Your Financial Checklist: Financial Moves to Make During a Job Transition

Your Financial Checklist: Financial Moves to Make During a Job Transition

So your dream job didn’t work out.

Maybe you had a change of heart. Maybe your life circumstances changed. Or maybe you never even got the job. Indeed.com estimates that between the ages of 18 to 24, the average American changes jobs about 5.7 times, and they change jobs an average of 2.4 times between 25 to 34 years old. So if you’re in the middle of a job transition, you’re in good company.

Still, transitioning from one job to another can be a stressful time no matter the reason, especially for those who may be transitioning from the public to private sector, or vice versa. No matter if you’re about to start the transition from one job to another or if you’re still looking for your next career move, there are a few things you can check off your financial to-do list in the meantime to make sure your job transition doesn’t wreak havoc on your financial life.

1. Build an Emergency Fund

Building an emergency fund is a great first step when you’re transitioning from one job to another. Doing so can give you a better idea of your financial situation and if you have enough savings to cover an emergency (such as your job transition taking longer than expected). Most experts advise you have at least six months’ worth of expenses saved up.

2. Use Vacation and Sick Days

According to Expedia’s 2021 Vacation Deprivation Survey , Americans took the fewest vacation days (eight, on average) out of 16 countries surveyed. So if you’ve accumulated any vacation or sick days, check with your HR department to see if you can cash them in. Many companies pay exiting employees a preset rate for unused vacation and sick days, as outlined in their contracts.

3. Take an Honest Look at Your Finances

Is buying locally important to you? Does your gym membership help you feel healthier, both mentally and physically? You’ve heard the adage that nothing is free, so take a deep dive into what you’re spending your money on and ensure that discretionary spending matches up with your values, life goals, and your budget.

4. Look for Easy Spending Cuts

When was the last time you actually read that knitting magazine? Are you ordering food delivery for every other meal? Take a look at your credit and debit card charges and pick off the easy things that you don’t need to be spending money on. This could be a quick way to build a cushion in your budget during your job transition.

5. Fend off Lifestyle Creep

If you’re still getting a coffee every morning even if you’re not going to work, you may have fallen victim to lifestyle creep. You can look for easy fixes, such as buying a coffee maker, to hedge against it and build better financial habits even after your transition from one job to another is complete.

6. Don’t “Orphan” Your Retirement Fund

Many people abandon their 401(k) after they leave a job. That is, they assume the account is owned by their ex-employer, and by quitting they’ve forfeited their funds. However, the money that you contribute to a 401(k) stays with you even after changing jobs. So you may want to check into your current or former employer’s 401(k) policy for insight on how you might claim these funds or roll them over into a new retirement account.

7. Combine Your Retirement Accounts

Do you have multiple retirement accounts? Now may be a good time to review your account details and decide whether it makes sense for you to consolidate your retirement accounts.

8. Create a ‘Career Change’ Budget

Once you have a better idea of what your expenses will look like as you transition from one job to another, it may be time to create a career change budget. This can be a temporary budget that’s adjusted for the period of time between now and when you start your next job. If you don’t currently have your new job lined up, you can still use a temporary career change budget as a starting point to test out potential permanent budget changes, such as cutting streaming services.

9. Do Your Homework

No matter if you’re just started a new career or if you’re still looking for one, now may be an ideal time to delve into your new industry’s average salary expectations. Being armed with this information could help you know your worth and provide data points to help you negotiate your starting salary, bonuses and reach your financial and career goals.

10. Make Money off Your Passions

Do you love gaming? Or maybe you have a passion for making candles or pottery. You may be able to make some side cash streaming on Twitch or selling goods on Etsy. Doing so may help you relieve stress since you’re doing something you love while also bringing in a few extra bucks.

11. Check Your Health Insurance Options

In the U.S., most health insurance options are tied to your jobs. As such, a job transition may be a good time to see what your insurance covers or even if you need less or additional insurance. Researching what type of insurance options are generally offered in your new career may also be beneficial.

12. Keep Extra Cash in Your Bank Account

Do you usually only keep a couple hundred bucks in your checking or savings account? Having extra money in your bank account during a job transition may be wise. If you have a new job lined up, you may have to go longer than usual to get your next check, such as getting paid monthly instead of bi-weekly. And if you don’t have a job quite yet, keeping more cash in your account than usual can save you from hefty overdraft fees.

13. Cash in on Networking

Most people don’t have a Rolodex anymore, but they do have a network of professionals they’ve accumulated throughout their career. Now may be a good time to log into LinkedIn and send some messages to people who may be able to help you get a job. You could also invest in online courses on sites like LinkedIn and Coursera that are related to your new career, especially if you don’t have much experience in the career you’re transitioning into.

14. Invest in Networking Events

Even during COVID-19, you can find a plethora of networking opportunities both in person and online. While some of these won’t be free, they still may be a wise investment to not only help you learn about your new industry, but also to meet new people who could open doors for your career. As such, networking can be a great financial move while you transition from one job to another.

15. Keep Track of Work-Related Expenses

If you do attend networking events or pay for industry-specific training or webinars, you may want to keep track of these expenses. You may be able to write off work-related training and other expenses during your job transition, especially if you’re a freelancer or contract employee.

16. Use Extra Time To Learn about Investing

Do you not know what a blue chip stock is? Or maybe you’re confused about the differences between stocks and bonds. Leveraging your time during a career transition to decode investing could help you learn how to make smart investment moves that your future self may thank you for.

17. Re-evaluate Your Savings Accounts

You may be surprised at the number of savings accounts you actually have, be them health savings accounts, high-yield savings accounts, money market accounts, CDs and yes, even your 401(k). Before transitioning from one job to another, you may want to ensure you have a handle on your current savings accounts and how they may be affected by a career change, especially if your income level is likely to change.

18. Purchase or Update Your Life Insurance Policy

Because different industries have different levels of risk and danger, your life insurance offerings may change during a job transition. Knowing what your life insurance needs are and how they may change in a new career could help you save money if you start researching and comparing insurance options now.

19. Set Up Automatic Payments & Transfers

Got a late fee because you forgot that credit card bill was due last Thursday? You can avoid these fees by setting up automatic payments. You can also set up your bank account to automatically transfer funds to another account, such as a savings account, on pay day. Of course, you only avoid a fee, though, if you don’t overdraw your account, so you may want to make sure you’ll have the funds available before setting up automatic payments or transfers.

