Frequently asked questions.
What is Simple?
Simple offers a bank account that has all the tools you need to manage your money built right in. The funds in your Simple account are held by our partner bank, Compass Bank, Member FDIC. (BBVA Compass is a trade name of Compass Bank.) Simple provides everything else, including the Simple Visa® Card, our powerful iOS and Android apps, a beautifully designed web interface, and customer support that really cares.
What are you all about?
Simple’s about making managing your personal finances effortless. We adamantly believe that making smart spending and saving choices should be easy, and often even fun. All the tools you need to manage your money are built right into your account, where they’re most effective.
Does Simple charge fees?
In most cases, Simple doesn’t charge fees. We believe your money is your money, and you should be able to access it whenever you want.
A book of checks does cost $5 though, just to cover the costs of materials and shipping. As a heads up, each pack comes with 25 checks.
And although Simple doesn’t charge any other fees, other companies may charge you in the following cases:
- If you use an ATM outside of our fee-free network, the ATM owner may charge a fee for that.
- If you use your card internationally, Visa will include an International Service Assessment (ISA) fee of up to 1% of the total transaction amount.
Simple is a business, right? How do you make money?
Great question. There are two ways we make money at Simple.
- Although we love technology, we don’t knock tradition. Like traditional banks, Simple and our partner bank split the interest margin - the difference between the amount of interest made on loans, and the amount of interest paid to customers for balances.
- When you swipe your debit card, the merchant pays a service fee (called interchange) to the issuing bank. Our partners split this with us.
That’s it, which means we only make money when our customers use and love their accounts.
Requirements, Security, Privacy
Who can use Simple?
We want to make Simple as widely available as possible. However, there are a few basic requirements. We can only offer accounts to U.S. citizens over 18 years of age, with a Social Security number. You’ll also need access to a device that can run our mobile app—find all the details here.
Do I really need to have a smartphone?
You’ll get a lot more out of your Simple account with our mobile app. It’s required for Photo Check deposits. Although it is possible to access all our other features through the web application, Simple is designed to offer our customers immediate access to their money wherever they are. A smartphone makes this possible.
Are my deposits insured by the FDIC?
Yes, all the funds in your account are held by our partner bank, Compass Bank, Members FDIC. (BBVA Compass is a trade name of Compass Bank.) They’re insured to at least the FDIC maximum, which is currently $250,000.
What is your security policy?
We’re passionate about security at Simple—so we’ve got a lot to say on the topic. If you’d like the short and sweet answer, here it is: we’re committed to meet and exceed all industry standards. Protecting your information is our job, and we take it very seriously. For more, check out our security policy.
How do you handle my personal information?
Simple and our partners will never sell, rent, or loan any personal information that you give us.
What is Simple's fraud policy?
With Simple, if you notice something fishy, you can block your card right away from our web and mobile apps. But no worries: you're also covered by the Visa Zero Liability policy*. For transactions processed as credit, you're not liable for fraud as long as you notify us within two business days after you notice it (after two business days, you can be liable for up to $500). With debit transactions, you're only liable for the first $50 as long as you notify us within 2 business days. These protections don't apply to ATMs or transactions processed outside the Visa network. You can read more in our Account Agreement. (*The Visa Zero Liability policy covers U.S.-issued cards only and does not apply to ATM transactions, PIN transactions not processed by Visa, or certain commercial card transactions. Cardholder must notify issuer promptly of any unauthorized use. Consult issuer for additional details or visit www.visa.com/security.)
Where can I find more information on your policies?
Check out our privacy practices, your account agreement, and all the legal information pertaining to your account at simple.com/policies.
What features do you provide?
We’ll send you a Simple Visa Card issued by our partner bank. With Simple, you can make purchases both in stores and online, deposit checks using your smartphone, set up direct deposit, earn interest via our partner bank, pay bills, transfer money, withdraw cash from ATMs–all the basics you need for everyday banking. Simple does a lot more than just the basics, however. You’ll have access to our web and mobile applications, which include a rich set of budgeting tools. For example, with Goals, you can set aside money for routine bills, or once in a lifetime luxuries. Reports will give you a detailed breakdown of your spending. You’ll be able to easily monitor and improve your spending habits. Finally, our Safe-to-Spend is a more relevant version of your available balance—it factors in your upcoming bills and savings goals. And we’re working on new features all the time!
What kind of card is the Simple Card?
