Financial literacy levels are high in Finland when compared to other countries. Despite this, many problems are occurring, across all income levels and especially within specific age groups. In addition, according to a survey, one-third of Finns don’t have any savings in store for a bad day. This means that when something unexpected happens, it often marks a start for a vicious cycle.
Financial problems are gaining a lot of public attention. In 2018 there are more households with debt problems than ever before. These problems must be taken seriously, but why not look from a different point-of-view?
Why not put more focus on financial well-being instead of solely focusing on the problems?
What is financial well-being?
Financial well-being is defined as having financial security and financial freedom of choice, in the present and in the future. For people, it concretely means the act of managing personal financial situations and budgeting within the confines of your own earnings – and doing it in a confident and secure way. Smart finances give you freedom.
So, how can one improve financial well-being? In the core of financial well-being is your net worth, having a sufficient amount of savings, and having an emergency fund. Financial planning is the process of managing your money to achieve personal economic satisfaction. Getting better at this requires some good share of learning and education.
The problem that not too many people want or have time to go deep into the world of finances. May us add, that, comparing financial products is a very slow process and requires a big effort to do it. Oftentimes, we end up not doing it. Not because we don’t see a need for it, but because we simply don’t have the right tools.
Consumers need an easy solution – a platform which is easy to navigate and where they can have options and transparency of the financial product market. for example, when it comes to traveling, consumers are used to services, like Ebookers or TripAdvisor. That is where they can compare prices, to look for an advice and get a good deal on any traveling product they like. This has not been the case in the financial products market until now.
The financial products market has changed massively in the past years. Today, the financial market is in midst of a transformation and opening new and exciting opportunities for consumers in buying and managing personal finances. Banking is being automated and digitalized. Regulations around banking industry are also changing, giving rise to new personalized consumer products.
For instance, the new payments service (PSD2) is one of the enablers for third-party service providers which allows them to offer better services based on the consumer’s banking information, given there is a concent.
This is where financial products comparison platforms become handy. Platforms like VertaaEnsin create more options for people to buy and manage their personal finances in a clear transparent way.
In addition to creating transparency and more options for consumers, VertaaEnsin wants to improve financial literacy and educate consumers. The service wants to do their share in encouraging consumers to do financial planning, to prepare for financial shocks, and comparing financial products.
The company also wants to brings banks and consumers closer to each other. For banks, it can mean more cost-efficient tools to meet existing and potential customers which will, in the long term, help them to offer better and more affordable products to the customers they want to have.
Compare Europe Group, the company behind VertaaEnsin was listed by KPMG and H2 ventures as one of the world’s top 50 leading Fintech Innovators in “Fintech100” last year. In the same year, they raised 20M euros from Nova Founders and Peter Thiel. Besides Helsinki, they have offices in London, Copenhagen, Lisbon, and Brussels. The platform is currently available in Finnish. You can go ahead and try it here.
About the Author
Jussi Valsta is the managing director of VertaaEnsin, part of Compare Europe Group, that has a mission to advance the disruption of how people buy and manage their personal finances. Tweet him at @VertaaEnsin