Finding ways to save money is an important part of a healthy and stable financial picture. And, whether you need to repair credit or maintain a good credit score, every little bit you can save is a step in the right direction.
No matter what your financial goals, saving money is always smart. But as most consumers know, it’s not always easy. The good news is that there are plenty of apps available to help consumers manage their finances, save their spare change, and even to help them set and monitor financial goals.
Let’s take a look at eight apps that could help to put you on a more secure financial path and give your credit score a boost.
Qapital takes the concept of saving money and adds a goal-setting component. The app also offers lessons on the value of saving even small amounts, and explains how doing so can make a big impact on achieving larger goals. To help you save, Qapital rounds uneven transaction amounts up to the nearest dollar and puts the difference in an FDIC-insured account. The accounts earn a small amount of interest and do not charge you any fees.
Mint helps you stay on top of bills to avoid late payments and their associated fees and penalties. It also helps you develop a budget to maximize the impact of your money and allocate savings, establish an emergency fund, or put money toward retirement while keeping your bills current.
Wallaby helps consumers think more intelligently about credit card usage and how to make credit work for you. Walla.by offers a mobile app, browser extension, website and wearable device app, all to help keep you informed on what credit cards to get, how to use them, and how to maximize rewards programs. The app also tracks credit utilization, which accounts for 30 percent of your credit score.
If you’re routinely overspending, then unnecessary shopping is one habit you’ll need to kick when you’re trying to save money. Still, if you’re going to shop for any number of things, using coupons and discounts can help. This is where the Honey app comes in. Honey is a free browser extension that automatically finds and applies coupon codes at checkout on more than 30,000 shopping sites.
Like Qapital, Acorns rounds purchases up to the nearest dollar on linked credit and debit cards and automatically deposits the difference into an account. Acorns is also an investing platform that allows you to put that money in a portfolio based on your income and goals. The Acorns portfolio is made up of exchange-traded funds that cover the full conservative to aggressive spectrum. Users pay $1 a month for balances under $5,000 and a fee of 0.25% of your account balance for anything above that. The app is free for up to four years for college students and offers cash back percentages on purchases with partners including Blue Apron and Airbnb.
Chime is a mobile banking app that includes a spending account and an FDIC-insured debit card that allows you to securely deposit funds, see transactions, and track spending. Chime also offers an automatic savings account that automatically sets aside 10% of every paycheck you deposit. Like Qapital and Acorns, Chime also includes the option to round up on purchases made with the debit card and have the difference transferred into savings.
Digit essentially makes money-saving decisions on your behalf by looking at your current income and expenditures and then calculating what you can afford to save. It then puts that amount into an FDIC-insured Digit account. The app analyzes your finances two or three times a week and gives you the ability to earn a 1% savings bonus that is paid every three months. The amount you receive is based on the average daily balance in your Digit account during that three-month period. One catch: There is a monthly fee for this service that begins after the initial 100-day free trial period is up.
8. Clarity Money
If you’re like most people, you’re probably doing some wasteful spending that you’re not even aware of. This app helps determine where money is being wasted on things like unused or unnecessary subscriptions. It searches for opportunities to negotiate lower interest rates on existing loans and credit accounts and recommends credit cards that may better fit your needs. Clarity Money also includes a feature to track spending and help you stick to a budget. Like many of the previously mentioned apps here, this one also gives you the option of creating a savings account to deposit these freed-up funds.
If you’ve been struggling to budget or save, a combination of these apps can help you get started by establishing a sound budget to manage your income and expenses, and ideally, to start saving.