BEST FOR BUDGETING
BEST FOR SAVINGS
BEST FOR TRACKING
Financial Apps to Change Your Life
Gone are the days of counting cash, relying on piggy banks, and making trip after trip to the bank to keep your personal finances in check. Many banks have not only adopted direct deposit but made it possible to deposit other checks via the banking apps. These days, there’s an app for just about anything. Technology has swept our world, making it easier and easier to do many things, even money management including budgeting and investing via numerous apps available via the app store.
Whether you need help doing these things or simply just making automatic payments, there’s a personal finance software for you. Look no further! We’ve done the hard work for you. Here we have the 17 most useful financial apps of 2018:
If you’re looking for a savings tool:
$1-$3 monthly unless you are a college student with an.edu email address. It must be valid.
iPhone, Android, and on the web
The Acorns app goes to work rounding up purchases to the nearest dollar and investing the change. For example, say you link your credit or debit card to Acorns and you go to the store. If your transaction equals $2.72, Acorns rounds it up to $3 and then that extra 28 cents goes to a savings portfolio within the application. It allows you to manually invest lump sums, with the minimum being $5. Using this app, you're investing and saving mindlessly and, over time, you'll have a bit of a cushion built up. While this app is free for those with .edu email addresses, it can cost a few bucks monthly depending on which helpful features in the app you prefer. We covered Acorns Investing reviews more in depth in another article for you to take a look at and compare to other apps.
Invest mindlessly. Fees seem to be reasonable. You can qualify for free management if you've got a qualifying email address. If you don't, $1, $2 or $3 per month depending on which level you choose. If you struggle to save money, this app might be beneficial to you. For comparison sake give Ally Bank Invest a look too.
iPhone, Android coming soon
This is an interesting app. While encouraging savings and investing, it also cares about your happiness. After you create your profile and link your cards or bank account, Joy asks you to report on your recent spending. Then, Joy will ask you to rate your purchases as either “happy” or “sad”. Loved it? Happy spend. Hated it? Sad spend. Joy will show you how money can relate to happiness.
This requires you to reflect a little bit on your spending, which some of us don't do because of how we feel. Ever had that guilty conscious after a purchase? With Joy, you'll be able to see the connection between beneficial spending and more hurtful, negative spending. The app also holds a range of financial articles you can read with information about savings and can help to motivate and create savings plans.
Another unique feature of Joy is the ability for users to open a savings account right inside of the app. The app will show you savings opportunities and will transfer money right into the account if you give permission. Joy won't do it automatically; you have to give the okay. Users can withdraw money or close the account altogether any time they want to.
Qapital is a relatively easy app to save money with. In order to use the app, you are required to open a new savings account, but there's no monthly fee or required minimum account balance. You're able to create specific categories for different spending habits – gas, grocery, etc.
It's similar to Acorns in that it will round up transactions to the nearest dollar and put the extra change into your savings account. Like the example above, if you bought a coffee for $2.72, Qapital will round that up to $3 and put that extra 28 cents into savings. Qapital also takes this one step further. If you spend less than your budget in any of your categories, you're able to put those extra funds into something else, maybe something fun like a date night or a vacation! As time goes on, you will see money accrued that you might not have ever had saved before.
Qapital automatically connects to another app, “If This, Then That”, which just makes suggestions on more ways to save money. There are other unique features, such as being asked if there's anything you'd like to learn, like knitting or cooking. If you are interested in learning any new skills, Qapital will ask you to estimate how much it will cost, then help you make a plan on how to save that money.
iPhone, Android, Apple Watch, Web
If you're wanting to take a step toward saving and investing, but you aren't prepared to put in a lot of work, Digit might be worth checking out.
Digit requires you to open up an account that lives strictly inside the app. Digit tracks and evaluates your spending and transfers money from whatever account you link to the app into your Digit account. If you don't already have one then you can open a bank account online first. Digit uses an algorithm that determines how much money will transfer into your Digit account – anywhere from $2 to $15, every couple of days. Digit looks at your balance, your income, bills you may have to pay, and spending habits, which is all part of the algorithm, and it chooses an amount that won't hurt your account and you likely won't notice. However, this might be something to steer away from if your income is inconsistent.
This isn't a way to make a lot of money and make it fast, but over time, you could have a decent amount of money built up to use for whatever you want. The only thing is, you don't have control over how your money is saved. Digit decides for you. This lack of control might work best for the generation that relies almost solely on technology to take care of everything. For these people, the fee might be worth it for the convenience factor. For people who can't put all of that trust into technology, this app might be an uncomfortable experience and may not be worth it.
