Moka Review (May 2024) – Pros, Cons, Features, & Pricing

If you’ve been thinking about saving your money but you’re not sure where to start, this Moka review may help.

This comprehensive review of the Moka app will provide all the information you need to begin your savings journey. With automated Round Up savings, recurring deposits, TFSAs, RRSPs, and cashback perks, Moka has it all. You can even use the Moka app to donate to your favourite charity or get advice from an expert wealth manager.

Saving and investing your hard-earned cash is possibly one of the most vital steps to take when entering the working world.

It’s the best way to gather funds for large purchases, education, travel, retirement, and more. And the earlier you start saving, the better.

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Last Updated: May 23, 2024


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In fact, saving is such a crucial life skill that we should be taught about it at school. But it, unfortunately, is not, and this leaves most people unsure of how to start. Hearing the words ‘save’ or ‘invest’ can induce a level of fear and make our stomachs churn. And too many of us avoid it altogether as a result.

The purpose of FinTech apps, such as the Moka mobile app, is to make the process of saving and investing less intimidating. They aim to open the doors of wealth building to everyone, young and old.

These apps are intended to provide a financial service while educating users about the importance of their long-term financial goals. Users can start investing with very little money and at low risk, making the process far less scary.

That said, there are a few FinTech apps available, and it’s essential to know where it’s best to start investing. It is for this reason that I’ve put this comprehensive Moka review together.

In this Moka review, I’ll take a closer look at the pros and cons of their savings and investment app. I’ll also examine their product offering and the potential benefits of their services to its users.

The Reputation of Moka

In terms of credibility, Moka and the investment experts behind the app have been working in the industry for many years. The founders are considered experts in the field of finance and financial technology.

Some may remember seeing founders Phil Barrar (CEO) and Dr. Liam Cheung (Executive Chairman) on television in 2017. They featured on an episode of Dragon’s Den, Canada’s version of Shark Tank, to pitch the app for investment. And they were successful in obtaining investment from one of the Dragons on the show.

When the app was first released in July 2017, it was called Mylo. At the time, it was one of the first apps of its kind. And it was the first to offer FinTech savings and investment solutions to Canadians in this way.

In 2020, the Mylo app was rebranded, and its name was changed to Moka. When doing so, Moka expanded its service offering to Europe.

Then, in early 2021, the Moka app was acquired by financial services and asset management firm Mogo. Based in Vancouver, the company has been in business since 1972. And it is managed and run by some of the biggest names in the world of finance and investment.

According to their website, over 750,000 Canadians have already downloaded and used the Moka app. The app and its founders have also won and been nominated for numerous awards listed on their site.

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Pros and cons of Moka

Before signing up with any FinTech app, it’s crucial to know what you’re in for. You’ll want to determine what products and services they offer or don’t offer. And you’ll want to make sure that these align with your savings and investment goals.

That is why I’ve included the following breakdown of pros and cons in this Moka review.

Pros of Using Moka

Here’s what makes Moka a great service to use:

Easy Automated Savings

There are three primary savings options on the Moka app, all of which take the hassle out of regularly putting money away. You can save through round ups, recurring deposits, or one-time boosts. These three options will be explained in more detail later.

No Minimum

Many financial service providers require a minimum deposit amount when signing up for an investment account. However, with Moka, there is no minimum amount required. You can start investing from the get-go with whatever you can afford.

Personalized Solutions

Before signing up for an investment account, the Moka app will take you through several questions. The objective is to determine your personal investment risk profile. This way, Moka can advise you on the best type of investment account for your circumstances.

Variety of Plans

Unlike many other FinTech apps, Moka offers users a few different types of investment accounts. These include a non-registered account, a TFSA, and an RRSP. They also provide users with the option to invest in companies that align with their values through their Socially Responsible Investing portfolios.

Give Back

Users also have the option to select one of approximately 86,000 supported Canadian charities to give back to. A donation goal can be set, and funds can be accumulated through their Round Up To Give service. 

Free & Easy Withdrawals

With Moka, you are free to withdraw your savings or invested funds at any time. You’ll receive your withdrawal in a few days. What’s more, is that the withdrawal is entirely free.

Cashback Perks

Moka has partnered with well-known brands and retailers for their perks program. In other words, when you buy from their partners through the app, you’ll earn cashback rewards.

Cons of Using Moka

Moka’s great but there’s always room for improvement.

Lack of Choice

One of the downfalls of the app is that you don’t have the option to choose where your money is invested. After you’ve answered a series of questions to determine your risk profile, a suitable investment portfolio is selected for you.