The Simple Visa Card is a debit card issued by one of our partner banks. You can use it anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted, and at ATMs. Since it’s a debit card, transactions that exceed your available balance will normally be declined. We don’t charge overdraft fees or interest.
Does Simple offer bill pay?
We don’t. But you can easily pay your bills or set up payments using your card number, checking and routing number, or by sending a check.
How do I deposit funds?
There’s a plethora of options. Direct deposit is the easiest way to fund your account. You can also transfer funds electronically from an account at another institution, or deposit a check by taking a photo of it with our mobile app. We can also accept deposits by mail.
How’s the ATM access?
We’re partnered with the Allpoint® ATM network. That means all their 40,000 ATMs are totally free for Simple customers. We have an ATM finder that makes it easy to find the nearest one to you. You can also get cash back at many merchants without a fee.
How does Simple Instant work?
We offer Simple customers the ability to instantly move money between accounts with no holds, no checks, no fees, and no wait. Add another Simple customer to your Instant contacts with just their email address and phone number. Once they've confirmed the connection, you'll be able to send and receive funds instantly.
Can I export my data to use with accounting or budgeting software?
Yes. We currently offer the ability to export your Simple data in CSV or JSON format. We may support other formats in the future. You can isolate the data you’d like to export with our powerful searches. You can also download your monthly statements in PDF format.
Does Simple integrate with Mint or PayPal?
You can link your Simple account to Mint, PayPal, and many similar third-party services, just like you would any other bank account.
Does Simple offer competitive interest rates?
We do! We currently offer 2.02% APY in Protected Goals Accounts. You do need to keep at least $2,000 in there to earn the rate. Outside of Protected Goals, our bank partners’ interest rates are generally comparable to those of other banks for the type of account we offer.
Does Simple rebate ATM fees?
If you use an out-of-network ATM, we won’t charge you, but the ATM owner might. Because we help our customers avoid fees by offering 40,000 surcharge-free ATMs, and the ability to get cash back at thousands of merchants, we don’t rebate that fee.
Does Simple offer rewards programs?
We don’t currently offer a rewards or points program, as these programs are often funded through extra fees or interest charges. We’d rather help our customers save effectively, so we focus on offering a great product and excellent service.
Does Simple offer checkbooks?
We do! You can order them right in the app or online for both individual and Shared Accounts. They cost just $5, and can really come in handy when you least expect it.
Will you offer credit cards, brokerage accounts, CDs, mortgages, or loans?
Right now, we’re focusing on the basics—perfecting personal spending accounts. However, we know that our customers have diverse financial needs. We’re looking into offering other products and services in the future.
Will you offer small business accounts?
Though we don’t offer small business accounts yet, we’re very interested in the possibility. We’re looking into it, and we’ll spread the word (by email, on our blog, shouting it from the rooftops … when we have news).
Can I use Simple if I live outside the U.S.?
Not yet—we’re only able to offer accounts to U.S. citizens who live within the country. If you live outside the U.S., we won’t be able to offer you an account, and if you move internationally after opening a Simple account, we may have to close it. (You can definitely use Simple if you’re just traveling internationally, though—you can find more details on that here.)
Does Simple support joint accounts?
Our founder, Josh Reich, announced Simple Shared in this lovingly crafted blog post.
Simple Shared connects each partner’s individual Simple account. With one account to share and two to use solo, you have the flexibility to find a healthy balance of financial transparency and boundaries. Whatever that means for both of you. Check out our Simple Shared support article for a little more of the nitty-gritty on how that works.
Your Shared account partner can be pretty much anyone: a roommate, a best friend, a romantic partner, the person you just met at a hostel with whom you’re about to embark on a spontaneous cross-country road-trip, even your mom. Simple Shared is for everything that’s better done together.
How is Simple working with BBVA?
Check out this page for more information on Simple’s decision to join the BBVA family of companies in 2014. We started moving Simple accounts from our original partner bank, The Bancorp Bank, to BBVA Compass in 2016. Spoiler alert—this partnership means great things for our customers.
The Finest Print: The rate is effective as of October 25, 2018, is variable, and subject to change after the account is opened. Accounts subject to approval. So long as you keep at least $2,000 in your Protected Goal Account (this is where your Savings Goal lives), you’ll earn 2.02% Annual Percentage Yield on your entire balance. Dip below and you’ll earn 0.01% APY on your entire balance.
1 Check it out for yourself (based on the October 1, 2018 National Rate): https://www.fdic.gov/regulations/resources/rates/