20. Deal with Debt

Student loans, credit card balances, medical bills, car loans, mortgages: It’s easy to build up debt, but it’s not-so-easy to tear it down. If your student loan interest rates are soaring higher than your income, it may be worth checking into student loan refinancing options. Debt consolidation may also be worthwhile if a budget overhaul isn’t enough to put a dent into your debt. Having less debt going into your new career could relieve some of your financial stress as you wait for that first check to come in.

21. Consider Getting a New Credit Card

While it may not seem like an obvious option, applying for a new credit card during a job transition could make sense for you. Having more lines of credit could help you build your credit score (as long as you pay your bill, of course!) It could also help you make ends meet in the short-term, especially if you take advantage of cashback bonuses or other credit card rewards.

22. Re-Evaluate Your Financial Goals

Don’t like the idea of having a furry friend anymore after hearing about that big vet bill your friend just paid? Maybe you want to move that pet fund into a travel budget or prioritize paying off your student loans instead. You may want to use your time now to reevaluate your financial goals so you know what you’re saving for once you start your new career.

23. Evaluate Your Housing Situation

Many early career professionals are eager to stake down their roots and buy into that American dream of a white picket fence and a big backyard. But a big backyard doesn’t come cheap (and neither do white picket fences). If you’re living in a big city studio apartment but your job transition could mean you work remotely or in another market, it may be worth the savings to break out your moving checklist and head for cheaper horizons. And if you’re not ready to give up your expensive apartment just yet, you may want to consider roommates or even renting out your cool pad on Airbnb when you’re away.

24. Check in with Financial Mentors

Nothing in this world is free … or is it? Maybe you have an investment-savvy uncle or a friend who works in accounting. Asking a trusted financial mentor or friend for advice may be the closest thing to free financial guidance you can get; however, you may want to be sure you really trust this individual with details about your financial life and take their advice with a grain of salt.

25. Consult an Expert or Two

While your friends and family could be a good place to start, a financial advisor could help you make the most out of your finances during a career transition. An advisor could help you learn more about how to adjust your financial situations if your new career path changes your income, be it lowering or raising your expected income. Being prepared for a change in income before it happens could help you create a budget ahead of time so you’re not scrambling to adjust after that first paycheck clears.

The Takeaway

Transitioning from one job to another can be stressful, especially if you’re unsure of when your net paycheck will be. However, there are several money moves you can make during a job transition to help yourself both now and in the future. A major life event like transitioning to another job is a good time to take stock of your financial situation and reevaluate your budgets and money goals.

If you need a tighter grip on your funds during a career transition, signing up for SoFi Money could be part of your financial checklist. Its mobile interface literally puts cash management at your fingertips and there are zero account fees. Plus, SoFi Money holders get access to free one-on-one career services to help with career transitions.

Photo credit: iStock/Chalirmpoj Pimpisarn


SoFi Money®
SoFi Money is a cash management account, which is a brokerage product, offered by SoFi Securities LLC, member FINRA / SIPC .
Neither SoFi nor its affiliates is a bank. SoFi Money Debit Card issued by The Bancorp Bank. SoFi has partnered with Allpoint to provide consumers with ATM access at any of the 55,000+ ATMs within the Allpoint network. Consumers will not be charged a fee when using an in-network ATM, however, third party fees incurred when using out-of-network ATMs are not subject to reimbursement. SoFi’s ATM policies are subject to change at our discretion at any time.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
Ladder policies are issued in New York by Allianz Life Insurance Company of New York, New York, NY (Policy form # MN-26) and in all other states and DC by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America, Minneapolis, MN (Policy form # ICC20P-AZ100 and # P-AZ100). Only Allianz Life Insurance Company of New York is authorized to offer life insurance in the state of New York. Coverage and pricing is subject to eligibility and underwriting criteria. SoFi Agency and its affiliates do not guarantee the services of any insurance company. The California license number for SoFi Agency is 0L13077 and for Ladder is OK22568. Ladder, SoFi and SoFi Agency are separate, independent entities and are not responsible for the financial condition, business, or legal obligations of the other. Social Finance, Inc. (SoFi) and Social Finance Life Insurance Agency, LLC (SoFi Agency) do not issue, underwrite insurance or pay claims under LadderLifeTM policies. SoFi is compensated by Ladder for each issued term life policy. SoFi offers customers the opportunity to reach Ladder Insurance Services, LLC to obtain information about estate planning documents such as wills. Social Finance, Inc. (“SoFi”) will be paid a marketing fee by Ladder when customers make a purchase through this link. All services from Ladder Insurance Services, LLC are their own. Once you reach Ladder, SoFi is not involved and has no control over the products or services involved. The Ladder service is limited to documents and does not provide legal advice. Individual circumstances are unique and using documents provided is not a substitute for obtaining legal advice.
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The Biggest Money Scams in the US

The Biggest Money Scams in the US

Scammers have been around forever, and the only thing that changes from year to year, it seems, is the technology they use to pull off their scams. While many of these con artists still use the phone, the mail or even in-person tactics to try to part you from your hard-earned money, most scams these days are pulled off digitally — reaching you through your email, text messages and fake websites.

According to the Better Business Bureau , nearly 75 percent of consumers lost money to a purchase scam in the first eight months of 2021. And the amount consumers lose every year continues to rise — from an average of $76 in 2019 to $102 in 2021.

To help folks battle these scammers, we’ve rounded up some of the biggest, most common scams hitting American consumers this year with tips to help you avoid them and a guide on how to report scams if you do become a victim.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, some of the most common bank scams include:

Overpayment Scams

Many con artists try to get between you and your dollars by tricking you into sending them funds directly. Scammers typically start off by sending you a fake check in the mail, but because they’ve sent you “too much” money, they reach out instructing you to deposit the full check into your bank account and send the overpaid portion back to them via check or wire transfer. As a rule of thumb, you should contact your bank before depositing checks from anyone you don’t recognize.

Automatic Bank Withdrawals

In this scam, a company sets up automatic withdrawals from your bank account in order for you to “qualify” for a free trial or to collect a prize. Some companies will also legitimately charge you for a purchase, but will continue charging you each month because your purchase signed you up for some obscure product or service that requires monthly billing. Consider protecting your banking information by using a credit card instead. Unauthorized charges are easier to dispute, and you don’t provide anyone with direct access to your money.

Charity Scams

It’s hard to imagine a worse scam than stealing money in the name of people in need, but it’s a tried-and-true grift we should all be on the lookout for, especially around the holidays or after emergencies/natural disasters. Scammers pose as a real charity (or one that sounds real) and call, mail or email asking that you help with some recent tragedy. Instead of making a donation pledge right then and there, it’s smart to tell them you’ll contact them through the organization’s official website or phone number noted there.

