Achieving financial freedom isn’t easy. Regardless of how old you are or how much money you make, managing your money can be challenging. But that’s where technology can help.
Are you struggling to keep track of your expenses? From helping you create a budget to automatically saving money, there are apps you can use to better manage your finances. Just sync your accounts and in no time you’ll have the insight you need to monitor your wallet.
Here are eight apps that will help you create a budget, stay on budget, and work toward achieving financial freedom:
PocketGuard is a money management app that can help monitor your spending. First, simply connect your debit and credit card to the PocketGuard app. Once connected, it will carefully analyze your finances and check for recurring bills and your overall month-to-month spending.
What’s nice about PocketGuard is it allows you to view all your accounts in one, central place. Not to mention, the In My Pocket feature provides users with an easy-to-follow budget. This feature takes a deep dive into your income and expenses. From there, it shows exactly how much money you can safely spend.
In My Pocket also finds ways for users to save money based on their specific spending habits. What does this mean? The budget PocketGaurd gives you won’t necessarily be identical to the budget they give your friend, or another user.
Unlike other banks and financial institutions, Chime is designed to be used primarily through its mobile app. This is mainly due to the fact that Chime doesn’t have a physical bank. But that doesn’t make Chime any less competitive. Users can access a checking account, savings account, and a secured credit card that’s connected to the user-friendly mobile app.
The Chime app offers several unique features. For example, the app will send users their account balance and even transaction alerts on a daily basis. Not only does this help users stay accountable for their spending, but it allows them to catch any fraudulent activity.
The Chime app also offers automated savings tools to help users track their spending and find ways to put money aside.
Mint offers several features, but one of the most popular is its budgeting tools. With this app, users can create categories and allocate a certain budget to each category. For instance, let’s say you’re shopping at the mall and you buy a new pillow. Once that transaction goes through, you can categorize it. For example, a new pillow might fall under your “decor” category. Or, maybe even your “non-essential” category.
But the app doesn’t stop there. Mint also analyzes how much money you’re spending in each category. It will share that information with you so you can clearly see where your money is going. To get the most out of this app, make sure you connect all your accounts, including your investments.
Empower is a money management app that does it all. From creating a realistic budget to helping users save money, Empower takes the guesswork out of achieving financial freedom. Once connected to your accounts, the app will track your spending habits against your income. From there, you can categorize your spending and allocate a certain amount to each category.
For example, one category might be “rent” and you might allocate $1,400 a month to that category. If you have a category labeled “groceries,” you might allocate $200 a month to that category. Regardless of the amount, Empower will monitor each category and send alerts so you know whether you’re staying on budget.
With Empower’s AutoSave feature, you can even have funds automatically pulled from your checking account and moved into your savings account.
Dollarbird is the ideal financial app for those who want an overview of their finances. Once logged into the app, you simply add your upcoming expenses. For example, you might add your recurring expenses (rent, utilities, student loans, etc.). Once added, you’ll see all of these expenses in calendar form. Then you’ll have a better idea of exactly how much you can spend on non-essential items like dinner with friends.
With that said, unlike other apps, this one doesn’t connect to your accounts. Meaning, you’ll have to enter your expenses yourself.
Albert isn’t just a money management app — it’s also a financial assistant. The app shows users an up-and-close look at their finances. Users can also reach out to financial experts for advice via the app. Whether they need budget help or tips for getting out of debt, Albert is ready to lend a helping hand.
Once users download the app and sync their accounts, Albert automatically creates a tailored budget based on your income and expenses. The app will even help you save money by letting you know when other, less expensive options are available. For example, if you’re paying $100 a month for a gym membership, Albert might flag it. It will then show you a cheaper alternative.
Wally is a budgeting app that keeps things simple. How? By focusing primarily on one thing — budgeting. Once your accounts are connected to this app, Wally will monitor your expenses and income and create a budget. Wally will send you real-time alerts for your remaining budget, so you don’t accidentally (or on purpose) spend over your means.
8. You Need A Budget
You Need A Budget, better known as YNAB, syncs to all your accounts and shows users how to manage their money. What’s unique about this money management app is that it assigns every dollar in your budget a job. Instead of keeping your expenses together, YNAB wants every dollar to have a purpose. For example, a certain dollar amount will go toward rent, student loans, groceries, etc. By categorizing your expenses this way, you’ll be less likely to spend money frivolously.
According to a report from The Pew Charitable Trusts, about 80% of Americans are in debt. If you’re struggling, don’t worry. Financial freedom is accessible. All you have to do is keep track of your money and make smart decisions. Unfortunately, that’s not always easy to do. The good news is, the apps above will help you monitor your expenses and hold you accountable.