Build andcan be overwhelming whether you’re a seasoned investor or just starting out on your financial journey.
With hundreds of budgeting apps available online, we’ve picked the best options for you based on your financial situation. We evaluated many factors, including each app’s methodology, user interface, how it categorizes transactions, whether it allows for custom goal setting, its forecasting capabilities, and any additional resources available.
All of the apps we recommend have multiple layers of security to better protect your banking information. And most of them are free or have budgeting app picks for 2022.so you can test the app before you commit. Here are our top
Best Budget Apps
Mint is one of the highest rated budgeting apps out there, and for good reason. This budget app not only lets you set your own savings goals by linking multiple bank and credit accounts, but it also offers free access to check your credit score and lets you manage your bill payments from one place. With 25 million users to date, we believe Mint is the best budgeting app for most people looking to take control of their finances.
While Mint’s basic account is more than most people will need to manage their budget, Mint offers an ad-free Premium experience that costs $5 per month. Mint Premium also gives you access to its subscription cancellation service, spending projections, and other financial information.
Cost: Basic: free; Premium: $5 per month
Setting a budget for the first time can seem overwhelming. Goodbudget uses the “envelope method” of budgeting, a decades-old financial strategy that encourages you to divide your income into separate envelopes or categories. You might have envelopes for rent, bills, groceries, gas, non-essential purchases, and savings, for example. If you like the visualization of keeping your money in separate envelopes or compartments, Goodbudget lets you use this method, digitally. You choose envelopes from a list of predefined goals and deposit money into them each month. A damper ? You can only use Goodbudget’s predefined envelope goals – you cannot design your own.
If your budget is relatively simple, Goodbudget’s simple user interface, pre-selected goals, and visually pleasing envelope method can help you create good budgeting habits.
Personal Capital is one of the only budgeting apps on the market with extensive investment forecasting capabilities. This app is perfect for the long-time investor looking to track their investments, net worth, and personal portfolios, while setting and tracking long-term savings goals, like retirement. Personal Capital’s charts make it easy to track your daily expenses and cash flow from month to month, while still aiming for long-term goals. It also offers recommendations to improve your portfolio, especially with its Smart Watch function which indicates the best options to take from your employer’s pension plans.
You Need a Budget (YNAB) is for people who like to sweat the details. Its strategy encourages you to put every dollar to work, allocating all income to categories you define, like specific bill payments and savings goals, to avoid overspending. However, it lacks forecasting capabilities, so if you want to save for future vacations, you’ll need to set yourself a goal and allocate money to it each month.
Cost: YNAB offers a free year for students and a 34-day free trial for all users, but then costs $15/month.
Merging expenses with your partner can be tricky — and managing a budget together can be downright frustrating. But if you’re looking to establish a joint budget, Honeydue makes the process a little easier. It lets you link all your bank and investment accounts you want to include in one app, and then it tracks all your transactions and savings combined. It also includes a chat feature that lets you ask your partner about unusual or suspicious transactions. However, Honeydue doesn’t offer goal setting, just tracking – so you can’t contribute money from an account towards a specific goal.
A budgeting app is a digital app to help you plan, track, and manage your finances. Budgeting apps are not a digital wallet, generally do not offer credit or debit cards, and generally do not allow you to pay your bills through them. Budgeting apps are designed to help you see how much money is coming in and how much is going out each month, so you can better track spending, plan purchases, and create savings and debt repayment goals.
Some are affiliated with banks or credit unions, although you don’t need to have an account with the bank to use the app. Other budgeting apps are not affiliated with banking institutions.
How do budgeting apps work?
Each app has its own process and methodology, but generally they allow you to link your bank accounts and set personal savings goals. The app will then track and categorize all of your expenses and create reports to help you better understand your current financial situation. Once you know where your money is going, you can change your habits and allocate money to specific goals.
How do I choose the right budgeting app for my finances?
To choose the right budgeting app for you, consider your current financial situation and set short-term and long-term financial goals. Once you know where you stand financially and what you’re working on, you can compare features and see which app best suits your budgeting style.
CNET reviews financial apps by comprehensively comparing them against set criteria. We consider the features and functionality of each budgeting app, including user experience, interface, support options, and overall value versus price. We also evaluate key features including the ability to set savings goals, connect to multiple bank accounts securely.
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