It is always a good idea to keep track of your cash flow; to look at what you're spending on, where you are spending unnecessarily and where you can start saving money. Although it is a common desire to start spending judiciously, not everyone has the discipline when it comes to maintaining a budget or managing expenses. There are tons of different apps out there that help you manage your personal budget and in this guide, we identified the best apps to help you manage your money better.
In order to do so, we looked at a number of different criteria and after making a shortlist, tested the apps to draw up the list and pick our favourite. Our top pick is based on what we personally liked the most, and other people's needs might be a little different, so we've also included our runners-up and their strong points in the list below to help you find the best app for you. We tested the apps on Android, but checked to make sure that there was no significant difference between Android and iOS versions of apps where both are available.
After a lot of research and going through numerous apps, we decided to narrow it down based on the following criteria:
Our number one pick, Wallet is a very visual money manager that gives you quick and easy insights, and includes both free and paid features. The free account requires you to manually update your spends, but you get a free two-week trial. It allows you to bring all your different accounts into one place, automate tracking your spends by connecting your bank account (most major banks, like HDFC, SBI, ICICI, and Axis are supported), as well as accounts like Amazon Pay, Coinbase, and PayPal, as well as some additional features like sharing your details and more visual customisation options.
Not only does it record your income and expenses, it also lets you allot money for your goals, keep a track of your debts, be it lent or borrowed. You can set a budget for shopping lists so that you don't go overboard and, keep a track of your warranties, loyalty cards, and so on. It also has a really good visual design which made it highly glanceable. There's also a fun game called Was It Worth It, that generates a score for purchases based on your inputs, to help you see if you're happy with how you're spending money.
Wallet is the go-to budgeting app choice for any lover of statistics. It graphs your money into six different categories starting from the ‘Balance Trend Chart' to the ‘Cash Flow Table,' giving you a detailed analytical understanding of your spending habits. You'll need to have a premium account to link bank accounts to Wallet. The premium plan costs Rs. 210 per month or Rs. 1,050 per year. A lifetime plan can also be taken for Rs. 2,700. On the bright side, features such as dark mode and security pin for your data are included in the free version.
While Wallet was our top pick, your needs and preferences could be a little different. That's why we've got a few more suggestions from among the different apps that we tried out, including why we think they're worth your time and money. Read on to see the remaining picks.
With its bright colours, Money Manager makes tracking your expenses an interesting activity and is a great app for beginners. It allows you to add photos to entries, which is handy if you need to provide receipts for work, and it only supports manual entires. While account syncing made Wallet more appealing to us, people who don't want to give third-party companies access to their details will appreciate the privacy this confers.
The app is simple with numerous sub-categories under both income and expense. You can get an overall view of your expenses and income with a pie chart, and get a detailed analysis of your daily average on each of your expenses and income through the line graph. Money Manager is a free app without ads, and any limitation on the features. The app is available on both iOS and Android.
A Rs. 390 paid version unlocks additional features like management from your PC, removing ads, and adding unlimited accounts, while the free version is limited to ten accounts.
Monefy is a great option for people who want a very quick and easy experience. It has a simple user interface that makes navigation through the app a piece of cake. It is another great budgeting app of choice for beginners. It is an ideal app to keep a track of your expenses and income. A calculator automatically pops-up every time you enter your income or expenses. Expenses can be viewed in different time frames, starting from daily to yearly or you can manually set custom time frames using the ‘Interval' option.
There are 15 categories of expenses, three categories of income and a colourful pie chart of both, so you can track where most of your money is going. This pie chart alone is enough to make you feel guilty in case you are spending way too much on entertainment or dine-out and want to mend your ways.
There is a premium version available for Rs. 199 that will additionally let you apply a dark theme, use the password protection feature, synchornise your data and add more expense and income categories. The free option is good enough with features that lets you backup data, set a monthly budget limit, etc.
YNAB (You Need A Budget) is a personal budgeting software that's popular on the desktop, but there are also mobile apps for the same. The interface of YNAB is quite different. It looks more serious and corporate compared to the others on the list. YNAB has a budget section that helps us to plan your spending ahead of time, thus reducing the chance of overspending. Even the categories that need to be budgeted are divided thus: ‘Immediate Obligations', ‘True Expenses,' 'Debt Payments,' ‘Quality of Life Goals,' and ‘Just for Fun,' so that you can know exactly how, why and where you are spending your money. This is a great app but it can be a little intimidating, and we'd recommend YNAB to people who want to really spend time and dig deep into their budgeting.
In case you are stuck or encounter a problem with the app, you can ‘send in diagnostics' or your queries to the support team, which usually replies within 24 hours in my experience. The only downside of YNAB is that you can't directly link a bank account unless it is from the US or Canada. As a result, the transactions have to be entered manually here.
But YNAB needs to be on this list for the otherwise amazing budgeting experience that it provides. There is a 34-day free trial after which you have to pay to continue using it. It costs $11.99 (roughly Rs. 880) per month or $83.99 (roughly Rs. 6,150) per year.
It is always a good decision to start budgeting. If you hadn't thought about it till now, there's no better time like the present. These budgeting apps should let you manage your money with relative ease.
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