A feature unique to Digit includes a texting service. You can view your balance, initiate withdrawals, view bills, and do other regular banking transactions through text messaging rather than using the app or a computer.
Bonus money: For every few months that you save with Digit, you can earn a 1% savings bonus annually which makes this just as good as the highest money market rates you can find. If you convince a friend or multiple friends to sign up, you will also earn a $5 referral bonus for each person. Catering to tech-savvy millennials, Digit might be just what you need to start saving money.
iPhone, Android, website
While anybody can use GoodBudget, his app works well for couples who want to work together to budget and share their goals together in real time. This is quite similar to the envelope method. You're able to create your categories to allocate funds, and these categories are considered your virtual envelopes. You get up to ten envelopes for free; any more will require a small fee. When you add funds, perhaps on payday, you have the option to add details about your envelopes as well as break up your deposit into multiple envelopes. If you're using this app with another person, you will be able to track how much you both spend and you'll both always know how much is left.
Your envelopes will be represented by a color-coded bar. Green means you've got money left, and red means you've gone over budget. You're able to enter potential transactions to see how they might affect your budget.
$4 monthly or $40 yearly.
Have you ever used envelopes to categorize your money? Maybe you've had an envelope for groceries, gas money, date night money, and so on, with an allocated amount of money in it. Maybe you've heard of this method but have never tried it. Mvelopes is the same concept but in the digital budgeting world. It remains updated and lets you know if you can afford that coffee stop or if you need to wait until next month when your budget resets.
If you’re looking for a budgeting tool:
Free – $83.99/year
iPhone, Android, Amazon Alexa devices
YNAB without a doubt requires commitment. This is a very hands-on application that helps allocate funds and put a cap on your spending. This comes at a price. Students get 12 months free, and non-students get a 34-day free trial. After that, the cost is $83.99 yearly or $6.99 monthly. The app automatically imports account transactions, but it is up to the user to categorize them as desired. Other useful features YNAB provides is goal tracking and debt payoff plans for a little extra motivation.
What's the one question you always want to know? You got it – how much money can you spend right now? PocketGuard does some number crunching for you so that you know how much money you have left after it accounts for financial responsibilities and other things you're needing money for. You'll know at any moment what you've got left in your pocket for the day, rest of the week, or the rest of the month – whichever way you choose to budget. You're able to add your own categories, too. No more over-spending! In fact, it will occasionally provide you with opportunities to save money. PocketGuard looks at recurring payments, such as phone or cable, and can help you find better deals on your service costs.
iPhone, Android, website
Mint provides visual representations of your budgeting and spending habits. It automatically updates and categorizes your transactions. You can look in the “spending” tab of the app to see a pie chart of what your money has been spent on – food, bills, clothing, gas, etc., and will also show you how much each category has left in your budget. If you budget $60 per month on gas and spend $20, $20 will show in the pie chart and the deduction will be shown in the budget graph. If any cash transactions are made, users can manually load this in the application. Mint even provides alerts when you're reaching the end of your budget for each category. This app paints a great picture of what your bank account looks like at any given moment. You will also receive alerts when you reach and go over your budget. There are some ads within this app, but, hey – that's what keeps it free. These ads actually provide information about other ways to help your finances.
Wally helps you track your income and expenses, and shows you what you've got left in your budget to prevent overspending. It's also offered for those who live outside of the US and allows tracking of foreign currencies. However, this app isn't the easiest to navigate. It allows users to do things such as categorization money and budgets, but it makes you work for it. Things aren't always easy to find, but if you like searching for things, this app may be for you.
Simple is unique in that it is more than an app. It's actually a whole bank account that holds your money completely instead of your old checking account. Built-in are endless amounts of budgeting features. The fact that this app acts as a bank account can make it easier to manage your budgeting and have more control, as instead of looking at an app as well as bank account, all you need to do is look in one place.
Simple offers a goal-tracking feature to help motivate you to save. It lets you know if you are on track with your budgeting or if you need to be a bit more careful with your spending. It also tracks your income and spending and keeps it up to date within the app. This is a great app for those of us who prefer to have everything in one place.
If you’re looking to track and pay bills:
iPhone, Android, Windows devices, Kindle.
Prism shows users all account balances and bills in one place. This app allows users to pay bills directly from Prism or schedule payments for a later date. You will also receive due date reminders and payment confirmations, courtesy of Prism.
If you’re looking for tools to invest:
Personal Capital is indeed free to download, but there are features within the app that will need paid for if you're wanting to use them. This includes investing assets with the company, but other useful tools are free to use. In fact we recently reviewed this as one of the best investment apps on the market. When using this app, you are considered a client as human financial advisors are the faces behind the app, teamed up with robo-advisors within the app that together combine their algorithms to make this a successful investment management service. A tool within the app looks at looks at the asset allocation in a user’s investment accounts as well as recommends a target allocation automatically. Information about 401K fees and a help retirement planning are both also offered services in the app.
