This new app helps teach kids good financial habits to set them up for success as an adult.
While working in Massachusetts as a banking executive, Benjamin Nachman knew he could teach his two sons how money works. But he also knew many parents didn’t have the advantages he had when setting up their kids for financial success.
“The families that need these lessons the most are the ones that can’t afford it,” Nachman tells Debt.com. “We want to make sure their kids are starting their financial journey correctly.”
That’s why he founded Jassby, a free debit card system built to help children and teens learn about money management.
Jassby functions primarily through the app where parents can give money for allowances and completed chores.
The app is free for families to use and offers free digital debit cards for anyone in the family who would like one.
The program doesn’t typically hand out physical cards, it works through contactless payments like Apple and Google Pay. Its reliance on technology makes it ideal for teens who are more comfortable using a smartphone, but younger kids can use it too.
While physical cards are not the default, Nachman said that if users request a card, Jassby will send one in the mail. Kids cannot make ATM withdrawals with it, and parents are still able to monitor purchases. Parents can also choose to receive a notification when the either the digital or physical card is used.
Jassby has its own shopping feature within the app where kids can buy things like snacks, electronics, and gift cards from major retailers.
Parents can use their bank account to send money directly to their child’s Jassby card and set spending limits. But that isn’t the only thing it’s good for.
The app provides learning tools to guide kids through financial lessons. It gives users a financial literacy score, which mimics the credit score system without actually impacting a user’s real-life score.
The financial literacy score is determined by how much a child saves, donates, or how often they interact with learning tools and video lessons. Higher scores enable kids to earn more reward points that they can exchange for real money.
The “family organizer,” or the parent who has primary control of the account, can give bonuses for achieving saving goals or getting good grades in school. Kids can also use Jassby to donate to charities like Habitat for Humanity.
If needed, parents can turn the card on.
The family organizer can add additional parents and grandparents to the account – they won’t have control over settings but can send money to the child’s account.
Getting started with Jassby is easy – after downloading the app, it will walk you through the process step by step.
“We’ve spent a lot of time and resources on our registration process. We’ve gone through it and changed it multiple times,” Nachman said. “Today, it’s a very easy process – it takes only a couple of minutes to get through.”
When opening an account, Jassby will ask for the family organizer’s social security number but won’t request the number of any minor. They do this to make sure that the organizer is who they say they are.
Jassby is powered by Mastercard and uses up-to-date encryption software like conventional banks.
The app will not run a credit check on its users and a child’s financial literacy score has no impact on their credit score.
“Security is part of our framework,” Nachman said. “We’re exceptionally secure, we don’t sell your data, we don’t sell your kids’ data.”
It’s important to teach your children good financial habits early in life so that they can make better decisions as adults. Jassby is one of the many great tools that can help you do that.