Whenever you hear H&R Block, the first thing that might come to your mind is tax returns. H&R Block is a very popular software reputed as a tax software for individuals, businesses, and tax professionals.
Indeed, it’s one of the best software when it comes to e-filing tax returns, understanding the deductions, claiming refunds, and customer support by the company.
When it comes to tax filing, there are several subscription tiers you can choose for. Individuals who have to file 1040 and schedules 1&3 can avail of the free subscription of the tax tool. Besides, the others can choose from Basic Online Assist, Deluxe, Premium, or Self-Employed, paid packages.
But did you know that H&R Block is more than just tax software?
The software offers several banking products and financial services for users who opt for tax filing. This article will review the banking products and financial services offered by H&R Block.
Besides, we will talk about general features of the software that can be experienced whether you are using financial services or not.
So let’s get into it.
What Is H&R Block?
H&R Block is popular tax software for people who don’t have time and energy to spend hours for many days with their tax accountant.
You can file your tax returns in a comforting way and also get advice when it’s needed. If you’re someone who want to file tax returns on their own with many tax professionals at your service, H&R Block is an alluring option.
The good thing about H&R Block is that its prices are more affordable than other options like TurboTax. Besides the taxation services, the company is also offering different banking products and services to consumers.
Whether it’s mobile banking or tracking your refunds, getting early payments from employers, or refund advance, H&R Block has a lot of products for you.
In the coming sections, we will review the services and products related to finances.
Brief History And Products
H&R Block was not born in 2015 or 2020 but has been there since 1955. The company named Block was established by Henry and Richard in July 1955.
They gave it the name as their family name was Bloch. The name H&R Block signifies the names, Henry and Richard, with Block as the pronounciation of their family name.
The company entered the franchise model just one year after its establishment. Until 1986, they were already relying on computers for completing tax returns. In fact, the company is a pioneer of e-filing as they lend their help to the IRS for the testing of e-filing.
The journey continued until 2004, when the company introduced its new product(tax preparation method) that combined the convenience of DIY preparation by yourself and assistance when needed by H&R Block tax accountants.
In 2018, the company introduced augmented intelligence by introducing the tax filers to IBM Watson. In 2018, the taxpayers were able to do virtual tax preparation without visiting the offices.
And the company is still on the path of innovation and improvisation to facilitate their customers at their best.
Financial Services Of H&R Block
Without sneaking into the tax services of H&R Block, we will discuss the financial services and solutions as advertised by the company. We will briefly describe every product/service and who it is for.
Spruce might sound like a bank, but it’s not actually a bank but a financial technology platform built by H&R Block. They are continuously updating and innovating platforms to facilitate the consumers.
The mobile banking solution allows consumers to manage their money by setting saving goals, getting cashback offers, bonuses on direct deposits, etc. Besides, the Spruce users can get their paychecks two days earlier than the normal date.
There are no hidden fees, signup charges, or recurring fees. You can sign up for the solution for free. You can integrate your tax information with Spruce and add your tax refunds to meet saving goals, create emergency funds, and earn points.
This product is for the people who find it hard to save money and have no motivation for it as well. When you’re getting cash backs and bonuses for every deposit and achieving saving goals, it is fun and exciting to complete the challenges.
2. Refund Advance
Refund advance is also a finance service similar to other tax software. When you are using the software to file your tax return and expect a refund from the IRS, you can get it in advance without worrying about your credit score or any additional charges.
The refund advance work in a way that you have to file your tax return and then file a Refund Advance Loan application by consulting with your tax professional at H&R Block.
Once IRS issues the refund, the company deducts the advance amount and send the balance to you, if any. With the high approval rate, you get your advance refund the day you file.
The benefits of using Refund Advance are as follows:
- No hidden fee or interest rate
- No credit score impact
- Fast and free
- High approval rate
3. Emerald Advance
Emerald Advance is a line of credit that consumers can avail of up to the amount of $1000. It’s an option that opens for a limited period every year.
The users who qualify are eligible to get a line of credit up to $1000 whenever they need it during the year. There’s no need to have your W-2 or other documentation for getting Emerald Advance.
The salient features of this line of credit are as follows:
- An annual fee of $45 is deducted when Emerald Advance is approved
- The annual percentage rate for the amount drawn from Line of Credit is 35.9%.
- If you are late in paying back the credit, the late payment fee of $7.50 is charged.
- You have to pay $20 if any of the checks for Emerald Advance payment are bounced or dishonored.
This solution might not be feasible for any individual, but small businesses can capitalize on this line of credit to fund their seasonal needs or cash requirements.
4. Emerald Savings
Emerald Savings Account is like a piggy bank for people who want to start a saving account and keep an amount aside to finance any emergency expenses, luxuries, or expected expenses in the near future. H&R Block’s Emerald Saving has no fee for signing up.
The features of the Emerald Savings Account are:
- Zero fees to sign up for the line of credit
- It’s FDIC insured up to the maximum amount as permitted by the law
- There’s a low initial deposit of $25 or more per month.
- The interest rates are very competitive(higher returns)
- 24/7 Customer Support
5. Emerald Card
Last but not least, Emerald Card is a MasterCard like most other companies’ issue. The Debit Mastercard is accepted by thousands of merchants online and in physical markets.
You can also get your tax refunds and monthly salary directly deposited into your Emerald Card.
You can also schedule any payments from your Emerald Card and be worry-free. Emerald’s Mastercard is a great solution to say Goodbye to carrying cash all the time.
This product is one-size-fits-all; anyone can get the Emerald Card to enjoy the exciting benefits mentioned above.
Is It Worth It?
To the best of our knowledge and experience, H&R Block is a very professional tax software company facilitating businesses, startups, and individuals. It’s hard to say a yes or no about the legitimacy of the company’s financial services.
If you want to go for the financial services and products offered by the company, Emerald Card, Spruce, and Emerald Saving Account are what you can go for without a second thought.
However, you must decide about Emerald Advance and Refund Advance after considering and understanding each service’s fee structure.
What is our final verdict?
H&R Block’s financial products are actually very good and worth trying. If you’re a tax filer who already uses H&R Block Software, you can use their financial services without a second thought.
In our opinion, it’s a legit platform with great finance tools. 24/7 customer support, ease of use, and continuous innovation.