Managing money and sticking to a budget can be a challenge. It is common for people to set a budget at the start of the week and then at the end of the week wonder what happened to their money.
Handling investment decisions and planning a budget are easier now than at any other time in history thanks to the endless number of personal finance apps that are available.
Not every money management app is worth the time it takes to download. The following is a list of three budgeting apps that you should already be using.
- Get Out of Debt and Stay on Budget Using “You Need a Budget”
You Need a Budget has a lot of features found in other budgeting apps. What sets it apart is that it assigns every dollar you have a “job” in your personal budget. It can be money toward investing, covering living expenses, or paying down debt. Its purpose is to help you migrate from living paycheck to paycheck and get to the point where you have a cushion set aside that will allow you to roll with the punches if the unexpected happens.
A unique feature of You Need a Budget is that you cannot create budgets based on money that you don’t have. It forces you to actually live within your means. If something happens and you get off track, You Need a Budget shows you what you need to change in order to stay on balance with your budget. For example, if an unexpected emergency situation arises and you need to find online loans in Texas to cover the expenses, this app could help you pay back the loan in a timely manner and then get you back on track to saving for your future.
You Need A Budget comes with an annual fee. However, many people feel that the support is worth it. Online classes with budgeting instructors have helped users pay off an average of $500 of debt in their first month. The financial commitment of paying for the app every month encourages users to use the app.
• Special features that set You Need a Budget apart from the competition include the ability to set up weekly and monthly budgets and budgets for individual projects.
• This app is great if you have tried everything to stick to your budget but just can’t do it.
- Mint Offers a Clear Picture of Your Finances
This is one of the oldest and best-known budgeting apps. Mint is owned by Intuit. This company is famously known for programs like QuickBooks and TurboTax. Mint provides you with a number of tools to help you track and manage your finances, be it from lenders, financial institutions, banks, etc.
This is an all-in-one resource designed to help you create a budget, track your spending, and become money savvy. This program alerts you when bills are due and tells you how much you can afford to spend based on the funds that you currently have available. It can be set up to give you payment reminders or let you know if you are getting near to budget limits.
A nice bonus about Mint is that you get specific advice that gives you control over your spending. The free credit score is a nice bonus.
• One nice feature about Mint includes seeing your credit score in real time.
• This app is perfect for you if you want to know how much money you have at any time based on your credit cards and bank accounts.
- Acorns Makes It Easier to Build a Nest Egg
Acorns is an app that fuses robo advisor with an automated savings tool. It has a zero dollar account minimum with fees that range between one dollar and three dollars a month. This app has taken the age old practice of saving loose change and brought into the digital age. Users are charged:
• One dollar a month for a taxable investment account
• Two dollars monthly to include individual retirement accounts
• Three dollars a month for Acorns checking account
Acorns works by rounding up purchases made on credit cards or debit cards and then taking the change and putting it into a computer managed investment portfolio. This is a useful tool that has allowed many people to save money.
While Acorns can be beneficial for all people, it is aimed at college students, people who want a hands-off approach to investing, and people who find it difficult to save. One of the features that makes this app stand out is that it offers free management for college students. A student who uses this application wisely could end up with a decent amount of money after four years of rounding things up.
Another selling point is the automated savings approach. If people don’t have to think about saving money, they are more inclined to do it. You have the option to automatically roundup money added to your investment portfolio, or you can manually do it, selecting which roundups to transfer. Although roundups are at the heart of this platform, you can also set up recurring deposits or invest lump sums manually.