Grandparent Scams

Also popular around the holidays are “grandparent scams” where scammers call older adults pretending to be a grandchild or other relative. They claim they are in trouble and need help, often asking that you wire them money or send them a gift card so they’ll have the cash they need. If this happens to you, it’s smart to tell the caller you need to call them back. That will allow you to contact your relative directly to confirm if the request was real or fake.

Read more about other ways to protect older adults from fraud and financial exploitation .

Imposter Scams

A cross between charity and grandparent scams, imposter scams typically work something like this: A caller tries to persuade you to give money to their organization or government agency (think police and firefighter funds). As they’re often able to fake their caller ID, the grift may seem legitimate. Instead of contributing over the phone, it’s a good idea to directly contact the organization the person claims to be associated with and make a donation that way if you’re so inclined. You can read more about imposter scams .

Debt Collection Scams

Dealing with legitimate debt collectors can already be stressful, but there are guidelines they must adhere to which can make identifying a scammer easier. An overly aggressive “debt collector” may be a scammer in disguise. These warning signs can help you further recognize if you’re being targeted, and these sample letters can be used to request more information if you’re still questioning the legitimacy of someone contacting you about a debt.

Unclaimed Money Scams

It’s estimated that more than $40 billion in unclaimed money is out there waiting to be claimed by its rightful owners, mostly languishing with state governments. Some companies may offer to help you find and recover unclaimed money for a percentage of the found funds. Paying these fees is pointless, since you can search for unclaimed property and reclaim it for free (or perhaps for a small processing fee) on official databases.

Foreclosure Relief or Mortgage Modification Scams

For people who are behind on their mortgage payments, this can be a truly frightening scam. These con artists often offer to save you from foreclosure, but they require upfront fees for their “services,” such as loan modification. Sometimes they’ll even ask for you to sign over the title or rights to your property on paperwork you don’t understand. If you’re contacted with mortgage promises that sound too good to be true, it’s a good idea to contact a HUD-approved housing counselor who can help you avoid scams and review your actual payment options.

Mortgage Closing Scams

These scams target homebuyers whose mortgage closing date is approaching. They attempt to separate the homebuyer from their down payment and/or closing costs by pretending to be a realtor, title company, escrow company or other mortgage-related company or entity.

Like with so many other scams, it’s important to communicate directly with people and companies you already know who can verify if these information requests are legitimate. The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has put together some helpful information to help you protect your closing funds .

Mail Fraud

If you ever receive a letter asking you for money or personal information in order to receive a prize from a lottery or sweepstakes, or in order to claim an offer of a high value item like a car or a vacation, it could be a scam. The U.S. Postal Service has identified common postal or mail fraud schemes to help you avoid some of the most common ones.

Romance Scams

Targeting the heartbroken is another tried-and-true con that scam artists just love. Typically, the scammer tries to trick you into being romantically interested in them so they can ask you for money or get you to share personal information like credit card numbers, bank account details and even your Social Security number. These romances can lead to financial ruin so stay alert and don’t send money or gifts to a love interest that you haven’t met in person.

How to Report a Scam

If you think you’ve been a victim of a scam, you can report it by:

•   Submitting an online complaint with the Federal Trade Commission

•   Contacting your local police department or sheriff’s office

•   Reporting it to your state’s attorney general

How to Protect Yourself From Scams

Though scams abound, you’re not completely vulnerable. There are plenty of things you can do to help protect yourself against scams and scammers. Here are some of our favorites:

Using Credit Cards & Payment Apps

In general, credit cards can offer significantly better fraud protections than debit cards, which are directly connected to your bank account. Plus, a lot of credit cards also offer additional services like purchase protection, price protection and extended warranties.

Mobile apps (think Apple Pay and Google Pay, but also SoFi Money) offer advanced technologies, like fingerprint authentication and “tokenization” (credit card account numbers are replaced by randomly generated numbers) to provide added layers of security. Similarly, virtual credit cards similarly allow online shoppers to mask their financial accounts.

Checking Bank & Credit Card Statements

No matter how you prefer to pay for purchases, checking your bank and credit card statements regularly for suspicious or erroneous charges can help you spot fraudulent activity right away. You may want to do this daily during periods of high usage, like around the holidays when it’s easier for fraudulent charges to slip through.

Activating Transaction Alerts

Many banks and other financial institutions offer free transaction alerts each time a new change hits your account. Like reviewing your statements, these alerts can help you spot suspicious activity right away.

Being Proactive

If you do spot something unusual when reviewing statements or alerts, it’s a good idea to contact your financial institution right away. You’ll be able to immediately cancel your compromised card(s) and get replacements so you can get on with your life and hopefully avoid further issues.

Staying on Alert

If you get a call asking for your payment information or other personal information, it’s smart to just hang up and call the company directly so you can avoid potential fraud.This goes for your address, phone number and especially your Social Security number.

Securing your Devices

Is your smartphone, tablet or laptop password-protected? If not, it can be an important first line of protection against fraud, so it’s definitely something to consider. If you’re unsure how to do it, enlist the help of a trusted friend or relative (but it’s still smart to set your own password that they are not privy to). Also, you may want to keep in mind that browsers like Firefox, Google Chrome and Safari issue updates to protect against scams, so it’s wise to ensure you have the latest version of whatever browser you use. You may also want to consider purchasing antivirus software to keep your computer clean and safe.

Reconsidering Public Wi-Fi

If you like to use your phone for shopping or banking while sitting at your local coffee house and using their Wi-Fi, you may want to reconsider that. Public Wi-Fi networks are well known spots where hackers and scammers steal personal information. That’s why a virtual private network (VPN) can be a smart choice for connecting to the internet when you’re away from home. It’s much harder to pick up information you may transmit than it is over a public network.

Shopping Where You’re Comfortable

Shopping only at reputable and recognized retailers — especially online — can help you avoid some of the fraud headaches abounding out there. If you are concerned about an unfamiliar retailer you want to transact with, consider researching them on the Better Business Bureau website. You can also check out their site state using Google’s Transparency Report tool.

Watching Out for Skimmers

Does that ATM or gas pump look a little weird? It’s not uncommon for scammers to install skimmers in places where consumers swipe their credit and debit cards. These devices snatch your payment information, including PIN codes whenever used. Take a close look at whatever reader you’re using to swipe your card. If it looks suspicious, report it to the establishment.

