10 Best Apps For Your Budget
Whether you’re digging yourself out of debt, saving for a specific goal or trying to get a better handle on your budget, there’s an app to help you reach your financial goals. We scoured the internet to see which apps are winning the most acclaim.
Your Bank’s App
Most major banks, credit card companies and investment companies now have them and experts say they’re a good place to start. Checking balances, making transfers and paying bills is just the beginning. You can check on your investments, find the nearest branch or bank machine and access a variety of other tools such as mortgage calculators.
Mint.com is the darling of the online budgeting world so it’s no surprise that the app has received so much acclaim. Like the online tool, Mint lets you connect all of your accounts in one place to track and categorize your spending, pay bills, check your balances and double-check your budget before you buy. You can also set up reminders for upcoming payments and receive low account balance notifications.
The ability to sync your account with your smart phone, tablet and computer has another bonus: you can go online to disable the app on your devices if you lose them.
Many financial experts advocate using envelopes or jars as visual aids to tame spending — but perhaps you want to go high tech? EEBA lets you create a budget system using up to 20 virtual Envelopes for regular and irregular expenses. Then, you record your spending and the app keeps a running total. You can check your Envelope balance before spending, and there’s no need to connect your bank accounts or put your information at risk.
The app can sync with multiple devices so all members of the household can work with a common budget. If you’re worried about data loss, the app automatically backs up data online too.
Widely popular YNAB used to be for desktops only, but now you can extend much of its functionality to your smart phone and tablet too. (You will need the latest version of the software to use the app, however.) You can check your budget and enter transactions on the go, and the app will automatically sync to your desktop when there’s an internet connection available.
Want to try it before you buy? The YNAB software is available for a one-month trial (and costs $50 to purchase) and users can download a free version of the app known as YNAB Lite.
Receipts ( iTunes)
Whether you’re tracking expenses for work or home, this app makes it easy to manage all those receipts. Using the camera in your device, the app lets you take a picture of the receipt or bill and enter relevant details on the spot. Not only will it record the date and location of your transaction, it will add up expenses in different categories as well. Consider the app a digital archive of receipts that you can search, print, email and export to other programs.
If you don’t have an Apple product, there are similar apps available for other devices as well — such as Smart Receipts Pro (Android).
If you’re looking for an expense tracker that’s more robust, experts pick this app for the additional features. For example, you can use a variety of currencies, calculate vehicle mileage, track spending trends and see how much room you have left in your budget — among many other reporting features. When you need to claim expenses, you can export data to a CSV or HTML file — complete with a digital copy or your receipt.
And good news for your New Year’s resolutions: the app is on sale for $1.99 this holiday season.
Debt Manager (iTunes)