Recently I’ve had a few friends ask me about the financial apps I use to keep track of my spending, saving, and due dates. While my “boring” Excel spreadsheet will always be number one in my heart, I do supplement my organization and awareness of financially relevant info with additional apps that are worthy of recognition. Here are some of my faves:
App for the Busy or Forgetful: The Bills is an extremely user friendly application that helps you keep track of and manage your bills. I love this app because it is VERY easy to learn, and I can record a bill and its due date in a matter of seconds. It is not fancy, but sometimes fancy becomes too high maintenance for me when all I really need is a little reminder that I’m going to have to fork up some money soon if I want to keep a roof over my head and keep the lights on too. The Bills is perfect for anyone who has busy life and a plethora of bills to pay throughout the month.
- Complete visual of “Due Bills” that fall into the categories of Overdue, Upcoming, or Next 30 Days. You can view these bills in list format or on a monthly calendar.
- Ability to view past payments as well as upcoming payments.
- All payments are displayed by Category or Bill Name in pie charts and bar graphs.
- Bill trends across categories (think household expenses, utilities, etc.) are displayed on a chart as well. This is especially helpful if you would like a visual representation of bills that fluctuate, like your gas or electric bill.
- Ability to turn on reminders for upcoming and overdue bills.
App for the Roommate: Settle Up is the perfect way to eliminate awkward and uneasy conversations about money between roommates or friends. It is objective and has an easy-to-follow process to add and distribute bills/expenses. Simply start your “event”, add the names of all who will be paying, input the total expense, and add the dollar amount or percentage each person owes. In the final step, you are able to email the breakdown of total and individual payments to each person who contributes. Everyone is accounted for, and Settle Up does the dirty work!
- The app keeps a payment log so that previous events are easy to find.
- Can have multiple events and groups set up
- Total amounts can be split evenly using a percentage or unevenly using a dollar amount.
- Can help you plan trips or parties with your friends so that nobody has to act as the monetary dictator and no mooches sneak out the back door.
App for the Traveler: TripAdvisor doesn’t specifically help me remember when to pay my bills or pay my friends back, but it does help me save money while traveling. If you love visiting new places and exploring unfamiliar territory, download the TripAdvisor application, and consult it to find hidden gems in your soon-to-be destination. TripAdvisor provides locations, prices, and reviews for hotels, restaurants, and attractions located around the globe. You can filter your searches to narrow the options. I have had huge success using TripAdvisor to find unique and very well-priced places to stay during trips in and outside of the United States. The reviews were spot on, and the places we chose were within our budget AND greatly enhanced our experience.
App for the Coupon Lover: RetailMeNot is an application that alerts you to coupons and specials that are currently valid at your favorite stores and restaurants. This application makes searching for the best deals before you leave your house easy, so it has the potential to save you money and time. The potential downfall of having these deals constantly at your fingertips is that you may be tempted to spend on items you wouldn’t otherwise purchase. To fight this urge, I only look at specific stores when I already know what I want/need to purchase.
- If a retailer requires your coupon upon purchase, you are able to present it via your phone instead of using an ad or clipped coupon.
- You can bookmark your favorite stores and restaurants so they are easy to access from your homepage when you want to see if there are current deals.
- Deciphers between online and in store deals
- Is able to locate the store that is nearest to you.