During 2020 I have been looking for a way to help me stash away money without too much intervention from me. The newly refreshed Money Management App Plum came along when I needed it and is now busily working away in the background helping me to set aside money every week.
Plum is a money management app that stashes away money for you at a level you are comfortable with. Within the Plum app my main bank account is connected. Plum moves appropriate amounts each week depending on how my spending has gone. If I have had a good spending week more money will be stashed than if I have a not so good spending week.
I have experimented with Plum when it was a Facebook messenger tool in 2019 and more recently another auto-saving app, that shall remain nameless. I had a very stressful time where my money was lost four times whilst I tried to withdraw the cash. Each time my money was lost I thought surely this can’t happen again. But it did for a second, third and fourth time. That account is now shut, and I will never be recommending them again. Plum came along at the right time to meet my needs of wanting a tool to automatically set money aside with better customer service.
What I Love About Plum
The app was quick and easy to download and get set up. I have connected my First Direct personal account as the account to analyse and have money stashed from. I get a message every day from Plum telling me my First Direct balance. This added feature is great and provides me reassurance of my personal bank balance.
I can change the mode of setting money aside. The standard deposit rate is set to default mood, which was putting away a few pounds a week for me. This wasn’t enough so I upped it to beast mode, 75% higher deposits. There are several levels of mood, ranging from beast mode at the highest level, to ambitious, to eager, to default mood, to chilled to shy
I like the daily ability to boost my ‘Plum Pockets’ with an extra £15 boost. If I see my bank balance is looking healthy then I have boosted my funds a couple of times.
After using the app for four weeks and having changed my mood up to beast mode halfway through I already have about £58 stashed away for a rainy day. All of this has happened without me noticing too much. I love apps that help me to save without much effort from me!
The referral a friend scheme is great, you get a £15 bonus for every three of your friends who joins using your referral code!
What I Don’t Love About Plum
There are still some changes to make and features that don’t work for everyone.
The lost money feature needs to work a bit better as it is recommending that I switch my car insurance to pay as you go. My car insurance is already pay-as-you-go! I am already saving a small fortune with By Miles, particularly with low mileage in lockdown.
My current energy supplier is Octopus, and according to the app I could save £190 on my energy bill. However, it’s not a supplier on their list, they can only switch from suppliers on their list.
My awesome-ness rating. I’m not so keen on being told that I am 10/10 awesome. Makes me think of the Lego Movie and that annoying song.
Plum will be a brilliant place to stash away emergency money. A savings pot that is so essential for everyone to have. I consistently share this every day in radio interviews and blog posts about how important it is to have an emergency fund in place. A safety net of easy to access money for real emergencies. Things like the washing machine breaking down or the car needing new tyres (not a fund for holidays or things that you want). Having this money in place will mean less reliance on credit cards and debt.
Of course, it can also be used to save up for a treat like a holiday, but I really like the idea of it being there for emergencies. When you withdraw money the money is back in your account in real time.
Where is Money Held?
Your Plum funds are deposited in a secure account, and held as e-Money by PayrNet (a subsidiary of Railsbank), Plum’s e-Money provider. Your money is safeguarded because e-money cannot be lent out (this is also why it doesn’t earn interest).
That same safeguarding also prevents any of Plum’s or PayrNet’s creditors from claiming your money in the event that either business should go bankrupt.
Over the next few months Plum is rolling out interest pockets, which will earn interest on your money and is FSCS protected. Currently, this is rolled out for iOS Plum Pro users only in the shape of an Easy Access account that earns 0.6% AER
This is a collaborative post with Plum and I receive a referral payment if you download the app and start setting money aside when you link up your bank account.