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- Jun 12, 2020 Some personal finance software can be used through software downloaded to a desktop. Made primarily for Mac users. This is a personal finance app for people who hate personal finance apps.
- Mac App Store is the simplest way to find and download apps for your Mac. To download apps from the Mac App Store, you need a Mac with OS X 10.6.6 or later.
Download Personal Finance for macOS 10.6.6 or later and enjoy it on your Mac. Personal Finance is a program with many parts, each one helps you to better handle your money. It allows you to take care of revenues and expenditures, securities portfolio, budget calculations, currencies, financial calculations.
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Looking for an easy way to help get your personal finance in order?
If you're like most people, your paper trail is probably decreasing by the day. No doubt, you already receive your bills and bank statements online, and now there are even apps and web-based tools to manage important documents such as your will, business contracts, insurance, receipts and invoices.
While personal finance apps used to focus on budgeting alone, many tools now go much further. Not only can you store all of your financial details in one place no matter what bank you use but you can also have your spending grouped into categories to see exactly where your money goes, receive bill alerts, financial updates relevant to your finance path and much more.
But, before you visit the app store, there are a few things you should remember when selecting the right personal finance app for you.
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The first thing to do is really understanding what you need the digital platform for. This sounds obvious, but there are many products available with different functions and there's no point wasting your time (and data) downloading an app that's not right for your financial needs.
Secondly, always look for a finance app that:
Is easy to use;
Provides accurate and real time data;
Gives you clarity and control over your personal finances;
Saves you time; and
Helps you achieve your financial goals.
And finally, be safe. After all, we are talking about your personal wealth here, and security is paramount. While most finance apps use the same level of encryption security as the major banks and are read only tools (meaning you can't actually transact through them), you are required to enter verification to enable the app to access data from your bank's systems. As a result, your bank may deem this to be a breach of your internet banking agreement. This means, should your account have money withdrawn illegally even if the breach isn't related to the app your bank may refuse to compensate you.
If you're looking for a reliable and easy-to-use Australian-based digital platform, here's our review of the 3 best personal finance apps and online tools.
1. My Prosperity
This online tool suitable for your mobile, tablet or desktop gathers all of your banking information in one place. My Prosperity allows you to view and access bank accounts, credit cards, property information, shares, superannuation and any other assets in one place. It's designed for finance professionals, like FinancePath, to use with clients. The best part is, it allows you to connect with your lending consultant online at any time. Plus, you can create and track personal money goals and receive free finance reports and data tailored to your interests. Check out our money management platform using My Prosperity, Your Smart Money Tool.
2. Pocketbook Personal Finance Expense Tracker
This budget planner app is designed to streamline the way you manage your personal finance. By syncing with your bank, the finance app (used by more than 200,000 Australians) let's you see your balances, view your transactions and setup budgets, fast. It automatically organises your spending into categories such as clothes, groceries and fuel showing where your money is being spent. You receive notifications of fees charged to your accounts, and you'll never miss a bill again with automatic bill detection.
3. Money Brilliant
With one login, this online tool and mobile app connects all of your accounts including bank, credit card, loans, superannuation, investments and loyalty accounts, giving you a 360° view of your money. You can track your spending categories to easily identify habits that are effecting your savings, and set a Safe Spending zone to help keep you in the green each pay cycle. You receive money alerts to your phone or email so you never miss a bill. And, via the web, you can view your net worth including property, vehicles and assets. See how you compare to the rest of Australia and how your net worth changes over time.
To find out more, tune into the FinancePath Money Management Podcast when we catch up with Stephen Jackel, chief information officer of My Prosperity.
Are finance apps the new gym membership? Read more here.
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- Personal budgeting app filled built on a solid money-management philosophy.
- One-time fee (no subscriptions).
- Great in-app and video tutorials.
- Live instructional webinars available.
- Does not automatically connect with financial accounts.
- No real-time automatic updates.
Bottom LineYNAB stands for You Need a Budget, and it's true. You do. This offline app, built around a philosophy of financial responsibility, requires a lot of manual maintenance, but it teaches sound principles about money management.
