Drake loves this new green bank. Do I have to open an account?
Aspiration, a bank whose mission is to help the environment, has selected several leading investors. Leonardo DiCaprio, Robert Downey Jr. and Orlando Bloom are some of the most famous rappers, and best-selling Drake is the latest to sign.
Drake not only invests, he also wants to use Aspiration’s services to reduce his carbon footprint and potentially achieve carbon neutrality in his personal life. The bank offers this service to all of its customers, but it’s more difficult with a celebrity traveling the world.
This is great news for Aspiration, which started serving its customers in 2015 and now has over 4 million members. If you are interested in the bank, here is what sets it apart and learn more about the financial products it offers.
About Aspiration Bank
The bank offers customers several ways to help the planet and to shop according to their values.
Aspiration says it is 100% committed to cleaning up the money. While many other banks lend money to fossil fuel projects, Aspiration promises that the fields will not fund fossil fuel exploration or production. She also donates 10% of her earnings to charities.
One of its most notable features is called Plant Your Change, which rounds each purchase to the nearest dollar and uses the extra money to plant a tree. You don’t need to be a member to do this – Aspiration allows you to link debit and credit cards from other financial institutions. According to Aspiration’s website, he has planted more than 6 million trees so far.
In addition, the bank provides an Aspiration Impact Measurement (AIM) score to summarize how companies treat the planet and their employees. Members can view companies’ AIM scores in their transaction histories to see how their purchasing choices are impacting.
Aspiration’s bank accounts
The heart of Aspiration is its Spend & Save bank accounts. Spend is its version of a checking account, and you can shop with it using a debit card. Saving is technically not a savings account, but as the name suggests, saving is its goal.
You have the choice between two banking formulas: Aspiration and Aspiration Plus. The Aspiration plan works on a “pay for what is right” system. You decide how much to pay each month and you can even choose to pay $ 0 if you want. Aspiration Plus costs $ 5.99 per month (if you pay annually) or $ 7.99 per month (if you pay monthly).
Both plans offer the following:
- 55,000 free network ATMs where you can withdraw money
- The Plant Your Change option to round off your purchases and plant a tree with each purchase
- AIM scores to assess the impact of your purchases
- Cash back with Aspiration’s partners in its Consciousness CoalitionMT (you earn between 3% and 5% on the regular Aspiration plan, and 10% on the Aspiration Plus plan)
In addition to a higher cash back rate on Conscience CoalitionMT purchases, the Aspiration Plus plan includes a few other advantages:
- Up to 1.00% APY on the first $ 10,000 of your Save account
- Monthly repayment from an off-network ATM
- Aspiration measures the carbon impact of all your gas purchases and purchases carbon offsets to counter the climate impact
The interest rates with the Aspiration Plus plan are a bit complicated. You can earn 1% on the first $ 10,000 in your Save account if you meet a minimum spend requirement of $ 1,000 on your Aspiration debit card. If you do not meet this requirement, the APY is 0.25% up to $ 10,000. All funds over $ 10,000 earn an APY of 0.10%.
When you qualify to spend, Aspiration Plus offers a competitive APY that outperforms many high yield savings accounts. However, that doesn’t necessarily make him better than those other options because there is a monthly fee and you only earn his highest APY on the first $ 10,000.
Zero Aspiration Credit Card
Aspiration plans to release a credit card promising a planted tree for every purchase. The Aspiration Zero credit card will have an annual fee of $ 60, and every time you buy with it, Aspiration plants a tree. You can also activate a rounding feature – Suction then rounds each purchase and uses the money to crash another tree.
As an incentive to offset your carbon footprint, the Aspiration Zero credit card offers 1% cash back on every purchase – if you meet that goal. Aspiration calculates that 60 trees planted per month offsets the carbon footprint of the average American.
The cash back rate doesn’t come close to the best credit cards, so it’s not the card to maximize rewards. But this is a good additional feature.
There is currently a waiting list for the Aspiration Zero credit card. Sign up to be among the first to get the card.
Redwood Aspiration Fund
The Aspiration Redwood Fund is a mutual fund for sustainable investing. To choose where to invest, Aspiration assesses companies’ environmental, workplace and governance practices.
You can open a General Investment Account or an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) with Aspiration to invest in this fund. There is a minimum opening deposit of $ 10. The fund’s expense ratio is 0.5%, a reasonable amount compared to the best mutual funds.
Aspiration has an admirable mission that has helped them raise funds and attract millions of members. But best of all, this is not a situation where the mission overshadows financial products. The services offered by Aspiration, especially its bank accounts, strike a balance between helping the planet and providing valuable benefits to customers.