Was one of your New Year’s resolutions to save money? Or, you're starting to plan your summer adventures and realize you need to stick to a strict budget to make it happen. Have you thought about using an app to help you keep track of your budget easily? There are some awesome ones out there and they make your life super easy. But with the good comes the bad and not all budgeting apps are created the same. We tried four different ones and are going to share our thoughts with you.
At the top of every list is Mint, and we will tell you, it’s at the top of our list as well. Mint is an app from Intuit; yes, the same company as TurboTax. It is the clear industry leader in budgeting technology. The app pulls in all of your accounts, including your credit cards to give you the best picture of your financial situation. You can also set up weekly spending targets and the app lets you know when you are getting close. Mint will also send you a weekly summary of your spending habits, so you can check the bad habits real quick. It is also a way to keep yourself in the know on potential changes before they hit your credit report. This is a great, easy-to-use way of getting your finances in order. We highly recommend Mint.
Have you heard about Clarity Money? Clarity Money is another budgeting app that we really like. Our favorite part of this app is the easy to read dashboard on your monthly spending. The app tells you your month to date spending vs. your monthly income. It is highly user friendly, so that you can see when you are over budget or outspending your income from just a quick glance. The app can also help you automate your savings habits by rounding up transactions to the nearest dollar and saving that spare change in a separate account. The Clarity Money app is an overall good looking and easy functioning way at your finances.
There is a lot of buzz right now around Acorns. Which is not technically a budgeting app but a savings app. We thought it should be on our list because if you can automate your savings you can help get your budget in order. Savings is a key part of your budget and it is something you should be constantly thinking about. Acorns rounds up transactions and invests the extra change for you. Most say it is a mindless way to invest and build your wealth.
This one takes Dave Ramsey’s envelope system and turns it electronic. With Mvelopes, you can see your past spending with the help of linked accounts, and then assign future money to Mvelopes that help you stick to a budget. If you use credit cards, Mvelopes will make sure you don’t run up a balance at the same time you’re draining your checking account—when you charge something to a credit card, Mvelopes moves that amount out of your “spending” envelope and into an envelope set aside to pay your credit card bill.
All of these budget tools offer something a little different and can be beneficial to you. No matter which one you choose, you should be budgeting every month and sticking to it. A budget can make or break your lifestyle and future financial decisions. If you have any questions, RMCU is here to help you find the budget that’s right for you and suggest tools that can help you meet your future goals. Start budgeting now, and save what you need for what you want to do.
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