5 Finance Apps to Know About

By Katy Macek

There are a lot of financial apps out there to help you manage your money, but it can be over- whelming to decide which one to use — and even more so if you’re trying to use multiple. The trick is figuring out your financial goals (budgeting, saving, investing) and which app can help you accomplish them. Here, we break down some of the top-rated money apps based on web reviews.

MINT

Best for: Budgeting and bills.
Cost: Free.
Pros: Syncs all of your accounts (think: checking and savings accounts, credit cards, loans, even utilities), so you have a full picture of your expenses as well as net worth. You can easily track savings goals and set up bill reminders. It also offers a free credit score based on your Equifax report, and it translates well across devices.
Cons: Ads can make the interface feel cluttered and overwhelming to navigate. Mint breaks down your spending into categories, but these aren’t always accurate
(i.e. childcare might get categorized in the rent category).

YOU NEED A BUDGET (YNAB)

Best for: Budgeting and paying off debt.
Cost: $11.99/month or $84 annually.
Pros: YNAB takes your monthly income and helps you allocate every dollar to a specific category, so you know exactly where it’s going and don’t spend outside your means. It’s a great app for handling debt and nixing unnecessary spending. It’s easy to sync accounts and translates across devices. The first 34 days are free.
Cons: It’s pricey for an app, and it requires a time commitment to set up your budget.

ACORNS

Best for: Investing and growing your finances.
Cost: $1-$5/month.
Pros: Great for new, low-risk investors. By syncing your checking account with Acorns, the app invests spare change from your everyday purchases. There are no investing minimums or trade fees. Plus, it offers resources and money how-tos, so you gain financial knowledge.
Cons: Spare change might not add up to much, so the fees could end up being higher than the reward. Investing is limited to basic index funds. If you’re versed in investing and/ or have a significant amount to invest, this might not be the best app for you.

ELLEVEST

Best for: Women-centered and goal-oriented investing.
Cost: $1-$9/month.
Pros: This app is tailored to women’s lifestyle choices, considering everything from the gender pay gap to our longer lifespan. It’s great for goal-specific investing. You can choose from three tiers of service, and members get discounts on professional services and free resources.
Cons: The more personalized help you need, the higher the fees. Investment choices are limited and advice is automated.

PERSONAL CAPITAL

Best for: Investments and money management.
Cost: Free.
Pros: The app has great visuals for tracking investment performance and managing your portfolio. Get the best of both worlds with robo-advisors and human advisors. You can connect other financial accounts to see a holistic view of your financial picture, including net worth. Translates across all devices.
Cons: If you choose to add them on, the wealth management services fees are high and also require a minimum of $100,000. The budgeting function is more basic than other apps geared toward that goal.

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