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Warning: This is a complicated feature request to describe in simple terms! The budget is one of the cornerstones of personal finance. BECU and other banks already offer tools to track spending, but this information is provided in hindsight. What I would like to see is the following suite of user features: 1 - automation rules that users can configure on their personal checking and savings accounts to automatically deposit income 2 - the option to earmark accounts for specific purposes, or the option for virtual 'buckets' within accounts like CapitalOne360 3 - ability to assign unique debit cards to earmarked accounts or virtual buckets 4 - the option to limit overspending by blocking access to additional account funds outside of that bucket Example A: - I create a bucket in my BECU savings account for mortgage - I create an automation rule that deposits (fixed amount or percentage) of income to my Mortgage bucket - I make sure this automation rule is prioritized over my wife's Vacation bucket : ) Example B: - I create another bucket in my checking account for groceries - I create an automation rule that deposits $250 per month MAXIMUM to that bucket - Automation rule transfer options like 1x $250 transfer every month, or 52x transfer of $58 per year, etc - I go to local BECU to print debit card unique to that account or bucket - once I run out of money, I can't spend any more from that bucket with that debit card - time to eat ramen noodles! Example C: - I earmark a account for Allowance - I create a virtual 'bucket' for each one of my kids - each kid receives a debit card tied to their own bucket - I create a rule so that if a kid spends all their money in their bucket, they do not pull funds from their siblings' buckets These are very simple examples, and yes there are ways to *almost* do the same thing with existing automated transfer features. But once you consider the full scope of personal finance products and priorities, basic automated transfer has its limits. My dream is to be able to automate income distribution for something as complex as this personal finance flowchart: https://i.imgur.com/CcEVQAV.jpg
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@JohnS Re: "Your idea sounds interesting - can you elaborate? How would you want to select the pre-set percentage? Would you want to change the amount often, or only if you knew you were going to be spending more?" Can't speak for the other BECU member that posted the idea, but I would like to request three options for automating savings perks with debit card purchases: 1. Round to nearest dollar (Ex. $10.01 purchase becomes $11.00, $0.99 difference transferred to savings) 2. Member-chosen flat-rate amount per transaction (Ex. each debit card swipe moves $1 / $5 / $10 into savings) 3. Member-chosen percentage amount per transaction (Ex. each debit card transaction moves 1% / 5% / 10% into savings) If this is at all possible, it will be a HUGE game changer for personal banking. The big banks make their money off of fees and don't want to enable their customers with savings automation tools like this. I would want to change between the different options, and change the amount transferred to savings, at least as frequently as once a month or once a quarter. Ideally it would be user-managed via the website and take effect after 5-10 business days.
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Costco and USAA throw their userbase around to get better deals off MSRP from dealer, but mostly for new and certified pre-owned. That service is ideal for car buyers after a car worth $20k or more. That market is saturated with competition, and even though BECU is great, I don't think it will be able to compete with USAA and Costco userbase. In a perfect world, BECU could differentiate by offering a local used car buying service targeting loans under $20k in Washington state only. I hate haggling with dealers in this area. But the only way I can avoid it is by buying new through one of the above services. I would love to have a service go to bat for me for used vehicles. Plenty of perfectly fine used cars in the $10k to $20k range. Anyone who qualifies for a used car loan can get their first inspection free with a local mechanic. You could find ASE certified mechanics in every WA zip code who would appreciate the lead generation. Great way to attract buyers of private listings like Craigslist who regular car buying services would not attract. Also, what about an internal listing service for BECU members only - buy / sell / trade cars and rec vehicles? USAA has something similar, ideal interface would look like theirs or cargurus.com
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