Avoiding ‘Phishers’

Did you get a weird notice from your bank or pharmacy? How about a text message from AT&T that your phone bill has been paid as a “gift”? It’s possible the unsolicited offer you receive is a “phishing” scheme. Scammers often pose as a legitimate company or website in order to get you to click on a link that either asks for personal info or downloads malware on your device. They can use emails or even texts to try to get you to bite. If it looks fishy, avoid clicking on any links or downloading any attachments.

A Few More Tips

Putting this advice into practice can definitely help keep you safe and your money in your pockets, but it can’t guarantee you won’t become a victim. Here are some additional things to keep in mind that can help boost your overall awareness.

The Basics

Keeping things simple is almost always a good idea, and that’s true of avoiding scams as well. If you’re shopping online, it’s super smart to check that the website url starts with HTTPS instead of just HTTP when you’re checking out. That means it has a Secure Sockets Layer certificate, meaning all your data will be encrypted. On secure sites, you’ll see a little padlock icon in your browser’s address bar.

Bad Reviews

Scam artists really aren’t known for their stellar online reviews, so if a company you’re considering buying from has a bunch of bad reviews (or no reviews at all), you may want to strongly consider taking your business elsewhere.

Words Matter

Is the website you’re considering making a purchase from riddled with misspelled words and grammatical errors? Typos can be a sign of scammers, so if what you’re reading looks a little off, you might want to reconsider purchasing from that site. It’s also good practice to check website urls for little differences (think Bestbyy.com instead of BestBuy.com).

Strength Also Matters

The strength of your password can be very important, but what’s considered “strong?” Passwords that are hard to crack generally have a random mix of letters, numbers and symbols, but long phrases like song lyrics that are easily remembered can also be used. Also, keep in mind that a password used on more than one site actually makes you more vulnerable, so take the time to customize your logins.

Safety in Person

If you’re shopping in a brick-and-mortar store, it’s smart to keep your purse and/or wallet close and secure at all times. This may mean moving your wallet to your inside pocket and wearing your purse strap over your head, especially during the holidays when stores are busier. In fact, traveling light can be the smartest way to ensure you don’t have your purse or wallet stolen. What’s traveling light? Consider carrying just one card with you into the store and leaving your cash and checkbook at home.

The Takeaway

While there will likely always be someone willing to cheat others out of their money, there are obvious ways you can help protect yourself. Staying alert and following your instincts can help, but implementing security measures and keeping some key tips in mind can make it harder for thieves to get at your dollars.

It’s equally important to use financial services that also have implemented top-of-the-line security measures. If you’re looking for one, you may want to consider setting up a SoFi Money account. SoFi Money is a mobile-first cash management that alerts you immediately after finding any suspicious account activity, and allows you to instantly freeze your card at the first site of fraud.

Photo credit: iStock/filadendron


SoFi Money®
SoFi Money is a cash management account, which is a brokerage product, offered by SoFi Securities LLC, member FINRA / SIPC .
Neither SoFi nor its affiliates is a bank. SoFi Money Debit Card issued by The Bancorp Bank. SoFi has partnered with Allpoint to provide consumers with ATM access at any of the 55,000+ ATMs within the Allpoint network. Consumers will not be charged a fee when using an in-network ATM, however, third party fees incurred when using out-of-network ATMs are not subject to reimbursement. SoFi’s ATM policies are subject to change at our discretion at any time.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
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Different Types of Banking Accounts, Explained

Different Types of Banking Accounts, Explained

When it comes to bank accounts, there’s no “one size fits all” approach. Everyone has different needs and financial goals, which means we’re all bound to have different combinations of checking, savings, and other types of accounts.

Different accounts serve different purposes. Retirement accounts like a 401(k) or IRA offer tax benefits to encourage people to invest toward their retirement. Traditional banking accounts like checking and savings offer easy access to cash and are generally for spending or short-term goals, respectively.

7 Types of Financial Accounts Explained

Here’s a rundown of the different types of banking accounts, how they’re different, and how they could make achieving financial goals simpler.

Recommended: How Many Bank Accounts Should I Have?

1. Checking Account

Checking accounts are available through traditional banks, credit unions, and online financial institutions. These accounts allow deposits and withdrawals. Some accounts may charge fees, while others checking accounts can be opened at no cost, but may have some restrictions. It may be possible to have fees waived on a checking account by meeting certain minimum account balances or setting up direct deposits from your employer.

Checking accounts got their name from one of their prominent features — writing checks. While writing checks may be less common these days, traditional checking accounts still offer the ability to make deposits and withdrawals, write checks, and in some cases, the account balance may earn interest. For the most part, they’re meant for daily expenses, not intended for savings.

The checking account interest rate offered on many checking accounts is lower than the rate of inflation. If a person chooses to park all their money in this account, their money wouldn’t keep pace with inflation and would end up losing value year over year. That’s why, while most Americans have a checking account, it’s not their only bank account.

Recommended: How To Open a Free Checking Account

2. Savings Account

Unlike a checking account, the cash stored in savings accounts is typically less accessible — that’s why they call it a saving not spending account. A savings account may not have an ATM or debit card and it is most likely not possible to write a check from it either. Some savings accounts may require a minimum balance. If an account holder goes below the minimum required balance, some banks will charge a fee. Savings accounts may also have limits on how many withdrawals can be made from the account each month.

Additionally, some banks may charge maintenance fees for keeping a savings account open. Fees and policies will vary bank to bank, so it can be beneficial to account holders to shop around to different banks instead of settling with the first one they find.

To access their account, an account holder could go to the bank’s location or may be able to make deposits through an app or online platform.

Regulation D may also limit the number of withdrawals on your savings account that can be made each month. In the past, Regulation D limited the number of withdrawals from savings accounts to six per month. This limitation was removed in April 2020, though financial institutions are not required to implement any changes to their policies. In general, it’s not recommended to use a savings account for day-to-day spending. Instead, it’s better suited for short-term savings goals.

Savings accounts may offer more competitive interest rates than checking accounts.

Recommended: Comparing the Different Types of Deposit Accounts 

3. Cash Management Account

A cash management account allows account holders to save and spend from one account. Financial institutions that offer cash management accounts may also partner with a bank to store funds. Cash management accounts allow the account holders to make withdrawals and deposits, but may also offer competitive interest rates.

While there’s no one “perfect” bank account, people can mix and match, opening a few to meet both their daily needs and may be suitable for some short to mid-term goals, depending on the APY or investments available from the account.

4. Certificate of Deposit

A CD, or certificate of deposit, is sort of like a savings account, but more hands-off. Both types of accounts are meant for saving, but while an account holder can withdraw money from a savings account within the limits set by Regulation D, outlined above, money deposited in a CD is untouchable for a predetermined amount of time.