YNAB stands for You Need a Budget. This online personal finance app uses modern technology to help you create a budget the old-fashioned way. In YNAB, every dollar you're projected to earn needs a job, so you assign it to either be spent or saved. YNAB connects directly to your financial accounts to pull in account balances and other information in real time. It also provides a lot of educational material, both tutorial and philosophical in nature. On the other hand, can take quite a bit of time to learn to use, and it costs $5 per month to use. While $5 per month isn't so expensive, other top budgeting apps, such as Editors' Choice Mint, are free. Still, if you want a more traditional method of budgeting that's different from what Mint offers, then YNAB is an excellent choice. In fact, it makes a good adjunct to Mint, for those who are really serious about getting control of their finances.
YNAB costs $5 per month or $50 per year to use, and there is a free trial for 34 days. Why 34 days? After one month, you'll have just started to understand your budget and spending. So YNAB gives you a few extra days to think it over. There's no credit card required to try it, and students can apply to have the fee waived on their account for one year.
As I mentioned earlier, a lot of other personal finance apps are free. Mint, for example, is totally free. The company makes money by showing you highly targeted advertising, such as credit card offers that have lower interest rates than the ones you currently use or savings accounts with higher interest rates than what you're getting now. If you sign up for an offer via Mint, the company earns a referral bonus.
Some personal finance apps use a freemium model. LearnVest is one example. You pay nothing to use its budgeting and spending analysis features, but there's an optional financial coaching service (in which you interact with an actual human advisor) that you can add on for a one-time initiation fee of $299 and a monthly fee of $19.
Even apps that focus on personal finance but don't have budgeting tools as such are often free. Doxo is a hub for bill payments, and it includes a storage center for account statements and other household documents. It's free to use, although you might incur fees of around $2.99 for some payments. A service called WalletHub that watches your credit report and flags you of any suspicious activity also costs nothing.
In YNAB, you start by creating an online account. Once you're inside the system, YNAB has prompts that guide you through setting up and starting budgeting. A large part of this is connecting to your financial accounts directly by entering the usernames and passwords for as many checking accounts, credit cards, savings accounts, and other financial institutions as you want to include. You go through a very similar process getting started with Mint and LearnVest.
YNAB (like the other services I've reviewed in the personal finance space) promises to keep your information encrypted and secure, and makes its full security policy publicly available. The policy is strong, especially the part about completely deleting your account should you choose to leave the service. Additionally, YNAB is not a fly-by-night company. It's been around since 2004. But is your information truly secure?
Some financial institutions ensure better security by providing you an access code that you can use for just this sort of thing. So instead of you entering your username and password for, say, a CapitalOne360 account (it's just one financial institution that offers it), you enter your username and the access code. Any service accessing the bank with this code can have read-only information. I feel much better about connecting accounts that offer this service, but not all of them do.
YNAB does not offer a multifactor authentication option, although Mint does. It also does not have second-party verification, such as an endorsement from Norton Secured/VeriSign or TRUSTe, which Mint also has. For more on multifactor authentication, see Two-Factor Authentication: Who Has It, and How to Set It Up.
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Technically, you can use YNAB without ever connecting to any financial accounts at all. It absolutely supports manual entry. But that's a tedious way to make use of a piece of software designed to make budgeting easier. The company used to sell a downloadable version of its product that was a little more suited to offline budgeting.
All this said, it's up to you whether you trust YNAB. In testing the service, I did connect several of my real accounts, and I didn't worry too much about it.
YNAB in Use
Tutorials and pop-up help windows introduce you to the basic concepts used by YNAB. A checklist to the left suggests a few ways to get started. Completing the checklist is easy, but as you dive deeper, things start to get complicated.
As mentioned, YNAB starts with your income and asks you to give every dollar a job. Every dollar should be assigned to either a spending category or savings. In the first few days, you invest a lot of time thinking through what categories you'll need, though a few dozen are provided to help you get started. Still, they require customization. I had to add co-op fees, for example, and fitness. You can change categories later as needed. YNAB also gives you a default 'Stuff I Forgot to Budget For' category, which is handy.
