My Favorite Budgeting tool

A little while ago, I was looking for different apps and programs that could help me keep track of all my accounts. We have so many accounts – 4 kids College Savings plans, Multiple IRA’s, 401K, stocks, mutual funds, brokerage accounts, checking, multiple savings accounts, credit cards (which we pay off EVERY month – never carry a balance!), mortgage, and on and on… I wanted a program that could help me track everything in ONE place, and help set budgets and goals.

I read reviews and used a few different (free) apps… All of them had something that I liked, but none had everything that I liked/needed. They all wanted you to pay to upgrade. Yeah, I didn’t like your apps enough to pay for them.

Then I found that Intuit had a program – Mint – and it was FREE. Now, growing up the kid of an accountant, my dad loves TurboTax (I use it every year for taxes), Quicken, etc. So I thought it was worth a try. I quickly fell in LOVE with Mint! It had everything I wanted for free – no need to upgrade to get more features.

I entered all my different accounts (there were many), entered my home, and even my cars! It calculated our net worth for us! Something I was never able to get a firm handle on with our accounts everywhere or in any other program. It organized it all in one place. They also provide your Credit Score every couple of months for FREE. It reminds you when bills are due. It tracks your spending in categories of your choosing. It will send you warnings when you are getting close to your budget allowance.

You can set savings goals – like for a new house, a vacation, a car, a Kindle, a lego set, college – whatever you choose. Set a goal and you can track your progress toward that goal. I realized that our net worth was much higher that I thought, and our goal for the next 10 years was much more achievable that I thought (as long as the stock market doesn’t tank horribly again between now and then!)

I get absolutely nothing for recommending Mint to you guys. It is free and costs you (and me) nothing. So many sites recommend certain budgeting tools/apps/programs, because they get paid for telling you about them – Mint does not do that. I simply really like the website and want to share 🙂 It is such a useful tool for tracking my spending, and keeping track of our investments. I’ve been using them a year now, and after many trials with other apps and programs, I am sold on using Mint!

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