Let’s face it. We could all use a little help in the savings department.
With access to cash and credit — and the temptations of retail opportunities — the tendency to spend more that we actually have looms large. Fortunately there’s help by way of smart phone apps. Available on both IOS and Android, we choose a few apps that might help in budgeting one’s finances.
Acorns saves your money in several ways:
- Round-ups: Every time you purchase something, Acorns will round the amount to the next (US) Dollar.
- Automatic Investments: Acorns can automatically invest the amount and frequency you set up
- Manual Investments: You can decline to do the first 2 choices and deposit any amount you choose anytime.
First start with a USD 5 sign up bonus when you register, connect your bank accounts, then complete your personal and financial profiles. Then set up your investment portfolio and partake in Acorns other offers such as their shopping offers, refer a friend, debit cards, retirement accounts, and more.
There is a USD 1 monthly fee (waived if you’re a student) and a limit of 5 portfolio types but it’s a great beginner app for those with very little understanding of investing.
This app works by tracking everything that happens with your money – your income and spending, then suggests a savings plan that fits you. It will automatically withdraw that amount into a savings account that earns 1 per cent annual interest.
There is a USD 3 monthly fee, but they do offer a 30-day free trial to see if this fits your lifestyle and the amounts being saved is worth the fee. They also offer a 100-day money back guarantee as well.
Because Digit analyzed your earnings and spending, the amount it withdraws won’t affect your regular routine or budget, which is a great advantage.
The Trim app analyses all the accounts linked to it and suggest ways to cut back on your spending.
Not only will Trim suggest ideas such as cancelling subscriptions or cut back on those pricey coffee shop drinks, but it will also hunt around for better deals on all your service providers. Trim will find lower internet services, car insurance, and other amenities.
You need not worry as Trim sends regular texts to let you know how your accounts are doing and any changes that have been made.
How much can you save with Trim depends on your expenses and the availability of services in your area – so this may not be the best option for those outside the US.
Another easy for beginners investing app is called Stash. Stash Invest is a registered investment advisor and they’ll help guide you in making the best investment choices based on your financial goals.
It only costs USD 5 to start investing (and get a USD 5 sign-up bonus) and there are no commission fees. It costs USD1 a month (with the first month free) for investments under USD5,000.
Clarity Money is another personal finance management tool that uncovers your spending habits and suggests where to cut and save.
It works the same way as Trim does, analyses your spending habits and cuts out extra spending and cancels subscriptions and negotiates to lower your bills.
There is no sign up or opening fees for using Clarity Money, but they do charge a one-time fee that’s 33 per cent of your annual savings you gained from their negotiations
Not exactly a money saving app, but Mint is a budgeting app that will help you stay on top of all your bills.
Mint allows you to see all of your balances and transactions together. All of your financial information is displayed on one picture, making it incredibly simple to balance your budget. It also can track your spending habits and categorize everything for you. It also gives you tips on what areas you can reduce your spending.
Because you’re budgeting and watching where you spend your money, this is a good way to save money buy not “blowing” your set budget. Mint will also help you pay your bills on time – another money saver as you avoid late fees and suffer higher interest rates.
The goal of using Qapital is to help you reach certain financial goals – saving up for a new car, a new vacation, or just to save more money.
You can start saving by claiming their USD 5 sign-up bonus and connecting your bank account to your Qapital account. Make extra free money by referring friends and make USD 5 per friend.
There are no fees for using this app but your bank may charge transfer fees for transferring the round-up difference to your Qapital savings account, the app only transfers twice a week (8 transfers a month) so be wary of what your bank’s limit is.