Length of CDs can range from a few months, to a few decades. The benefit of a longer CD term is generally a higher interest rate. According to the FDIC , the adjusted rate cap for a one month CD is 0.77% and for a 24-month CD is 0.92%.

For example, a year-long CD might earn 1% to 2% interest, whereas a CD that’s five years long earns 2% to 3%.

But, with that boost in interest rates comes a few caveats. In addition to its “no touch” policy (no early withdrawal) some CDs also have a minimum deposit, typically starting at $500 and up.

There is the option of no-penalty/early withdrawal CDs. However, be wary when signing up for these, as they often include specifics on how and when an account holder can withdraw early without fees and penalties.

Another alternative is CD-laddering. That means buying CDs at specific intervals, meaning access to savings will be staggered as CDs expire.

Recommended: Different Ways to Earn More Interest on Your Money

5. Money Market Account

A money market account is another type of FDIC-insured account . Money market accounts generally have a higher interest rate than a traditional savings account, but may have more restrictions. Money in these accounts may be invested in low-risk investments such as government securities, certificates of deposits, and commercial paper.

Additionally, taking funds out of a money market account can be relatively easy — many come with checks, or online electronic transfers. Money market accounts are also restricted under Regulation D and have monthly limits on transactions. That means withdrawals and transfers are limited, not making it a good fit for day-to-day transactions.

Like savings accounts, money market accounts typically have balance minimums. In some cases, these minimums are higher than a savings account. If an account holder doesn’t maintain the balance minimum, it’s likely they’ll be charged a monthly fee.

Money market accounts might be the right choice for people who want high yield savings, but don’t need to access the capital too often and can meet the deposit minimums.

6. Brokerage Accounts

A brokerage account is a type of investment account that allows account holders to trade securities.

Depending on the service level of the brokerage, a brokerage account can come with fees. Typically, the more “full-service” firm, the more the firm does the work for the customer, the more fees. On the other hand, automated investing and DIY brokerages may have fewer fees associated with them.

To open a brokerage account, a person needs cash and an idea of what they’d like to purchase. Some accounts do not have a minimum deposit amount but others require a minimum deposit which may range depending on the account type.

In order to withdraw funds from a brokerage account, securities need to be sold first. After settlement, the money can be withdrawn from the account. Withdrawn investments may be taxable if they are capital gains, and investing is often thought of as a long-term savings strategy. A brokerage account is less liquid than a savings, checking, or money market account.

7. Retirement Accounts

Retirement accounts, like IRAs, 401(k)s, and SEPs, are designed to help individuals save for retirement. Deciding what kind of retirement account to open will depend on a number of factors:

•   Employer benefits. Some employers offer a 401(k) and may have a 401k matching program or other perks with their retirement plans. Taking advantage of those benefits can be worthwhile, especially up to the employer match.

•   Target retirement date. Working backwards using a retirement calculator, people can determine just how much they need to save each month to retire on time. From there, certain retirement plans might make more sense than others.

Selecting a retirement plan is a personal decision that depends on factors like their personal goals, the target date for retirement, and more. For questions, it can be helpful to consult with a qualified financial professional. With retirement accounts, the money contributed is locked-in until retirement. Withdrawing early can result in fees and penalties that can cut into savings.

Recommended: 3 Easy Steps to Starting a Retirement Fund

Finding Accounts That Work for You

Since different types of accounts have different purposes, benefits, and uses, it is likely that individuals will have a few different accounts to meet their needs. Some financial institutions may offer a variety of account options, while some individuals may choose to have a savings and checking account with one institution, and investment and retirement accounts with a separate financial institution.

Each financial institution is likely to have its own policies in place so it can be helpful to review the options available with a few different institutions as you build your financial portfolio. If you have questions, consider consulting with a financial professional who can provide personalized financial advice.

If you are looking for an account that allows you to save, spend, and earn interest, all in one place — consider SoFi Money®. With this cash management account, all ATM fees are reimbursed and there are no account fees.

Looking for Something Different

Different financial accounts serve different purposes. Checking accounts make it possible to easily withdraw and deposit money while accounts like 401(k) or IRAs are designed for longer-term goals like investing toward retirement. People will generally have a mix of these accounts. A cash management account offers account holders the ability to easily deposit and withdraw money into the account, while also earning a competitive interest rate. SoFi Money® is a cash management account that makes it easy to see how you are saving and spending money, all in one place.

Find out more about SoFi Money.

Photo credit: iStock/hemul75


SoFi Money®
SoFi Money is a cash management account, which is a brokerage product, offered by SoFi Securities LLC, member FINRA / SIPC .
Neither SoFi nor its affiliates is a bank. SoFi Money Debit Card issued by The Bancorp Bank. SoFi has partnered with Allpoint to provide consumers with ATM access at any of the 55,000+ ATMs within the Allpoint network. Consumers will not be charged a fee when using an in-network ATM, however, third party fees incurred when using out-of-network ATMs are not subject to reimbursement. SoFi’s ATM policies are subject to change at our discretion at any time.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.
Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.
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8 Ways to Make Your Money Work For You

Let’s be real — unless you hit the powerball, growing wealth doesn’t usually happen overnight. Making your money work for you is more like a marathon that requires planning, diligence, and financial smarts.

Thanks to the advent of online banking, 21st-century financial technology, and the democratizing notion that investing should be accessible to everyone, you no longer need to have money in order to make it. And that’s good news, because you work hard for your money.

By making financial decisions that optimize your money for your goals and needs, you put your money to work. A few ways to make the most of your money include learning to budget, opening a high yield savings account, starting to invest (if you haven’t yet), and automating portions of your finances like bill pay or savings.

Making Your Money Work For you

These tips and ideas can help you put your money to work.

1. Learning How to Budget

An effective budget can help you make the most of your money, allowing you to understand where you are spending, so that you can feel empowered to save, and spend, on things that are most important to you. With the right tools on your side, you can learn how to make your money work for you.

These budgeting tips can help you get started:

Layout Your Finances

An effective budget is an accurate budget. If you are starting your budget from scratch, some recommendations suggest reviewing three months’ worth of receipts, bills, etc., before moving forward. This will give you insight into your current spending habits. Then, split those expenditures into needs and wants.

A budgeting tip: The information for making your budget should be accessible. Depending on your preferences that may be a physical copy, a spreadsheet, or using an app that can help you stay on top of your budget and expenses. SoFi Relay®, a money-tracking app, lets you see all of your accounts in one central location so that you can easily see where the money is coming, where it’s going, and where you can shift things around.

