Technological advancements and developments have many advantages. One of these benefits is that we have access to very powerful mobile applications at our fingertips. Over the last decade or so, many companies have developed apps focused on helping people with their personal finance. One of the best things about this is that so many of these apps are free to use! Here I will discuss 9 of the best personal finance apps that you need to download today.
Take Charge of Your Finances
Are you looking to better your finances? Well fortunately there are a lot of tools out there that can help. The personal finance space is full of applications offering a wide range of services. This is why we have broke this list down into a couple different sections. First, we will cover the best personal finance apps focusing on your day to day budgeting needs. Then we will cover some additional apps that can be useful in building wealth by investing. So, what are the best personal finance apps?
Day to Day Budgeting and Savings
The following applications can be used to help budget, save money, transfer money, and keep track of your credit score.
Credit Karma is a great tool to help you keep track of your personal finances. This company has been around since 2007 and has cemented itself as one of the best personal finance apps. Credit Karma’s main claim to fame is that it can provide you with your credit score. The best thing is that they do this for free!
How will you know if you need to improve your credit score without checking it on a regular basis? Credit Karma can help.
In addition to providing you with your credit score, this app can give you details regarding the factors that go into your credit score. Credit Karma can tell you if you should reduce your credit utilization, if you have any derogatory marks on your credit report, and much more.
Credit Karma can also fill out your income tax return (for free), give you credit card and loan recommendations, and even tell you if you could be saving money on your car insurance.
If you have ever needed to pay a friend back after going out to dinner or drinks then I am sure you know about Venmo. Venmo is a digital wallet that makes it super easy to transfer money to anyone. The only caveat is that the person you need to send the money to also must have a Venmo account. This is not problem at all considering it is such an easy app to use.
In most cases, Venmo is free to use if you link your bank’s checking account to it. You can also send money to people using a credit or debit card, however Venmo charges a small fee for this. This is why we recommend you linking your bank account.
If someone sends you money, the balance stays in your Venmo account. You can easily transfer the funds out of your Venmo account into your bank account. One of the great advantages to this app is that it is super fast to transfer funds between your Venmo account and bank account. Plus, this mobile application has a social media aspect to it so you can see who your friends are sending money to. You can turn off this feature by setting your transactions to private.
In review, Venmo makes it super easy to transfer money between people. If you live with someone, Venmo makes it super easy to split rent, utility bills, grocery bills, and everything in between!
Mint is one of the most popular budgeting apps on the market today. This app offers a free budgeting tool that can aggregate all of your financial accounts in one place. This is a really powerful tool because you can see a high level overview of your personal finances. In addition to this, you can track your spending and savings habits, and set goals for your self all in one place.
Wondering what types of accounts you can link to Mint? Well, pretty much everything. You can sync bank accounts like checking and savings, as well as others. In addition to these traditional accounts, you can also link money management accounts, retirement accounts like a Roth IRA, investment accounts, credit cards, and more.
Mint is one of the best personal finance apps out there. It is easy to use, very powerful in helping you track expenses and savings progress, and on top of that all its free to use.
Do you have problems putting money away into your savings on a regular basis? If so, then the Guac app is right for you. This mobile app saves money automatically for you while you spend. Guac offers its users something called micro-savings on all qualified purchases. Guac takes a percentage of the total amount spent on each transaction and puts it in a savings account for you.
You can create savings goals for everything you can think of. You can even have multiple goals at once and customize savings allocation between them. Are you trying to save up for a nice relaxing vacation? Maybe you are trying to save up for a nice new Rolex. Either way, Guac can help achieve your savings goals. Guac also provides you with daily analytics so ensure you reach your goal.
Unlike other budgeting apps, Guac users can utilize their savings account to make purchases from what they call their Guac Marketplace. You can purchase goods and services from their partners and earn free cash back.
Not only is Guac safe and trusted, but your deposits are FDIC insured up to $250,000. With all these benefits, you have no excuse to put off your savings any longer!
Are you new to investing and wonder how to start investing? Well one of these mobile applications can help. They offer automated investment solutions that can be totally hands off. Starting to invest early has many advantages and can help you build an emergency fund. Here are the best personal finance apps that can help you invest.
Please note, investing might not be for everyone. Like many things, investing does come with risks. Although historically investments return a higher amount of interest than traditional bank accounts, you may lose some value of the funds you deposit.
Investing is all about growing your nest egg. Or in this case, watching your Acorns grow into a mighty Oak tree! Acorns takes a similar approach to the Guac app. Acorns was made popular by offering its customers micro-investing. When you open an account, you can link your credit cards, debit cards, and bank accounts. Anytime a transaction is made with these, Acorns will round up the transaction to the nearest dollar and put it into your Acorns account. This service will then invest those funds for you. You can also set recurring transfers into your Acorns account, or make one time deposits.
