Best Apps and Programs to Help People Budget & Save Money
Let’s face it, living isn’t cheap. Also, we’re living longer, so it goes without saying that we need to find every opportunity to save every single penny we can. A recent study by Scottrade suggests that most people currently saving for retirement are behind in the levels they should be saving in order to enjoy their golden years.
Whether it is recession, exorbitant student loans, or simply low wages the current generation seems to be in a precarious position as far as personal finances are concerned. Moreover, Gen Y is demonstrating a very lax attitude toward those personal finances. Whether your goal is a comfortable retirement or just to have some extra cash at month’s end, here are some great apps to help you budget and save.
With Mint, you can consolidate your accounts, track your spending, and receive alerts when bills are due. The app also allows you to set reminders and establish personal finance goals from your tablet or mobile device. Also, label expenditures by category and convert your financial data into charts or Excel spreadsheets.
SavedPlus is a handy app that creates savings every time you spend. Simply connect your accounts and set a percentage of every purchase dollar you wish to save. When a transaction occurs, a percentage of the purchase will be transferred to your savings account. So, if you set your percentage to 10% and you spend $75.00, $7.50 will be deposited into savings.
Remember when the price of gas was under a dollar per gallon? Yeah, that memory is kind of foggy for me, too. Anyway, GasBuddy helps you to locate the cheapest gas using your tablet or mobile device while in town or on the road. The savings may only be pennies on the dollar, but those pennies do add up over time.
With RedLaser you scan the barcodes of items you wish to purchase in order to obtain price comparisons. RedLaser will tell you the prices of those items at other retailers; you can also purchase directly from the app and retrieve your items in-store.
Another great way for people to save money is to compare cable, internet and wireless service provider’s rates on a regular basis. For instance, it is no secret that T-Mobile is shaking up the wireless service industry with its innovative programs. With no-contract, pay-as-you-go cell phone plans, and killer deals on smartphones such as the Google Nexus 5, iPhone 5s and the highly-anticipated Samsung Galaxy S5, T-Mobile has the competition beat. It is always wise to make sure you know what the competitors are doing to make sure you are receiving the best bang for your buck!
Deals and Coupons
Use Groupon to receive daily deals of 50-90% off of activities, shows, and restaurants in more than 500 cities. Simply provide a valid email address and Groupon will send you info on these deals directly to your inbox. The mobile app allows you to obtain these vouchers while on the go.
Like Groupon, LivingSocial provides similar deals on patronizing local establishments and purchasing products and activities. Users of LivingSocial can expect to save the same 50-90% as enjoyed by users of Groupon.
With Trivago, you can comparison shop hotel rooms across the major booking sites like hotels.com and Expedia. The app will help you locate the right room for you based on filtered search criteria such as price, amenities, distance, and star category. This is a helpful app for when you want to schedule a trip or you are on the road and need to comparison shop the different places where you might crash for the night.
Skyscanner is an all-in-one travel app. Use it to assemble a list of prices from more than 1,000 airlines to locate the best deals on flights, hotels, and car rentals.
Saving isn’t easy. If it was, we might all be millionaires. But maybe taking advantage of some of these and other money-saving/budgeting apps will help you to find that balance between saving and spending.