Figure Out Your Net Income

After you know how much you’ve been spending, you want to compare it to how much you earn. When making a budget, it can help to work with your take-home pay. This is the total income you earn from your job, after taking out all the required taxes, savings, and insurance payments from it. Those who are self-employed may work with different deductions than those who work a regular 9-to-5. In that case, subtract your self-employment tax (the sum of Social Security and Medicare taxes).

Using your after-tax pay can help you determine an accurate total for how much money you actually have available to spend. If you have any other income earners in your household, do factor in their income as well. Also include any investments or additional sources of income.

Plan Your Budget

Now comes the moment of truth. You have to create a step-by-step plan and put it into action. One method you may want to think about is the 50/20/30 budget. This budgeting method breaks your spending and savings into the following amounts: 50% into your needs, 30% into your wants, and 20% into your savings. If they need adjusting, shift the numbers to suit your plan.

Tracking multiple categories may not work for you, though. If you have trouble logging expenses in hyper-specific categories, simplify them. Overwhelming yourself will only make it harder for you to stay on target.

Review and Adjust

No matter how perfect the plan, things change. You might switch jobs, have a child, move somewhere else, or gain new needs. That’s why your budget can be flexible. When things change, change your budget to reflect those new priorities. If you have trouble fixing the plan, you may need to revisit some of the previous planning stages. Your budget and money should work for you, after all.

2. Getting Out of Debt

More than anything, getting out of debt means finding ways to make your money work for you. Whether it’s more robust savings tactics or new repayments strategies, there are options. So if you want to take the burden of debt off of your shoulders, here are some methods to try out.

It’s easy to say you need to pay off a debt. But it’s another thing actually to have the money for it. So before you cut down your expenses, you may need to save up first. A high-yield savings account is an available option that can help you build wealth to meet your financial goals.

Selecting a Debt Repayment Strategy

What do you think of when you hear the words “snowflake,” “snowball,” and “avalanche”? Perhaps you picture snow-capped mountains or blustery winter sports. But they’re the names for some of the most popular debt repayment strategies. While these strategies encourage individuals to make additional payments on some of their debts, making the minimum payments on all debt is important.

The snowflake method encourages individuals to put any extra cash earned toward debt repayment. Any time there’s excess to play with, you put it towards your debt. Since that helps you pay over your monthly minimum, you’ll eventually finish off the debt. You can earn additional money in any way that works for you. For example, some people get side hustles on the weekend, or you can try selling items you don’t want anymore.

Recommended: What to Do With Extra Money

With the snowball strategy, you pay off your debts from smallest to largest, when evaluating the total amount owed. During this, you still make minimum payments on all your other debts. While it’s motivating to see some of your financial troubles disappear, this may not work for you. The snowball method ignores interest rates, which gives a chance for other debts to grow.

On the other hand, the avalanche method works on the debts with the highest interest rates first. Unsecured debts, like credit card balances and personal loans, often come with unfavorable interest terms. Leaving them alone allows your debt to grow exponentially when you’re not looking. Focusing on debts with the highest interest rate first could help you escape debt quickly and potentially spend less in interest overall.

3. Opening a High-Yield Savings Account

A high-yield savings account is an available option that can help you build wealth to meet your financial goals. High-yield savings accounts work similarly to traditional savings accounts. However, they have a greater annual percentage yield (APY), which indicates how much money you can earn in interest. While you still have to pay income taxes on that interest, these accounts are a great way to save money for significant, short-term expenses.

Another critical feature high-yield savings accounts have is their limited accessibility. You can’t make withdrawals as frequently as you do with a checking account. In addition, they come with monthly limits on deposits and withdrawals. So, you won’t be as tempted to touch the funds.

4. Considering Passive Income Streams

America’s workforce is changing with the times. In response to surging prices and higher costs of living , consumers want to find ways to increase their income. Many are turning to passive income to combat these financial hurdles, which may be the solution to your debt.

Essentially, a passive income is money that you earn without active involvement, outside of what you earn as a regular wage and salary. Instead, you put something you own to work, such as a rental property. Other examples of passive income include dividends from stock investments, royalties, and product sales.

So, you still might put in some effort getting started, but not as much as your full-time job. Side hustles are one of the best ways to pad that income. You can put the extra cash flow directly towards your debt and interest, weekly necessities, or your savings.

5. Considering Investing as a Part of Your Financial Plan

Analyzing your situation and finding an acceptable amount of money to put towards investments can help long-term. Investing can be an important part of a well-rounded financial portfolio for long-term goals such as retirement.

Investing has the potential for a higher return on investment vs. a savings account, but the reward isn’t guaranteed. Unlike cash-based interest accounts, your portfolio balance will fluctuate with the market.

Because of the risk associated with putting money into the market, some people may be hesitant to jump in, especially if they don’t fully understand how investing works. Getting a headstart on saving and investing can help you get prepared for retirement.

6. Automating Bill-Pay or Automatic Savings

To avoid missing bill payments, consider an automatic payment system. Alternatively known as “autopay,” this technology automatically withdraws funds from your bank account or credit card. Then it transfers to the necessary vendor. Once you set it up, you don’t have to deal with the pressure of juggling repayments. Instead, you just have to make sure there are enough funds in your account for the withdrawal.

Paying bills on time history makes up about 35% of your overall FICO score , so enrolling in autopay could potentially have the added benefit of building your credit score.

It’s also possible to automate contributions to retirement accounts or savings accounts. This could help keep you on track for your savings goals.

7. Ditching the Fees

Fees charged by financial institutions can add up. Here are a few to consider avoiding:

Bank Fees

The list can include account maintenance fees, returned deposits, foreign transactions, account minimum fees, replacing a lost or stolen card, ATM fees, making too many savings withdrawals, writing too many checks, closing an account, not using an account enough, speaking with a human, paying late, or even paying off a loan too early.

In fact, the 2021 FinHealth Spend Report Shows, American households spent $127 billion in interest and fees alone in 2020. That’s your money. Going into their pockets. Just for doing business with them. Ouch.

ATM Fees

At an average of $3.08 for non-customers , ATM fees can add up quickly. And “I just need to stop at the ATM really quick” is a phrase that’s likely uttered often, since 60% of Americans ages 25-34 and 51% ages 35-49 withdraw $40 8-10 times a month.

One way to avoid paying ATM fees is to always make sure that you’re using one of your bank’s designated ATMs. However, if you’re on the road or your bank only has a few networked ATMs, that can be a challenge.

