Monzo vs Zeta vs One Finance?

I’ve been doing a ton of research on banks to replace Simple. My husband and I have used the Expenses “buckets” since they were introduced. Our financial situation before them was a bit rocky, and very “paycheck to paycheck.” In the last few years of using them, we’ve really been able to truly get ahold of our finances, never been late on a bill, and haven’t come up short on funds. We’ve built a savings account (technically 2, with Goals), and we’re in a better financial situation than ever before. Plus, I stopped having to use my Excel spreadsheet for budgeting… We tried budgeting sites and apps like Mint, but they still can’t get our transactions tagged correctly, and I’d spend hours fixing it.

Our hearts, and stomachs, sank when we got the alert that Simple is no longer come May… So, I’ve spent hours, days and weeks combing through bank after bank, feature after feature. I’ve done my own searching, and used the Reddit spreadsheet (now a website). Here are the 3 I’ve chosen to compare:

Zeta- Similar to Simple starting out, they’re “backed” by a bank, but not actually a bank themselves. They feature “couples” account features, including funding for bill pay. I’m not entirely sure how it works, but the website features an image of a reminder that rent is due soon, and has the option to fund it.

In addition, you can create your own bucket like savings accounts for yourself or shared between you and your joint account holder.

One Finance- This one seems complicated and time consuming to setup, but does seem like it could be a good replacement down the line. One is boasting a direct comparison to Simple. Their twitter account is littered with these, and even suggests their users share their own budgeting flows using One’s “Pockets” feature to compare to Simple.

However, I’ve seen notes that there is no way to setup a “safety net” pocket to fund your spending pocket if you drop below a certain amount (similar to an unprotected savings account). I’ve also heard that you have to actually set your card to a specific pocket before using it, which would make paying your bills via debit card extremely time consuming and complicated (especially with services that solely rely on debit card payments, like Netflix or Amazon services).

That said, it seems as though this might change later down the line with them being so heavy on their comparisons with Simple’s features. In the long term, this could be the bank to replace them, but for now looks very convoluted.

What sets this apart at the current moment is the auto savings APY (3% up to $1k, and 1% on the savings account up to $5k), and ability to share “Pockets” with other account holders. It removes the need for joint account holders, and expands the ability to share money. Their “Boost” feature seems like it could be a very powerful tool as well, which finds places where you can save automatically as well as tracking your spending habits.

Then there’s Monzo. I’ve seen other banks that tout bucket saving, including Ally (which is a strong competitor even without the Expenses feature), but without automated spending from these buckets it’s just not as much of a draw. I’m very curious how Monzo handles this feature, or how the IFTTT automation can be set to handle this.

I have been researching every Neobank in existence too, and I still can’t decide. I do have a Monzo account, and its on my short list. No one does Expenses like Simple, so I think my workaround will be to pay everything with my Apple Card and create a Pot that should have enough money at the end of the month to pay the card.

So, I have an update. My husband and I are going with One (One Finance). Their “Pockets” can work like expenses, just with a little extra work. They have made changes since Feb, and have included unlimited automatic scheduled funds transfers, and virtual cards for every pocket you create.

It’s a few extra steps to setup, but once it’s set it should work just as well as expenses. The 3% APY for auto transfer of part of your paycheck and rounding up the change on your purchases will come to a higher savings ability than Simple.

Their support is also stellar! My husband’s application somehow got flagged, and required an ID verification. It didn’t go through the first time, so the next day we chatted (I’m so happy they have chat support) with them. Come to find out, the system also didn’t like his beard! LMAO! But the rep I chatted with is helping us and keeping in touch with us every single step of the way! The same rep, not just whoever gets assigned the next phase of the support ticket. It’s a huge step up from Simple’s support, and most any other bank out there.

So far, we’re very happy with our choice, and I’d definitely recommend giving them a try.

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