The Trim app is bringing new services to the world of personal finance apps — it can negotiate your bills and cancel subscriptions for you.
10 or 15 years ago, I’m not sure if the market would be there for an app like Trim. But things are different today. More and more, we’re subscribing to services that automate our lives. The goal is to save time and money. However, because these services are usually pretty cheap and easy to forget about, many people wind up paying for things they don’t actually need.
This is where Trim shines — it’s an app that can help you quit those extras and reduce regular spending. And with the release of Trim Premium, there are even more features to explore.
But is Trim for everyone? My Trim app review for 2020 will answer all of your questions, explain the full list of features and costs, and more.
What does the Trim app do?
The Trim app, also known as AskTrim, was introduced in 2015. It’s well-known for helping you negotiate for lower rates on your bills and cut out any unused subscriptions. Trim has already helped users save over $20 million and over $1 million in the last month alone.
Trim works a lot like other personal finance apps and budgeting tools. You sign up, link your bank accounts, etc. But what makes Trim shine is that it’s actively helping you reduce your spending. That’s by cancelling your unwanted subscriptions and negotiating your bills.
And before you say, “I can do that on my own,” I know you can. Trim just makes it really freaking easy. There’s no stress. No anxiety… I’ll talk more about this further down in my Trim app review.
Trim added new features in 2019, and now calls itself a “financial health company.” It’s taking more of a holistic approach to managing your money, adding some premium features to help you with even more aspects of your financial life. These new, paid features includes a high-yield savings account, debt services, and financial coaching.
Using the Trim app to cancel subscriptions
What you first need to know about how Trim works is that it’s like a personal finance bot that goes through your transactions and finds recurring transactions, like subscription services.
The reality is that it’s really easy these days to find yourself with more subscription style charges than you realize. There are common ones, like your Netflix or Hulu subscription. Or, you could have forgotten to cancel your HBO subscription even though GoT ended a while ago.
And according to Forbes, the subscription economy has grown by more than 100% in the past five years. The biggest names in the game generated a combined $2.6 billion+ in 2016.
Then there are recurring charges sometimes known as “gray charges.” These are small charges that fly under the radar for things like membership sites, software, video games, etc. These include free trial periods you forgot to cancel.
Unless you go through everything single transaction (which is really good to do!), they’re easy to forget about. And they cost you money.
Trim knows subscription-based services are an issue, so the Trim app will cancel them for you. Here’s how this works:
- Trim looks at transactions from your linked checking and credit card accounts
- It analyzes your transactions to see which ones are recurring subscriptions
- The Trim app shows you how much you’re spending on them
- Select the services you want to cancel
- Trim cancels them for you and keeps you updated on the progress.
Some users have reported that Trim occasionally isn’t able to cancel something. At that point, you can contact the company and cancel the service.
Negotiating your bills with Trim
Here’s how bill negotiation works with Trim:
- Submit a bill for negotiation
- Provide a payment method (you are only charged if Trim saves you money)
- Trim will contact the bill holder to negotiate
- You will be notified if Trim can save you money
- Trim will charge you for the service three days later
For bill negotiation, Trim charges 33% of the total you save each year. You pay that to Trim upfront. That means if they can save you $20 a month on your cell plan, or $240 over the course of a year, you would pay Trim $79.20. You can switch payment methods during the three-day period if you need to.
If that fee sounds high, you can always negotiate bills on your own.
Trim can help you with car insurance at no extra charge. They connect you with a service called Gabi that scans 90% of insurance companies to find you a better rate. Again, there is no charge for this.
This is Trim’s new paid service, and Trim Premium is $10/month and has a 30-day money-back guarantee. I mentioned that Trim was going for a more holistic approach in its services, and Premium is it. There is a savings account, debt calculator, automatic credit card payments, and financial coaching. You can read about each of these features below.
This is Trim’s brand new automated savings account. It comes with a 4% annual reward on the first $2,000 that you save in the account. The rate is 1.1.% after that (only slightly higher than the average APR). You can use the Trim app to schedule automated transfers in your Simple Savings account.
