What is SAVVI?
SAVVI is an online tool offering personalized financial advice. The team that created the artificial intelligence behind this service consists of highly educated professionals who have worked with a diverse range of customers.
You share your goals and your financial situation then they provide you unbiased advice to plan for the future. If you like what they have to tell you, then you can put it into action to save and invest your money in smart ways.
How SAVVI Works
Setting up an account with SAVVI is easy. You go to their website and click on the signup link.
In terms of payments, here’s how it works:
- If your employer has signed up for SAVVI, then it’s free for you.
- Try a free ad-supported plan. You can set 4 financial goals and create an action plan.
- Pay $120/year for a full plan. Set 8 goals, create an action plan, and get asset allocation advice.
Once you choose your plan, create a basic user profile and answer some questions. The idea is that you give them information and they help you to make sense of it in a new way.
Step-By-Step Set Up
First, you’ll link your accounts. Select your institution (such as Wells Fargo) then sign in using your institution’s login info. I already bank online so that was easy. The SAVVI tool does use a secondary authentication (by sending a text message with a private code) to help secure your information.
Once you link an account, you “confirm details.” If the information is incorrect, Iyou can adjust it, but it was all correct when I did it. You can also opt to ignore an account. Certain accounts have a few additional questions such as “have you made an after-tax contributions to this account?” for my IRA.
You keep repeating the process of adding accounts until you’ve added them all. The site reminds you to check for other accounts by highlighting what you’ve added and showing what you haven’t. For example, don’t forget “loans, insurance, and health.”
I found it particularly helpful that I’d already done this on other tools such as Mint. I could easily switch between accounts to make sure that I’d included everything. If this is your first time using such a tool, though, then the process might take a little bit more time. Make sure you’ve gathered all pertinent financial documents in advance to make setup go more smoothly.
This is all part of the “organize” tab on the SAVVI tool. At the top of the page, you’ll see a running tab of your assets, debt, and net worth. As you link more accounts, this number will change. This is the first sign of what SAVVI can do with your information, quickly organizing it for you into digestible bites.
Enter Income Information
Of course, you can’t make a financial plan without considering your income. First SAVVI asks you to choose between “employee, contractor or self-employed, and I don’t work.” You can add additional income sources and benefits. It’s helpful if you have your tax documents handy but it’s not necessary.
Understand and Plan
Entering all of your information shouldn’t take very long. It took me about fifteen minutes. From there, it’s time to “understand” and then “plan.” You’ll answer some more questions in the “understand” section including:
- Do you rent or own?
- Do you contribute to your savings accounts?
- Do you support your lifestyle with savings?
Once you’ve answered the questions you get to see “The Big Picture” and “Insights”. Through words and graphics, you can quickly and easily see where your money comes from and where it goes – breaking it down weekly, monthly, or yearly. You can also see where you might be making some financial mistakes and where you’re doing well. For example, I pay a lot for housing and it suggests I may want to look carefully for other options.
After gaining insight through the “understand” tab, move on to “plan.” The site offers the option to plan for an emergency fund, home purchase, and retirement. However, you can click to choose other goals from a dropdown list. You can easily gain information that’s helpful when planning for these goals. For example, when I selected “emergency fund” SAVVI offered to tell me more about why I need an emergency fund, how much is good to save, and where I should save that money.
Once you’ve laid out all of your goals, you can click to “create an action plan.” This takes a few minutes to several hours depending, presumably, on the depth of information you’ve supplied as well as site details on their end. They email you when your report is ready.
SAVVI Financial Review Summary
Overall, I found the information in the report and on the website to be fairly helpful. As someone who stays on top of my finances, nothing was particularly surprising. However, it’s always helpful to look at this information in new ways. The advice they offer is solid, and it definitely helped me to think about how I want to proceed with certain aspects of my finances.
That said, the information wasn’t perfect. For example, the site calculated my “general spending” for The Big Picture, but the number it gave was way off (lower) than what I actually spend. It told me what I should theoretically have to spend, but I actually spend more than that. So, I would say that the tool is helpful but should only serve as a starting point.
If you already use a similar tool to organize your finances, then you might find that adding SAVVI isn’t necessary. The insights for planning can certainly help you, so if you want to try a free account then there’s no harm in that. But I’d say that if you can organize your money for free elsewhere and use that information to plan on your own then it’s not necessarily worth the cost of the annual fee-based SAVVI package. Sign up today and see how SAVVI can help you!
This review was paid for by SAVVI Financial. However, all opinions expressed above are my own.
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