Saving money can be tricky when you’re trying to keep up with everyday expenses. And if you don’t yet have a savings account or an emergency fund, you’re not alone. According to a recent report from the Federal Reserve, 27% of Americans said they couldn’t cover a $400 emergency expense without borrowing money or selling something, and 12% said that they wouldn’t be able to pay for it at all.
Whether you’re trying to prepare yourself for sudden costs, put money away for retirement, or reach a fun financial goal such as taking a vacation, putting money aside is key to staying in control of your personal finances. But changes in monthly income and expenses can make it difficult to know how much to save.
Enter Digit: the savings app that helps you save the right amount of money each day. Digit calculates your income, upcoming bills, and expected expenses to determine exactly how much to withdraw from your checking account, saving you time as well as money.
This Digit review will help you figure out if it's the right option to help you work toward your savings goals.
Digit has helped save its users over $1 billion collectively.
- Start saving money effortlessly
- Try it free for 30 days
- Work toward your savings goals without changing your lifestyle
What is Digit?
Founded in 2013 by Ethan Bloch, San Francisco-based Digit is a finance app that helps people effortlessly save money without cutting into their expenses. It’s a legitimate way to save money in an FDIC-insured account without having to keep track of a monthly transfer amount or worry about overdraft fees.
Because Digit analyzes your spending habits to decide how much to save for you, it saves you time and energy and helps you avoid mistakes. In addition to stashing customers' money in FDIC-insured bank accounts, Digit also has security features that can offer peace of mind, like military-level 256-bit encryption and touch or face ID on its iOS app.
If you're interested in saving for retirement, Digit can help with that, too. It offers multiple individual retirement account (IRA) options for retirement contributions and lets you invest in exchange-traded funds based on your preferred risk tolerance.
How to use Digit
When you sign up for Digit, it takes the guesswork out of how to save money. It offers a 30-day free trial, and after that, you'll pay $5 for a monthly subscription. Once you're signed up, Digit will regularly analyze your spending and upcoming bills against the money you make. It will then move extra money from your checking account to your Digit account each day if you can afford it. For added protection, Digit also lets you set custom savings controls to limit how much it saves and help protect you from overdrafting your account.
To determine how much to save for you, Digit looks at the following four factors:
- Your bank account balance
- Your upcoming bills
- Your upcoming income
- Your recent spending
Based on these figures, Digit calculates a safe amount of money to save and deposits that amount into your Digit account. Unlike automatic transfers at a traditional bank, Digit adapts your automated savings to your spending habits, bills, and cash flow. You won’t need to pick an amount to transfer, you don’t need to worry about maintaining a minimum balance, and you can withdraw from your Digit account whenever you want without restrictions.
Digit also lets you set automatic savings goals, and shows you how far you’ve come towards achieving those goals. There’s no limit to the number of goals you can set. For instance, you might set a rainy day fund goal, a student loan debt goal, a credit card debt goal, and a down payment goal, and Digit could help you save towards all of those objectives.
And if your goal is to save for retirement, Digit's investment tool could help. It offers multiple IRA accounts and you can create a portfolio of ETFs based on your risk tolerance. The investment option is included as part of your monthly Digit monthly subscription.
How much can you save with Digit?
There are no limits to how much you can save with Digit, and your account is FDIC-insured up to $250,000. According to Digit, the average customer saves $2,200 per year. Digit users have collectively saved more than $1 billion securely.
The more you budget and the less you spend, the more you save. Digit will even reward you with a 0.10% annualized savings bonus after you save money for three consecutive months. You don't need to meet an account minimum to get the bonus, and the amount of your bonus is calculated based on your average daily balance.
For instance, if your average daily balance for a particular quarter was $5000, your savings bonus for that quarter would be $1.25. Here's how the math works out: $5,000 x (0.10% ÷ 4) = $1.25.
Since the amount you save with Digit is also partially determined by your recent spending, it’s important to develop healthy spending habits. To maximize your savings, it's a good idea to:
- Create a budget for your monthly expenses and stick to it.
- Cut unnecessary expenses. An app like Trim can help you identify areas where you could save, and will even cancel unwanted subscriptions for you. (Read our Trim review.)
- Consider using apps to save money while you shop.
- Generate more income by finding legitimate ways to make money on the side.
- Consider earning some extra income by finding the best side hustle for you.
Common questions about Digit
Does Digit cost money?
You’ll get a 30-day free trial, but Digit costs $5 per month after that. That monthly fee may seem like a lot to pay when you’re trying to save money, but Digit provides many benefits, including saving users an average of two overdraft fees per year by providing overdraft protection. When you consider that the average overdraft fee is $33.36, Digit pays for itself.
Is Digit secure?
Yes. In addition to providing 256-bit encryption, Digit uses firewalls and other precautions to protect your data. iOS users can even set a passcode and require Touch or Face ID.
Is Digit FDIC-insured?
Yes. Your Digit balance is held at FDIC-insured banks and is insured up to $250,000.
Is there a fee to withdraw from Digit?
No. It’s free to withdraw from your Digit account, and you can withdraw as many times as you want. It typically takes about one business day for withdrawn funds to appear in your checking account.
Is Digit better than Qapital?
That depends on your needs. While Digit is focused on tracking your spending patterns and determining how much to save for you each day, Qapital is more focused on helping you decide how much you should spend based on your savings goals. Qapital also has some additional features, like pre-built investment portfolios. Members with the basic plan pay $3 per month and save an average of $1,500 per year.
Does Digit work with my bank or credit union?
According to the Digit website, Digit works with thousands of banks and credit unions, with more being added constantly. If your bank isn't listed when you're connecting your checking account to your Digit savings account, reach out to Digit support for further assistance.
How to sign up for Digit
To start your free trial of Digit, you’ll need to create an account. First, head to Digit.co, click Get Started, and enter your mobile phone number and a password.
You’ll need to link your checking account, so you have your account and routing numbers handy before getting started. You’ll also need to confirm your account via text message, after which you can use texts to give Digit commands rather than logging in online.
And if you prefer to use Digit on your phone, the Digit app is available to download for Android and iPhone.
Alternatives to Digit
If Digit doesn’t seem like the best fit for you, there are other ways you can learn how to manage your money with the right financial tools. If you don’t need the support of Digit’s analysis and can afford to make a recurring monthly deposit, you might be better served by a high-yield savings account like the Aspiration Spend & Save, which offers a better-than-average interest rate.
If you like the automated features of Digit, Acorns is another alternative to consider. When you opt into its Round-Ups feature, it lets you automatically round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and invest your spare change into a diversified portfolio. By comparing Digit vs. Acorns, you can see which better suits your financial goals. And remember, investments are inherently risky so there is no guarantee you will earn a return on money invested and you may incur losses on your principal.