Freelance friends and I are in constant conversation about the methods available to us for receiving payments.
PayPal is fast, but a not insignificant service fee is deducted from the total we receive.
Wire transfers are efficient, but most US banks charge transfer fees, even to the recipient. My bank, for example, deducts $15 every time I receive an incoming wire transfer.
Checks are generally fee-free but take longer to be processed and received.
How, we ask each other, can we avoid losing a considerable part of our income to middleman transaction fees?
Maybe Square Cash is one answer.
I read about Square Cash in The Wall Street Journal today and thought that it might actually resolve the service fee problem for freelancers… if enough of us can trust that the service is safe.
Here’s the quick explanation: Square Cash allows one person to send cash directly to another person via email using a debit card. You compose an email, enter the amount in the subject line, and the checking account you’ve linked to your email will provide money to the recipient, who links his or her checking account for a direct transfer.
Pros: You don’t have to set up an account, create a user ID, or try to remember yet another password. The service is fast and easy.
Possible Cons: Security. Is your bank account information too exposed with this service? (Here’s what Square Cash has to say about that.) And are you comfortable with Square’s policy of not protecting you in the event of a hack?
What are your thoughts? Does this look like a service you might be willing to use? Have you tried something else (Google Wallet, for example) that works around middleman fees?