Welcome back to our 8-step series on “How to Build Wealth From Nothing.” In this article we’ll cover how you can get an immediate boost to your net worth from expenses that you should never have been paying for in the first place. We call these expenses “acute debts” in that they are high frequency, high frustration pain points in our financial health that often fly under the radar and can impose lasting damage to our financial health at the expense of opportunities for growth. The most common of these acute debts are bank fees and recent interest charges. Over ⅔ of American consumers are unaware they’ve paid bank fees in the last 12 months and the average American pays over $720 per year (!!!) in bank fees alone, every year. That’s $7200 in 10 years of wasted expenses. An overdraft for example, has an average effective APR of 15,000%, which would be illegal in almost every state if it was a payday loan. It’s insane! We could go on for days about this because we’ve helped refund over $2M in bank fees to our members in 2020 alone, but you’re here to get yours so let’s get started.
Getting bank fees and interest charges back from your bank is quite simple: simply call and ask. Most people don’t realize that you can get hundreds of dollars in bank fees and interest charges refunded from your bank either through a phone call or even more conveniently, through the online message system your bank may provide. If you’d like to learn in more detail about how to get bank fees refunded, we have several articles that go into depth on this process. Alternatively, our platform helps you get bank fee refunds automatically or can assist you with your refunds through customized scripts unique to the exact amount, type, and frequency of bank fees you’ve been charged in the last 12 months.
After recovering your acute debts in the form of bank fees and interest charges, you may be eligible to “find” money that is owed to you from none other than state and local governments. Every year states receive lost and unclaimed money, property or other assets that is owed back to consumers. To check if you’re eligible, simply head over to Missing Money and punch in your information to see if you can make a claim.
Lastly, there’s another way to “find” money that may be literally right in front of you and that is to liquidate “stuff.” The stats are endless but chances are, you probably have shi* that you simply don’t need anymore. On the extreme end of the scale, estimates suggest that as many as 19 million Americans actually have a hoarding disorder. Liquidating your things and turning it into cash is another sure bet in providing an early boost to your net worth goals. It helps that getting rid of stuff has never been easier today with apps like LetGo, OfferUp, Facebook Marketplace, and good old-fashioned Craigslist that can get you on the right track. If you have an offsite storage unit, you may be freeing up even more of your money from storage rental costs.
Between recovering acute debts, missing money, and liquidating “stuff”, you can find yourself a pretty healthy foundation of money to start your net worth journey. In Step III of “How to Build Wealth from Nothing,” we’ll cover how to prevent wasted expenses such as acute debts and other payments you may not have been aware of to begin with.
Harvest helps increase the net worth of the 99% through artificial intelligence and financial automation. To date, Harvest has refunded over $2M in bank fees and interest charges to its members with the ultimate goal of increasing the net worth of everyday Americans by $1 trillion by 2030. Our platform starts with providing immediate relief through bank fee and interest charge refunds, orients a member's financial health with our proprietary PRO Index™, and keeps track of net worth over time aided by our suite of financial tools. Check out our 8-step guide on "How to Build Wealth from Nothing" to get started on increasing your net worth.