The idea is to balance your budget, making sure that necessary expenses are met and you aren't overspending in any category. YNAB offers a lot of help, but reading through the text and watching videos takes time.
Part of YNAB's premise is to help people who live paycheck-to-paycheck understand where their money goes and become more aware of income and expenses. Ideally, the app and its developers want people to subsist on their monthly income without dipping into extra funds, and hopefully to even begin to save, too. It doesn't tackle more complex matters, like how to generate additional income or how to invest existing or future savings. YNAB is for much more modest individuals and households just trying to get a grip on their money.
When you spend money, you enter it as a transaction. When the transaction clears, you click on a little 'C' icon next to the entry, which turns green. The goal is to spend close to the budgeted amount of money in each category, which you'll know after the close of the month. If your estimations are wildly off, YNAB's education material can talk you through that very issue and teach you how to handle it. But all that takes some time to decipher.
As I got rolling with YNAB, I hit a few walls. For example, I had transferred a good chunk of money from one account to another. YNAB saw the money coming into one account, but not going out of the other, so it marked it as income. I looked for a transfer category and found none. I searched online and found some suggestion about marking the transfer as a recurring transaction prior to it occurring, but it wasn't a recurring transaction and it had already happened. In Mint, there's a simple option to categorize money movement as a transfer, and it takes about eight seconds to do. In YNAB, I spend half an hour trying to solve a very simple issue and coming up empty-handed.
I also had trouble categorizing money that was being spent on a credit card payment because my credit cards initially would not authorize YNAB on the same day I set it up. (A few days later, they connected without a hitch.) But until you have connected credit card accounts, you can't mark a transaction as a payment toward a credit card bill.
Working with cash confused me at first, too, as you have to create a 'Cash' account. You also have to 'fund' your cash account. My cash came from a withdrawal that occurred before I started using YNAB, so it wasn't in the system. I had to create a line item indicating I had taken out the cash on an earlier date to fund my cash account.
Most of these annoying problems ease as you use YNAB. Once you learn the system's quirks, you'll eventually have a smoother user experience. But it takes time to get there.
YNAB vs. Mint
YNAB feels quite different from Mint. Mint logs all your transactions automatically and does an excellent job of guessing spending categories so you don't have to. But Mint's budgeting is completely different. Instead of thinking about how much money you have to spend, Mint shows you how much money you historically have spent in any given category. Then it suggests a budget limit based on that amount. You keep an eye on how much you're spending day to day, and Mint delivers push notifications if you creep up on your ceiling. But it doesn't ask you to decide in advance where the money to fund those expenses is coming from. It doesn't ask—or help—you to plan ahead.
In some ways, it's a philosophical difference, but the result is either:
- you make a complete budget based on how much money you expect to earn and how much you think you will need, in YNAB, or
- you set spending limits on yourself based on your past history of spending, regardless of where the rest of your money goes, in Mint.
Personal Finance Apps For Mac Australia 2016
YNAB has mobile apps for Android and iOS. They work well and replicate the experience online. They don't provide some of the immediate feedback you get from Mint's mobile apps, however. Mint makes it easy to check on the status of your budgets at any time, and to get mobile notifications when you're about to hit your limit.
Do You Need a Budget?
Yahoo Finance App Mac
YNAB is a sound program with a reasonable price, although seeing as many other personal finance apps charge nothing at all or offer a free level, the $5 per month can seem like an unnecessary expense. Many people have a lot to gain from using YNAB, however, especially those who need the most basic advice about how to plan to spend no more than what they earn. But some of that planning happens in the dark..unless you use YNAB in conjunction with Mint to see what your actual expenses are each month and on average over time. The two services are not mutually exclusive. Mint remains PCMag's Editors' Choice for personal finance, but YNAB is a useful tool for learning the ground rules of budgeting and for helping you plan ahead.