The Bottom Line: Budgeting Apps
Updated: Wednesday, January 29 2014, 09:49 PM EST
NISKAYUNA -- If you're looking to stay on budget, there's an app for that!
Most of us know how hard managing money can be, especially when it comes to an entire family budget. But as CBS6's Dori Marlin found, The Bottom Line is there's a free and easy answer -- right at your fingertips.
If you want to organize your full family's finance, Learn Vest looks to be the most comprehensive app. Once you connect your accounts, it allows you to set your own budget, but then also plan longer-term goals -- retirement, emergency savings, and more. It tracks your insurance policies, your estate documents, and asks for investments goals. This app is what you make of it -- so if you want an "all-encompassing" finance tracker, this could be the one for you.
Mint.com has a free app that Dori uses herself. Once you enter the accounts you want to keep track of, it does the work for you -- reminding you when your bills are due, breaking down by category what you're spending your money on, etc. Then it does a good job of showing patterns -- your spending over time, net income -- to help you plan and adjust.
BillGuard is also free, but its app is very basic, really just meant for smartphones. Click on the plus-sign, and add whatever account you want. It'll track the activity for you, but that's about it.
Level Money is also meant for smartphones, but goes into a little more detail. It breaks down your budget by income and bills, what's spendable by month and by week -- and it even shows your day-by-day spending history if you want.