Written by: Sarah Backenstoe
We’ve all heard the saying time and time again: “There’s an app for that.” And it’s true. In March, there were 2.8 million apps available on Google Play, and 2.2 million apps available on Apple’s App Store, according to Statista. It’s no surprise then that tons of personal financial apps have emerged. From simple everyday budgeting, to checking your account balances, online banking and more, apps are bringing financial services right to your smartphone.
We asked some of our team members to share their favorite financial apps with us. While some of these apps have found success building their brands, we compiled a list of personal finance apps with the best under-told stories out there. Check out what they had to say!
Venmo – Jen Diehl
I’ve been using Venmo for about a year, and can’t remember my financial life without it! Venmo is a payment app that’s linked to your checking account, allowing you to make direct payments to friends. With this app, there are no excuses for not paying someone back.
We all know what it’s like to split the bill at dinner, be the one person to not have cash on hand, divvy up vacation payments and deal with that friend who always says, “I’ll pay you back.” Venmo eases the tension in these scenarios because you can make and request payments at the touch of a button. Since downloading this app, I’ve found myself relying less on hand-written checks and cash reimbursements to friends.
It will be interesting to see how Apple’s recently announced peer-to-peer payment system will impact Venmo’s popularity. Until it’s implemented into Apple products this fall, Venmo reigns supreme as the most popular payment system among young adults. The app is so popular that it has become yet another brand turned verb: I’ll Venmo you.
Prosper Daily – Madison Meyer
If you’re anything like me and relish in having everything in one place, the free personal finance app Prosper Daily is worth a try.
Prosper Daily is an all-in-one rollup of my personal finance information that monitors my budget, purchases, credit score and loans. The app also provides identity theft protection and is always monitoring for possible fraud. When I open the app, it displays all of my recent transactions and lets me either approve them or flag them as questionable. Having a form of cyber security motioning for personal fraud is vital in today’s world where hacks are a dime a dozen, so I appreciate having this line of defense. Additionally, the app tracks all recurring spending, such as subscriptions and regular payments. It will notify me if any prices increase, helping me save money – which is hard not to love.
My favorite feature of the app its goal setting features. It helps you visually see at any point during the month where you stand and how to improve. I can’t help but get competitive when trying to come in under budget and beat my previous month’s numbers.
I tend to keep track of my finances the old-fashion way, I balance my check book and check my credit card statement with receipts. However, as a true millennial, I am all for technology making my life easier, so I researched some top budgeting apps and found the LearnVest app to be the most comprehensive.
Every morning, part of my routine is to check my LearnVest app. It aggregates all accounts from checking, saving, credit cards, 401(k) and investment accounts. The app allows you to set up monthly budget ‘folders’ for spending, there are a few pre-made categories like groceries, rent, etc., but you can set up additional budgets for different discretionary and fixed spending, depending on how you want to classify your expenses.
The app also tells you know how much on average you spend within each budget item, which keeps you in line if you’re on the verge of overspending. My favorite part is that I can see each transaction on my credit card as it hits—I don’t have to wait for my statement each month and I can make sure everything on my credit card was charged accurately. There’s also no shock factor when I have to pay my bill each month. I know how much I will owe because it’s constantly updating on the app—which also helps keep my spending in check!
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