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Financial management might be fun for some, but for many it is a dreadful task. Unfortunately, it is part of life and must be tackled.
If you hate taking the time, energy, and brain power to manage your finances, using the right tool can help. Whether you want something just to track what you spend or a full-featured financial management suite, these apps and tools might be just what you need.
Before you can choose the right tool, you will want to think about why you dislike managing your finances so much. Do you hate having to budget your paychecks? Or do you not like tracking spending while you’re away from home? Maybe you find using different apps and tools for different parts of your finances too cumbersome?
When you’ve determined why you don’t like dealing with finances, you can start the process of choosing a tool that’s right for you. Maybe you can budget just fine, but you need something very simple to track your spending. Or you need access to everything in one place so you don’t have to download multiple apps. Figure out what will work best for you, then pick one of these tools to make it happen.
Track Spending on the Go
If you keep cash in your wallet and find yourself wondering where it all goes, handy tools can help. The same goes for if you want to track your card spending without giving an app access to your bank account. When you are on the go, you can quickly track your spending with these mobile apps.
1. Expenses OK
This iOS app makes keeping track of your spending simple. Just enter an amount, pick a category, and you are set. The app offers a widget for your Home screen, so you do not even have to open Expenses OK to enter an amount.
To see where your money goes, check out the app’s colorful pie chart. You can view your spending by the day, month, or year. For a basic tool that makes expense tracking easy, Expenses OK is a great choice. Its low price and lack of in-app purchases just top it off.
Download — Expenses OK for iOS ($0.99)
2. Spending Tracker
A similar tool for Android devices is Spending Tracker. This convenient app has a simple interface for entering both income and expenses, but you can easily skip the income part to just see what you’re spending. When you are out and about, you can add expenses like eating out or fuel by picking the category and entering the amount. The app has a handy widget for easy entries.
Spending Tracker lets you set up multiple accounts and offers recurring expenses along with editable categories to suit your needs. To see where your money goes, the app provides a summary view for a quick glimpse along with interactive charts and a history of your spending. The fact that it’s free is also very appealing.
Download — Spending Tracker for Android (Free)
Download — Spending Tracker for iOS (Free)
Plan Ahead With a Budget
For budgeting your money, you might like to pull up a seat to your computer. But you do not have to think of it as a chore when you have the right tools. Whether you are managing a budget for your family, organization, or club, make it easy with these options.
3. Excel Templates
You may hate managing finances, but if you’re comfortable Microsoft Excel, a terrific budget template will make it less disagreeable. There are many template options and websites with helpful offerings. If you are just starting a budget for the first time, the Family Budget Template from The Personal Finance Lawyer is a solid choice.
This template is ready to go with sections like home, transit, child care, activities, and personal care. It also has columns for each family member, a section for your savings and investments, and formulas built right in for all your totals. For more Excel template budget options, try these Excel templates for improving your family budget and our follow-up article with even more great templates.
You may be familiar with Trello and its project management features, but might never have thought of it as a finance tool. However, Trello can be a wonderful application for budgeting, especially if you already use it for projects.
With Trello, you can track paid bills, see how much you have remaining after they are paid, and even organize a savings plan. Take advantage of useful features such as labels for organization, due dates and reminders, lists, and categories. Its great web interface and mobile apps make it easy to access no matter where you are. If you are a Trello fan, this is a great option. To get started, check out Ryan Dube’s helpful article.
Download — Trello for Android (Free)
Download — Trello for iOS (Free)
Do It All
If you find that using one tool for all your finances is a better way to go, there are plenty of options. Applications that connect directly to your bank account can make finance management easy. In addition, you can get insight into your spending, saving, and budgeting in one complete package. These applications may take longer to set up, but in the end, they provide everything you need.
Mint has been a long-time favorite for money management. When you start using Mint, you enter your banking, credit card, and loan accounts. This gives you a clear view of your balances. You can create budgets, set up savings goals, track and view your transactions, and see a clean picture of your spending.
Additional offerings from Mint include details about your credit score, bill reminders, and payment scheduling. If you are concerned about security, know that Mint comes from the creators of TurboTax and QuickBooks, participates in security scanning with VeriSign, and uses multi-factor authentication. And the mobile apps make managing your money on the go simple.
Download — Mint for Android (Free)
Download — Mint for iOS (Free)
Another trusted option for complete management of your finances is Quicken. While not a free application, Quicken does offer a total system with three different plans. Like Mint, you connect your accounts to get started. Then the application will import and categorize your transactions for you.
You can set up your budget, track and pay bills, receive reminders, and project your income and expenses. Depending on the plan that you choose, you can also plan for college or retirement, view your portfolio value, and see your net worth. Quicken securely transmits your data using 128-bit and 256-bit encryption.
Download — Quicken for Android (Free)
Download — Quicken for iOS (Free)
Which Tools Do You Prefer for Your Finances?
If you don’t like managing your finances, choosing a tool that makes it easy can help. Keeping an eye on your financial health is important, so don’t skip out on it just because you don’t like doing it. Whichever tools appeal to you, remember that managing your finances does not have to be a hateful task when you have a tool that suits you.
Do you hate managing your finances? Have you found a tool that makes it easier? Or do you continue to struggle? Share your thoughts in the comments below!
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