6 Money Trends to Have on Your Radar for 2019
New year, new emergency savings goals? It’s not a bad idea. But before you overhaul your budget for 2019, take a peek at the trends making the biggest financial waves going into the new year.
No More Brick & Mortar Bank Accounts
Zelle, Venmo, PayPal—as we inch closer to a cashless society, many millennials are feeling less of a need to go to the bank, says Priya Malani, co-founder of financial planning firm Stash Wealth. “Three to four years ago, clients would tell us they wanted a physical bank that they could walk into, but we aren’t hearing that as much,” she says. “Millennials are all about hacking every aspect of their financial life—and they are keen on the better interest rates offered by online banks.”
An Increased Priority for Work Perks
Sure, salary matters (a lot), but in 2019, people are doing hard calculations as to exactly how all those “bonus” work perks affect their bottom line. No, we’re not just talking about an excellent 401(k) match or paid time off. It’s everything from the option to work from home, get ample maternity—and paternity—leave (four months or more) or even have your wedding paid for. (Yep, Boxed will pay up to $20,000 when you tie the knot.)
Buying Your Second Home First
Just a couple years ago, The New York Times called this out as an up-and-coming trend, and now it’s really picking up steam thanks to the increased median home price in major U.S. cities. (In San Francisco it’s $1.61 million, in case you were wondering.) In short, folks are buying in the country, while maintaining rentals in the urban areas where they work. (Bonus points for cheaper taxes and the option to monetize during vacation months.)
Making Self-Care a Budget Line
A recent survey conducted by Fidelity Investments found that self-care is a top resolution for Americans going into the new year. (In fact, 78 percent of those surveyed said that spending time with those they love is a top priority, followed by exercising more—64 percent—and carving out more “me time” and practicing mindfulness—46 percent.) What does this mean for the household budget? People are actively making self-care (massages, yoga, at-home face masks) a monthly savings goal. (Hey, if you’re going to automate your cash flow, you might as well set up a regular spa day slush fund.)
More 'Smart' Financial Tools and Apps
It goes along with the slow and steady exit from brick-and-mortar banks: A slew of apps promising “smart” technology that can do the thinking (or fee management) for you. Case in point: Mint just launched MintSights, a new tool that uses machine learning to provide users with a simplified view of what’s important for their finances (how to better manage your cash flow or how to dive into investing). Another example: Zero Financial just debuted a debit-meets-credit card in the form of a mobile banking experience that manages the fees for you, offers cash back and doesn’t allow you to spend what you don’t have. Too good to be true? Time will tell.
Banking with Amazon
Rumors are rampant that soon you’ll be able to bank with Amazon…as in have an actual checking account that you can use to buy books and diapers and anything else you two-day ship via Amazon Prime. The perks? Two percent cash back, apparently. The cons? One-click to buy just got even more dangerous.