Looking for a budget app? Good idea! Managing your finances is essential if you want to take control of your money, pay down debt, and achieve financial freedom. However, tracking every dollar can be challenging, stressful, and time-consuming.
A budget app can help, but which one should you use? There are so many on the market to choose from. Some focus on paying down debt, and others aim to help you manage investments or avoid overspending. Which budget app is right for you?
In this article, we’ll run through 10 of our best budget apps that could help you manage your money. Plus, if you’re looking for a free budget app, we’ve got you covered in our top ten. These apps make it easy and rewarding to take control of your finances. They also allow you to save money with the 50/30/20 budgeting rule.
Okay, let’s jump in!
Our Best Budget Apps in 2020
Here is a list of 10 of the best budget apps in 2020 according to Let’s Talk About Money:
- You Need a Budget
- Clarity Money
- Personal Capital
Now, let’s take a closer look at each budget app.
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Budget App #1. You Need a Budget
Best for: Committed budgeters who want granular control of their money.
You Need a Budget is a very popular budget app with a die-hard following who lovingly call it, “YNAB.”
This budgeting app claims that on average, new budgeters save $600 in the first two months of using the app, and more than $6,000 in the first year.” Not bad, right?
You Need a Budget is an advocate of the zero-sum budgeting strategy. The idea is to “give every dollar a job.” This way, you’ll spend every dollar intentionally and won’t fritter money away on unimportant purchases.
This budget tracker allows you to connect all of your accounts to one money management dashboard. You can access this dashboard on mobile or desktop.
It’s great for individuals and couples who want to set savings goals and manage a budget together.
Plus, it has a dedicated feature to help you pay down your debt. This budget tool teaches you to manage your debt effectively and how to save money mindfully. It allows you to set attainable targets to help you feel good about tackling big, scary debts.
Pricing: ‘You Need a Budget’ offers a 34-day free trial. This budget app costs $11.99 per month or $84 per year.
Budget App #2. Mint
Best for: All-round money management.
Mint is an established, well-known budget app. It’s made by Intuit, the maker of the finance software programs Quickbooks and TurboTax.
Mint provides a range of budget tools and features to help you manage your finances. You can use it to set money goals, track your progress, and get advice on personal finances.
In short, this budget app makes it easy to get a complete picture of your financial situation.
It has a massive list of banks, credit cards, lenders, and brokerages that you can connect to your account. This allows you to see all of your transactions, account balances, and net worth in one place.
This free budget app automatically categorizes your transactions. As a result, it’s very easy to track spending by category and compare it to your budget. Additionally, Mint will send you bill alerts and notify you when you spend too much money or go over budget.
Mint also allows you to “enjoy access to unlimited free credit scores, without harming your credit.”
Plus, Mint will notify you when your credit score changes and sends you fraud alerts.
Pricing: Mint is free to use. (The company makes money by recommending related financial services from third-parties, such as credit cards or mortgage loans.)
Budget App #3. EveryDollar
Best for: Those in need of a complete personal finance solution, including budget apps, finance tools, and resources.
EveryDollar is a budget tool from best-selling finance writer and author Dave Ramsey.
Ramsey doesn’t pull any punches when it comes to managing money, paying off debt, and saving for retirement. And this budget tool is designed to help you implement his advice.
EveryDollar helps you create and manage a zero-sum budget – where you “tell every dollar where to go.” In Ramsey’s words:
If you cover all your expenses during the month and have $500 left over, you aren’t done with the budget yet. You must tell that 500 bucks where to go. If you don’t, you lose the chance to make it work for you in the areas of getting out of debt, saving for an emergency, investing, paying off the house, or growing wealth.”
The free version of this budgeting software allows you to create a budget and add transactions each time you make a purchase.
The premium version of the app offers a far more streamlined process. You can connect your bank accounts to the app and automate your budget.
Plus, the premium option also provides access to other budget tools, apps, and resources to help you take control of your money.
Pricing: Free accounts with limited features are available. Alternatively, you can sign up for a Ramsey+ Membership, which costs $129.99/year and includes a personal finance course, budget app EveryDollar, and the BabySteps app.
Budget App #4. PocketGuard
Best for: Helping you stick to your budget and avoid overspending.
PocketGuard users rate this app as the best budget tool to create custom budget and track purchases. You can use this free budget app to set budgets and track your spending throughout the month.
You can also set unlimited financial targets and track your progress as you move closer to your goals. This budgeting software also has an autosave feature that allows you to create automatic rules to make saving easier.
It allows you to link all of your accounts and provides an overview of your finances at a glance. Then you can keep a close watch on your debt payments, how much you earn, your net worth, and your expenses.
Plus, PocketGuard uses algorithms to identify ways you can lower your spending. It keeps a close eye on recurring household bills and helps you find better deals to save money. It even simplifies the process of canceling subscriptions to services you no longer need.
This simple budget app will send you smart bill reminders to make sure that you never miss a due date again.
Pricing: Free accounts are available, or you can sign up for PocketGuard Plus for $3.99/month or $34.99/year.
Budget App #5. Mvelopes
Best for: Using the cash-style envelope budgeting method.
