Here’s the good news: managing your money is actually pretty simple. All you need is clarity (i.e. an understanding of the ins and outs of your income and expenditure), a realistic budget (based on how much you earn), and some good old-fashioned self-control.
The bad news, however, is that simple doesn’t always mean easy.
If you’re already in the habit of spending a certain way, you might find that keeping to a budget isn’t as straightforward as you’d like. Research shows that once a behaviour is stuck, it’s remarkably difficult to get it unstuck. So where does this leave you?
Well, if nothing changes, nothing changes – the important thing is to make a start. And the way to do that is by slowly and surely getting to grips with a financial plan. Here’s a list of our top five budgeting apps (each with its own little helpful twist) to get you started.
If you’re looking for simplicity
There’s a reason that Pocketbook is arguably the most popular budgeting app in Australia. For one, it connects directly to your actual bank account – providing a real-time health check of your personal finances. And secondly, it automatically organises your spending into useful categories, so you can see where your money is going when you need a reality check.
If you like setting goals
This handy tool includes all the basics of a standard budgeting app, but with the nifty ability to set specific goals and targets. So if you ever find yourself ready to splurge and you need some help pulling back, simply check-in with Wally and let yourself remember what it is that you actually want. Your future self will be extremely glad you did.
If you’re looking for accountability
While this budgeting app is pretty simple in its design, it does include a feature that – rather ingeniously – lets you define every purchase as a ‘need’ or ‘want’. The only snag? Pretty much everything becomes a ‘need’ when you’re in the mood to shop. But at least with this clever device, you get to stop and think for a second before finally handing over the cash.
If you need moral support
No doubt, the greatest feature of this budgeting tool is the community that comes with it. Not only can you enjoy unfettered support and encouragement from other savvy savers, you can also pick up heaps of handy tips – and even indulge in a little bit of healthy competition. Plus you can also celebrate your wins over social media (if that’s your thing).
If you’re driven by praise
Sometimes, the prospect of hitting your target just isn’t enough to keep you going. You need a bit more – like a gold star or a pat on the back. And why not? You deserve it – which is why Monny has been designed with a built-in reward system that marks and celebrates significant milestones. So not only do you get to enjoy more cash in the pot, you’ll also get a nice little boost to your self-esteem.