You can choose the type of investment account, whether it’s non-registered, a TFSA, or an RRSP. But you won’t have the option to select the stocks and bonds your money is invested in. Your portfolio will be through a pre-determined ETF.

That said, if you’re new to investing, this may be to your advantage, as you might not know which stocks and bonds to choose. However, for seasoned investors, this would not be ideal.

High Monthly Fees

Moka charges a $7 flat monthly fee when using the app. And, while it’s only a few dollars per month, this can add up over the year if you’re not using the app regularly. However, if you’re actively saving and investing each month, it may not be an issue.

Traditional firms will only charge you a small percentage of the total amount invested and earned when it comes to wealth management. This is usually about 1% per annum but depends on the total amount in question.

In Moka’s case, this would equate to an annual investment of between $3,600 to $18,000 on your part.

That said, the Moka app is unique in that it offers a host of valuable products and services on one app. You get all-in-one automated savings and investment accounts, with options to donate to charity and earn cashback.

Most other FinTech apps offer one or some of these products and services. But few, if any, deliver them all together.

Not Ideal for Large Investments

Suppose you want to make a sizeable investment and facilitate regular large deposits. In that case, Moka may not be the app for you.

Moka is very much aimed at the novice saver/investor who has no idea where to start. The average Moka user would likely be a young adult with a small amount of cash available to invest each month.

The app is not suitable for veteran investors, who know what they are doing and invest millions in stocks and bonds.

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Moka’s Range of Products & Services

One of the most critical aspects of this Moka review is highlighting the products and services they offer.

Moka provides a variety of savings and investment products and services. These are offered through an affordable $7 monthly plan. The following is a breakdown of products and services, per plan, for this Moka review.

The Moka Plan

This is Moka’s main offering and is the plan available through their app. Through this plan, you have access to all the account types, as well as the perks.

The Moka Plan will set you back $7.00 per month.

These are the types of accounts and core features you can expect on the Moka Plan.

Account Types

They are three key account types offered by Moka. Each of these falls within the basic Moka plan.

Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA)

Moka provides users with the option to open an unlimited number of TFSAs. And, if you have a TFSA through a different service provider, you can still open a TFSA through Moka.

A TFSA allows you to earn tax-free interest on your investment. And because Moka invests your money via their market-based ETFs, you have the potential to earn a high interest rate.

Bear in mind, though, that there is a limit to how much you can contribute to TFSAs per annum. So, if you have multiple TFSAs, it’s up to you to keep track of how much you’re investing to ensure you don’t exceed the limit.

Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP)

Are you thinking about saving for your retirement? If so, Moka’s RRSP may be a good option for you.

Moka’s pre-defined ETF portfolios offer low-risk and cost-effective investment opportunities for those looking to invest long-term. Which is what makes their offering perfect for retirement savings.

All RRSP account holders will receive a tax receipt for contributions, as you would through any other institution. These can be submitted with your annual income tax return.

Basic Non-registered Plan

Contributions to Moka’s accounts on a Non-registered Plan are not tax-free, but they offer other benefits.

These accounts are geared towards individuals who would like to save for something over the short term. An example would be to save for a vacation or a deposit on your mortgage.

This is considered to be a conservative investment option, which offers a very high interest rate.

Level of Risk

Once you’ve decided on the type of account you’d like, you’ll need to choose your preferred level of risk. This will determine which pre-determined ETF portfolio your money will be invested in.

Moka has five different portfolios on offer, dependent on the level of risk. They are:

  1. Conservative investment – 100% Moka Money Market ETF
  2. Conservative to Moderate Investment – 40% Moka Money Market ETF, and 60% Moka Fixed Income ETF
  3. Moderate investment – 60% Moka Fixed Income ETF, and 40% Moka Equity ETF
  4. Moderate to Aggressive Investment – 40% Moka Fixed Income ETF, and 60% Moka Equity ETF
  5. Aggressive investment – 20% Moka Fixed Income ETF, and 80% Moka Equity ETF

Account Features

Round Ups

Moka’s Round Ups service is a great way to dip your toe into the world of savings and investments. You don’t need any knowledge regarding investing funds, nor does it have to be an expensive exercise.

With Round Ups activated on your savings account, Moka will link to your credit or debit card. The app will monitor your spending through this card. With each purchase, it will round up the value of that purchase to the nearest dollar. The difference will then be placed in your savings account to be invested.

In other words, should you spend $1.25c on something, Moka will round that purchase up to $2.00c. They will then place the difference in your savings account, which in this case would be $0.75c.

Saving in tiny increments this way will have little to no impact on your lifestyle. But, dependent on your spending behaviour, you could accumulate a sizeable amount in the long run.

