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Last updated on September 9th, 2021
- No annual fee
- Seamlessly integrates with M1's Invest and Borrow services
- Use the M1 Spend debit card anywhere Visa® is accepted
- Upgrade to M1 Plus for even more benefits and tools
- Foreign Transaction Fee: Up to 1% of the transaction amount in U.S. dollars
At a Glance
The M1 Spend Visa® Debit Card provides M1 Finance customers with a streamlined approach to spending their available funds – and earning more with an eligible premium account. The Card earns up to 1% cash back and 1% APY on balances with a Spend Plus Account.
Ideal for Those Who:
- Already invest with M1 Finance
- Plan to subscribe to $125/year Spend Plus Account
- Want to earn 1% APY and 1% cash back at the same time
- Hate expensive foreign transaction fees
M1 Spend Visa® Debit Card Review
M1 is an online brokerage firm that provides commission-free trades on stocks. The M1 Spend Visa® Debit Card allows clients to consolidate accounts in the M1 program and spend their available funds anywhere Visa is accepted.
How M1 Spend Works
To understand how the M1 Spend Visa Debit Card works, you need first to understand the M1 program s a whole. M1 is a brokerage platform that allows clients to invest, spend, and earn in one ecosystem. This ecosystem consists of several current (and future) parts: Invest, Borrow, Spend, and Credit.
Getting an M1 Spend Visa requires an account with M1 Invest, the firm’s brokerage account. M1 Invest provides a fully customizable investment platform with fractional shares, automation, and a low starting fund requirement of just $100.
Earn Up to 1% APY with M1 Spend Plus
Because the M1 Spend Visa requires an M1 Invest account, the Visa debit card acts as the perfect companion to an M1 client’s portfolio, allowing them to spend their available cash/dividends while earning rewards on those purchases. Earning rewards, however, requires M1 Spend Plus, which features a $125 annual fee.
The Spend Plus Visa earns that 1% APY on holdings, which is one of the better high yield checking rates on the market today. The Spend Plus version of the M1 Spend Visa also earns 1% cash back on qualifying debit card purchases. Other features of the M1 Spend Plus Account include:
- 2% loans through M1 Borrow. Members receive a 1.5% reduction on the base rate of M1 Borrow, the firm’s portfolio line of credit.
- Special afternoon trading window if the account has more than $25,000 in the investment portfolio
- Up to four ATM fee reimbursements per month
- Ability to send physical checks without having to open a checkbook or lift a pen
- No foreign transaction fees
No Annual Fee with M1 Spend (Instead of M1 Spend Plus)
Basic M1 invest members receive a no annual fee M1 Spend Visa Debit Card without a Spend Plus Account. That card, however, does not offer 1% APY or 1% cash back on purchases. No annual fee M1 Spend users also enjoy one free ATM fee reimbursement per month.
The no annual fee version of the M1 Spend Visa offers a lower foreign transaction fee than most other large banks. The fee with M1 is between 0.8% to 1% of the transaction in U.S. dollars – far lower than the 3% foreign transaction fee offered by most large banks.
Both accounts (M1 Spend and M1 Spend Plus) have no minimum deposit requirements and are FDIC Insured for up to $250,000 through Lincoln Savings Bank, Member FDIC. Both accounts also enjoy access to the M1 Finance mobile app – available in both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.
Should You Get the M1 Spend Visa® Debit Card?
The M1 Spend Visa® Debit Card is a great option to consider for investors WITH significant holdings within the M1 Invest program and want to earn additional rewards through the M1 Spend Plus Account. Earning 1% APY and 1% back on purchases is a great feature for those with $25,000 or more in investments, as the $125 is easily offset by the additional value from that APY. Add to that no foreign transaction fees, extra trading hours, and special financing on M1 Borrow, and you have an impressive checking and investment package in one.
Still, other high yield checking and debit accounts offer a competitive rate without the steep annual fee. Discover, for example, currently offers around 0.4% APY on its Cashback Checking account for no annual fee. That account also provides 1% cash back on all eligible purchases for no annual fee, making it a better bet for those who prefer a higher APY but don’t feel the need to tie it to a brokerage account.