Clipping coupons and balancing your physical checkbook are OUT! Intuitive mobile apps are IN!
In this day and age, we as a society have the world at our fingertips, large in part due to the advances of smartphone technology. With the tap of a few buttons, we can order lunch and have it delivered to our front door, or click-open a search engine to find the closest Target. Smartphones provide us with instant gratification for all our daily needs.
While these advancements have made life easier and essentially more fun, they don’t always have the best outcome on our financial well-being; shopping online and “in-app,” make spending money almost too easy. However, though there are apps and sites that facilitate spending money, there are just as many that make managing your money and putting together a budget, more achievable.
Budget, Bills, Finance
One exceptional mobile app for financial assistance is, Mint, a cutting edge personal finance app that can be used to help individuals monitor their fiscal activity including checking, savings, student debt, etc… Even better, it’s FREE!
Every transaction is automatically recorded and categorized so by taking note of your spending and income patterns, Mint creates a budget designed specifically to fit your finances. Furthermore, Mint frequently sends you updates of your credit score, making it an efficient way to keep tabs on your overall financial condition, and direct you to make appropriate monetary decisions.
Putting a priority on security and fraud protection, the app is password protected and even has a function to deactivate access from your phone through the Mint website.
Mint takes full advantage of using digital tools such as friendly “memes” and “gifs”, to gently remind their users when they’re heading down a rocky financial path. According to a recent CNN Money article, when asked how the company decides what tone to use when prompting users to watch their spending, consumer money expert and head of communications at Mint responded, “We view our alerts as a way to make sure our users are paying attention and keeping track of their finances… A little humor goes a long way, especially when we’re sharing important, and sometimes technical, financial guidance.”
Bill Management / Tracking
Self-explanatory by its title, “BillTracker” is a passcode-protected app that allows you to keep all due dates and amount totals in one place and even sends you notifications for impending payments. Additionally, due dates are highlighted on the calendar for quick views. This way you can remain fully aware on payments for household necessities like water, electricity, phone, etc…
Furthermore, once you’ve “accidentally” charged your new flat-screen TV or irresistible designer jacket to your credit card, BillTracker will help you stay up-to-date on paying it off. Don’t worry, we all splurge sometimes!
Coupons, Deals & Discount Shopping
For those of you who just can’t resist a department store’s pretty, bright lights and glossy floors, RetailMeNot will provide you with thousands of coupons to treat-yo-self. By downloading this free app, you’ll find deals for Bloomingdale’s, Macy’s, Lord&Taylor and many more.
The app also helps you save with coupons for hundreds of smaller stores such as Sephora, Forever 21, FootLocker and so on. You’re given easy access to all these savings and even notified with deal expiration dates. Make shopping easier and more cost-efficient for yourself by simply showing the coupon on your phone screen when you get to the register to check-out!
Shop Deals, Discounts & Coupons
Groupon, another app providing exceptional deals for all of those ‘must-haves’, operates on a much broader scale. Featuring location-based coupons, ranging from as much as 50-90% off on everything from restaurants to hotels to retailers, Groupon makes ‘seizing the day’ much more affordable.
So while it’s easier and easier to spend money, technological advances and app developments provide a balance, allowing you to spend your money responsibly, budget appropriately, and take advantage of savings and deals on all of your favorite brands.
Happy Shopping… and SAVING!