Your parents have been trying to get you to start saving your money and touch up on your money management skills since the first day you set foot on campus. But, in between the battle that is managing life as a college student in and of itself, that probably seemed like too much of a task for you. So, if you’re one of the many people who have no idea how this budgeting thing works, fear not.
Read on to find out about five handy apps that’ll track your spending and keep your parents from laughing at the amount of money you spend on coffee.
Mint allows you to track your spending by connecting to your bank account and studying your spending habits in order to create a personalized budget for you. With the help of the app, you get to look at charts and graphs to see where most of your money goes (we won’t judge you if it’s food) and really get ahold of your budget so that you can prevent overspending in given categories like food, shopping, entertainment and other miscellaneous expenses.
2. Every Dollar
Basically, it’s exactly what it sounds like. An app that keeps track of every dollar you spend, no matter how miscellaneous the expense is, in order to make sure you’re chugging along on the seven-step journey to financial success. The seven steps included in that journey, thrown under the “Baby Steps” tab in the app are:
- Save a $1,000 emergency fund
- Pay off all debts using the snowball method
- Save 3-6 months of expenses
- Save 15 percent for retirement
- Start a college fund for the kids
- Pay off the house
- Build wealth and give
The app is free for those who are okay with adding all of their expenses by hand. If not, you can upgrade for $99 a year.
3. Pocket Guard
Like Mint, Pocket Guard also connects directly to your bank account in order to keep tabs on where exactly all your money goes and to display a number on your home screen that shows exactly how much money is left in your pocket. To add, the app also tracks your spending and recognizes your spending habits in order to create a way to inform you of what kind of expenses you need to plan for.
For $5 a month, the name of this app sounds like something your parents would say to you after finding out that you have no problem spending $30 on Sunday brunches. According to You Need a Budget (YNAB), there are four ways to get your financial life intact: Give every dollar a job, plan for your expenses, roll with the punches (i.e. don’t beat yourself up for going out for those bottomless mimosas) and give your money a chance to get old.
Like the others, Mvelopes is a user-friendly app that connects to your bank account that symbolizes the idea of keeping all of your money in an envelope. This virtual envelope allows you to automatically have an idea of the exact number that you’re budget is at, as opposed to what it was before your charges and expenses started pending. The is available for both iPhone and Android.