Acorns vs. Stash: Which Mobile App is the Best for Small Budget Investing?

by | Nov 8, 2017 | Investing, Money Hacks

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I’ll be honest, I’ve never been great at saving money.

Every time I plan to put some money aside, I get the next bill, or some unexpected cost arises like needing new brakes on the car. (That one hurt!)

And chances are, you’re in the same boat as me. The general population struggles to save money, let alone invest it.

But as you are probably aware, the sooner you start investing your money, the better off you’ll be. Investing is one of the top ways to build wealth. By doing the small things NOW, the bigger things will pay off down the line.

And no, you don’t need to know how the stock market works to start investing your money.

The only thing you need is a couple bucks and a smart phone and you’ll be well on your way to investing in your future wealth!

How does it work?

Introducing Acorns and Stash – the 2 most popular mobile apps for investing.


The Rundown: Acorns vs. Stash


While both apps are aimed towards millennials, let’s face it: everyone could use a little help investing no matter the age.

Both apps are available on Android or Apple smartphones.

Both apps have a “Set it and Forget it” method of investing. This methodology is perfect for those who struggle to invest regularly (raises hand) because it tricks your brain into investing. In fact, you’ll be investing without even realizing it.

Stash will use this method by setting up automatic investments into the stock market for you. You can start by investing for as little as $5 into a set of simple portfolios that are recommended based upon your specific investment goals and interests.

You can set Stash up to pull a specific dollar amount from your bank account at regular intervals to grow a nice investment portfolio over time.

Acorns approaches the “Set it and Forget it” methodology a bit different. CNBC called it “the new millennial investing strategy”.

Once you connect Acorns to a debit or credit card, it will round up your purchases to the nearest dollar and take that change and invest it into an investment account.

You decide how Acorns approaches this by having it round up to the nearest dollar on every purchase automatically or you can manually decide what purchases to round up and invest with. And since your investments come from under $1, you will barely notice the impact on your bank account.

A Deeper Look:


Stash: “Investing should be simple and accessible”

If you have $5, you can get started investing now. Sign up here and you’ll get an extra $5 to invest when you open your account.

Once you finish signing up, you can set up your “auto-stash” to withdraw a certain dollar amount from your bank account every week or every month.

Choose from over 30 investment funds to put your money towards. You pay just a $1 monthly fee, with your first month being free. When your account reaches $5,000 (congrats!), you’ll be charged 0.25% of your account balance per year. (That’s just $12.50/year for a $5,000 investment portfolio!)

Remember that you can control all of this from the palm of your hand with your smartphone!


Acorns – No, not the things that fall from oak trees.

Create your Acorns account by clicking here and receive a $5 bonus to invest with!

Download the app, connect it to a bank account and select a few different settings.

Annnnnd you’re done!

Whenever you purchase anything with the connected bank account (debit or credit card), Acorns will automatically “Round-Up” to the nearest dollar and put that change towards your investment fund. As mentioned above, you can also manually select what transactions you want to be “Rounded-Up”.

Related: For more on Acorns, see our previous article about Smart Investing.

Smart Investing Without The Hassle

The Winner

So, what is the answer of Acorns vs. Stash? Which of these apps will help you invest better/faster?

Honestly, there’s not one true answer here.

With Stash, it depends on how often you take money out and invest into a fun.
With Acorns, it depends how often you “Round-Up” your transactions.

The bottom line is that both apps will get you started investing for as little as $5.
As I stated, you certainly don’t need a lot of capital to invest with anymore.

Remember, even if you’re starting small, it’s best to start now.

Because a year from now, you’ll wish you had started today. 

Sign up for Stash | Sign up for Acorns