Need to know: Saving apps

I am as good at saving money as Kim Kardashian is at keeping a low profile. I suck at it.

Marie Antoinette and I have one thing in common: we have the financial management skills of a piece of seaweed

Marie Antoinette and I have one thing in common: we have the financial management skills of a piece of seaweed

The good news is that there are some new apps that help fiscal degenerates like me to budget, save and invest.

The top apps are able to consolidate all of your finances and present them in one clear, easy to understand and simple to interact with platform.

Here are three of the best:
1. Mint
Practically every mobile app shortlist is topped by Mint from developer Intuit. This is because it integrates all of your financial information and offers you a comprehensive and real time assessment of your money situation in simple, intuitive graphs and charts.

Mint is geared toward helping you spend less and save more through collecting all your financial activity and organising it in one place. This allows the user to accurately track their spending habits, enhance saving and be automatically notified to pay bills or curb spending when a budget threshold limit is being approached.

2. Level Money – ‘The mobile money meter’
This app connects to your bank account and from there gets to work calculating your income and recurring expenditures and offers a roadmap to money mastery in the form of daily, weekly and monthly suggestions for how much you can spend.

Savings targets are also easier to set and maintain because the Level Money app automatically deducts the amount you should reasonable be saving from your budget. A particularly useful feature is the ‘auto save’ option which ensures that any unspent money from your budget is funnelled directly into your savings at the end of each month.

3. Goodbudget
Based off the tried, trusted and true budget practice of compartmentalising ones earnings into envelopes, Goodbudget brings the simple but effective practice of envelope budgeting to your mobile phone – with some added features, of course.

Goodbudget allows users to generate separate budget envelopes such as groceries, petrol, entertainment, rent, etc. and determine how much of their income gets allocated to each envelope. The app then offers a detailed real time, data driven snapshot of their current spending within each ‘envelope’.

Personal finance apps like Mint, Level Money and Goodbudget are all incredibly powerful tools by app developers to help their users gain control over their spending habits and get proactive about how they manage their money.

That being said, it is important to emphasise that while these mobile phone apps are designed to help curb wasteful money habits, it still all boils down to practicing self-discipline and playing it smart with your finances in your daily life.

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