Within the last decade, online banking has become an industry standard. Customers are able to go online and log into their account to manage their finances, pay bills, make transfers and send money to friends. This perk is virtually essential in today's fast-moving lifestyle, and it goes hand in hand with appealing to younger consumers.
However, checking a bank account is only one piece of managing personal finances. Consumers, specifically the younger ones, may have multiple checking accounts, credit cards, bill payments and even low-risk stock options. According to a Pew Research Center poll, 64 percent of Americans own a smartphone. Among the respondents, 15 percent of those ages 18 to 29 said they depended heavily on smartphones. Even in combination with other Internet-capable devices, smartphones are used extensively to manage personal finances.
To get the most out of personal finances, there are a handful of mobile applications everyone should take a look at, some of which have been highlighted by Tech.co.
Stop worrying about a budget
Creating a budget is essential for just about everyone. It helps manage financial priorities and track spending. Budgeting is an area that takes time to develop. In fact, according to Bankrate.com, many budgets are too conservative in the beginning. It's important to track spending, but that does not necessarily mean all entertainment spending has to be cut.
Creating a budget and tracking daily spending can get confusing at times. One app, called Level Money, takes the hard work out of budgeting for its users. By connecting monthly income, all bank accounts, credit cards and bills, the app calculates a daily spending amount. In an interview with The New York times shortly after the app went live, Co-Founder and CEO Jake Fuentes said the app is meant to resemble someone looking in their wallet and seeing how much they have left to spend. As a result, there are no overly complicated graphs, making it suitable for millennial workers who have yet to seriously build up their finances through investments.
Complete a financial overview
An app called Mint seeks to give you the whole picture of your financial health. It has a desktop version and mobile app, making it suitable for those who have the time to check updates on the computer, but still live a hectic lifestyle. Users connect their checking account, credit cards and other information, and can sit back and watch the service recommend budgets, spending levels and more.
Software company Intuit created Mint so users can see important financial information in one place. In many ways, it is more in depth than Level Money because it provides free credit scores, overspending notifications and investment tracking. The service even provides tips, alerts and updates as needed.
"Creating a budget is essential for just about everyone."
Planning for the future
Millennials and young, working adults may not want to think about retirement, but it's better to do so sooner, rather than later. By learning the ins and outs of investing and saving money, young workers will set themselves up for a comfortable future. One app, Acorns, enables users to invest in low-cost exchange traded funds, according to Tech.co. The app also connects credit cards and bank accounts. The service rounds every purchase up to the nearest dollar and invests the difference in an ETF of the user's choosing.
Various settings enable the service to take on more aggressive or conservative investing habits. The app can be used for long-term investments or as a way to save for a vacation or a big purchase.
A recent report from Blackhawk Engagement Solutions found millennial workers are more willing to switch jobs earlier and more frequently. A few mobile apps can keep track of financial information and provide advice for this fast-moving lifestyle that may create some uncertainty.
Investment products and services are not FDIC insured, not insured by any federal government agency, not a deposit or bank obligation, not financial institution guaranteed, subject to investment risk, including potential principal loss.
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