Neo Financial is a new Canadian company created in 2019 by the founders of SkipTheDishes. Their goal is to disrupt the financial service industry the way they disrupted the food delivery industry. Neo doesn’t charge monthly or annual fees, offers substantial interest rates on savings and provides a completely digital experience with fast to instant approval. Financial Tech companies like Neo are important to the Canadian financial market because they create competition and lower the price of financial services for consumers. In essence, Neo is offering a fresh approach to managing your money, separate from traditional financial institutions.
Neo Credit Card
The Neo Financial Credit Card is Neo’s answer to traditional Canadian credit cards. The Neo Card is available Canada-wide and can be entirely digitally managed. It is a card for all Canadians, from spenders and savers to credit builders. There are three different account levels offered to cater to the wide audience, starting at $0 in monthly or annual fees. The only difference between the three levels is the amount of average cashback rewards and the monthly fees. If you decide to try out a different level, you can do so through the app at no annual cost. You only pay the monthly account fee which gives you continuous valuable flexibility.
- At the base tier, the Neo Standard Card comes in at $0 in monthly or annual fees with an average of 4% unlimited cashback at thousands of Neo partners.
- In the middle, you have the Neo Plus Card, with an average 5% cashback for a monthly fee of $2.99.
- The highest tier available is the Neo Ultra Card. This account level costs substantially more at $8.99 per month, but earns you an average of 6% unlimited cashback at partners.
Other general Neo Card features include bonuses such as 15% cashback on your first purchase at most partners. There is also the guarantee of a minimum 1% cashback across all purchases. This means that if your overall cashback falls under 1%, Neo will top you up. The Neo Card also has no over-limit fees and can be frozen and unfrozen through the app at any time. Neo’s app is very convenient, notifying you about your account in real time, and can be used to apply through. Application only takes a few minutes and approval is instant, assuming your credit score is 600+. This means that you can use your digital card instantly, with a physical one usually delivered within a week or two. Something else to note is that the card is accepted anywhere where Mastercard® is accepted and it is backed by Mastercard’s® zero liability protection, meaning that you are fully protected from any unauthorized payments. There are some downsides to the card however, including the fact that there is no insurance included. The Purchase Credit Rate is also somewhat lofty at 19.99%- 24.99%. Neo’s Credit Card provides an interesting alternative to regular credit cards as it offers many cashback rewards with no monthly or annual fees.
Neo Secured Credit Card
For those who may have a lower credit score or are new to credit in Canada entirely, Neo offers the Neo Secured Card. This card comes with many of the same perks as the aforementioned Neo Credit Card. The key differences are that the secured card comes with guaranteed approval, regardless of current credit score or history. This means no hard credit checks. The card has no monthly or annual fees and requires a comparatively low security deposit of $50. This is so that anyone can start building their credit instantly regardless of their current financial status. The Secured Card comes with the same cashback1 rewards as the Neo Credit Card save for the fact that there are no separate levels, just one account that earns an average of 5% unlimited cashback. Neo makes it easy to adjust your credit limit to your needs as well, with all you need to increase it is add security funds. The Purchase Credit Rate on the Secured Card is the same as on the traditional Neo Card and insurance is once again not included. Another benefit of Neo’s Secured Card is that your security funds will be returned to you if you close your account and the balance has been paid in full. Like its counterpart the Secured Card is MasterCard and has the same Purchase Credit Rate at 19.99%- 24.99%. All in all this card is a good alternative and competitor to the more traditional bank secured cards. It presents no monthly or annual fees with a low security deposit while rewarding you with high cashback earning opportunities, which is rare for a secured card.
Neo Money Account
Neo doesn’t only offer cards though, with the Neo Money Account serving as a blend between a chequing and savings account. The account does follow in the footsteps of Neo’s cards in the sense that it has no fees of any kind. Free transactions are unlimited and there is no minimum deposit or balance. The interest rate sits at 1.45%, much higher than the 0.05% average of high interest savings accounts at most banks. Anything you want to do, from bill payments to Interac e-Transfers® to bank to bank transfers – it’s all unlimited and free of transaction charges. Your interest is also daily calculated and paid out every month. You can track everything already mentioned and more from the app, making it once again convenient and easy to use. Neo’s Money Account is eligible for CDIC deposit protection and is provided by Concentra Bank which is a CDIC member institution. Lastly, the application process is simple and can be done entirely online just like with Neo’s cards. The money account is a nice mix between a savings and a chequing account that differs from its competitors as it imposes no fees of any kind along with a fantastic interest rate.
Neo Financial offers a small but high quality range of products. With their cards, you can earn high cashback rewards from the multitudes of Neo partners. Their high interest Money Account allows unlimited free transactions. Complete security also comes thanks to Neo’s partnerships with Concentra Bank and Mastercard. The best part is that all these benefits cost no monthly or annual fees. In today’s financial climate Neo presents a fresh new option for Canadians to build their credit and wealth, questioning and challenging the practices of traditional financial institutions for the customer’s benefit.
1 See Merchant web site