Learn more about this app by reading our comparison guide on Personal Capital.
Free to download. Offers an upgrade in which you are set up with a financial advisor for an initiation fee of $299 a $19 monthly subscription.
LearnVest has a lot of similarities to Mint. It helps you understand your current financial situation, keep and analyze data, and monitor your money. It works with your transactions and account balances that occurred no more than three months prior. This can help show you where you spend the majority of your money. Transactions are automatically placed into categories, called “folders” within in the app, which automatic labels. Users are able to change labels and create new folders.
The initiation fee and subscription come into play if you want to use the provided option to work with a financial planner. These financial planners work with you on typical everyday financial strategies, but not with your assets or investments, generally.
There are things this app doesn't have, such as reminders to pay bills, credit scores, and Android users can't use it. However, the benefits of this app might make up for the difference.
If you’re looking to track your credit scores:
iPhone, Android, Website
Credit Karma is a great app for keeping track of your credit score and credit report. It enables you to log in and view your credit score anytime as often as you would like. This is not like the typical credit checks where you can only view each report once annually for free. Credit Karma never charges and always gives you a detailed report when you want it. It has useful features such as a graph which shows your credit score changes made over time, it shows what is helping and what is hurting your score, how similar your credit score is to others your around your age, in the same state bringing in a similar income, and more. It will even update you any time your credit score changes.
If you’re looking for an app to do it all:
Albert does a little more work than just helping with budgeting. It creates a budget based on your income, bills and spending habits, and sets some aside in savings. It does this automatically. You can create a goal amount to save up for, withdraw money at any time, and receive notifications about new subscriptions, fees, or upcoming bills. The cost of the app is free, but there is an option for a few dollars a month that allows users to connect with experts – real humans- and get advice on financial topics. This service helps create a stronger personal financial plan, catering to your needs.
If you’re looking for quick ways to send and receive money:
Do you like PayPal? If so, you'll love Venmo. Venmo is a free app in which you send and receive money from friends with ease. Simply create an account, enter in card and bank account details, connect with friends who also have the app, and you're ready to go. Depending on how much information you provide, you could send up to $3,000 per week.
Important notice: On funds, there is a 3% fee that is taken from credit or debit cards. This might be worth it to note.
A major difference between PayPal and Venmo is that Venmo transactions are automatic; you don't have to wait for approval or a processing period. With Venmo, your funds are withdrawn or deposited right then.
Sending a payment is simple. You tap the bill icon, select a friend, select a price, and done! If someone owes you money, you're able to request it in the same way as well. You may see some colors involved here. Green means money has been received and red means money has been paid. Color coding makes everything easier!
Venmo is able to look at your contact list to find others who use Venmo. If you have contacts that do not use Venmo, you're able to send them an invite to sign up. You could import your Facebook profile for Venmo to see your friends list which would allow you to pay Facebook friends – but you've got to actually be Facebook friends with them in order to do so. Facebook friends definitely add more of the convenience factor, though!
It's currently 2018, and personal financing apps have become more and more popular. People want quicker and more convenient ways to manage their money. These apps can even help motivate you more by providing visual aids and giving you tips on how to better manage your money. Only you can decide which app or apps are for you, but chances are there's a great app out there to fit your financial situation and needs.
Personal finance and budget apps are a powerful tool to help you manage your money and invest. If you're curious about the best short term investments then we talk about that in another article. This FAQ will answer the questions you have about these apps in general as well as cover some of the most popular apps on the market.
General Budget App Questions
Money Management and Budgeting apps can be complicated sometimes. This section answers general questions you have about budgeting apps. Use this information to get a good foundation so you can find the best money management app for you.
Are Budget Apps Safe?
For the most part, yes. Any time you connect something to your bank there’s always a risk. However, reputable and popular budget apps use bank-level encryption and extensive safety measures.
Why You Need a Budget App?
You need a budget app to help you keep track of your spending. The app will sort your spending into different categories automatically so you can understand where your money goes.
What Is the Best Budget Planner App?
There’s no single best budget planner app. Thankfully, most or all of the most popular budget apps are free. That means you can try out different apps and find the one that works best for you.
Is There an App for Budgeting?
There are a ton of apps for budgeting. You can try Mint, Money Manager, Every Dollar, Wally, and more. The key is finding one that offers the tools you want and has a good interface.
What is a Good Budget App?
