SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 13, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- A new survey released by mobile banking startup Varo Money, Inc. shines a light on the financial habits of modern couples, revealing that many Americans prefer maintaining a degree of fiscal autonomy in their relationships rather than engaging in full financial transparency with their spouse or significant other. The survey queried 1,045 participants over the age of 18, of varying incomes living across the United States.
While the data revealed a majority of respondents shared fiscal responsibility with their partners (77%), it also underscored a clear interest in maintaining a sense of financial independence for many. Nearly half of all respondents (45%) maintain separate bank accounts from their partner. Among those who have joint bank accounts, 23% also keep a separate personal account. What's more, nearly one in five survey respondents maintain a secret bank account or credit card their partners do not know about.
Contrary to this surprising amount of secrecy, most participants surveyed (60%) stated they would prefer full financial transparency with their significant other. The trend in survey responses suggested that financial independence doesn't mean that responsibilities and resources can't be shared. While many may not want to run every purchase by their partners (81%), the data revealed that 37% of respondents that prefer not to, will do so if the purchase exceeds a certain amount.
Sharing funds proved to be a common need as well, with 50% of those who maintain separate bank accounts exchanging money at least once a month, and nearly one in seven exchanging money every week. When sharing money, respondents primarily use cash or check (31%), peer-to-peer apps (21%) or transfer directly between bank accounts at the same institution (30%) to complete the transaction.
To help facilitate money transfers such as these, Varo has launched a new peer-payment feature for its customers today. 'Varo to Varo' allows Varo customers to instantly transfer money between Varo bank accounts with no transaction fees. As one of the top-requested features from customers, Varo to Varo moves money between friends, family –– and even significant others –– that are Varo users in real time. The feature joins the suite of Varo's banking services designed to serve people who need flexible tech-oriented mobile services to fit their dynamic lives.
Safe and secure transfers
Varo to Varo brings the safety of a Varo Bank Account to peer payments by integrating the service directly into the company's banking app. Unlike other banking apps, Varo offers a peer payment feature, No Fee Overdraft* for eligible customers, Early Direct Deposit** and a high-yield savings account. As all Varo to Varo transactions are processed instantly within Varo, there is no lag time for fund availability or fees.
"In speaking to customers, we know how important it is to be able to move money quickly between friends and family. Paying a roommate back for a utility bill, splitting a restaurant meal, or moving money between loved ones are weekly if not daily needs for some," said Colin Walsh, CEO of Varo Money. "Our new Varo to Varo feature is fast and free. Other services charge as much as 1.5% for instant transfer or you pay by waiting for your money up to three or four days. At Varo, we want to provide the tools to make sure people can get their money quickly—and get their needs met as soon as possible."
In the United States, drag in the payment system costs Americans billions in extra fees as people turn to alternative services to get money faster, according to a report published by The Brookings Institute . Slow, dated payment systems are just one part of a legacy financial system that is no longer equipped to serve modern customers who increasingly have varied needs for paying bills, moving funds, and sharing money with friends and family. As a leader in innovating banking services, Varo has improved the speed at which people can access their funds and pay bills—Varo to Varo is the latest service to help people access money quickly.
Varo Money, Inc. ("Varo") is on a mission to help people make progress with their financial lives. In one mobile app, Varo offers customers premium bank accounts that have no minimum balance requirement or monthly account fee, high-interest savings accounts, and tech-first features to help people save and manage their money more easily. As a fintech leader, Varo has been granted preliminary approval for a de novo national bank charter by the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), and is working to become the first mobile-centric national bank in U.S. history. Varo Personal Loans are offered by Varo Money, Inc., under state licenses, subject to application approval. For more information, visitwww.varomoney.com, like Varo on Facebook, and follow us on Instagram and Twitter@varomoney.
Bank account services provided by The Bancorp Bank; Member FDIC
*To be eligible for No Fee Overdraft, customers must make at least 5 qualifying debit card purchases each calendar month; receive payroll or government direct deposits of at least $1,000 each calendar month into their Varo Bank Account or Savings Account; and opt-in to the program via the app on their mobile device.
**Faster access to funds is based on comparison of traditional banking policies and deposit of paper checks from employers and government agencies versus deposits made electronically. Direct Deposit and earlier availability of funds is subject to payer's support of the feature and timing of payer's funding.