How Wallet Helped a Millennial Spot Duplicate Charges, Recover Lost Money & Become A Conscious Spender

We are all guilty of doing it! Of not checking our bank statements just enough. We don’t blame you. They are not the prettiest or most interesting of documents, we know! But putting them aside as soon they come in without digging deeper may cost you a lot. Even without you realizing.

Stefany Báez, from Dominican Republic, couldn’t agree more because she, too, hated checking her bank statements. “It’s too much of a hassle,” she says. However, in the recent past, Stefany noticed that she was being charged twice for a few of her transactions. This happened not once, but four times, says Stefany.

Having been a regular user of Wallet for more than a year, Stefany was soon able to notice these irregularities as soon as they cropped up. Without Wallet, she wouldn’t have been able to spot these double charges as they “would’ve gotten lost in the [bank] statement”. A true blue millennial, who used to live a “free and dangerous” life, Stefany says that Wallet brought in order to her finances, helped her pay off two loans and made her a conscious spender.

We spoke to Stefany to know more about how she uses Wallet and what she loves about it. Here’s her story!

Hi Stefany! Could you tell us a bit more about yourself?

Sure. So I was born and raised in the Dominican Republic. I became very tech savvy at a young age and ended up getting a degree in IT engineering. I’m constantly looking for ways in which technology, be it an app or a gadget, can help me throughout the day. I also have a tech blog where I share stuff that I find helpful.

How long have you been using Wallet and what do you use it for?

I’ve been using Wallet consistently for over a year. I have used it before, but I got lazy and stopped using it. Nothing to do with the app, just me being lazy. But then, after a few cool updates of the app, I decided to hop back in. I use it mostly to keep track of my finances — expenses and income. Just so nothing slips out and I am fully aware of what I spend my money on. I also use it to set saving goals if I’m planning a trip and monthly budgets to make sure I don’t spend all my income on food, which, I must say, happens a lot.

What, in your opinion, sets Wallet apart from other personal finance apps that you have used earlier?

A lot of apps promise to do what Wallet does, but doesn’t deliver. I think it is all the extra features that sets Wallet apart from others.

I love the fact that one can access Wallet from any device or even the desktop as it instantly syncs all transactions.

I’m having countless flashbacks from other apps that would “do cloud backup” but were hardly ever up to date or even there.

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I have lost my data over a dozen times because I relied on a feature that didn’t work as advertised. It’s also the little things like the web version. None of the other apps I used had that. The bank connections, which is a fairly new feature, also isn’t very common on other apps. It is so very useful. And, the interface and ease of use is an absolute priority to me. I downloaded and immediately deleted several apps because it was either way too complicated or way too ugly. Wallet just felt… right.

What are your favorite features in Wallet?

Definitely the bank connections.

Like I mentioned before, very few apps have the feature available, and the ones that do are limited geographically, or don’t focus on countries where their niche is maybe a very small group of people.

I live in the Dominican Republic, so you can imagine how difficult it is to get an international app that would actually let me connect to a local bank. Wallet has two Dominican banks available. TWO. And, being able to just sync my transactions and see every move without having to manually insert it into the app makes this whole being an adult thing easier.

Could you explain a bit more about the incident regarding the duplicate charges and how Wallet helped you recover money?

The bank with which I have my main account was undergoing some technical trouble. So using their debit card at certain establishments would result in duplicate charges. For example, if I went to a restaurant and used my debit card to pay, I would get charged for whatever the amount was. But then, two days later, I would get charged again. This happened to me not once, not twice, but four times.

I sync Wallet to that account every morning to make sure everything is fine. I hardly ever log into my bank’s account through their website; it’s too much of a hassle.

If it weren’t for Wallet, those charges would’ve gotten lost in the statement and I might have never noticed and would’ve just thought it was money I spent (eating out) and forgot.

But I got to see it the day after it happened, upon syncing my account. I called my bank and got the problem fixed right away.

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Do you follow a budget? And, has Wallet helped you stick to it?

I used to live free and dangerously, but when it comes to money, that’s a really bad idea. I wasn’t doing the whole budget thing until I was planning a trip to California and decided to do all the savings planning with Wallet. It went so incredibly well that I decided to apply this to my daily life and set monthly budgets for certain things, mostly the money I spend on unnecessary things. And, it works. I stopped spending too much money on those things, I instead redirected it to my savings and other responsibilities.

I paid off two loans thanks to setting a budget!

What is the biggest lesson you learned about money after having used Wallet?

That saving is important. Budgets are important. Knowing your limits, financially, is important.

People say money isn’t everything but it opens pretty much all doors. There are things you will not get to do without money, and being in control of yours puts you one step ahead of any goal you want to achieve.

How has your attitude towards money management changed after using Wallet?

I used to be an earn-it-and-spend-it type of person. There were times when I literally had ZERO money in my bank account — no savings, no cash, nothing. I thought, “Well, if I died, who’s gonna spend it?”. While that is true that you need to enjoy the money you’ve worked so hard for, you also need to think of the future.

Saving is an absolute must no matter what your income is. Using Wallet has showed me all the many ways I had thrown money out the window on useless things and now I am a much more conscious buyer. I go through this whole thought process before I swipe that card or hit that “check out” button. I wouldn’t have been able to learn this much without Wallet.

What’s your Wallet story?

Share with us your own Wallet success story and get featured on our blog! Send in your experiences to us at jan@budgetbakers.com. Make sure to write “Wallet helped me!” in the subject line. We can’t wait to hear from you.

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Also published on Medium.

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