With high inflation eating into paychecks and limiting household budgets, many people are turning to money management apps to keep a close eye on their finances.
A clearer picture of your spending will help you cut down on non-essential spending. While it’s hard to lower the rent you pay, you have more control over how much you spend on meals, movies, or subscriptions you may have even forgotten about.
“To think you can keep the same habits when prices are so high is naive at best and financial ‘suicide’ at worst because your savings will suffer,” says Paula Cay, who has written a book in French on how effortlessly manage your budget and is popular Instagram account on the same topic.
Trying to maintain a financial safety net should be a priority as inflation will make contingency more costly, she told Euronews Next.
However, there is no need to control your expenses every day.
“I would advise people on modest incomes to review the budget once a trimester, and more affluent people to review it twice a year to make adjustments if necessary,” added Cay.
What are the most popular money management apps? Here are some tips.
Use the banking app
The simplest budget tracking tool may be the one you already have – but you may not be using it to the fullest.
Many banks have a service that allows you to view spending almost in real time, as the data is directly linked to the payment method.
Another advantage is that you can easily use the same banking app to transfer money to your savings account. However, this option will not be sufficient if your accounts and means of payment are spread across different banks.
Best apps to track your finances: Emma or Money Dashboard (Mint for US)
Both have been approved by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Money Dashboard has been awarded Best Personal Finance App two years in a row. They have user-friendly interfaces that can give you a comprehensive overview of your spending as they cover several hundred banks.
Both apps let you analyze expenses by category and offer budgeting tools like visualizing upcoming payments or setting budget goals.
While Money Dashboard is completely free, Emma relies on a freemium model (free basic plan with paid options). But Emma is the only app that offers a cashback option, i.e. discounts at partner stores if you choose a premium subscription.
They are more than budget tracking apps, they are neobanks. They allow you to visualize data from several bank accounts in one place, sort expenses by category, but also transfer money, receive a free bank card and make transfers.
One of the biggest advantages of neobank is the ability to pay in different currencies and countries without fees. It also allows you to keep an eye on your expenses, even when traveling when you might be tempted to spend lavishly.
Best for many: Tricount
Whether it’s for a vacation with friends, a gift together, or just living together, spending money together can easily become a financial headache.
There is also an app for this: Tricount, which accounts for your group’s expenses.
Here’s how it works: people contribute, and Tricount calculates the balance for each participant and determines the best way to settle.
No more long calculations and oversights, Tricount shows the penny who owes whom how much.