The Inspiration for our New Product – Qapital Spending

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Written by George Friedman, CEO.

At Qapital – we spend a lot of time thinking about people’s relationship with their money. About how the way people are wired affects the way we manage our money. And about how human nature shapes our financial decision-making (sometimes for the better, sometimes not).

It’s why we design our products in tandem with Behavioral Economist, Dan Ariely – who helps us find ways to make the act of saving more successful. Like having people save for specific goals, instead of generic savings accounts. Or having people upload custom photos for their goals – because we know that when people can see what they want in front of them, they save 2x more.

By combining behavioral economics and technology, we built an app that turned people into great savers by making saving easier and more motivating.

Today, we’re taking that same philosophy a step further with the launch of “Qapital Spending” – a checking account designed to help people spend more intentionally, and reach their goals even faster.

This means that Qapital is moving from a simple savings app, to a more holistic goal-focused personal finance platform. Or – in human speak – a new way to bank designed to help people put their money towards the stuff that matters most.

Now, with the addition of Qapital Spending, users can better monitor and manage their weekly spending and savings habits in real-time. They can automatically puts a little away every time they swipe – making saving for their goals a daily, automatic habit. Qapital users even get helpful notifications about how much they’ve saved and track progress towards their goals.

Just like traditional banks, Qapital lets people send paper checks, set up direct deposit, even earn interest on their account balances. But UNLIKE banks, Qapital has no monthly fees, no minimums, unlimited transfers and more. So basically – the stuff you need, without the stuff you don’t.

It’s the next step in our effort to create a better banking experience. One that helps people not only manage — but improve —  their financial lives. One that’s less frustrating, and more fulfilling. One that helps people get the most possible happiness out of their money.

And the best part, is this is just the next step. Much more to come in the next year.

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Resolution Ready for 2k17? Qapital Will Help Keep You On Track!

We all have good intentions when it comes to setting resolutions. Unfortunately, intentions aren’t the thing that usually keeps us going when it comes to meeting these goals. You’ll need drive, determination, and a sometimes…a little help.

Lucky for us, Qapital is all about #Qapitalizing (pun intended) on your already existing behaviors, which means if you’re looking to change those habits up for the better, why not reward yourself financially in the process? The ability to do so is just a few pushes of a button away.

In order to better help guide you, I reached out to some Qapital customers (and employees), and asked them for their resolutions for the upcoming year:

Matt Russell, Los Angeles-based musician and Customer Success Representative (as well as “Best Use of Emojis In Customer Interactions” award winner), is resolving to “change more diapers” this year (after the birth of his new baby girl), and would like to “shed some extra pounds.” If losing weight is something you’re interested in, Qapital has you covered. Using an iOS? We’ve got an Apple Health Rule for you; simply activate it and choose your trigger. Would you like to meet a daily walking, running, or exercise goal? Once connected, the Rule will save your set amount after you’ve reached it. If you’re on an Android, or already using your favorite fitness app, we can connect through IFTTT with Qapital + FitBit, Nike +, Strava and several others!

As for the diapers…while we can’t help you physically change those, we can keep you on track with an IFTTT Location recipe. Simply set up the location to fence the baby’s changing table. Enter the location, and voila! Future college money saved!

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Joe Weber, a Los Angeles Based comedian intends to travel more in 2017. If this sounds like it’s right up your jetway, Qapital suggests setting up a Freelancer Rule, which will set aside a percentage (you choose!) of each direct deposit over a chosen amount. If you’re a Pinterest fan, why not use an IFTTT Qapital + Pinterest Recipe to save some cash each time you pin something to your Travel Board? A little goes a long way, and so will you (once you’ve saved up)!

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Tracey Carnazzo, Qapital Customer Success Representative and New York City-based comic says, “I’m going to pay off my debt this year using Qapital,” and she’s already got her Rules in place. She set up the 52 Week Challenge Rule, which will save $1 the first week, $2 the second, and so on through the year. By this time in 2017, she’ll have saved $1,378. She’s also using the ever-popular RoundUp Rule, paired with a Weekly Set & Forget. Here’s to being debt-free, Tracey! We’ve got your back!

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Chicago-based Freelance Illustrator, Sterling Martin, has several resolutions: “I am going to buy a new computer, restart my 401k, cut my cholesterol, and get a new job doing graphic design.” We’ve got lots of ideas for those! For the new computer, maximize your time on the old one and set up an IFTTT Qapital + Spotify Recipe –  you’ll save each time you add a song to a playlist. Add additional money to your 401k by setting a Freelancer Rule to save each time you get a direct deposit. You can transfer back to your personal account, then roll it over whenever you choose! Cut back on cholesterol by rewarding yourself with trips to the grocery store (instead of a fast food restaurant). You can set up a Guilty Pleasure Rule to save each time you spend at your local market. When it comes to getting that new job? Maximize your talent by using an IFTTT Qapital + Instagram Hashtag Recipe. Post a photo of a recent illustration, use a specific hashtag, and watch the savings add up! Bonus: you’re marketing your work at the same time!