The Multiplier

Moka then takes its Round Up offering a bit further by giving users the option to multiply the change saved. The app allows you to multiply your savings by a factor of between 1 and 10.

For example, let’s say you choose to activate The Multiplier function on the app by a multiple of 4. If you purchase something for $1.25c, Moka will round that up to the nearest dollar, which is $2.00c. The difference would still be $0.75c.

But, with The Multiplier activated, Moka will multiply the amount allocated to save by 4. In other words, a total of $3.00c ($0.75c X 4) would be transferred to your savings account.

Recurring Deposits

If you’d like to regularly contribute to your savings and investment account, you can set up recurring deposits. Moka will then transfer an amount of your choosing from your bank to your Moka savings account.

According to your preference, recurring deposits can be set up to transfer funds on a weekly or monthly basis.

One-Time Boosts

If you want to transfer a lump sum into your savings and investment account at any point, you can.

With Moka’s One-Time Boost, service you can add a booster lumpsum to your next transfer. But it should be noted that the minimum amount you can add is $5.00c.

Socially Responsible Investing

Through their SRI feature, Moka offers users the opportunity to invest in companies that align with their personal values.

Moka provides portfolio options comprising companies that go about conducting their business ethically. Investing in one of these portfolios helps you reach your financial goals while contributing to a cause you care about.

Cashback Perks

Moka has partnered with some of the biggest brands to provide users with discounts and cashback perks when shopping. These brands include the likes of Uber Eats and Apple Music, to name a few.

To take advantage of these perks, users must purchase items from these partners through the Moka app. Any cashback perks earned are then deposited into your savings account.

Round Up to Give

Not only can you invest in companies with ethical business practices, but you can donate to charity through Moka too. Moka has partnered with CanadaHelps giving users over 86,000 registered Canadian charities to choose from.

The app allows you to set up a Round Up feature with a target amount like you would for your savings account. As you use your debit or credit card, Moka rounds up each purchase to the nearest dollar. The difference is then collected and donated to your charity of choice each month.

The Referral Program

Another beneficial feature is Moka’s referral program. If you successfully refer a new user to the Moka app, you will both receive $5.00c from Moka.

This could be pretty beneficial if you know several people who might be interested in the app.

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Are Moka Products & Services Insured?

This segment of the Moka review deals with the safety of your investment and whether your funds are insured.

Indeed, your Moka savings account is not insured through the Canadian Investor Protection Fund (CIPF). However, the funds in your account are insured with the CIPF.

Fidelity Clearing Canada holds your funds on behalf of Moka and ensures that they are protected. And the funds are managed by Tactex Asset Management and appointed trustees, TSX Trust.

In essence, should Moka go out of business, your money would be safe. Should Moka need to close operations at any point, your funds will be returned to you.

Is It Safe to Use the Moka App?

There’s often a security concern when working with your finances through an app. Can hackers access your accounts? Is your information safe? In this section of the Moka review, I answer those questions for you.

In short, yes, it is safe to use Moka’s services through the mobile app.

Information stored on the Moka platform is protected using the same security measures a major bank would use. More specifically, they use 256-bit encryption technology and secure SSL connections to transfer and store data.

Moka also employs stringent internal security policies according to ISO standards. This ensures that any sensitive information stored is safe.

Moka Promotions & Discounts

Moka may run promotions or discounted specials from time to time. However, when writing this Moka review, there weren’t any to speak of.

That said, their referrals program might be considered something of a promotional special. Although it is a permanent feature.

But it does offer current customers the opportunity to earn some cash. And any new customers that are referred will benefit from a $5.00c reward when starting their savings account.

Should Moka run any promotions or discount specials in the future, I’m sure users will receive a notification on their mobile phones.

Is Moka Customer Service Good?

Another vital element to determine through this Moka review was whether Moka’s customer service is up to scratch. In other words, how easy is it to get hold of customer support, and how helpful are they?

The Moka app offers bot technology to answer standard FAQs and provide information from their knowledge base. This is sometimes helpful, especially when you’re starting out on the app and your question happens to be an FAQ.

However, for more complex information, you’ll have to email their customer support team. And the team can sometimes take a few days to get back to you.

You could also try reaching out to them via one of their social media channels, as these seem to result in quicker responses. But it would be nice to phone customer support and speak to an actual human being.

It must be said that their team goes to great lengths to answer each and every review of their app. Not many companies take the time to do that.

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What is the Moka mobile app like?

For the purposes of this Moka review, I took a closer look at the Moka app and its functionality. The objective was to determine whether the app interface was user-friendly.

The Moka app has a sleek and uncluttered design. It’s easy to find the information you need, and the layout of the menus and shortcuts makes complete sense.

