Like most people, I enjoy going out to places with my friends. Restaurants, movies, overnight trips, amusement parks, paintballing – you name it and I’ll go. Going out as a group is great but sometimes there are complications, especially when it comes down to money.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll cover someone if they’re short on cash and I’ve been covered on occasion as well. However, if your group of friends (or family, coworkers, colleagues, etc.) is the type that expects everyone to be reimbursed perfectly, the whole act of tracking debts can become a headache. This is also applicable to roommate situations where different people are paying for different bills.
Fortunately, there’s a new website that aims to solve this problem. It’s called What Do I Owe You? and it’s an extremely simple solution that gets the job done – and it’s different from traditional bill splitters and budget managers.
Here’s the basic layout of the website. Don’t be turned away by its simplicity, though. Haven’t you ever heard not to judge a book by its cover?
The gist of What Do I Owe You? is that you can add or remove people from the group that you want to split bills with. Each person has a name (which is by default “Click to Edit“) and a list of items that they’ve paid for. As far as I know, you can add as many items per person as you want.
When you’re done with all of the items for all of the people, a single “Who Owes What?” click will tell you what each person owes to whomever else.
Editing people in the group is easy, too. To change their names, all you have to do is click on the “Click to Edit” and start typing.
The “Add Bill” button will add more input fields where you can more items that they’ve paid for. The text field is smart because you can start it off with a money value (like $40.00) and the rest of it will be ignored, so you can use that to describe what that bill was for.
Here’s an example setup that I’ve created. As you can see, it’s as straightforward as can be. As far as I know, there are no limits to how many people can be added to the group. (I stopped at 25 because there will never be a situation where I need to track 25 casual debts with my friends.)
And finally, once you click that beautiful “Who Owes What?” button, the site will tell you what each person owes and to whom they owe that amount. Again, it’s not very pretty and there aren’t too many bells or whistles that go along with it, but the information is accurate.
If you want to start over, there’s a Reset option. You can also send an IOU Email to an address, which presumably reminds them in a friendly way that they have a debt to settle. Perfect for people who don’t like face-to-face confrontations!
The last two features are what make What Do I Owe You? something that will be used by many people – mobile support and progress saving.
At the bottom of the site, there’s a link that lets you switch into a mobile version of the site. On some devices, the site may detect that you’re on a mobile phone and change its format accordingly. Either way, I’m sure there are many applications for this website while on the go, so having mobile support is aces.
Progress saving is also quite nice. If you want to do long-term tracking of debts, just update the bills and click “Save” at the top right. This will tie your progress with your browser using a cookie and all of your data will be reloaded whenever you come back. However, in case you delete your cookies mistakenly, the site provides a link that you can use to restore your progress.
Overall, a fantastic website. The graphics could use some polish (okay, a LOT of polish) but the functionality is great. If more people used the site, I’m sure the creator would keep it updated with new features over time. There’s a “Feedback” link in case you want to send in your comments and suggestions.
Image Credits: Wallet Bills Via Shutterstock
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