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Alfredo Aponte, the Head of Design at Qapital,  would like to “stay better connected with family while I am afar. And post more small updates for them on Facebook and Instagram.” If you’re feeling the same, try using an IFTTT Qapital + Facebook Status Recipe to save money each time you update online. Now they’ve got an update, and you’re one step closer to a plane ticket back to visit. You can also trigger savings when you post on Instagram with an IFTTT Qapital + Instagram Recipe. Or keep yourself in touch with family by setting up a weekly chat or phone call. You can save money in two ways – with the 52 Week Challenge as well as a Weekly Set & Forget.

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The possibilities for saving are endless! If you’re in need of some help, feel free to email socialmedia@qapital.com – we’ll be happy to throw some ideas out for you. Think you’ve got it on lock? Share your stories with #QapitalResolutions! We’d love to hear what you’re going to accomplish this year, as well as your successes.

From the team at Qapital: stay safe this New Year’s Eve, have a great start to 2017, and always – happy saving!

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A Time Traveler’s Guide to Qapital

Scenario: The time machine is accidentally activated. You are teleported back to the 90s, and all you have now is a scratchy denim outfit, a smartphone, and the Qapital app.

How will you use the most cutting edge banking app from the future to your advantage — or in other words, what goals will you kick with Qapital in the 90s?

Step one:

The first thing you’ll want to do as a Qapital user (and time traveler) is to set up a ‘Goal’ to save for. We advise you to save for a pager, to blend in. Blending in is important since you don’t necessarily want people to learn that you are from the future (because who knows what would happen if they did?).

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If you’re not a techy-person, you don’t have to worry. There are other phenomenon that you can disguise yourself with.

For example, the creative hair crimper.

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Or rollerblades.

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What is so great about all these items is that none of them are overly expensive. With Qapital you’ll have your blend-in kit in no-time (remember, the more 90s stuff you carry on you, the more authentic you will look)!

Now you might wonder: how is it that I will be able to save up for these things so quickly with Qapital?

Introducing step two: Rules!

A Qapital Rule is, in its essence, how you save — the digital equivalent of reaching your hand to the piggy bank and putting the quarter in. Take our RoundUp Rule for example. If you spend $12.43 on lunch with your card, Qapital rounds the amount to $13, and saves the 57 cent difference. But this is the 90s. Lunch is so much cheaper, so you’ll save money on that too!

Another example is our 52 week challenge. This rule will save one dollar for you the first week, two dollars the second week, and so forth — until you have saved for a full year. If you complete the challenge, you’ll have saved $1,378!

The Guilty Pleasures Rule — to come heavy with a third example — saves money each time you get something against your own good conscience. Let’s say you spend a little too much money while having a great time down at the bar, or since it’s the 90s — down at the very popular oxygen bar. No problem. Set Qapital to save for you each time you purchase as much as a sip of oxygen!

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If you want to check out the rest of the Qapital Rules, they’re right in the app. You can also read about them here.

Now that you have both a Goal and Rules with Qapital, you are ready to take on the 90s! Below are some general tips & tricks to help you out while you’re in this strange decade. If you play your cards right, it will be far from a Bogus Journey.

  • There are no music streaming services anymore. You might want to set up a Goal for a Walk/Discman, ASAP. Yellow was all the rage those days.
  • Use phrases like “Fresh” and “Prince” and “of Bel-Air.” People will know, and nod.
  • You’re playing Tamagotchi now, not Pokemon. DO NOT MENTION POKEMON.
  • MTV is for music videos, not reality TV. Except they do make exceptions for Liquid Television, which you watch religiously. All hail our queen and kings, Aeon Flux and Beavis & Butthead! Heh. Heheh.
  • If you’re going to complain, it’s going to be because your little brother spilled his Squeez-It all over your No Fear shirt, or that Alf went to Melmac at the beginning of the decade and just like, never came back. As if!

These tips will probably be enough to get you through. So just toss your “Rachel” or “Hanson” hair back, and enjoy the 90s ride – before you know it, you’ll be living “in the now!” So help us, Wayne and Garth. Until then, start kicking your Goals, save up, and party like it’s 1999.

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Hi, welcome to Qapital!

We’re here to answer some of the most frequently asked questions and help you get set up and saving with Qapital!

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Now that we’re downloaded onto your phone, you’re probably wondering who we are, what we do, and when you get to sling angry birds.

