When you think about it, money isn’t about finances. Not really. Money is about emotions.
Finding a fiver in an old pair of jeans comes with an unexpected thrill. Going to the shops and having your card declined leads to embarrassment or panic. The end of the month can feel like the World’s Toughest Mudder, whilst that first weekend post-payday fills us with a rush of relief, joviality and generosity.
Money is emotional. But sadly, according to research, the most common emotions surrounding money are those of shame, fear, anxiety and anger. Even our positive emotions — surprise, relief — arise as a response to that stress and worry.
With today’s technology, however, money does not need to be the emotional rollercoaster we know it to be.
Money can be simple, clear, fast, stress-free. You can have a relationship with your money that is positive and healthy.
And that’s why we’re so excited to let you know that we’re a fully licensed bank — with no restrictions — authorised and regulated by the FCA and PRA. We’re now able to move forward with our vision, to provide a step change in banking and help more people to have a healthy financial life.
The first thing to note is that we’re built specifically for the mobile and there’s good reason for this.
From ordering a takeaway to arranging a babysitter — many of us now organise our lives through our mobile phones. Managing your money this way, however, has been little different to doing it through a bank branch until recently.
Because just like money is more than finance, banking is so much more than just a bank account. It’s your health and your family’s health.
We’ve therefore built the Starling account with features such as Faster Payments, direct debits, contactless debit cards, overdrafts for qualifying customers, and protection for all eligible deposits up to £85,000 from the FSCS. These are all tools within the account that help put you in control of your money, where it’s going and when.
We also offer a real time view of your balance — there’s no more need to worry about whether Friday’s bar tab has gone through before you do your weekly shop on Sunday; it all shows up on your account as you spend and you can sign up for notifications too, if you want them.
Controls for your money are likewise central in the app because we know this can help alleviate stress. You can switch your card off if you’re not quite sure if you’ve left it in yesterday’s coat, then turn it back on once you’ve found it. If you qualify for an overdraft, you can increase or decrease how deep it goes. Passcodes, passwords and PINs are all accessible from the app. And if you get stuck, 24/7 customer care is available through the app too (with actual humans answering your questions at the other end).
Thirdly, we’re building a Marketplace of products and services to help beyond your everyday spending by partnering with smart apps like Transferwise and Moneybox. You can wave goodbye to those emails trying to sell you a mortgage when actually you’re saving to travel the world, or an ISA when you’re more worried about paying for groceries that month. We believe in giving you access to a mobile market of products and services that best fit your financial needs. No sales pitch. Just your data working for your benefit and no one else’s.
And there’s so much more we have planned. Soon we’re going to be introducing insights into spending habits, categorisation options, and savings goals. You’ll be able to budget for holidays, your first home, your sister’s wedding and so on.
And throughout we’ll be fair. We’ll be transparent. There won’t be fees for having an account or surprise charges if you’re off travelling.
We built this bank account to help solve everyday money problems. To give everyone in the world a chance for a healthy financial life.
And that’s exactly what we intend to do.