There are plenty of great choices when it comes to budget apps. The most popular budget app is Mint by Intuit. That’s the same company that makes the popular Turbo Tax and Quick Books products.
Are there Budgeting Apps that Allow State Farm?
Yes, many budgeting apps will allow you to connect your State Farm account. That will allow you to see when your bill is do and plan your budget accordingly.
What Budgeting Apps Can I Link my Bank Account To?
You can link your bank account to almost any budgeting app. The most popular apps, like Mint and Money Manager, allow this function.
What Is Your Favorite Budget App?
Our favorite budget app is Mint by Intuit. The company has a long track record of making excellent financial products, and Mint is no exception. You can track spending on everything including food. We also reviewed the top food delivery apps.
Should You Pay for Budget Planning App?
We certainly don’t think so. The best budget planning apps are available for free. Mint is one great example. You don’t pay for the app or pay any kind of subscriptions.
Why Should I Use a Budget App?
You should use a budget app to help track your spending and purchases. It will help you make sure you have enough cash to pay your bills on time and see how you spend your money.
Do Budget Apps Link to Credit Cards?
Almost every budget app links to credit cards. The popular money management app Mint is a great example. It will track your account balance, spending, statement dates, and bill due date for you. On another note you may be interested in consolidating your credit cards in a lower interest loan if you're trying to decrease debt. There are even bad credit consolidation loans you may qualify for.
What Is the Best Money Management App?
There’s no one money management app that’s absolutely the best. We recommend downloading a few different apps and seeing which one works best for you.
What Are Some Good Personal Finance Apps or Software?
There are plenty of good personal finance apps and software options. We like Mint a lot. Other people use Money Manager, Quicken Budget, and Every Dollar.
Is There an App to Help Manage Money?
You bet there are. There are actually many apps around to help you manage your money. The best ones will help you track all aspects of your financial life and link to your accounts.
When Can You Use Personal Finance Apps Safely?
You can use personal finance apps safely almost any time. The only time there might be a risk is if you’re using an unknown app that doesn’t have good security measures.
Budget Apps for Specific Devices
There’s no point in getting excited about a new budgeting app if it doesn’t work on your device. This section covers questions about different budgeting apps for different devices.
What Is the Best Budget App for iPhone?
That depends on what you’re looking for in an app. We recommend trying out a few apps so you can see which makes the most sense to you. Mint, Money Manager, and Simple Budget are all good options.
What Is the Best Budget App for Android?
There are many great options for a budget app for Android devices. Try out some of the different options and see which one works for you the best.
What Is the Best Budget App for Mac?
Almost any budget app that you like on PC or Android can also be used on Mac. Our favorite is Mint, which is produced by Intuit – they’re one of the largest companies in the world for financial software.
What Is the Best Home Budget App for iPad?
Our favorite home budget app for the iPad would have to be Mint. However, there are many great options if you look on the app store. Find one that is easy to use and makes sense to you. Just make sure you have a good data plan or a wifi hotspot unlimited data option since a number of these apps are heavy on data use if you use them frequently.
What Is the Best Free Budget App for iPhone?
There are plenty of options when you’re looking for a free budget app for the iPhone. Mint is the most popular option, but Money Manger and Wally Budget are also good.
What Is the Best Budgeting App for iOS?
The best budgeting app for iOS is a matter of opinion. You should try different options and see which one has the best interface. The best app for you is the one that you find easiest to use.
Are There Still Personal Finance Desktop Apps?
Yes, there are several personal finance apps for desktops. All of the biggest and most popular personal finance apps can run on a desktop, so try out several and see which you like best.
What Is the Best Personal Finance App for iPad?
The best personal finance app for the iPad is the one that makes the most sense to you. Most personal finance apps offer the same features. It’s a matter of finding one that’s easy to use and makes sense. Also check out the best passive income apps we reviewed.
What Is the Best Personal Finance App for Mac?
Mac computers have many options when it comes to personal finance apps. We always like to recommend Mint, but you can try out different apps and pick the one you like best.
What Is the Best Personal Finance App for iPhone?
The iPhone has a lot of great choices for personal finance apps. Mint is a good option, but other people also like Wally Budget and Money Manager. Your bank might also have an app you can use.
What Is the Best Android Phone App to Manage Money?
The bet Android app to manage money is the one that is set up in a way that’s easy for you to use. Try Mint, Wally Budget, and Money Manager to see which you like best.
Mint Budget App Questions
Mint is easily the most popular budgeting app on the market. We’ll cover some of the most common questions people have about Mint in this section.
Is the Mint Budget App Safe?
The Mint app is completely safe. It’s made by Intuit, who also make the popular Turbo Tax and QuickBooks products. They know how to handle security for people’s finances.
