Budgeting is a great way to help you take control of your spending. But instead of keeping wads of receipts, why not try one of these handy free budgeting apps? They can be used on your smartphone or touch screen device, and will help you understand your day-to-day and long-term spending habits.
This intuitive app is perfect for those wanting create a budget based on their cash flow. A useful (and nostalgic) feature is that you can set aside amounts of cash into ‘envelopes’ each week, month or fortnight, enabling you to understand the spending habits in each area of your life. This is a great app for those who receive varying payments, such as freelancers. Irregular payments and expenses, such as birthday gifts and holidays, are easily tracked by using the irregular envelopes.
If you’re looking for a budgeting app that helps you understand your spending habits and protects you from fraud, BillGuard is the one for you. Not only does it automate your budget, but it also warns you if there is an unauthorised charge on any of your accounts or credit cards. This app works by syncing your bank accounts first, before calculating the amount you spent during the month and showing you your total balance. You are presented with a list of transactions and the option to swipe right (yes) or left (no) depending on whether you made that transaction. If you swipe left, the app will provide you with these options:
- help me recognise this
- report/contact merchant
- follow up later.
If you choose to follow the matter up at a later date, a small red dot will appear until you’re able to complete it.
Pocket Expense is great for those concerned about linking accounts. It allows you to manually enter all your transactions yourself, instead of retrieving the information from your accounts. Unlike many other budgeting apps, it focuses on tracking how you spend money to provide a snapshot of your spending before creating budgets, rather than the other way around. The app works by having you enter your cheques, savings and spending. It also provides you with a breakdown of how much you spend versus how much you save, and allows you to set a budget for the week or month.
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