Oxygen Review: Banking and Credit for Freelancers
Oxygen is a new digital bank designed to meet the needs of freelancers who traditionally have a hard time getting access to credit. You’ll only pay a monthly membership fee when you tap into your line of credit.
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Freelancing is a great gig at times – you can set your hours and you get to be your own boss. But when it comes to getting approved for a line of credit, things can get tricky because freelancers often have fluctuating incomes so many lenders are wary of giving them access to cash. Oxygen, a digital bank, wants to change that by offering its members access to a line of credit, credit cards, and instant access to their bank account funds.
Oxygen is built specifically with the needs of freelancers in mind and has many advantages. Deposits with Oxygen are FDIC insured so you don’t have to worry about the safety of your money. And, you don’t have to pay any fees until you start drawing on your line of credit. But, there are some downsides to consider as this Oxygen bank review shows. You should consider the pros and cons when deciding if Oxygen is right for you.
In this review:
What Oxygen Offers to Freelancers
Oxygen aims to make freelancers’ financial lives easier by offering a full slate of financial services including both banking and access to credit.
Checking Account & Visa Debit Card
Oxygen makes it fast and easy for freelancers to open a checking account. Once you’ve signed up you’ll be sent a Visa debit card so you can withdraw funds instantly. You’ll also have access to more than 30,000 Moneypass ATMs where you can access your cash for free.
Freelancers can also become eligible for a line of credit from Oxygen after you apply and Oxygen assesses your financial situation. That credit line can sit there untouched, acting as a security blanket, and you won’t have to pay any interest if you’re not using it. If you do need funds, you can access your line of credit immediately and pay a flat monthly fee until the money is repaid.
Benefits of Oxygen Bank
- There aren’t any overdraft fees. If you tap into your line of credit, you’ll be responsible for the monthly fee though.
- The mobile app is easy to install and use. It works on both iPhone and Android devices.
- Customer support is available.
- You don’t have to carry a certain minimum balance. You can have just a few dollars in your account and you still won’t pay fees.
- You won’t pay foreign transaction fees.
- Your bank deposits will be FDIC insured.
- You’ll have access to a line of credit and can work on building your credit score.
- You’ll have access to more than 30,000 ATMs that are free to use.
- There’s no delay in transaction notifications.
- You can link your other bank accounts.
- Signing up takes just a couple of minutes.
Downsides of Oxygen Bank
- Oxygen Bank is a digital bank only, which means there are no brick-and-mortar locations for you to visit if you have an issue.
- If you tap into your line of credit, you have to pay a flat per-month fee. That’s not bad if you are using thousands of dollars of your credit line but is a high fee to pay if you’re only borrowing a small sum. A no-fee credit card might be a better option unless you can’t qualify for a card because you don’t have enough credit history or a history of reliable income.
- You won’t earn any interest on the money you have in your checking account. If your balance builds up, you could miss out on significant interest you could get elsewhere.
- You don’t have to pay fees for using Oxygen but some services cost money
How to Sign-Up
You can apply at GetOxygen.com. After you fill out your name and address, an invitation will be sent to you when it becomes available.
Is it Worth It?
If you’re worried you won’t have access to a line of credit or other traditional funding because of your freelancer status, this can be an option for you. Oxygen some helpful tools you can use to monitor your company’s finances.. Plus, if you don’t tap into the line of credit and you don’t pay for the immediate access version of Oxygen, the service is fee-free. However, if you’d prefer an interest-bearing bank account, you’ll need to look elsewhere.
Author: Shannon Serpette