How to Use Mint Budget App?
It’s easy to use the Mint budget app. Just link your accounts to the app and it will collect and categorize all of the information. Then it displays it for you in easy-to-understand charts and tables.
How Safe Is Mint Budget App?
The Mint budget app is extremely safe. It uses bank-level encryption protocols and is run by one of the biggest and best-known financial software companies in the world – Intuit.
How to Set a Budget on Mint App?
The Mint app has you set budgets on different categories. You can use the categories included on the app or make your own. Once you’ve picked, just use the slider to pick how much you want to spend each month on the category.
Does Mint Budget App Do Bi-Weekly Reports?
You can get reports from the Mint app any time you want. You can look at your spending over a custom-defined period. You can apply the same settings to your income to see how you’re managing your money. This is great for tracking multiple residual income opportunities.
What Is the PC version of Mint.com Budgeting App?
The best way to access the Mint budget app on your PC is to use their website. You get all of the same functionality as the mobile app and it’s easy to set up your budget and accounts.
How Many Budget Accounts Can You Have on Mint App?
There’s no limit to the number of budgets you can set up for different categories on the Mint app. You can break down your spending to be as general or specific as you like.
Can You Connect Multiple People's Accounts to Mint Budgeting App?
You can add people’s accounts where you are a joint holder of the account. However, you can’t add accounts that aren’t in your name in some fashion.
Other Budget App Questions
There are many budget apps to choose from. This section covers questions about some of the other popular money management apps on the market.
How to Use Daily Budget App?
The best way to use the Daily budget app is to set your budget for different categories. Once you’ve done that, pay attention to the notifications it gives you to ensure you’re staying on target.
How to Use Home Budget App?
It’s fairly easy to use the home budget app. All you need to do is link your accounts to the app and set your budgets. Use the reports the app gives you to make sure that you’re meeting your goals.
What Is the Travel Budget App?
The travel budget app tracks your spending while you’re on vacation. That lets you set up certain budgets for each thing you plan on doing so you can make sure you’ve got enough money to enjoy your vacation to the fullest.
How Does Every Dollar Budget App Work?
The Every Dollar budget app works just like the name implies – it tracks every dollar so you can see how your money is being spent and plan your bills accordingly.
How to Use Wally Budget App?
You can use the Wally Budget app just like you’d use other budget apps. Just set budgets for your different spending categories and use them to track where you’re spending your money.
How to Budget Money Within Citibank App?
You can budget your money within the Citibank app by setting up different options for notifications when you’re approaching your spending limit.
Does the Quicken Budget App Work?
Yes, the Quicken Budget app works. It has the same functionality as most of the other budget apps on the market. You can link it to your accounts and it will tract your spending and income and put them into categories.
How to Use Simple Budget App?
Using the Simple Budget app is, well, simple. Just link your bank and credit card accounts to the app. You can also link your bills and tell it your due dates. Then the app will track your finances and help you plan your money.
How to Use Money Manager App?
You can easily use the Money Manager app by connecting it to your various accounts. The app will track money in and money out. It also gives you detailed reports to help you plan around your bills and budget.
Is the Money Manager App Safe?
Yes, the Money Manager app is safe. It uses bank level encryption to communicate with your accounts. It also has other added security features to protect your information.
Does USAA Have a Budget App?
Yes, USAA’s budget app is called USAA Money Manager. It’s one of the most popular budgeting apps out there. You can also try Mint, Budget Wiz, and Fast Budget to see which you like best.
How to Use Budget Wiz App?
Using the Budget Wiz app is a straight-forward process. Simply fill out budgets for different amounts you want to spend in each category. Then, link your cards and accounts and follow the notifications to ensure you’re staying on budget.
How to Use Pocket Expense Personal Finance App?
To use the Pocket Expense Personal Finance App, you need to link your various accounts. It will track both recurring and non-recurring payments and provides powerful statistical analysis to help you understand your spending habits.
How to Add Vehicle in Personal Finance App?
That depends on which personal finance app you’re using. Most personal finance apps have a category for vehicle expenses that tracks things like gas and repairs. However, if that’s not the case, then you should be able to create your own category and manually assign your vehicle expenses to it.
What Are the Best Apps for Money Managing for Retirement?
Most of the personal finance and budget management apps are good for managing retirement. We like Mint and the CNNMoney Portfolio App. These apps will link to your 401(k) and automatically track transactions and expenses so you can make sure you’ve got enough money to make it through retirement.
Is there an app to improve my credit?
There isn't an app that will specifically improve your credit score. However a well known company called Lexington Law reviews credit repair issues with their app though.