budget that’s destined to fail,” he added

To sign up, visit Moven at www.moven.com or download the Moven app on Itunes or Google Play.

Connect with us on Twitter @getMoven.

Research Methodology
Moven commissioned accredited research agency YouGov Plc to poll the views of a representative sample of 1,178 U.S. adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between October 24-27, 2014. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all U.S. adults (aged 18+). The research was carried out online.

Spending: Turn that frown upside down!

Lifestyle

Warren_Quote_balancing money

There’s nothing as fulfilling as being able to do something that truly makes you happy.  Whether it’s buying the latest must have gadget or dining out at the newest trendy restaurant, we all have an indulgence that is guaranteed to put a big smile on our face.

But that smile can quickly become a frown when we get carried away.  Have you ever had to spend the rest of the month subsisting on Ramen and turning down invitations to social events because of an ill-timed indulgence or a purchase that just went a little too far?

It’s never a great feeling when we realize that our indulgence may have come at too high a cost.  Suddenly what should have been a blissful experience is now overwhelmed by guilt and regret.

Fortunately, many of us learn this painful lesson early on in our money experiences and devise ways to restrain ourselves.  Some of us hold off until the end of the month when all the important stuff has been paid off, while others give themselves a mental limit (no more than 5 song downloads a week!) to keep everything in check.

But all that may be in jeopardy now that ApplePay is on the horizon.

In fact, we at Moven believe that there will soon be a virtual pandemic of guilt-filled purchases.  When buying something becomes as easy as walking into a store, tapping your phone and walking out, it will be vastly easier for all of us to lose context and indulge too often.

It’s like when you first signed up for iTunes or Amazon one click and got that sticker shock when you saw your first month’s statement.  “I downloaded how many songs last month!!?  I bought how many items off my wish list?!!!”

Now don’t get us wrong.  We believe that everyday indulgences are what make life worth living and we certainly don’t advocate swearing off those things that truly make you happy.  But an indulgence can’t be fully enjoyed if it’s followed with guilt and regret.

That’s why we believe that the happiest people are those who indulge responsibly. We created our Spending Meter and Instant Receipt for just this reason.  By simply looking at your Moven app, you can easily figure out how much you can spend on what makes you happy.  And with the Instant Receipt you get with every purchase, you always know how much you’ve spent on Dining Out or Shopping or whatever it is that makes you smile.

Let us know your thoughts on whether ApplePay will make it easier or harder to indulge responsibly.  Send us a tweet @getMoven.  Or if you happen to know someone who would benefit from just a tiny bit of restraint, share this short video we put together.

RentHop Cost of Living Article

Looking at the Hidden Costs of Living in New York

HousingLifestyleWellness

When you’re comparing places to live, it’s important to remember that your total cost of living can vary widely between two places even though the rent or mortgage you’d pay would be the same in both places.

RentHop digs into spending data in New York City for three key drivers of household expenses – food, transportation and entertainment – to illustrate how even adjacent neighborhoods can have strikingly different costs of living.   Read more at RentHop!

This article is part of series based on Moven’s infographic on housing spend.  Join the conversation on Twitter @getMoven.

2011-05-22_1306090874

Finding Gratitude Everyday

Lifestyle

 

When I talk about financial gratitude with people, they often look back at me with a blank stare since I find it’s not a concept that’s talked about often.

To me, financial gratitude is when you’re grateful for the resources that you already do have, instead of always focusing on what you don’t have.  If you’re always focused on what you don’t have, you’re focusing on the negative instead of being appreciative of what you already do have. Keep reading

Enter your email address to subscribe and receive new posts by email.

Twitter

css.php