Only 65 percent of Canadians save for retirement or other reasons, and that’s a huge problem. Mylo is changing all that by making investing and savings incredibly easy for Canadians. Check out our review and decide if Mylo is right for you.
- 1 What Is Mylo?
- 2 How Does Mylo Work?
- 3 How Does Mylo Round Up Work?
- 4 What Kind Of Accounts Can You Open With Mylo?
- 5 What Kind Of Portfolio Allocations Does Mylo Have?
- 6 Can You Only Put Money In Mylo Via Spare Change Roundups?
- 7 How Is Mylo Different Than Other Robo-Advisors?
- 8 How Much Does Mylo Cost?
- 9 Is Mylo Trustworthy And Secure?
- 10 Mylo Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) Fund
- 11 When Do I Want To Use Mylo: Long-Term Vs Short-Term Savings
- 12 Mylo Charity Options: Round Up To Give
- 13 Mylo Referral Program
- 14 Does Mylo Offer Support?
- 15 Who Is Mylo Good For?
- 16 Mylo Pros And Cons
What Is Mylo?
Mylo is a Canadian microsavings app that helps you save and invest. Mylo was launched in Montreal in 2015 by Philip Barrar and has raised $3.3 Million in venture capital funding by Desjardins Venture and Ferst Capital Partners. It’s safe to say the financial community believes in Mylo.
If you watch Dragon’s Den, you’ll recognize Mylo from an earlier episode. Mylo has been featured in a lot of press and is changing the way Canadians save money. The app currently has 2,000 Google Play reviews with a rating of 4.4 stars and 5,000 Apple store reviews with a rating of 4.5 stars.
How Does Mylo Work?
1. Sign Up For Mylo [$5 Promo Bonus]
Mylo will ask some Know-Your-Client (KYC) questions in order to gauge your risk profile. They’ll ask about your financial situation, goals, and risk tolerance in order to recommend an asset allocation you’d be comfortable with.
2. Set Up Your Round-Up Account And Checking Account
Mylo uses 256-bit encryption and SSL to rival bank-level security. If you can’t find your bank, simply email Mylo and they can help manually add it.
3. Create Your Mylo Account
Mylo will ask you questions about your investor profile in order to determine what kind of risk you’re willing to take. There are 5 portfolios based on your risk appetite, which we’ll talk about in the portfolio section.
4. Set Up A Savings Or Investing Goal
Mylo is a savings and investing app, so you can set up either a savings or investing goal.
Here are the 4 you can pick from:
- Save for retirement
- Build an emergency fund
- Save for travel or a large purchase
- Donate to charity
You can upload a picture of your goal so you can visualize it and be more motivated to save.
You can set up multiple goals in Mylo at the same time. Once you decide which goal you’d like, you’ll get to choose something you’re saving for, how much to save, and the year and month you want to reach your goal. You’ll be able to change this as time goes on if you save faster or slower, or change what you want to save for.
You’ll be asked how you want to contribute to your goals, either by roundups or recurring deposits. You can later transfer money directly into your Mylo goals.
How Does Mylo Round Up Work?
Once you link a credit or debit card to Mylo, the app starts rounding up your purchases to the next dollar and depositing it into your account.
For example, if you’re buying a Starbucks coffee for $4.22, Mylo will round up your purchase and take $.78 from your bank account and put it into your Mylo account.
Since this might not be a ton of money for people who don’t use their credit or debit cards often, Mylo introduced the round-up multiplier. If your multiplier is 10x in the Starbucks example, you would’ve saved $.78*10 =$7.8 for that transaction. If you purchase something every other day with your credit or debit card, you could save up to $1200 per month. Up that multiplier and you can save even more!
If you have multiple goals, you can have round-ups for each goal. You can set the roundups to be different multipliers across goals. If one of your goals is to save for a down-payment on your house, you might want Mylo to have a large multiplier of 10x vs saving for an emergency fund, which is smaller, you might want to only have a multiplier of 5x.
What Kind Of Accounts Can You Open With Mylo?
Mylo offers 3 types of accounts. The fee for a non-tax advantaged account is $1/month, while the tax-advantaged accounts are only available on the Mylo Advantage plan, which is $3/month.
Non-Directed Brokerage Account
This account doesn’t have any tax benefits, but it comes free with the $1/month tier. You’ll get free withdraws but need to wait 10 days.
In late 2018, Mylo added the ability to open tax-advantaged accounts. Note that if you want to open a tax-advantaged account, you’ll have to be on the higher Mylo Advantage of $3/month.
The Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) is very similar to the US-based 401k. When you put in money into your RRSP, you don’t get taxed on this money. Your money grows tax-free until you decide to take it out in retirement.
You’ll have to pay income taxes on the money you withdraw from your RRSP, which is why it’s advantageous to open this type of account if you think your current tax brackets will be higher than your tax bracket in retirement.
The second tax-advantaged account that Mylo offers is the Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA), which is similar to an American IRA. You contribute post-tax dollars, but they grow tax-free. If you think you’ll be in the same or higher tax bracket when you retire, you should open a TFSA.
What Kind Of Portfolio Allocations Does Mylo Have?
Modern Portfolio Theory
The closer you get to retirement, the higher you want your allocation of bonds to be. Though bonds may have lower returns, the real risk when you retire is sequence of returns risk. Vice versa, the further you are from retirement, the more room there is for stocks to recover in the long run and earn a higher rate of return — so you’ll want a higher allocation of stocks when you’re younger. The safest investment is in a savings fund backed by the government, but that offers low returns. The further away from retirement you are, the higher you want your allocation to this to be, and the closer you are to retirement, the lower you want your allocation to be.
You can pick any portfolio you want, but Mylo uses modern portfolio theory, as created by a Nobel prize winner Harry Markowitz, and later refined by Merton Miller and William Sharpe.
Mylo Portfolio Mixes
Here are the five different kinds of portfolios Mylo offers:
Mylo Portfolio Allocations
|Conservative||Conservative - Moderate||Moderate - Moderate||Moderate - Aggresive||Aggressive|
Notice that Mylo only has stocks, bonds, and savings as the types of portfolio allocations you can have. It doesn’t have real estate, inflation-protected securities, etc, but does have international stocks and bonds for some more diversification.
Mylo uses ETFs with low expense ratios so that you’re not getting charged huge fees as some other banks and brokers do. Notice that Mylo is using mostly Vanguard tickers, which have some of the lowest expense ratios.
Here are the ETFs Mylo currently invests in and their Expense Ratios:
|High-Interest Savings ETF||PSA||0.12%|
Where Is Mylo Registered?
Your Mylo account is through Taxtex Asset Management, which is a subsidiary of Mylo.
Can You Buy Fractional ETFs Through Mylo?
Yes! This is an awesome benefit because you won’t have to wait until you save up enough money for an entire share. Some of the ETF shares cost hundreds, so you’d have to wait for a while with other brokers. With Mylo, you get parts of a share so you can invest right away.
Can You Only Put Money In Mylo Via Spare Change Roundups?
Saving money is difficult, so Mylo sought to introduce round-ups for ease. You won’t miss a few cents from your bank account, so that might help you save more. If you want to save more though, you can set up different kinds of deposits as well!
If you get a bonus or have a large influx of cash, you can set up a direct deposit to your Mylo account. This is a one-time deposit.
If you want to make a recurring deposit by transferring the same amount of money each week or during each paycheck, you can set this up. $10 per week is $520 a year! Tiny amounts add up to a lot over time.
Mylo Minimum Transfers
Mylo requires you have $25 in your bank account in order for Mylo to transfer money. This is because Mylo doesn’t want you to get any overdraft fees.
How Is Mylo Different Than Other Robo-Advisors?
While the US has tons of spare change and microinvesting and saving FinTech apps, Canada seems to only have Mylo. Though there are roboadvisors like WealthSimple, they don’t use behavioral psychology as much as Mylo, which is why Mylo is great for beginner investors.
How Much Does Mylo Cost?
Mylo has two pricing tiers. $1/month and $3/month.
Mylo Base Tier Cost
The $1/month is the base tier and allows you access to round-ups, and recurring and direct deposits.
Mylo Advantage Cost
The $3/month tier allows you:
- Ability to open a tax-advantaged RRSP and/or a TFSA.
- Invest in companies that are socially responsible through the Mylo SRI Fund
- Earn cash back from large retail brands you use your credit card at (Amazon, Netflix, Uber, etc)
- Get withdrawn funds within a business day
- Everything included in the base $1/month tier
Mylo Plans Cost Comparison
$1 might not be much to you, but consider what the other roboadvisors are offering in terms of fees. Canada doesn’t have a huge array of FinTech apps and roboadvisors like the US, so the only other big investing platform in Canada is WealthSimple, which costs .50% in management fees if you have less than $100,000 and .40% if you have $100,000 or more.
The breakeven point of Mylo vs WealthSimple is $2,400 for the $1 plan. If you have less than $2,400 or less, you might want to start with Wealthsimple. This is because you’d end up paying $12/year for Mylo, which equates to a .50% management fee if you have at least $2,400 in your account.