Acorns makes investing easy. You do not need to think about putting money into your investment account – they do it for you. When opening an account, there are several things to consider. First, you need to link a bank account and credit/debit cards if you want to take part in their round up investing program. After you do this, you can set the round up limit. Then, you can select your investment objective. They will ask you questions like your age, income level, and what your goal is for the investments. Acorns will use this information to determine the appropriate level of investment risk. Your investment risk is associated to your investment objective, and will determine how your funds are allocated.
Acorns can invest your money for you in a wide variety of securities. They can be growth focused, or Acorns can invest the funds in income based securities.
Not only can you open a traditional investment account with Acorns, but you can also open retirement accounts, plus accounts for your children. Acorns does charge a small monthly fee. However, if you are a student you can get their service for free!
Wealthfront is one of the best personal finance apps that offers you hands off investing. Similar to Acorns, when you open a Wealthfront account, you will fill out some questions. Wealthfront then determines your goals and objectives, and can allocate your invested funds automatically based on your answers. Over time, Wealthfront will automatically rebalance your account.
Rebalancing is when your positions in your account are sold/bought to make sure they make up the proper percentage of your holdings. Over time, the market value and percentage changes. Rebalances takes this into consideration and makes sure you hold the right amount of each security in your portfolio.
Wealthfront has several benefits that differentiate it from its competitors. First, there is a low account minimum. This means you can start investing with barely any money at all! This service charges a very low fee of just 0.25% (or 25 basis points), and has a low investment expense ratios. Lastly, they offer socially responsible portfolio options.
This application also offers investment accounts that are hard to find on other platforms. For instance, Wealthfront supports 529 college saving plans.
Betterment is another personal finance app that gives their users the ability to invest hands off. You can open a slew of traditional investment accounts, plus specialized retirement accounts.
One of the best things about Betterment is that there is no account minimum. This means that you can open an investment account with just $1.
Account management fees are in line with their competitors, at just 25bps. There is no fees or transferring or closing your account, plus they offer automatic rebalancing and the ability to speak to a live investment advisor. This is a benefit that is hard to come by these days. If you like goal based tools, Betterment might be a great option for you considering they offer such resources.
Overall, the differences between Wealthfront and Betterment are small. It really just comes down to personal preference.
Hands On Investing
Do you want to have the ability to purchase individual stocks and other financial securities such as cryptocurrencies? If so, you may want to look into a more traditional brokerage account. With this type of account, you are in charge. You can buy and sell individual stocks, ETFs, and more with one of the following apps. While you may be able to get a higher return on your investment managing your own stock portfolio, trading can be complicated. Be sure you conduct your due diligence on stocks before you buy them. If you buy and sell often, then you should also be aware of possible tax implications. Here is some information on day trading income tax.
Disclaimer: The following applications offer commission free trading. While this sounds very appealing, there are some things you should know. Many of these types of apps sell your trades to firms who pay for the order flow – this is how they generate revenue and are able to offer free trading. Although there are no commissions charged, the price you buy or sell a security at might not be as competitive as other platforms. This is something called best execution and is a legal mandate requiring brokers to provide the most advantageous order execution for their customers given the prevailing market environment.
This can be a confusing and might be a little more than you wanted to know, but it helps to be informed!
Robinhood is an online investment platform that offers it users commission free trading. In addition to this, they offer tools and resources you need to make informed investment decisions.
This app allows your to invest any amount by offering fractional shares. If you don’t have enough funds in your account to buy a whole share of Apple for instance, you can buy a part of it!
If you have some trading experience, you will be happy to know that Robinhood offers some advanced features as well. Not only can you trade stocks and funds, you can also buy options, gold, cryptocurrency, and trade on margin. If you are unsure of how any of this works, be sure do to your research before pressing the buy button.
Another commission free trading app is Webull. Webull and Robinhood share many of the same features, however there is one major difference. Webull offers some more sophisticated trading features which may be more suitable for advanced investors. While you can still conduct traditional investment transactions on this app, if just offers a broader array of services.
Like many of the apps we have discussed here, Webull has no stock trading costs, does not charge for options trades, and has no account minimum. This app offers access to several cryptocurrencies, has a great mobile user experience, and has impeccable 24/7 customer support.
In additional to all of this, Webull also offers research and data available to its customers. This information can be used to your advantage and help you make more profitable trades.
Best Personal Finance Apps – Summary
There you have it – a list of the best personal finance apps. I covered several ranging from day to day budgeting apps to those that can tell you every detail about your financial picture. Included on this list are also several different types of investing apps. Some of these automatically manage your investments for you, while others enable you to trade individual securities at the click of a button.
Getting your finances in order is no easy feat. This is why you should use some of the best personal finance apps to your advantage.
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