Personal Accounting Software

Are you struggling to get a handle on your finances?

Has the quarantine cut or eliminated your income?

To address these problems, you first need to know where your money is going.

You can follow the process I’ve outlined here with spreadsheets, or you can use personal accounting apps to help you.

So why use an app versus a spreadsheet?

An app can download transactions automatically and classify some transactions for you after it learns your spending habits.

It also allows you to run various reports much easier than a spreadsheet. Want to see how your spending last month compares to your budget? Click, and the app runs your report in a few seconds.

Finally, these apps capture routine bills and can report bills that will be coming due in the next week/month. This helps you to identify upcoming cash needs, which is key if your income is irregular.

Below are three options for personal accounting apps.

Feature

Quicken

Mint

YNAB

Access anywhere

Computer-based but can be viewed online or with the app

Online and app

Online and app

Set up downloads from bank, cc, bills, liabilities

Yes

Yes

Yes

Create a budget and set savings goals

Yes

Yes

Yes

Enter and track upcoming bills

Yes

Yes

Yes

Customize categories of expenses & income

Yes

Yes

Yes

Can add other property (home, auto, personal possessions) to give a full net worth

Yes

Yes

Yes

Customize spending & budget reports

Yes

No

Yes

Pay bills from the site/app

Yes

No

No

Provides a credit score

Yes

Yes

No

My personal favorite is Quicken. However, if the cost is a barrier, Mint is a good no-cost option.


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