Let’s say you have $500 in your Mylo account. That’s a 2.4% yearly expense fee, nearly 5 times the expense fee of WealthSimple.
Of course, once you save up to the breakeven point at $2,400, you can always move your money back to Mylo.
Here’s a chart comparing Mylo’s fees for each tier and Wealthsimple:
Mylo Pricing Comparison With WealthSimple
|Mylo $1/Mo Tier||Mylo $3/Mo Tier||Wealthsimple|
Mylo Advantage offers cashback, but there are a lot of cashback sites and apps that offer a sign up bonus so this perk seems to be a wash.
Mylo Advantage has special promo codes and deals to save money on things you’d spend money on anyway.
Is Mylo Trustworthy And Secure?
Mylo uses bank-level security of 256-bit encryption and SSL, which is run through ShareOwner security.
Mylo is secure and trustworthy, but keep in mind that you’re investing in assets like stocks and bonds, which can lose value. The stock and bond market do not go up in a straight line. Some days it’s up, some days it is down, but over the long run of a growing developed economy, investing might be a good plan.
Mylo is insured by the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF) for up to $1 Million. Keep in mind this does not ensure the price of the security, but the security itself. This is similar to the US SPIC program.
Mylo Socially Responsible Investing (SRI) Fund
If you’re concerned where your dollars get invested, you can choose to invest in Mylo’s SRI fund. Access to this fund is on the $3/month Mylo Advantage tier. The SRI Fund tries to invest in companies that practice corporate social responsibility, environmental protection, gender diversity in corporate leadership, sustainable development, etc.
When Do I Want To Use Mylo: Long-Term Vs Short-Term Savings
If you’re looking to save for retirement and won’t touch your invested money until retirement, then putting it in Mylo is a good option.
If you’re looking to save for the short-term, you should consider investing that in a high-yield savings account or Certificate of Deposit (CD). Short-term savings should include something you want to save for and buy in the next 5-7 years. These things can include saving for college, a house, a renovation, etc.
Mylo Charity Options: Round Up To Give
Mylo offers a few options to save and invest for charity. They partnered with CanadaHelps to create Round Up To Give. If you want to support charities with your savings, you can do this now too.
There are 4 reasons why Mylo believes in Round-Up to Give:
- Mylo makes an automated way to give
- Lowering your tax bill
- 86,000 charity options
- Get $5 to donate to charity when you refer friends
Here are a few charities Mylo users are supporting. With 86,000 options, you’re sure to find a charity that resonates with you.
Mylo Referral Program
Once you sign up for Mylo, you’ll get your own referral link. Every time a friend signs up through the app with your link, you’ll get $5 and your friend will get $5 too. You can share the link anyway you want.
Some months Mylo offers referral sprints. In the past, Mylo has offered a $1,000 bonus for anyone who refers 10 people that month. This has happened for at least 2 months in 2018, so it might be worth it to wait to refer people if you have 10 people in mind.
Does Mylo Offer Support?
Who Is Mylo Good For?
Mylo is good for beginner investors who are looking to dip their toe into investing. The app is well-designed and easy to navigate, which is perfect for millennials.
The 2 Mylo pricing tiers are reasonable. Once your accounts have more than $7,200 in them, Mylo becomes the cheapest investment platform if you’re on the Mylo Advantage plan. If you’re on the lower tier, Mylo is the cheapest option once you have more than $2,400.
If you have trouble saving, I’d suggest starting with Mylo because you won’t notice the Mylo Round-Ups and you’ll build up savings.
Mylo Pros And Cons
Mylo squeezes your savings in ways that you don’t notice by rounding up your transactions. You can also set up recurring and one-time deposits.
You can have multiple goals with Mylo, and you can personalize each goal with a picture to keep you on track.
Mylo offers tax-advantaged accounts (TFSA and RRSP), which might help save you money on taxes.
The app offers a $5 sign up bonus. If you don’t like Mylo, you can withdraw all your money and the $5 gift.
Mylo allows you to invest in your future. The power of compound interest is incredible, and Mylo makes it easy for you to invest for your retirement and for the long-term.
For the normal plan, Mylo is not the cheapest roboadvisor out there until you have $2,400 in your account. For the Mylo Advantage plan, Mylo isn’t the cheapest option until you have $7,200 in your account. However, other roboadvisors don’t offer the easy spare change roundup that Mylo does.
Do you use Mylo? How do you like the app?
Olivia worked in finance and wants you to learn the secrets of financial independence. She believes there are so many ways to monetize your life and make money doing the things you're already doing because so many companies offer free money.
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