Mvelopes is a budget app based on the concept of envelope budgeting. This is when you would put all of your money into separate envelopes for different spending categories. When an envelope is empty, you’ve spent your budget for that category and will need to wait until next month to refill the envelope.
Envelope budgeting is a tried and tested method. However, it’s much more difficult to do when most payments are made digitally from the same account. Mvelopes solves this issue. This great budgeting app allows you to break down your budget into unlimited virtual envelopes.
You can also connect unlimited financial accounts to the app and track your balances alongside your budget to increase your savings and pay off debt faster. You can assign transactions to different spending categories and split individual transactions into separate groups.
This super simple budget app makes it easy to make informed decisions and manage your budget on-the-go.
The budget tool also provides resources within the app to help you learn more about personal finance management, such as saving tips, ebooks, and videos.
Pricing: Mvelopes has a 60-day free trial. Then plans cost $6/month for Basic, $9.95/month for Premier, and $19/month for Plus.
Budget App #6. Goodbudget
Best for: Couples who want to to manage finances together.
Goodbudget (previously known as Easy Envelope Budget Aid) is a free budget app that makes it easy for couples, friends, or family members to create a budget and manage their finances. Individuals can also use this budget tracker.
Goodbudget is based on the envelope budgeting method, just like Mvelopes. You can use this budget tool to create and track multiple spending categories using the apps virtual “envelopes.” For example, you can create separate envelopes for rent, utilities, eating out, and fun. This can make it easier to track your spending and identify opportunities to reduce your outgoings.
You can add up to 10 “envelopes” using a free account or upgrade to a paid membership to access unlimited envelopes and other features.
This is one of the best budget apps to help you gain control over your money with in-app reports that help you understand how to modify your budget.
Pricing: Goodbudget provides a free account and a Plus account for $7/month or $60/year.
Budget App #7. Clarity Money
Best for: Automated money management.
Clarity Money is a comprehensive free budget app that was recently purchased by Wall Street giant Goldman Sachs. It uses artificial intelligence to analyze your finances and help you make smart financial decisions.
This best free budget app has an intuitive dashboard that makes it simple to understand your financial situation at a glance.
You can link accounts from thousands of financial institutions, create a budget, track spending, and monitor your debt. Simply organize your spending into different categories, set goals, and monitor your progress. The app will even automate your expense tracking and savings.
What’s more, there are features to help you manage subscriptions and monitor your credit score.
Pricing: This great budgeting app is free of charge. (The company makes money from promoting other financial services within the app.)
Budget App #8. Wally
Best for: Managing multiple currencies, for global travellers, or those living outside of the U.S.
Wally is one of the top budget apps out there. It helps you to track your income and expenses, set a budget, and keep from overspending.
One of Wally’s key features is its ability to handle international money management. According to Wally’s website, you can add financial accounts from more than 15,000 institutions in 70 countries and manage your money in 60 currencies. This makes Wally the ideal choice for digital nomads and those living outside the U.S.
You can set monthly goals, analyze your spending habits, and adjust your budget as you go.
Pricing: Wally provides a free plan. Alternatively, upgrade to Wally Gold to access more features for $24.99/year or $1.99/month.
Download on: iOS
Budget App #9. Simple
Best for: Banking and budgeting in one app.
Simple isn’t just a budget tool – it’s also an online checking account with tons of features. Combining your main bank account and a budgeting app makes it simple to manage your money.
The Simple budget app allows you to track your income and spending automatically. You can also set goals and monitor your progress to help you save.
Simple is a free service with no hidden bank fees, and it comes with a free Visa debit card. The app also allows you to link external accounts, take photos of checks to deposit them into your bank account, and use payment services like Square, PayPal, and Venmo.
Budget App #10. Personal Capital
Best for: Best for retirement and investment-focused budgeters.
Personal Capital isn’t just a budget app – it’s also a wealth management tool. This budgeting software allows you to track and manage all of your accounts in one place, including bank accounts, credit cards, debts, stocks, and retirement funds.
You can also hone your retirement strategy with the Retirement Planner budget tool or by talking with a financial advisor through the app.
Personal Capital’s free budgeting software is geared toward managing investments. It automatically analyzes your asset classes, investment fees, and other details to help you find ways to improve your financial management.
The budgeting tool in this app isn’t as comprehensive as some of the other apps on the list. However, Personal Capital will automatically track purchases from your linked accounts.
Summary: Our Best Budget Apps in 2020
If you want to take control of your finances, pay off debt, and save more, a budget app can help. In summary, here are 10 of the top budget apps in 2020:
- You Need a Budget: Hands-on budgeting
- Mint: Simple money management
- EveryDollar: A complete personal finance solution
- PocketGuard: Avoid overspending
- Mvelopes: Cash-style envelope budgeting
- Goodbudget: Ideal for couples to budget together
- Clarity Money: Automated money management
- Wally: Works with multiple currencies and countries
- Simple: Banking and budgeting in one app
- Personal Capital: Investment-focused budget app
Using a budget app may feel overwhelming and complicated at first, but persevere. Once you’re up and running, they can make managing your finances much easier.