by Bailey LeRoux
You’ve likely heard about First Financial Bank’s app with picture pay and other features to manage your account remotely. Our Scene staffers are big fans of its convenience. But beyond a single bank, what about an app that helps you manage all of your money across all of your accounts in one place? Here are a few apps that can help take the daily grunt work out of monitoring your budget. All three of these apps help you categorize and understand your spending habits across any and all bank accounts
BillGuard will sync with financial accounts including debit and credit cards, bank accounts and more so long as they have internet banking capabilities. Income and spending is tracked automatically. A bonus about BillGuard is a heavy focus on fraud protection. They will alert you if there has been a suspicious charge and are the first to let you know about data breaches in the places that you regularly shop. This app also searches the internet (with your spending habits in mind) for coupons you will actually use.
Mint – Free
Mint.com and Mint the app use the same 128-bit encryption and physical security that banks use. All three of these apps have passcodes to protect your information in spite of a misplaced device, but Mint even has a remote device disconnect system. If you lose your phone, you can go to your account online and disconnect your device. Mint also automatically reads the information from the accounts you connect it to. All transactions will automatically load and be categorized (though with some margin of error). With Mint you can regularly check your credit score for free. You can even set up bill alerts and automatic bill payment systems.
Wally – Free
This one requires a little more time, as transactions need to be logged and do not automatically sync. It’s great, however, for someone who prefers not to include their bank account information. The only info Wally sees is what you manually add, and it has the same categorizing and budgeting capabilities as the other two. The benefits of Wally also include the opportunity to scan and save receipts in your phone. No more paper! And you can export the information to Excel.
These apps do not have the technical knowledge and insight that professional financial advisors have to help you understand where your money should go, but they can help you track where it is going and make baby steps towards the big changes. For additional financial advice see NewYear/New You advertising supplement in Abilene Scene!