What’s The Best Home Budgeting Software?

Sink's full of dishes. You've worn the same boxers two days in row. They're still good. (Hey, you slept bottomless so they could air out.) You've picked out the pot pie you'll have for dinner. And there's a bizarre odor coming from ... somewhere.

But some things we don't want falling to the wayside, like personal finances.

It's time to get the monies in order. And that doesn't necessarily mean you have to count the pennies yourself. There's a boatload of home budgeting software that will let you manage personal finance without a whole of focus on the numbers. Whether you need to save or be smarter about how you're spending, there's a platform that can help.

Use one of the solutions below and, in no time at all, you'll almost feel like an adult. At least until you and the boys start fighting over the PlayStation remote.

1. Banktivity

PROS

  • Connects directly with your accounts
  • Import from Quicken
  • Schedule & transmit payments

CONS

  • Apple only
  • Weak investment options

PRICE: $59.99

Banktivity (formerly iBank) is for Apple hardware only. But if you own a Mac, iPad or iPhone, you can have a solid solution for finances and mobility.

It's one of the rare platforms that can connect directly to major stateside banks, providing real-time monitoring of your accounts. You can import data directly from Quicken, as well schedule and transmit payments.

2. Moneywell

PROS

  • Simple budgeting system
  • Custom reports
  • Seamless connectivity

CONS

  • Apple only
  • Lacks in-depth analysis

PRICE: $60.00

Moneywell is for the Mac as well. It gets a notch above Banktivity for features that let you design plans to eliminate debt and grow wealth.

It also comes with a cleaner interface than Banktivity, direct connection to major banks for downloading information and a classic budget enveloping platform that ensures you never spend outside limits. It syncs with your Apple mobile devices via Dropbox.

3. LearnVest

PROS

  • Comprehensive budgeting
  • Great educational resources
  • Financial planning options

CONS

  • Pricey
  • Automation isn't as smooth as other tools

PRICE: $299 one-time setup fee + $19/month

LearnVest is as much a workshop in finances as it is an online feature-filled budget and money tracker. It has a library of information for making you financially literate.

There are great tools for following spending trends, analyzing credit card repayment, and options for predicting and preparing financial goals. This is the place to go if you have little experience at handling personal finances responsibly and want to learn how to do so, not have software do it for you.

4. mvelopes

PROS

  • Customize to fit your budgeting goals
  • Makes the envelope system simple
  • Great community (forums & support)

CONS

  • A bit of a learning curve
  • Runs a little slowly

PRICE: Free or $95/year for Premier

Based on the old fashioned idea that families managed expenses by dividing weekly paychecks into envelopes to pay bills (the envelope system), mvelopes is an online budgeting resource that virtually does the same thing.

There are free and paid versions. It's extremely user-friendly with features for debt elimination, envelop budgeting and expense tracking. The software's design is centered on proactive financial planning.

5. GnuCash

PROS

  • Open source
  • Good for business owners
  • It's free

CONS

  • Interface isn't pretty
  • Not for the average consumer

PRICE: Free

GnuCash is open source, powerful personal financing. It can track multiple accounts and performs like a traditional checkbook register. Its interface is a little outdated, but it has an excellent wizard for walking newbies through the process.

The download comes with complete customer support and regular updates to the platform. Entering information is easy and the software is free.

6. WalletHub

PROS

  • Good search engine
  • Free credit score checker
  • Analyzes your personal credit clearly

CONS

  • No budgeting features
  • Doesn't include all financial accounts

PRICE: Free

As one of the major personal finance solutions coming out of app stores, WalletHub's rep can thank its overall growth to the ever expanding universe of mobility. Like many great apps, it's free.

WalletHub monitors credit and provides a clear analysis of the info. (No better way to get a better grip on managing credit.) It's not an expansive financial solution, but serves a unique purpose. If long-term goals are owning property, getting a car or other ventures that require credit-worthiness, WalletHub will get you there and help find credit cards and lenders.

7. YNAB

PROS

  • Focuses on budgeting
  • Free for college students
  • Beautiful interface

CONS

  • No phone or email support
  • Not ideal for people looking for an all-in-one tool

PRICE: $5/month or $50/year

You Need a Budget. Say no more.

YNAB is a finely tuned personal financier that will plot your finances to the last dollar. What distinguishes the solution is, unlike even some of the best resources on this page, YNAB teaches you how to be responsible.

It walks you through fiscal responsibility, showing you how to set up finances, explaining each move and why it's important. It will do the math, but it won't make auto-decisions for you. While there is more work, you get the ability to see how finances and money management work.

8. Quicken

PROS

  • Comprehensive
  • Integrated bill-pay
  • Great for budgeting & investing

CONS

  • Support can be a hit or miss
  • It can be confusing trying to figure out which version to get

PRICE: See chart below

For over three decades, Quicken remains one of the most popular names in both business and personal finance technology. It puts all your money in one place. Review accounts, write and print checks, create sensible budgets and develop plans to manage your debt smartly.

Review your financial position across accounts without having to log into each. If you do your own taxes, Quicken data can be exported directly into the vendor's TurboTax.

Version

Price

Link

Quicken Starter

$39.95

Quicken Deluxe

$47.98

Quicken Premier (recommended)

$83.98

Quicken Home & Business

$67.98

Quicken for Mac

$45.78

9. Personal Capital

PROS

  • Full view of your personal finances
  • Detailed reporting
  • Very user friendly

CONS

  • Can't customize categories
  • May not be the best for complete beginners

PRICE: Free

Developed in conjunction with a major executive from both Intuit and PayPal, Personal Capital is a free online personal finance solution. It has highly advanced features for personal finance, budgeting and money management.

Personal Capital links all your finance accounts (CDs, expenses, investments, college fund, etc.) and provides real-time tracking for each. Monitor everything through daily, weekly and monthly reporting. With its simple interface, you'll gladly realize how important all this stuff is to your future.

10. Mint

PROS

  • Simple for anyone to use (great for beginning budgeters)
  • Set budgets and goals
  • Everything is automated

CONS

  • Some transactions can be miscategorized
  • Account synchronization can have issues

PRICE: Free

Create simplified budgets that you'd have to fight to mess up. Mint will even take supplied criteria and set the budget up for you. It will give you money and budgeting tips - customized, not general - giving you a clean perspective of all your finances.

Mint will track your credit and show you how to improve it. Get alerts about account charges. Discover how to save for the things you want. Suffice it to say, Mint is one heck of a finance planning solution that anyone can benefit from.

And there you have it. Now you have no reason to not get your finances together. So, when you finish eating that cold pizza, take the first step. Grab some personal finance software and next year you'll still be chomping on cold pizza, but with a bigger smile.

best home budgeting software

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