What's Next: Exploring What Helps Families Build Savings

As we mentioned in the first blog of our “What’s Next” series, Prosperity Now is taking what we learned from the Assets For Independence program and other initiatives to build better, sustainable and resilient initiatives that help families move from financial instability to prosperity. Last month, we discussed the state of the asset-building field. Today, we want to share our plans for helping low- and moderate-income (LMI) households build savings.

Over the next year and a half, Prosperity Now and partners will explore the combination of product features that will meet LMI consumers' wants and needs. We plan to take a holistic approach that analyzes what is currently available, assess which features are most desired by consumers and explore delivery channels to reach LMI consumers. 

Exploring Product Features that Help Families Save

We are currently analyzing the landscape of available savings products that help LMI families manage day-to-day savings needs, address needs in the short term and build wealth for the long term. Through conversations with experts, fintech providers and asset-building practitioners, we are learning more about how products and programs are designed for LMI consumers, how they are reaching consumers, how they are used, and what still needs to be done to improve products, their features and their delivery. This understanding will help us identify how to better design and bring savings products to families through various delivery channels.

Our landscape analysis will inform our exploration of all-in-one savings products or experiences that can provide families with the flexibility to save for now, soon and the future. After we understand product features that have worked well, we will test some of them with low-income consumers to better understand their needs and preferences for savings products through November 2019.

How to Deliver Savings Products to Families

Over the next year we will identify delivery channel partners to ensure that desired savings products are easily and broadly accessible to low- and moderate-income families, especially households of color. Building on our communities and networks, we will leverage the Savings Network to facilitate discussions. We envision the Network as partners who help determine how a product might be disseminated and administered to a wide range of low-income communities.

We are also building an advisory council of researchers, practitioners, fintech experts, financial institution representatives, and representatives from key delivery channels and target populations to help guide the project.

How You Can Stay Involved and Share Your Innovative Ideas

We look forward to hearing your thoughts and voices on these matters during webinars and on the listserv. During the webinars and in this blog series, we will communicate our findings from the landscape analysis, share opportunities to learn with us and provide space for your input.

We have launched an adult savings page, where you can find information about this project, including blog posts, webinars and a set of guiding principles for the design of savings products and services. Stay tuned for a post later this week outlining our guiding principles for new savings products, initiatives and upcoming webinars. Also, don’t forget to join the Savings Network Listserv to give your input on what supports your community needs to accumulate savings.

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