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Last Updated on January 2, 2020

Top 5 Spending Tracker Apps to Manage Your Budget Smart in 2020

Top 5 Spending Tracker Apps to Manage Your Budget Smart in 2020

Managing your budget can seem dull or just not an important concept at all. However, in the world we live in, we have to survive by being financially savvy. It is very easy to swipe a debit or credit card when we are at a restaurant, shopping at the mall, or ordering merchandize on Amazon.

Whether you like or despise finance, it is indirectly part of your life. Everything you do has to do with mathematics. Meaning, it has to do with numbers, so get acquainted with them.

If you are person who stresses out a lot and checks frequently their online banking, do not panic. There are super-friendly and easy-to-use apps that will break down your expenses in an intuitive way.

The next sections will outline spending tracker apps that will alleviate your worries, anxiety and obsessions of how to organize your money.

1. Mint

    Mint was founded in 2006, and is an award-winning service. It offers a comprehensive experience that is free, fast and super easy.

    The capabilities include budgeting tools, alerts, credit scores, mobile support and compatible with Apple Watch. The support is limited to the United States and Canada accounts.

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    Overall, it is a personal finance service with a wide range of resources to users who can track their spending and budgeting, which will calculate your net worth.

    Your net worth is calculated by connecting all of your online finance accounts and verifying your credit score.

    Get Mint here!

    2. YNAB

      YNAP stands for You Need a Budget and was founded in 2004. It is a great and personal budgeting app that is built on a solid approach.

      It is deemed flexible, and offers users educational tutorials to manage finances in a coherent manner. Also, it has a great web interface.

      However, it takes time to learn the platform. And this spending tracker is relatively expensive and has no free versions.

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      Get YNAB here!

      3. Mvelopes

        Mvelopes was founded in 1999. It utilizes a principles of personal finance budgeting and based on the envelope system of allocated spending. It can also roll-over monthly budgeting, which is supported.

        As a user, you can get personalized forecasts and suggestions on how to manage your financial situation. This means, you will be advised on not to make frequent purchases at the mall or on Amazon.

        Ultimately, it helps you the consumer put savings or envelopes away, so you can have financial freedom.

        The drawbacks, however, are that it is time-consuming to get up and running. The interface is dated and the cost of upgrading is not clear with different premium versions.

        Get Mvelopes here!

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        4. Personal Capital

          Personal Capital was founded in 2009 and it is a billion dollar company. The service is regarded as one of the most popular financial management platforms. The app has a free, Free Financial Dashboard, and a paid, Wealth Management Service.

          The pros of the app are budgeting and investment management are all available in one platform. In addition, it includes investment tracking and socially responsible investing.

          But for Wealth Management, it requires solicitation, high fees and has limited budgeting capabilities.

          Get Personal Capital here!

          5. Quickbooks

            Quickbooks was launched in 1992 on the IBM on Microsoft DOS and Apple’s Macintosh. The software accounting program comes in various versions and editions for small to medium-sized businesses.

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            It can be managed from anywhere at anytime, and it is very easy user-friendly. It can help organize everything from your books, manage expenses, send invoices, track inventory and run payroll.

            Beyond the expense tracking, Quickbooks has been adopted by lots of different companies across every industry you can imagine. So this app is particularly recommended for any business owners.

            Get Quickbooks here!

            The Bottom Line

            When it comes to managing your money, it is important to become educated and financially responsible. The messages we are bombarded all around us are constantly associated with spending, and buying. Nevertheless, the messages we should be getting have nothing to do with saving you money.

            Before making unnecessary expenses and purchases, read the fine print. All of these services have free or paid versions to assist you with your money-saving schemes.

            Ask a lot of questions before making any commitments. Search up free financial consultants or advisors to get a sense of where to invest and not spend your money.

            It is very easy to get in debt, so do not live on credit cards unless you can afford to pay them. Use these apps to live within your means and allocate savings in safe investments that will help you in the longterm.