Just like bank fees, however, more and more financial institutions are offering fee-free ATM usage as part of their perks. Especially if you use an online checking account, this can add up to hundreds of dollars in savings.

Investment Fees

Paying a traditional financial advisor a percentage of your account balance to manage, monitor, and optimize your portfolio could be worth the expense, but it might not be an option that is available to everyone.

Financial advising is still a confidence-booster for the majority of investors who use it. But when advisors charge a typical fee of 1% a year based on your portfolio balance, your total return can be significantly impacted.

Fortunately, a growing number of competitors are offering the same types of advising service with little or no fees — and no humans. Robo-advisors are becoming more popular because they use algorithms to optimize portfolios, thus eliminating the overhead of live employees.

Still other products like SoFi Invest® offer the best of both worlds, with human advisors willing to help at the cost of an automated system.

8. Getting Rewarded for Spending

You also can find several ways to get rewarded for spending, such as retailer loyalty programs, coupons, or rebate apps. Cashback or reward credit cards can also be an effective way to save at your favorite store, provided you pay your statement balance in full every time it comes due.

The Takeaway

Things like effective budgeting, opening a high-yield savings account, paying off debt, establishing a passive income stream, and investing can help you make the most of your money. Everyone’s financial situation is different, and what works for one person may not work for another. But with some trial and error, you can figure out how to make your money work for you. If you’re ready to start saving and investing as your work towards meeting your financial goals, consider SoFi.

Open a SoFi Money® cash management account and start putting your money to work.


SoFi Invest®
The information provided is not meant to provide investment or financial advice. Investment decisions should be based on an individual’s specific financial needs, goals and risk profile. SoFi can’t guarantee future financial performance. Advisory services offered through SoFi Wealth, LLC. SoFi Securities, LLC, member FINRA / SIPC . The umbrella term “SoFi Invest” refers to the three investment and trading platforms operated by Social Finance, Inc. and its affiliates (described below). Individual customer accounts may be subject to the terms applicable to one or more of the platforms below.

SoFi Money®
SoFi Money is a cash management account, which is a brokerage product, offered by SoFi Securities LLC, member FINRA / SIPC .
Neither SoFi nor its affiliates is a bank. SoFi Money Debit Card issued by The Bancorp Bank. SoFi has partnered with Allpoint to provide consumers with ATM access at any of the 55,000+ ATMs within the Allpoint network. Consumers will not be charged a fee when using an in-network ATM, however, third party fees incurred when using out-of-network ATMs are not subject to reimbursement. SoFi’s ATM policies are subject to change at our discretion at any time.
SoFi’s Relay tool offers users the ability to connect both in-house accounts and external accounts using Plaid, Inc’s service. When you use the service to connect an account, you authorize SoFi to obtain account information from any external accounts as set forth in SoFi’s Terms of Use. SoFi assumes no responsibility for the timeliness, accuracy, deletion, non-delivery or failure to store any user data, loss of user data, communications, or personalization settings. You shall confirm the accuracy of Plaid data through sources independent of SoFi. The credit score provided to you is a Vantage Score® based on TransUnion™ (the “Processing Agent”) data.
Tax Information: This article provides general background information only and is not intended to serve as legal or tax advice or as a substitute for legal counsel. You should consult your own attorney and/or tax advisor if you have a question requiring legal or tax advice.
​​External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
Financial Tips & Strategies: The tips provided on this website are of a general nature and do not take into account your specific objectives, financial situation, and needs. You should always consider their appropriateness given your own circumstances.
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Should I Buy a New or Used Car in 2021?

Should I Buy a New or Used Car in 2022?

A witches brew of COVID-related lockdowns, renewed demand after those initial lockdowns were lifted, ensuing shortages of semiconductors, and other auto supply issues have thinned out inventory for vehicles. All of the above combined to force car prices higher in 2022.

How high? Data from Cox Automotive pegs the average price of a new vehicle at $41,000, which represents a 5.5% upward spike in price compared to 2020. Used vehicle prices are on the rise this year, as well, with the average cost of a used vehicle with 67,000 miles on it standing at $24,414, compared to $19,646 in 2020.

Higher car prices make auto-buying decisions more difficult to make in 2022, and that’s especially the case with the time-honored dilemma of buying a new or used car this year. This year, it’s not an easy choice, but with the right information, you can make the choice that works for you.

Benefits of Buying a New Car

Besides the luster and pride in a brand new set of wheels, a new vehicle purchase has additional benefits.

You don’t have to kick as many tires. New vehicles arrive on dealer showroom floors (and at online auto sales platforms) in pristine condition with very few miles on the odometer, so you don’t have to spend time checking for vehicle inefficiencies and maintenance or repair issues.

Multiple auto financing choices. With a new car, it’s easier to get a good financing deal compared to financing a used car. That’s because the vehicle hasn’t been driven, has no structural problems, maintenance, or repair issues, and should hold its value if the new owner takes good care of the vehicle. That’s important to auto loan financers, who place a premium on avoiding risk.

The newer, the better. The auto industry is doing wonders with new vehicle construction, with features like electric-plug-in models, better gas mileage and technology advancements that improve vehicle performance in a wide range of upgrades. Those upgrades come most notably in car safety, cleaner emissions, and digital dashboards that improve driving enjoyment.

Warranty and service benefits. New car owners are typically offered a manufacturer’s warranty when they buy a new car, which typically grades out better than third-party warranty coverage on a used car. Additionally, auto dealers are more likely to offer services like free roadside assistance or free satellite radio to lock down a new car sale. Those services and features are harder to get with used vehicles.

Recommended: How to Save Up for a Car 

Drawbacks of Buying a New Car

Some disadvantages of a new car purchase might sway a buyer’s decision.

Immediate depreciation. The moment you drive a new car off the dealer lot, it loses several thousand dollars and an estimated 15% to 20% in the first year of ownership.

You may owe a lot of money on the vehicle. As car costs escalate, buyers who borrow 80% or more to purchase a new car, truck, or SUV may owe tens of thousands of dollars in auto loans before they’re free and clear. According to data from Lending Tree®, the average monthly payment for a new car loan stands at $563 in 2021.

Higher insurance costs. Auto insurers typically deem new cars as being more valuable than used cars and assign auto insurance premiums accordingly. According to Bankrate.com™, the average cost of minimum auto insurance in 2021 is $565 per year. Since new cars cost more, auto insurers prefer to see new auto drivers get full coverage and not minimum coverage. The price for full coverage, Bankrate reports, stands at $1,674 annually.

