You know how important it is to save money—for emergencies, retirement and other goals—but you may be having a difficult time figuring out how to do it. Fortunately, there are a number of mobile apps available to help. Here are five of the best apps to get you started.
Users can link their credit card and bank accounts to Clarity, and the app will provide unbiased recommendations about spending changes the user can make to save more money. The app helps users spend less than they make, stop spending money on things they don’t need, find lower interest rates to pay off debt more quickly, and save and invest for the future. The app also tracks spending, alerts users of upcoming due dates, and can help create investment accounts through Acorns and a savings account. You can also transfer funds between accounts and get a copy of your credit score.
Because this app keeps track of exactly where your money is going, you can save money by canceling items you are not using, such as subscriptions or gym memberships. Since it integrates all of your accounts, it also provides a streamlined way to manage your various financial accounts. Currently, the app is only available on iOS, but Android and web-based versions are coming soon.
Clarity can help you create an Acorns account via their app, but Acorns offers a useful app of its own. Acorns makes micro-investing easy by offering you five investment portfolios from which to choose. To use it, simply link the debit and credit cards that you use to make everyday purchases. Whenever you buy something, Acorns will round your purchase up to the nearest dollar and use the spare change to automatically invest for you. You can also set up recurring or one-time investments. The app costs $1 per month if your balance is under $5,000 and 0.25% of your balance if your account goes over that amount. You can withdraw your money at any time. Acorns also offers users access to Grow Magazine, which helps readers increase their investment and financial knowledge. The app has a web-based version and is also available on iOS and Android devices.
Wally can help create a budget by making it easy to track your expenses. The app, which is free for Android and iOS devices, allows you to take photos of your receipts instead of manually entering your expenses. The intuitive display makes it easy for users to see exactly where their money is going, which can help cut unnecessary costs and save more money. In addition to tracking expenses, Wally allows you to log your income and create savings goals. While it may not have all of the features of Clarity, it is a user-friendly tool that makes it easy to create weekly and monthly budgets.
You Need a Budget (YNAB)
YNAB, which is available for Android and iOS devices, Alexa, and your computer via the web, helps you track your expenses as well as build a budget and stick with it. It is based off the following rules:
- Give every dollar a job
- Embrace your true expenses
- Roll with the punches
- Age your money
YNAB is free for the first 34 days and then costs $4.17 per month. The website claims that users save an average of $600 by month two and $6,000 in the first year. However, they offer a 100% money-back guarantee for any users who feel they did not find the app helpful, so you can try it risk-free.
Digit, which began as a text-based service, automatically transfers money into a savings account. You must first link your checking account; then, Digit analyzes your spending to see how much you can afford to save every day. They have a no-overdraft guarantee, so you do not need to worry about the app over-drafting your account or saving more than you can afford. You will still have access to your cash. When you need to access your savings, simply send a text message to Digit, and the funds will be in your checking account the next day. There are no account limits, and you have access to unlimited transfers. The app, which is available for iOS and Android, is free for 100 days and then costs $2.99 per month.