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Budgeting Apps - The Path To A Free Financial Future?

...Expense tracking – Tracking your expenses is a vital feature within budgeting apps. If you can see in real time where your money is going, you will be able to get a better handle on it. In some cases, you can set spending limits, so that you don’t overspend...

Posted: 13th December 2023 by Mark Palmer
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It can be difficult to stick to a budget, especially when prices are rising. In fact, according to FINCAP, over a third of adults in the UK (39%) currently don’t feel confident managing their own money. There are, however, many ways in which to learn how to manage your budget, and many of them don’t require any specialist knowledge or experience in spreadsheets, setting reminders, or working out complex budget formulas. Budgeting apps are easy to access, and can be on hand (or in pocket!) to allow you to consistently budget better. Here, we take a look at how you can leverage the technology you already have to secure a brighter financial future.

 

What Are Budgeting Apps?

In essence, budgeting apps are software applications that have been designed to assist people in managing their money effectively. There are various features that can be found in budgeting apps, such as income trackers, expenses management, and savings and they can be accessed easily from both Android and iOS devices. Together, these can give you a quick overview of your financial health, and some even provide tips and guidance as to how to make improvements.

 

How Do They work?

You will have to give the app a fair few details about your financial income and expenditure to get started. Putting in your income and expenditure manually is an option with some budgeting apps, whereas others connect directly with your bank feed to assess your financial position. They can then give you an insight on setting up a budget for your household as well as reminding you to stick to it.

There are various additional features within budgeting apps that you may want to make use of, including:

  • Debt management features – some budgeting apps will show you how to pay off your debts, and can help create a plan to get you debt free.
  • Financial goal setting – It may also be possible for you to set financial.saving goals within the app, and track your progress towards them. This can also help you keep motivated when budgeting.
  • Expense tracking – Tracking your expenses is a vital feature within budgeting apps. If you can see in real time where your money is going, you will be able to get a better handle on it. In some cases, you can set spending limits, so that you don’t overspend.

 

Is It Okay To Use Free Budgeting Apps?

There are some free budgeting apps available on the market catering to various different types of users. Some popular choices include Plum,GoodBudget and Spending Tracker. However, while these have free versions, you may not benefit from some features included with the paid-for versions.

Are Budgeting Apps Trustworthy?

As with any app that you give your financial information to, you need to make sure it is trustworthy. When researching which budgeting apps to use, consider those who are transparent on how they process your data in accordance with the latest legislation for data protection. Also, choose one that takes cyber security really seriously. Encryption protocols, secure login, and a detailed privacy policy are all things that you should look for.

In addition to this, it would be wise to check user reviews and ratings. Use an independent review website to do so, as this will provide a better picture of the experience of those using the apps. Trustworthy budgeting apps only usually require access to vital financial data, and should not ask you for information outside of this. If they do, it might be best to question whether this is the app for you.

 

How To Get The Best Out Of Budgeting Apps

Once you’ve chosen the app you want to use, entered your details and set up your goals, the app won’t do everything for you. It’s important to recognise that you will have to review your spending and saving, and update it where necessary. If you know you will struggle to remember to do so, opt for an app that notifies you of significant budget events, or that reminds you to review your spending each month. However, once you’ve set reminders it is likely that it will become second nature to keep on top of your budget going forward.

 

In short, if you’re considering using a budgeting app for your personal or household finances, it could be wise to research what’s out there before you download one. Getting the right app for your needs could help you manage your money better, leading to a brighter financial future.

 

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