The HSA Report Card

Bend HSA

Bend HSA

 

Bend Financial is a Boston-based technology and services company that provides health savings account and financial wellness solutions to individuals, employers and organizations in the group benefits distribution market. Its innovative approach and product offerings simplify the use of HSAs while making the product attractive to all types of health care consumers.

 

 

Report Card for Bend

as a Spending Vehicle

 
Fees

A

Fund Access

B+

Features

A-

Overall

A-

 
 

 
 

Fees For Individuals

The best HSAs for spenders have no monthly maintenance fees. Bend doesn’t charge a monthly maintenance fee.

The best HSAs for spenders also have very few behavioral fees. These fees are not recurring in nature, but can be incurred by the account holder if they undertake a certain action. Bend only charges a few of these behavioral fees.

Below we have reconstructed Bend’s fee schedule to exhibit fees spenders are most likely to encounter.

Bend Fee Schedule
  • Monthly Fees

  • Maintenance$0

  • Monthly Investment$3

  • 1Quarterly Paper Statements1.50

  • Behavioral Fees

  • Excess Contribution$0

  • Overdraft$0

  • Stop Payment$0

  • Point of Sale$0

  • ATM Withdrawal$0

  • Check Distrtibution$0

  • Rollover$0

  • Full Balance Transfer$15

  • Closing$15

  • Replacement Card$0
1 Free electronic statements

As you can see in the chart below, from a fee standpoint, Bend's offering is quite appealing. 

 
Highcharts Tutorial
 

 
 

Payments

When you, your spouse, and your dependents have qualified medical expenses that aren’t covered by your health care plan, you can use your HSA money tax-free to pay for them. You can pay for qualified medical expenses with a Bend debit card. At this time Bend does not offer bill pay or checks.

(✔) Debit Card

Use your card at your doctor's office, pharmacy, or any other qualified medical expense provider. The card will not work at ATMs and will typically only work at appropriate medical facilities.

(✖) Bill Pay

Not avaiable at this time.

(✖) Checks

Not available at this time.

 

Reimbursement

You can pay for qualified medical expenses out-of-pocket and reimburse yourself anytime using your HSA money. As long as you opened your HSA before the expense was incurred, your reimbursement will be tax-free. With Bend you can reimburse yourself via bank transfers. Bend participants cannot reimburse themselves via ATM withdrawls or checks.

(✔) Transfers

Bend connects your HSA account to your bank, making reimbursements for expenses easy and straightforward. This makes it easy to reimburse yourself for medical expenses paid out-of-pocket.

(✖) ATM Withdrawls

No ATM withdrawals allowed.

(✖) Checks

Bend does NOT allow individuals to reimburse themselves with checks.

 
 

 

Features

 

Bend Advisor

The Bend HSA comes equipped with the Bend Advisor, a unique tool that takes advantage of leading technologies. Bend leverages Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning to recognize patterns and suggest optimizations. The Bend Advisor learns individual behaviors and situations, predicts outcomes and delivers actionable advice that helps you manage your health savings.

Link Personal Credit Cards to Take Advantage of Cash Back and Travel Rewards

You can link any personal credit cards you have to the Bend system so that you can categorize spending as eligible and get reimbursed for expenses which allows you to take advantage of any other card benefits like cash back or travel miles. This way no expense is left behind, helping you maximize your HSA. Bend does all the work by finding your eligible expenses for you.

Bend also lets participants link their checking accounts so that if a health-care transaction is made, the Bend Advisor will alert them that it is eligible for pre-tax treatment.

Education and Resources

Bend’s platform, the Bend Advisor, is uniquely capable of employing a learn-as-you go approach to enrolling and participating in an HSA. From proactively identifying HSA-eligible expenses to prompting employees to link personal bank accounts and credit or debit cards, the Bend Advisor takes a step-by-step approach, intelligently providing timely suggestions so even the least knowledgeable HSA users are able to work toward optimizing their accounts.

Debit Card

You will receive a personalized Bend branded MasterCard for your qualified medical expenses. Use your card at your doctor's office, pharmacy, or any other qualified medical expense provider where MasterCard is accepted.

Receipt Storage/Categorization

Electronically upload and categorize receipts and other documents so you can view them later. You can add an expense and save it for reimbursement at any time in the future.

Modern Dashboard

Bend's intuitive dashboard makes HSA accounts simple to manage.

Contributions

Bend will set up recurring or one-time contributions for you without any annoying paperwork (employer contributions or link your bank account).

Dedicated Customer Service Team

Bend’s singular focus is HSAs. Their team is ready to help you whether it’s by phone, email, or chat

iOS Mobile App

The Bend HSA mobile app allows you to conveniently and securely access your Bend Health Savings Account.

Features:

  • Access your account balance and transaction history

  • View, initiate, and update contributions

  • Request reimbursements

  • Link your preferred method of payment to easily identify and track eligible healthcare expenses

  • Take pictures of receipts, explanation of benefits (EOB), etc.

 
 

Pros & Cons

Pros
  • 100% fee-free

  • Interactive communication software

  • Receipt storage tool
Cons
  • Unproven customer service team

  • Short operating history

  • No price transparency tools
 
 

 
 

Which participants are best suited for a Bend HSA?

  • Those seeking a fee-free HSA. No monthly recurring fees.

  • Those who are comfortable with online-only HSA management. The Bend HSA is an online-only account.

  • Those who understand that Bend is a startup.

  • Dual-purpose use (spender/investor). Backdoor way to access UMB Bank’s solid investment platform.

  • Those who are comfortable with interactive communication software guiding and educating them about HSAs.    

 
 

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