7 A.I. Companies That Can Save You $7K a Year for Free
Find out if you’re getting ripped off on your car insurance in less than two minutes.
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Artificial intelligence (A.I.) can drive your car, control your thermostat, teach you another language, and pick your next Netflix binge. But what many people don’t realize is that A.I. can also save you a lot of money, and often all it’ll cost you is a free download. These seven companies have apps that do what alchemists couldn’t: Make solid gold out of thin air.
1. Get Jerry
Shopping for insurance used to be like a bad romance: Lots of pointless phone calls, mumbled half-truths, and outright lies. Now you can let an A.I. do all the shopping for you — Jerry has turned something painful into something pleasurable. No more long forms, pushy salespeople, or phone calls! Jerry has built an A.I. that can compare costs across over 40 insurance companies in mere minutes. The app is free and it takes 45 seconds to sign up. It shops for quotes matching your current insurance coverage, and the payoff can be huge: Savings of $800 or more per year. Let this A.I. tool automatically lower your insurance rates every six months.
The cable bill, the phone bill: It’s a one-two punch to the wallet that many families fear each month. The average cable bill is $217 per month, while the average cell phone charge is $114. Instead of just paying while cursing the skies, you can use BillSmart to negotiate with your providers in search of a better deal. All you do is send in your bills and BillSmart does the rest, which means you won’t spend hours on hold. The best part is, if BillSmart can’t save you money, you pay nothing. If they find savings, you give them 25%. So far the average monthly savings is $204 per customer, which isn’t chump change.
If you’re drowning in a sea of debt, then debt consolidation might make sense for you. Before the A.I. revolution, though, if you had a thin or no credit history, banks would’ve taken a one-size-fits-all approach and denied you. But Upstart uses deep-learning algorithms to assess borrower risk, taking into account factors like college degree and earning potential. Replacing a high interest rate with a lower one can lead to significant savings, depending on how much you owe. Robots to the rescue!
For A.I. technology, information is everything. It’s hard for us to keep track of what we spend, and where we spend it. But fintech plans to take the burden of financial accounting away from our stressed-out brains and into our very smart phones. One app that is showing much promise — and potential savings — is Olivia, which is designed to be a financial assistant that allows you to spend smarter and save more. Its chatbot will challenge your spending habits and find better alternatives. Thus far, early users have been hourly workers and they’ve saved an average of $200 per month. The key is not to argue, of course, about what Olivia tells you to do.
5. Grocery Pal
What if you could compare prices at all of your favorite big-box retail stores without getting out of your Barca lounger? What if you could clip coupons without using scissors? You could be the world’s best magician, or you could be using Grocery Pal, an app that allows you to find the best deals for your weekly shopping. There are several good grocery-shopping apps, and each has its virtues. But if saving money is your goal, then Grocery Pal gives you the best chance to shave dollars off your monthly food bill.
Many smart apps will help you save money, but how many will actually invest your savings for you? That’s what Acorns does, one handful of spare change at a time. Many people keep their pennies in piggy banks, but Acorns goes one step further with its Round-Up feature and allows you to start an investment portfolio by rounding your transactions up to the nearest dollar and depositing the rest. One user saved $420 in a year using it. It does cost a dollar per month for accounts with less than $5,000, but that is nothing compared to the long-term payoff.
Banks used to make money the old-fashioned way. Then they figured out it was easier charging fees to customers, who often had no idea that they’d been assessed these charges. That’s what led to the founding of Cushion, an app that gives users the chance to recoup some of these losses. And not just from banks, but credit card companies as well. Cushion’s bot uses A.I. to analyze your financial statements and figure out the best plan of action. Most banks would rather negotiate than lose a customer. More than reclaiming fees, Cushion aims to better your financial health by finding the best places to store your cash. It’s not free, but plans begin at $3 per month. The Cushion bot can get you many times that from your bank with one email.