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Mobile Apps to Help You With Budgeting

Setting up a budget is easier than you may think; sticking to that budget is the tricky part. It’s easy for anyone to get off track, especially when unexpected expenses derail things. While 310-LOAN is always here to help with an online payday loan when that does happen, we’re also here to help you plan your budget and have a plan in place for the unexpected.

One way to stick to your budget is to keep it with you everywhere you go. You can do that by downloading a budgeting app on your phone. It’s not an exaggeration, though, to say that there are literally dozens of mobile budgeting apps available in Canada. We’ve simplified the search by highlighting different app features based on your unique budget needs, as well as the top three recommendations for apps based on cost, user-friendliness, and value. 

Mobile App Budgeting Features to Look For

Different mobile budgeting apps come with different capabilities and costs. Some are free, some cost money to download, and others require a monthly fee. What kind of mobile app you need depends on your individual financial goals, potential roadblocks, and level of financial discipline. For sticking to budgets, though, make sure the app has at least some of the following features.

Syncs to Your Bank Account

One of the reasons we tend to go wayward on our budget is that we are using tools that do not directly tie in with our bank accounts, resulting in us having to manually update our budget. Not exactly easy for those with a busy life. Instead, look for a mobile app that syncs up with your bank account. Each time you log in, it will update - giving you real-time budgeting without any work on your end. Because your banking information is highly sensitive, make sure the app meets minimum security requirements and does not have a history of breaches.

Categorizes Purchases

An important aspect of budgeting comes down to understanding where and how you are spending your money. This gives you the ability to identify opportunities for cutting back in certain areas. For example, if you buy coffee every day, you won’t know how quickly that adds up unless you see it all lumped together. Choose an app that automatically categorizes your purchases into different groups to see that bigger picture and keep yourself accountable. Note, though, that these apps can sometimes mis-categorize your items - or fail to categorize them entirely - so set aside some time each week to correctly reallocate your purchases, if needed.

Forecasts your Financial Future

How do you know where you’ll be in six months from now? A year? Long-term budgeting can feel daunting but with a financial forecasting feature at your hands, you can more readily see what kind of path you are on. This will tell you how long it will be until you reach certain milestones as well as how you can adjust to better meet your goals. Knowing where you are going naturally leads to getting there sooner!

Notifies You of Upcoming Expenses

A very common way we all often fall off the budgeting bandwagon is when we aren’t prepared for upcoming expenses. Whether that’s a seasonal increase in costs, such as students being out of school during the summer, or one-off expenses like birthday gifts, selecting an app that will notify you of impending expenses can help ensure you’re prepared. For those unexpected expenses, though, an online payday loan from 310-LOAN can get you the cash you need in 30 minutes or less.

Best Budgeting Apps of 2021

Based on reviews from a wide range of websites, here are the top three mobile apps for their individual category.

Best Free Budgeting App: Mint

Called the “financial app by which all other financial apps are judged,” by GreedyRates.com, the Mint app is the most all-encompassing free financial application on the market. It meets all your syncing and categorization needs in a user-friendly format. Mint can create a budget for you or help you design one that fits your unique situation. It even reminds you when upcoming bills are due.

Best Budgeting Prioritization App: YNAB (You Need A Budget)

Young and Thrifty says that users of the YNAB app save an average of $600 by month two, and an average of $6,000 in the first year. That’s in part because of its prioritization feature; you can set short, medium, and long-term priorities and assign “jobs” to every dollar in your account. YNAB also gives you access to online tutorials to learn even more money skills.

Simplest Budgeting App: PocketGuard

Another common way we often stray from our budget is because of the complexity. Also a free app, PocketGuard is touted as an incredibly simple yet effective budgeting app. It puts all your spending into easy-to-understand pie charts and offers you a simple equation to follow when you’re not sure you can afford something. There is also a paid version that provides more robust budgeting features.

Stay on Track with Payday Loans

Regardless of our best intentions, sometimes it’s just not possible to stick to your budget. Unexpected expenses can derail even the most carefully planned budget. 310-LOAN is here to get you through the unforeseen with its fast, easy, and hassle-free online payday loans. There’s no credit check and the application process is simple. Get the cash you need when and how you need it. Apply for an online payday loan today!

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