So, before you even have to ask, let’s answer some of the most frequently asked questions for you, and – first and foremost – there will be nothing to sling, except savings!

Qapital is a mobile app that comes with an FDIC-insured account that will automatically save money for you based on your spending habits, Rules that you set up, and automatically transfer money toward Goals you’d like to reach, or things you’d like to buy.

Go ahead: think big or small

You might be saving for a wedding, a dream vacation, or in my case – a new gold jumpsuit and sneakers for all my weekend dance parties. Short term or long term goals are also welcome – we’ll help you save for what you want, without constantly worrying about getting by without what you need.

How Qapital Works (and helps you save money)

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Once you’ve linked your checking account, you’ll set up Rules that will help you easily (and automatically!) save based on your spending habits.

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Qapital + Apple Health Rules: Reward your fitness achievements!

Use Apple Health Rules to add more pep to your step! Keep yourself on track with both physical and financial fitness.

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If you’re anything like me, you’ll take any incentive you can get to help keep you on track with your fitness goals. Sound familiar? Then rejoice – our new Apple Health Rules are tailor-made for you!

Whether you’re hitting the gym, hiking in the woods or taking the stairs instead of the elevator, now you can make it count in Qapital! Use your iPhone to automatically save money toward Goals when you reach your target in Apple Health for Walk or Run Distance, Steps and Workouts.

The fitness targets and the amount you save when you reach them are, of course, completely customizable so you can adjust the Rules to your own personal needs.

Reach your 10,000 step Goal every day thanks to some great lifehacks? Reward your consistency by chipping away at a big Goal $5 at a time!

Trying to work out for an hour four days a week? Pitch in $20 to your vacation Goal when you do!

Whatever gets you moving, you’ll be able to save money as you do it. And don’t forget to check out the IFTTT Channels for other fitness trackers like Nike+, UP by Jawbone, Misfit, and FitBit if you’re looking for more ways to link your physical fitness goals with your financial wellness!

How to set up Apple Health Rules in Qapital

  • Open the app and tap the + button in the top right-hand corner
  • Tap ‘New Rule’ then scroll down to the Apple Health banner and tap it
  • Follow the onscreen prompts to set up your personalized fitness Rule

How do you use Qapital to help you reward yourself for meeting your fitness goals? Tell us on Twitter by tweeting to us @Qapitalapp and we’ll share it with the rest of the Qapital community!

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Save More Money in 2016 – With or Without a Resolution!

Nearly half of all Americans made a new year’s resolution in 2015. Among the top goals? Saving money.

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Half of Americans will make a New Year’s resolution in 2016. And half of them will fail. What can help you be among the successful?

According to Dan Ariely, Qapital’s Chief Behavioral Economist, saving toward a goal is the key to success. Dan told Quartz that people need to set money aside for a specific goal if they want to succeed in saving. You’re less likely to touch your saved money if you have an emotional connection to what you’re saving for.

Whether you love new year’s resolutions or hate ’em, we’ve come up with five ways you can use Qapital to successfully save money for the things you want in 2016! You only need to call it a resolution if you want to.

Save for taxes
Use our automated Freelancer Rule and never get caught short on your estimated taxes again. With just a few taps, you can set aside a percentage of each paycheck for Uncle Sam.

Save while staying fit
Qapital connects to many fitness trackers, including FitBit, Nike+, Jawbone and Moves using IFTTT. Each mile, step and target can translate into savings in your pocket. Learn more!

Save together using Shared Goals
Shared Goals allow you to save with your friends or partner for one big Goal. Save for something you all can share, from a weekend getaway to a weekly babysitter. You can even chat in the app about all the awesome stuff you’ll do with the money you save!

Save while being (un) productive
Reward yourself for using Google apps like Calendar or Drive, ToDoist or many other productivity apps. Spending too much time on Facebook or Twitter? You can “fine” yourself when you post #hashtags or post on Facebook. All of these options (and hundreds more) are possible with Qapital + IFTTT!

Save $1,378
Qapital uses automation to make the 52 Week Challenge a snap! During the first week of the challenge, you save $1. During the second week, you save $2, etc… At the end, you’ll have saved $1,378 without breaking a sweat. You can even reverse the challenge in the app!

What are you planning on saving for in 2016? We’d love to hear about what your financial goals for the year ahead. Tells us on Facebook or tweet it to us @qapitalapp!

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Savings Stories: “Qapital makes saving money fun”

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We know that Qapital is the best way to save money for all the things we want to do in life. But the things we buy are just a small part of the equation. Staying on top of expenses and taxes might not seem glamorous but it’s those things that give us the feeling that we’re taking control.

unnamedMeet Randi Newton, a 37 year-old journalist and sober companion who works with addicts in recovery

Tell us what you’ve been saving for.