            Featured photo credit: Alexander Mils via unsplash.com

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            Anthony Carranza

            Multilingual writer and journalist covering all things technology and productivity.

            10 Smart Productivity Software to Boost Work Performance 7 Clever Goal Tracker Apps to Keep You on Track in 2020 11 Google Chrome Apps & Features for Getting More Done with Less Effort Top 5 Spending Tracker Apps to Manage Your Budget Smart in 2020 10 Best Productivity Tools to Get You More Time in 2020

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            Last Updated on June 26, 2020

            25 Easy Tips on How to Save Money Fast

            25 Easy Tips on How to Save Money Fast

            “How to save money fast?” This is the question asked by all of us not in the top 1% of rich people.

            If you are looking for ways to drastically reduce your expenses immediately, first look at what you need to spend money on every week. And I mean really need.

            You don’t really need to order in food. You don’t really need to buy expensive perfume.

            Building from that, you can work out how your regular expenses can be reduced.

            As for irregular expenses, they can also be deceptively costly in the long run. Once-off buys can also be tackled with some prudent planning and a little extra research.

            And remember: a budgeted lifestyle does not mean a bad or boring one!

            But first, understand what budget you can cut down on daily:

            • Regular expenses for the average adult (can be trimmed but not eliminated):
              • food
              • rent/mortgage
              • cell phone
              • insurance
              • socializing/entertainment
              • transportation
              • hygiene products
              • household bills
            • Irregular expenses for the average adult (can be eliminated or cut down a lot):
              • travel
              • clothing
              • medication (*depends)
              • grooming (hair, nails etc.)
              • gifts

            Now, let’s dive right into the 25 ways to save money fast:

            Save Money on Food

            1. Bring a stock of food to the office/work

            Instead of popping out for an overpriced salad and a smoothie, leave a set of basic utensils at the office as well as a stock of non-perishable goods such as tinned fruit, tuna, rice crackers and so on (try to avoid the junk food and this can turn into a pretty great diet!).

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            Stocking up means you won’t forget or say “I didn’t have the time” when you rushed out to work in the morning.

            2. Buy the store-brand version

            Many basic foods, such as bread and milk, will taste exactly the same as their branded alternatives. Go for stuff with minimal additives and preservatives. Meat in a tube is probably insanely unhealthy!

            3. Eat cheaper cuts of meat

            Learn how to tenderize and flavour cheaper meat and fish, and save on the (typically) most expensive item on your grocery bill.

            4. Have group dinners

            If 10 friends put $5 each in the kitty, it’s pretty easy to make a giant lasagne and get refreshments, as well as hang out with your favourite people.

            Save Money in Transport

            5. Get a bicycle

            Save on gas money and bus/metro fares with this underrated mode of transport.

            6. Use public transport and/or don’t get taxis

            Some places can only be reached by car. But as a good practise, check your public transport website and see if any routes pass nearby where you need to get to. Walk as much as you can.

            7. Find the cheapest gas

            Regularly check out where the cheapest gas can be bought.

            Save Money in General Shopping

            8. Shop online

            Not only will you save on the gas or transport fares from going to the shopping mall but you will also find better deals

            9. Sell your old stuff

            Get your unwanted belongings up on eBay ASAP and earn a few dollars.

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            Here’re more ideas for you: 25 Things to Sell to Make a Lot of Money

            10. Bulk buying stores

            For regular non-perishable/slow perishable purchases such as toilet paper, cat food, pasta, washing powder and so on, do an epic stocking-up trip to a co-op or equivalent (my mum used to go to a place that restaurants buy from).

            Be wary of supermarket “deals”, as some have been found to be fraudulent after working out a simple calculation.

            11. Become a flea market/car boot sale/street market guru

            You can find original gifts and develop good negotiation skills at these places.

            12. Generic brand medication

            More often than not, the generic version of paracetamol and other basics work the same as the branded version.