Related: Best Online Savings Accounts in 2020
TrimPay is set up to help you destroy your credit card debt, and it works a little different than you might expect:
- Pick which credit card you want to pay off
- Set up automated weekly bank transfers to your TrimPay account (this is a savings account)
- Pick a day of the month for the total in your TrimPay account to be sent to your credit card company
This is an additional credit card payment — you are still responsible for making the minimum monthly payments.
TrimPay only works with one credit card at a time, and you can withdraw money from your TrimPay account if needed.
Premium users get unlimited email access to Trim’s team of financial planners. You can ask them questions about paying off debt, creating an emergency fund, saving for retirement, etc. Trim’s coaches can also help you negotiate for lower credit card interest rates.
By looking at all of your debt — why you need to link all of your accounts — Trim will help you build a payoff plan that minimizes interest. I’m assuming Trim is using the debt avalanche method.
Someone from Trim’s team will call your bank and see if they can find any savings for you.
More features in the Trim app
If you’re looking for serious budgeting tools, Trim doesn’t have them. But, it can help you analyze your cash flow. In the Trim app, you can set alerts for upcoming bills, track your net worth, and receive text-style alerts about how much you’re spending at different merchants.
Trim will help you find “ways to save.” These are sponsored personal finance products — like insurance companies, banks, etc. — that may save you money. This is something we’re seeing with a lot of different financial apps.
Does Trim charge a fee?
You can use Trim for free, or you can pay for upgraded features. Here’s a complete list of the fees associated with using the AskTrim app:
- Access to basic Trim - free
- Using Trim for bill negotiation - cost is 33% of your total annual savings
- Trim Premium - $10/month
Trim vs. other personal finance apps
One of the reasons I like Trim is because it’s offering users something completely new: bill negotiation services. To see how Trim compares to other personal finance software, check out these articles:
- Mint vs. YNAB 2020 | Which Budgeting App is Best?
- Digit Review 2020: Effective Saving App Or Total Waste Of Time?
- PocketGuard Review 2020: Track Your Bills, Spend Smarter, and Save More
- Personal Capital Review 2020 | Free Investment and Net Worth Tracking
- Quicken vs. Mint: Which Budgeting Tool is Better in 2020?
- EveryDollar vs. Mint Comparison 2020: Which Budget App is Best?
- Best Personal Finance Software of 2020 (You NEED These Apps!)
Using Trim vs. doing it on your own
Some people are going to read this Trim app review and think, “Uh, I negotiate bills on my own. Why would I pay an app to do it for me?” Then Trim isn’t for you. I also negotiate my bills, and the last time I found myself with an extra $480/year savings on car insurance.
This is something anyone can do, but not everyone is going to try it. If you’ve never tried negotiating your bills, there is a little anxiety at first. What if they say NO? Well, they say “no.” That’s it.
You’re not going to be penalized for trying to negotiate on your bills. Still, a lot of people are going to be too nervous to try. Trim can help those people.
Take my $480/year car insurance savings. If I had Trim do it, I would need to pay $158.40 for the service, but I would still save $321.60. Because I feel confident negotiating on my own, I would rather pocket the difference. But for people who aren’t comfortable with negotiating, the alternative is not saving anything.
Is Trim legit?
Yes, Trim is a legitimate company that can help people save money with bill negotiation services, by cancelling subscriptions, spotting spending issues, and more. Trim makes money on Trim Premium and though bill negotiation services.
Trim app review: pros and cons
Trim app review, final word
Trim is going to be a good answer for many users, but the reality is that personal finance is personal. Everyone has their own money blindspot or handicap. And there are lots of apps out there that can help you find and manage that weakness.
Trim has some strong features for users that need help cutting back on extra spending. If that’s you, Trim is worth checking out to see how Trim can you with your money. Just don’t let Trim become another subscription you pay for, but don’t use.