After dealing with a bank that gouged me with fees for years, Simple is a refreshing experience. I can actually pick up my phone and talk to a real person without even having to go through a menu! I don't get charged $20 a month just for using their bank! I really like the iPhone app too. Since I don't have checks with them, to mail my rent and other bills, I simply set up a monthly check that gets mailed by the folks at Simple for me automatically- and there's no fee for that either! I haven't used this bank long enough to come across anything I don't like, but so far, so good! It's so easy to budget for vacations and other goals and see where my money is going each month. For a 20-something who is concerned more with getting help with questions when I need it and assistance with budgeting, and less about getting a better interest rate, this bank is perfect for me.
I found simple and was thrilled to give them a shot. I received my application and then applied using their "simple" form or at least I thought. A couple of days later, I received the following email (trimmed down due to this sites character limits):
"Thank you for applying for an account with Simple. We understand that you may have been a victim of fraud in the past (15 years ago?), and to ensure that the application we received in your name was submitted by you, we need some additional information.
Please send us clear, notarized copies of each of the following items:
Proof of Identification
Proof of Date of Birth
Proof of Social Security Number
Proof of Residence
Signed Request to Open an Account"
Now, I've opened plenty of accounts in the past, including online banks (Ally and Capital One 360), and I totally get that they need to verify identities, but I have never had to go through all of that just to get an account. Capital One called me up and gave me an interview, asking me questions that only I would know, which makes a lot of sense and I can appreciate.
With that said, I was an idiot and made my own form to get notarized (yeah, they don't even give you one), made copies of my ID and SS card, got everything notarized and then mailed it off. Hearing nothing after 2 weeks, I called them and they were no help, saying they probably haven't received it yet. One month later, I received an email saying that my application was denied with a list of 20 different reasons as to why it MAY have been denied. Not one said "we didn't receive your paperwork". When I called the first time, the lady said that I had till Nov. 11th to get it in, and being that I got this notice on Nov. 12th, I knew they never receive it, which means someone now has copies of not only my ID, but also my SS card. So, trying to safeguard my identity likely just got it stolen. Thanks, Simple.
Moral of this story? Don't apply until they get their verification process fixed!
Eventually got my invite, signed up. In my mid-20s, always liked the "separate envelope" approach to saving for goals. So I loved the concept to begin with. However, over time, four things annoyed me:
(1) "Check Hold" for all deposits over $200 is confusing. Bottom line - you have to wait to access your money
(2) On two separate occasions, I had duplicate entries. One time I had six releases of $600, meaning I suddenly had $3,000 in the bank that I should not have had. The second time was a small check for $20. Both entries are permanently stored in my record. Confusing and annoying. Should I really trust my money with them?
(3) Today, I went to transfer $1600 to my local bank. It was expected to arrive in 8 days. That float period is too long.
(4) I have had a few errors with check deposits either not getting accepted or the processing getting pushed back a day. Solution - mail the check. If they'll accept it. I was told a check of mine is void, even though it doesn't say so on the check. I'll go to a local bank to have it taken care of.
The responses from customer support were cute and friendly, complete with smiley face emoticons. Nice for conversation with friends. But not what I expect when my money is in question.
All that, given, it is a new startup. I may continue to use Simple to save for small personal goals, but I won't continue to use the bank for any significant banking because I have found it unreliable.
Well, that was disappointing. After I signed up, gave them my social, bank info to deposit, and birthday, they emailed me a letter saying my application was denied. What a way to get all my information. What a scam!
I am a Senior in an undergrad Computer Science program. Therefore, I am tech-y and young, kind of the key market for this bank.
The app is wonderful. My parents bank with a larger bank and they have a similar app, but I looked into it and it still reeked of old world trying to be 'hip. They took their current clunky online banking solution and painted it up to look 'hip', but it just was still terrible.
Simple's app is both beautiful, responsive and to the point. Whenever I had to bank mobile on my old bank account (which I still have and hate), the app was slow and I had to type in my full password, it took four or five clicks just to see my balance! With Simple, I open the app, punch in a four digit number (Not your PIN number obviously!) and it is there, bam. It took 10 seconds.
I haven't gotten to the best part! The goals! I love the goals. I am always telling myself "Oh, I need to save for this. No I can't, the money is for this." With Simple, you create a goal, set the amount and the time (or not if you just want a pot to transfer money into at will) and it will set that money aside. That money will still exist, but it will not be "Safe-to-Spend" and as a result, won't show on the app (which is one of my few complaints. The app doesn't show your 'real' avaliable balance, only your safe-to-spend)
Anyway. If you are looking for a clean and intuitive banking solution: try Simple. It may do what you need without overcomplicating things like many banks do.
The few things I do not like:
- Paying traditional bills is next-to-impossible. Yes, there is a 'Send Check' feature, but I am still weary about it.
- Occasionally, if you get gas, you will get a massive hold. Send them a message and they will fix it quite quickly.
- Some places are misclassified, not a big deal.
Fantastic customer service, fantastic app, everything makes sense, simple and doesn't over complicate their app and website with ads and other non-sense.