            13. Choose deodorant, not perfume

            It blows my mind when someone drops $70 on a bottle of spray. Stick with a nice deodorant, and not only will you smell just fine but you’ll be sweat-free as well!

            Cut Down on Household Expenses

            14. Printing

            Ink is one of the most expensive substances in the office and coloured ink is doubly so. B

            e more efficient and choose black and white, and if your printer doesn’t have a print-both-sides options, just print odd pages first, re-insert the paper and print even pages.

            Expand the margins of what you are printing as often as you can to save on paper.

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            15. Minimize SMS and phone calls

            A combination of a free chat service such as WhatsApp and a free call service such as Skype can reduce your bill to nothing (so long as you have a decent Wifi connection).

            16. Shop around for insurance

            Most people don’t spend enough time searching for the best insurance deal.

            Keep a watchful eye out for deals and new competitors in the market.

            17. Try re-negotiating your rent/mortgage

            If you have built up a good credit history or a good rapport with your landlord, then chances are a frank chat about needing to tighten your spending could result in lowering your payments. You’ve nothing to lose from trying.

            18. Don’t get a TV

            Invest in a computer/laptop and an internet-only package. You can watch more (and often better) entertainment on the web, and skip the advertisements as well.

            19. Pool your internet bill with a neighbour

            My apartment building is basically a big old house split into three apartments. There are five of us in total. We pool the internet bill, making it crazy cheap.

            Save Money in Socializing, Entertainment And Travel

            20. Have house parties

            Instead of paying for overpriced drinks, set up a series of in-house get-togethers with your friends. Everyone takes a turn, so it’s not always your house that needs cleaning.

            For sound insulation, hang heavy drapes on the walls and windows. For music, invest in a good second-hand set of speakers which you can connect to your computer. Let Spotify or Grooveshark playlists do the rest.

            21. Open festivals, meetups and events

            It never fails to surprise me how much underground stuff goes on around me for free or for very cheap. Find out who runs the blogs and websites that list all the less well-known cultural activities.

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            22. Volunteer

            If you can’t pay for a ticket, volunteer and get to be there anyway.

            23. Housesit

            There are multiple housesitting websites offering you the possibility to avoid paying hotels and skip the discomfort of crummy hostels.

            Save Money on Hygiene and Beauty

            24. DIY beauty

            French manicures, pedicures, waxing, eyebrows… pretty much all of these can be achieved at home (and done well) with some practise. There are plenty excellent blogs and YouTube tutorials to help.

            25. Fewer haircuts/volunteer at a trainee hairdresser

            If you can’t bear the risk of a trainee touching your locks, learn more ways to manipulate your hair as it grows and get haircuts sparingly. Women’s haircuts are outrageously priced in many cities.

            Bonus: Effective Money-Saving Tips for Everything

            Here’s a summary of what you can generally do to save more money:

            • Share/pool resources. Organize a neighbourhood sharing scheme, common resources for your apartment block or with your friends. Not everybody needs an individual lawnmower.
            • Buy energy-saving everything. The easiest way to lower your bills – replace those lightbulbs!
            • Buy in bulk. Be sensible about it (i.e. make sure you have space!), and drastically reduce weekly expenditure.
            • DIY. Skill up using YouTube tutorials on plumbing and many other essential services so you never have to pay for simple problems again.
            • Research a lot before making a decision. Most money-wasting is the result of poor preparation and planning. Don’t shirk this part just because you don’t like it!
            • Use your network. Your network is full of resources that can ease the pain of budgeting. Ask for help.
            • Stop and think. Do I really need it?

            Unfortunately, there are some things that require plain ol’ giving up for the time being. This can include high-cost sports such as skiing, the latest versions of some technologies, the finest brands of food/drinks, premier seats at the opera and most other indulgences.

            What is important to remember during lean times is that when you look back on your life, it will be the experiences that stand out, not the extra comforts.

            Living on a budget can teach you a lot about how much you can really get out of your paycheck. We only live one life, so make the most of every penny you earn!

            More Tips for Personal Finance Management

            Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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