Benefits of Buying a Used Car

Used cars offer buyers value and savings, which are attractive benefits to drivers who may not have a big budget, but still want to drive a quality vehicle.

You’ll probably save money. No doubt about it, most used cars sell for significantly less than a new car with the same make and model. Case in point. The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) notes the average American owns 13 vehicles over the course of their life, with each vehicle valued at $30,000, on average. If a buyer waited three years to buy the exact same vehicles, NADA stated, that buyer would save $130,000 by not paying for the cars when they were brand new.

Slower depreciation rate. New cars tend to lose value quickly, especially if they’re not properly cared for. But used cars tend to depreciate more slowly, especially if they’ve had regular maintenance, and their sustained value makes them a good resale candidate if the owner wants another vehicle, but still wants to make a good deal when selling the vehicle.

A large down payment goes further with a used car. Buyers who can manage a robust down payment on a used vehicle can bypass a good chunk of the debt incurred in purchasing the vehicle. It comes down to simple math—if a buyer purchases a $20,000 used vehicle with a down payment of $10,000, there’s only $10,000 left to pay on the vehicle. If a buyer purchases a new vehicle for $40,000, and puts $10,000 down, that buyer still owes $30,000 on the auto loan.

Recommended: 9 Tips For Buying A Used Car

Drawbacks of Buying a Used Car

When deciding whether to buy a new or used car, these issues may be worth considering.

Reliability is a big deal. With a used car, an owner may be getting a quality vehicle—but maybe not. A used car may have spent years on the roads and highways, incurring a fair share of dings, dents, and general wear and tear that may have aged it prematurely, particularly if it hasn’t been maintained well.

You may not get the exact make and model you want. The options can dwindle when it comes to buying a used car. Whereas auto dealers can offer a wide range of make, model, and color for a new vehicle, those choices can be significantly limited with a used car, truck, or SUV. That could mean that a used vehicle buyer may have to compromise on different factors, in contrast to a new car buyer who can usually get their vehicle of choice.

You may pay more for vehicle maintenance. Consumer Reports found that auto repair costs double every five years, so the longer you own a used car, the more money you’re likely to pay in maintenance and repairs.

Other Car Purchasing Options

Auto consumers don’t have to be limited to a “buy new or used car” purchase decision. There are other valid options that go beyond the question of “should I buy a new or used car”: buying a pre-owned car or leasing a vehicle.

Certified Pre-Owned Cars

Car buyers who want to know that a vehicle is ship-shape, but who don’t want to spend a great deal of cash on a new set of wheels can compromise with a certified pre-owned vehicle.

A certified pre-owned vehicle means just what it says—it provides buyers with a vehicle that has low mileage, has no significant damage, has passed a battery of auto shop maintenance and performance tests, offers a new warranty, and likely costs thousands of dollars less than a new car. While you won’t be getting a brand-new car, you are likely getting a vetted and trustworthy vehicle at a decent price, which fits the bill for legions of would-be car owners.

Recommended: Smarter Ways to Get a Car Loan

Leased Cars

By leasing a car, you’re not buying it, you’re just renting it for a fixed period of time, usually with the option to buy the vehicle after the lease period is over.

Most auto leases average three or four years, and upfront costs are typically less than purchasing a new car (lease owners pay an upfront fee plus regular monthly payments for the duration of the lease period.) Once the lease period is over, the driver has the option to return the vehicle to the dealer, who may either lease it again or sell it outright as a used vehicle.

Car leases do come with restrictions on key performance elements like mileage, and also require that the vehicle is returned in sterling condition when the lease period ends. Ignoring those issues can lead to hefty fees charged by the lease provider and owed by the leasing customer.

Typically, about 26% of auto consumers decide to lease their vehicles, with an average monthly price of $460 per vehicle.

The Takeaway

Like any major purchase decision, auto buyers are advised to shop around, check the book value of favored vehicles, and look at the car’s maintenance and repair history to ensure it’s in good condition, and (if it’s a used car) make sure it’s inspected by a trusted mechanic.

By doing these things, the choice between a new and used car can get easier and enhance your chances of driving away in the vehicle that best fits your auto needs.

Saving for your next used car purchase or down payment on a new car can be challenging, but with a cash management account like SoFi Money®, the savings can add up, helping to reach a financial goal as quickly as possible. SoFi Money account holders pay no account fees, have free Allpoint® Network ATM availability, and the ability to earn interest on the money in their account. They can also save for other goals in addition to that future new or used car purchase by setting up Vaults in their SoFi Money account—no need to have separate accounts for separate savings goals.

Learn more about saving for your financial goals with SoFi Money.

Photo credit: iStock/Ivanko_Brnjakovic


SoFi Money®
SoFi Money is a cash management account, which is a brokerage product, offered by SoFi Securities LLC, member FINRA / SIPC .
Neither SoFi nor its affiliates is a bank. SoFi Money Debit Card issued by The Bancorp Bank. SoFi has partnered with Allpoint to provide consumers with ATM access at any of the 55,000+ ATMs within the Allpoint network. Consumers will not be charged a fee when using an in-network ATM, however, third party fees incurred when using out-of-network ATMs are not subject to reimbursement. SoFi’s ATM policies are subject to change at our discretion at any time.
As of 6/9/2020, accounts with recurring monthly deposits of $500 or more each month, will earn interest at 0.25%. All other accounts will earn interest at 0.01%. Interest rates are variable and subject to change at our discretion at any time. Accounts opened prior to June 8, 2020, will continue to earn interest at 0.25% irrespective of deposit activity. SoFi’s Securities reserves the right to change this policy at our discretion at any time. Accounts which are eligible to earn interest at 0.25% (including accounts opened prior to June 8, 2020) will also be eligible to participate in the SoFi Money Cashback Rewards Program.
The SoFi Money® Annual Percentage Yield as of 03/15/2020 is 0.20% (0.20% interest rate). Interest rates are variable subject to change at our discretion, at any time. No minimum balance required. SoFi doesn’t charge any ATM fees and will reimburse ATM fees charged by other institutions when a SoFi Money™ Mastercard® Debit Card is used at any ATM displaying the Mastercard®, Plus®, or NYCE® logo. SoFi reserves the right to limit or revoke ATM reimbursements at any time without notice.
External Websites: The information and analysis provided through hyperlinks to third party websites, while believed to be accurate, cannot be guaranteed by SoFi. Links are provided for informational purposes and should not be viewed as an endorsement.
Third Party Brand Mentions: No brands or products mentioned are affiliated with SoFi, nor do they endorse or sponsor this article. Third party trademarks referenced herein are property of their respective owners.
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