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The Best Methods to Save Money Without a Bank Account

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Most of us have bank accounts. Or a bank product, at the very least. Whether it’s a savings account, credit card, checking account, line of credit, or various other service, you most likely deal with a bank on some level. Plenty of business relies on having fast access to your money. We also want to know that our hard-earned funds are secure.

If you reside in the United States, having your profit a banking account (or a spot with similar tech and security) is easily the safest and most convenient way to manage your funds. With a bank, around $250,000 of your money is insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC). Banks also offer other services like loans, online banking, direct deposits, automatic bill payments, credit score checks, financial advice, and much more.

However, there are several reasons why you might be uncomfortable with banking as a concept. Any issue at a normally trusted bank can secure funds for a protracted amount of time. Likewise, not absolutely all banking systems are as reliable as those in the U.S. It’s possible that you (or your family) have experienced bad experiences with banks in the past. Which may make you reluctant to use them again. Banks also require plenty of personal information to participate and maintain an account with. Maybe you are wondering about alternatives to traditional banking for privacy’s sake alone.

Our position is clear: the benefits of banking far outweigh the negatives in always every case. However, if you’re determined in order to avoid dealing with those financial institutions (for whatever reason), there are several practices you can adopt if you’re trying to find alternatives.

First: Think about a Credit Union

If you never like the thought of maintaining your profit a bank, the next place you must look is just a credit union. Full stop.

Credit unions are nonprofit financial institutions that have most of the same security, services, and capabilities as a bank. However, they are not beholden to investors. Since profit and growth aren’t the priorities of a credit union, they often don’t charge just as much in fees. They also generally have more generous interest rates for loans, savings accounts, and APYs for CDs.

While credit unions aren’t insured by the FDIC, they are protected by the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA) for that same $250,000 amount. You do have to keep yourself informed of such things as membership dues and signup fees —and credit unions aren’t nearly as ubiquitous as banks. However, when you have access to one, generally speaking they are an equivalent (or superior) option to a traditional bank.

Another notable thing is that not absolutely all credit unions require the same level of personal information that traditional banks do. You will have to do some specific research when you join, but a credit union may also be your absolute best bet if privacy is your main concern.

Choose Good Safe

Keeping plenty of cash or prepaid cards around your home comes with some fairly substantial risks. Theft can be absolutely catastrophic, but so could an event such as for instance a fire. Homeowner’s insurance typically does not cover more than $200 in cash. Depending on what much you’ve saved, you may find yourself losing thousands of dollars that would have been perfectly safe in a bank or credit union. Safe deposit boxes may be a slightly more secure alternative, but it’s important to keep in mind that they’re usually not insured for big sums of money.

Due to these associated risks, it’s not our position that you need to keep large sums of cash in your house or even a safe deposit box. However, if you’re determined to (or left with no other choice), putting some of that money to the purchase of a secure can alleviate a few of the danger. We encourage you to make sure any safe you acquire is both waterproof and fireproof. We also recommend you buy one large and/or heavy enough that a thief can’t just take it, and figure out how to crack it open by themselves time. For supreme security, bolt it to your floor.

Prepaid Cards Will Be described as a Lifesaver

Not all stores accept cash. If you don’t have a debit or credit card, prepaid cards can help make up for a few of the lost convenience. One of the ways to consider prepaid cards is to treat them as halfway between gift cards and debit cards. You load money onto the card similar to you would for a present card. These cards usually come from a big brand like Visa or Mastercard. That meaning your money will be accepted anywhere those cards normally would be. Plus you won’t be bound to any particular store.

However, prepaid cards do have some additional risks. If your debit card is lost or stolen, it may be cancelled and disconnected from your own banking account instantly. In case a prepaid card is lost or stolen, you’ve no way to have that money back. Anyone might use it. It’s just gone. Prepaid cards also tend ahead with fees, so be sure you see the fine print. Your effort in order to avoid paying banking fees could be cancelled out entirely by paying maintenance fees on a reloadable, prepaid Visa card.

However, prepaid cards will make it easier to silo your funds and control spending. Debit cards remain a much better option, but prepaid cards to help you put aside certain levels of money for several purchases. They are also physically easier to transport than large sums of cash.

Find a Spot to Cash Checks

One of many major downsides of not having a banking account is not having an easy way to cash checks. Not to be able to cash personal checks (or even your paycheck) can actually put a damper on your ability to even access your money, not as save it. However, there are several options.

Some large retailers like Walmart will cash checks for you. Just bear in mind there are some restrictions. Amounts are generally restricted to $5000 — except from January through April, when the limit increases to $7500. Personal checks are typically topped out at $200. They also charge a fee. That will really mount up as time passes if you’re cashing your payroll check there every week. However, they’ll cash checks into a Walmart MoneyCard, their branded prepaid card. So if you’re utilizing that service, it could be a one-stop-shop. Other major retailers might do this as well, nevertheless, you have to be familiar making use of their terms and conditions.

You will find other places to cash checks quickly, but it’s often at a premium price. If you’re determined in order to avoid using the banks, it’s a price you will have to accept.

One Final Note…

Most of the same habits that can help you save money with a banking account can help you save money without one. Setting aside a pre-determined amount of your paycheck, coupon clipping, and other tips and tricks can help you develop your assets. However, going without a banking account or credit union completely comes with many risks. We really cannot recommend it if you haven’t any other option.

2 Comments

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    November 7, 2022 at 6:44 am

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