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Have you ever wanted to use the cash envelope system to better keep track of your spending but gotten discouraged by the hassle of using envelopes and carrying cash everywhere? I have.
Dave Ramsey is a strong proponent of the cash envelope system – “a way to track exactly how much money you have in each budget category for the month by keeping your cash tucked away in envelopes. At the end of the month, you can see how much cash is left by taking a quick peek in your envelope” – Dave Ramsey.
In fact, I heard so much raving about this system that I brough it up with Mr. FAF, who rejected the idea since it was “too much work.” And so I gave up and forgot about it.
Having 10-20 envelopes for all the spending categories and carrying them everywhere? Not really my thing.
However, what if I tell you that there is a digitial alternative to the cash envelope system that is a perfect marriage between the cash envelope system and debit cards? Enters Qube Money.
What is Qube?
Just think of Qube as a stack of cash envelopes that are digital and are all in one debit card. This debit card is issued by Qube and is connected to your phone.
Before you make a purchase, it lets you pick the spending category from your card and transfers the funds to your Qube debit card for you to make the payment. After the purchase is made, the payment is deducted from the total amount for the spending category, and the remaining amount is transferred back to your phone.
Your Qube debit card always has a balance of $0 when you are not making a purchase. This gives you peace of mind that the card is secure. It also makes you think carefully about what you want to buy before you swipe the card.
Qube has been a speaker and sponsor at FinCon, so you know this app is legit! The video below gives an excellent explanation of this simple yet effective app.
Does it really work?
Qube was originally launched as ProActive Budget by financial planners and coaches, Ryan Clark and Shane Walker. Ryan and Shane wanted to help their clients get out of debt and build a better financial future.
But what they saw instead was their clients falling off the wagon with online purchases and the inconvenience of a cash envelope system. ProActive had great initial success and was recently rebranded as Qube.
Pre-purchases of Qube have totaled over $100,000. On the company’s website, you can see testimonals from various users who Qube has helped get into good financial shape. Here are some of the examples:
“This service is genius! Avid YNAB user but get lazy checking categories…” – Todd
“I’ve tried other budgeting apps, but none of them have a card you can activate and choose which category to spend from before you make a purchase.” – Colton
“I’ve been using the card for three days, and I’ve been absolutely loving it! So exciting!” – Erika
“Since I have started, I don’t have that end of the month anxiety. It was just simply by using the system that anxiety—that money anxiety—is gone.” – Chris
“Me and my wife have argued for years about using the envelope system and making it work – finally we have something where we won’t be worries about losing an envelope full of cash or leaving it behind!” – Sam
This is an example of what the user interface of Qube looks like: simple, modern, and user-friendly.
With the Qube app, you and several other family members (i.e. spouse, kids) can be connected to the same account. When an account members makes a purchase, the others can check each other’s spending instantly or choose to get immediate updates.
This system increases accountability, transparency, and communication between you and your family members. And guess what? Your kids can get Qube accounts as well!
What has my experience been so far?
At the time of writing this post, I have signed up for an account, which took me less than three minutes. I got to pick the Qube debit card which I would receive after seven business days. I picked the green card on the right since it just looks so cool!
How much does it cost?
If you use the basic plan for an individual account, it’s $0. Yes, a big fat $0. It means that you get to try Qube out for yourself and decide if it’s right for you or your family. A plan for the whole family with up to 10 kids is $15/month which comes with features such as parent permissions and chore tracking.
If you enter FAF25 in the discount code section on the checkout page, it will give you a special 25% discount.
I am super excited about how Qube will grow as a company and an app to help us save money and track our spending.
Qube has solved the inconvenience problem of a cash envelope system while preserving the essence of this traditional system – tracking spending categories on the spot before, during, and after you make a purchase.
As a new developer who just entered the tech industry, I am also thrilled about this perfect combination of technology and finance all in one app. It motivates me to think about the financial problems that I and others are facing.
Hopefully, one day I will be able to develop a product like Qube that can help others improve their finances!
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4 thoughts on “An Excellent Alternative To The Cash Envelope System – Qube Money Review”
What an interesting idea! I’ll check them out. Do you know if they are going to FinCon this year? I went last year and loved it so signed up for the virtual event next week.
It’s great you loved FinCon. I didn’t get to go last year, but I’ve signed up for the free pass for the virtual event 😀 I don’t see Qube on the list of mainstage speakers. But that might change.
Interesting idea. I wonder if/how it will hold up for much larger purchases. Also I wonder if the allure of points, cash back, and other rewards from using co-branded credit cards rather than a single debit card will tempt users away. But I’m all for anything that instills good money habits!
That’s a great point! I think that if someone is responsible with credit cards, they can definitely take advantage of the bonus points. But for some who want to stay away from credit cards and want to stick with cash, Qube is a great alternative. I do believe they hold up for much larger purchases if you’ve budgeted enough cash for that purchase in the app. 🙂