Overall, the app is structured in a way that helps you get started with your first savings account seamlessly.

You’ll have very little trouble finding your way around the app. And if there’s something you don’t understand, there’s information available with just one tap.

The design of the app aligns with Moka’s mission to make saving and investing accessible to everyone.

How Do I Get Started with Moka

In this part of the Moka review, I’ll run through the basic steps of setting up your Moka account. I’ll also detail the information you’ll need on hand during the process.

Setting up your Moka savings account is quick and straightforward.

First, you’ll need to download the Moka mobile app to your mobile phone. You’ll find the app in both the Google Play and Apple stores.

Note that to open an account on the app, you’ll need to conform to the following:

  1. You must be a Canadian citizen residing in Canada
  2. You must have a valid social insurance number (SIN)
  3. You must have a valid banking account or a credit card in your name
  4. You must be over the age of 18-years

Once you’ve downloaded the app, you’re ready to start setting up your account. The Moka app will begin by asking you several questions to determine your investor profile.

These questions are aimed at establishing your investment goals and experience. And you must answer them as accurately as possible to start your investment journey on the right foot.

Next, you’ll need to provide details regarding the debit or credit card you’d like to link to your Moka account. This step will include a verification process to validate that you are the account holder linked to the card.

It’s important to note that you’ll be asked to provide additional personal information for the verification process. In some cases, verification can take anywhere from a few days to a week to complete.

Once your card has been linked, you can adjust the Round Up and Multiplier features to suit your needs. And then, you can start swiping your card and saving as you spend.

If you want to set up recurring deposits from your banking account, you can do this once your card is linked.

Bear in mind that when setting your savings goal, make sure it’s a reasonable and attainable goal. You don’t want to place yourself under financial strain or unnecessary stress.

If, at any point, you change your mind about the goal you initially set, you can adjust it later.

Is Moka Right for Me?

So, you’ve been reading through this Moka review, and you’re wondering whether Moka is a good fit for your savings goals.

Judging from their advertising and visuals, I would say that Moka is primarily aimed at young adults. But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t an excellent option for older generations.

Having gone through this Moka review, you should have a good idea of what the app has to offer. And you should be able to determine whether it applies to you.

The ideal Moka user is new to the world of investment and not too sure where to begin. Moka is designed to take would-be investors by the hand through their first investment experience.

They take the guesswork out of it and simplify the process by investing your money in pre-defined ETF portfolios. This helps users to learn the vocabulary and about how saving and investing works. It’s a great training ground for the absolute beginner.

If, however, you have some experience with saving and investing your money, Moka may not be for you. In this case, you may require more flexibility to decide where your money is invested. And you might want to build a specific portfolio comprising stocks and bonds of your choosing.

There are, unfortunately, not many alternatives to Moka. Other apps in this space that are focused on the Canadian user offer certain of the features of the Moka app.

That said, if you feel that Moka isn’t for you, you could try Wealthsimple. This is also a popular Canadian FinTech app. And here, you’ll find savings and investment options offering users a bit more control.

Moka review conclusion

Moka was founded by wealth management experts to help new investors and young adults save for the future. Learning to save is of vital importance.

So many people in this world are in debt or don’t have sufficient retirement funds. And the reason is that they either started investing too late or didn’t try to save at all.

Many are dubious about investing, and it’s often a lack of knowledge and discipline that prevents people from starting a savings account.

The Moka app helps users to overcome these obstacles by automating savings and pre-determining profitably investment portfolios.

I’ve looked at many vital factors in this Moka review. While their customer service may need a little work, I feel there is much merit in their service offering.

And we, therefore, highly recommend this for those who are struggling to get started with saving and investing.

In this Moka review I examine the features & benefits of automated saving & investing with high-interest TFSAs & RRSPs via the Moka mobile app.

Moka Features

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FAQs about Moka

How do you determine my investment strategy?

Moka determines your investment strategy through the information you give them when you sign up. These include: your financial circumstances, risk profile and your financial goals.

Who will manage my money?

Moka has a range of portfolio managers that will work thoroughly to manage your investment. Your funds are managed by the Tactex Asset Management and appointed trustees, TSX Trust.

How can I monitor the performance of my investments?

You can monitor the performance of your investments through your monthly statements that can be accessed on the Moka app. Moka will also send a comprehensive performance report on an annual basis to show the rate of your return.

Can I create multiple goals in Moka?

Yes. Moka allows you to have multiple goals on your profile, its intention is to provide and educate users about long-term financial goals. On your Moka profile, you get to see an overview of your investment goals and experience.

Where is Moka available?

Moka is available in every Canadian province and territory. Moka is also available for users in France.

September 10, 2022
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