I’m always saving for something on Qapital.  My top goals for now are saving for tax time, since I’m a freelancer and saving for a rainy day.

How has saving money been difficult for you in the past?

I’ve tried different ways of saving. I’ve literally put money in a jar, aka the piggy bank method. It was too accessible, sometimes I’d turn to the piggy bank rather than run to the ATM.

What’s your savings strategy with Qapital? 

I started saving small with Qapital.  At first I used Set and Forget to deposit $5 into each goal.  Then once the money started adding up, I upped it to $10 a day. Then I started using the Guilty Pleasure rule since Starbucks, Uber and Seamless Web are repeat offenders in my life. But I actually didn’t feel bad using them, knowing that money would be put into my account toward my Goal. It didn’t take long at all for me to start saving and notice my savings building up.

Do you feel the money leaving your account? 

Sometimes I do feel it, but I know it’s going into another account toward my goals. And I know I can access if I need it, so no matter where the money ends up, I know it’s mine.

Why do you think that the money advice you’ve been given in the past has let you down?

Different strategies work for different people. As much as I’ve loved saving and it’s something I’ve had an interest in, I’m bored by conventional “how to save” articles. Qapital makes saving fun, it’s that simple. I attribute this to the variety of ways you can save money. I really like the colorful graphics on the Qapital app and the sense that I’m doing something to help my future.  It makes it all easy to keep track of and fun.

What are you saving for next?

I’m always saving for something.  I’m dreading tax time, but the Freelancer Rule has made it a little more bearable.

Any advice for new users? 

Saving money is something that a lot of people make excuses for being they “can’t afford to do.” Qapital takes the daunting thought of saving and turn it into something you might actually enjoy doing. No amount you try to save is too small, because it all really adds up over time.  I say start saving slowly and small if you’re intimidated, then after you see the results, push yourself to save more. The person it benefits the most is you.

Get the app!

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Freelancers Rule: Qapital Makes Saving for Taxes Automatic (Finally!)

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Caught short paying the IRS? Never get blindsided by taxes again.

Qapital, the banking app that lets you save according to you everyday habits, now has a new functionality that lets you automatically put aside money for your annual or quarterly estimated taxes without breaking a sweat. We call it the Freelancer Rule.

Here’s the thing.  Life as a freelancer can be pretty great. You’re your own boss. The hours are flexible. And best of all, relief from (most) office politics. The downside? Taxes. If you’re a freelancer, there’s nothing worse than an unexpected bill from the IRS.

A better tax solution for an evolving workforce

The American workforce is changing. By 2020, independent contractors will comprise 40% of the workforce by, according to a recent study by Intuit. According to the New York Times, the self-employed economy, approximately 53 million Americans, is being fueled by young professionals. In the U.S., 38% of Americans under the age of 35 presently work as freelancers. 

At Qapital, we believe this growing workforce deserves a better way to  manage the responsibility that comes with being part of the freelance economy. The Freelancer Rule is innovative and mobile to align with the we work now.

How the Freelancer Rule Works

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Here’s how our  simple solution helps freelancers and independent workers stay on top of their taxes and avoid trouble with the IRS.

1. Connect your regular bank. Download the Qapital app and connect your checking account to an FDIC-insured Qapital account. We integrate with nearly 20,000 banks in the U.S.

2. Set a percentage. Choose the income percentage you’d like to set aside. For example, if you want to put aside a third of your income for your taxes, set the Freelancer Rule to 30%. 

3. Sit back and relax. Qapital’s free app will automatically transfer that amount out of every deposit over $100 into your FDIC-insured Qapital account.

4. When you’re ready to pay your taxes. Simply transfer that money back into your checking account to pay the IRS. Need to take it out before? You have full access to your Qapital account, whenever you need it.

Try Qapital

Whether you work with an accountant or file yourself, the Freelancer Rule will become the easiest part of your life as an independent contractor.

Download the app now Sign up now.

Already use Qapital? Click here to set up the Freelancer Rule.

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What is IFTTT? Qapital Lets You Save With Your Favorite Apps

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Did you know you can save with a hashtag? Or every time you post on Instagram? It’s true! With Qapital you can save using many of your favorite apps, including FitBit, Facebook, Twitter and more. It’s all possible with Qapital and IFTTT

Wait, what’s IFTTT?

Here’s how it works: IFTTT (pronounced like ‘gift’) uses one action or behavior to trigger another. The name stands for If This, Then That and means that each time one action happens, another will follow (like a series of dominoes). There are more than 200 IFTTT channels that can trigger savings to Qapital — we’re the first and only banking service to have a channel. IFTTT has been dubbed “digital duct tape” and it’s pretty cool.

Here’s How to Make Qapital Work with IFTTT

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