7 Best Personal Finance Software Consumer Reports 2019 – Top Rated

There are many websites that handle personal finance exceedingly well. We review five of the best here. Quicken, the granddaddy of all personal financial solutions, is now a hybrid solution. The software still resides on the desktop, but the 2018 and 2019 versions offer access to a website that contains Quicken’s most often-used features and synchronizes its data with your own personal file. So, you can check in on your income, expenses, and investments on the go.

Top 7 Personal Finance Software

Bestseller No. 1
Quicken Deluxe 2019 Personal Finance & Budgeting Software [PC/Mac Download] 1-Year Membership + 2 Bonus Months [Amazon Exclusive]
356 Reviews
Quicken Deluxe 2019 Personal Finance & Budgeting Software [PC/Mac Download] 1-Year Membership + 2 Bonus Months [Amazon Exclusive]
  • See your bank, credit card, investment & retirement accounts in one place
  • Stay on top of bills & spending
Bestseller No. 2
Money Pro - Personal Finance, Budget, Bills
8 Reviews
Money Pro - Personal Finance, Budget, Bills
  • BUDGET INCOME AND EXPENSES WITH EASE
  • TRACK EVERY ACCOUNT
Bestseller No. 4
Quicken Premier 2019 Personal Finance & Budgeting Software [PC/Mac Download] 1-Year Membership + 2 Bonus Months [Amazon Exclusive]
132 Reviews
Quicken Premier 2019 Personal Finance & Budgeting Software [PC/Mac Download] 1-Year Membership + 2 Bonus Months [Amazon Exclusive]
  • See your bank, credit card, investment & retirement accounts in one place
  • Make smart investment decisions, Be prepared for tax time
Bestseller No. 5
Quicken Home & Business 2019 Personal Finance & Budgeting Software [PC Download] 1-Year Membership + 2 Bonus Months [Amazon Exclusive]
87 Reviews
Quicken Home & Business 2019 Personal Finance & Budgeting Software [PC Download] 1-Year Membership + 2 Bonus Months [Amazon Exclusive]
  • See all your personal, business & rental property finances in one place
  • Identify tax-deductible business & rental expenses
SaleBestseller No. 6
Moneydance - personal financial management app [Online Code]
12 Reviews
Moneydance - personal financial management app [Online Code]
  • Track bank accounts, credit cards, investments, and more
  • Online banking and bill payment
Bestseller No. 7
EZ Home and Office Address Book
407 Reviews
EZ Home and Office Address Book
  • Address book software for home and business (WINDOWS 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP). Three...
  • GREAT for PRINTING LABELS! Print colorful labels with clip art or pictures on many common...

Get Your Financial House in Order

Gone are the days when you could tell how much money you had by looking in your wallet or at your checkbook balance. These days, many people only carry debit and credit cards—no cash. You find your checking account balance or check stock prices by reaching for your smartphone.

Critical Connections

Quicken’s online companion app is the biggest recent news in the personal finance world. But all of the applications we reviewed have new features, and they share some common characteristics. Most of them support online connections to your financial institutions. That is, you can download cleared transactions and other account data from your banks, bank card providers, brokerages, and other financial institutions, and see all of it neatly displayed in registers in the applications. Typically, you only have to enter the credentials that you use to log into those financial sites, though you occasionally have to provide additional security information.

A Different Kind of Dashboard

Four of the five personal finance websites reviewed here have what’s called a dashboard. It’s basically each site’s home page, or the first screen you see when you log in. Sometimes, the dashboard is the only screen you’ll need to see because it displays the information you most need when you’re checking on your financial situation. You’ll learn what all of your account balances are and perhaps any bills that are pending.

You’ll see charts and graphs that tell you, for example, what your income is versus your spending, and how you’re doing on your budget. You may be able to gauge your progress on any goals you’ve set and view your investment portfolio, with live prices if it’s during the market day.

Budgets, Goals, and Bills

If you’re a freelancer or sole proprietor, budgets can be challenging. You don’t know for sure how much money you’ll make in a given month as a W-2 employee does. Being conscientious about your finances includes trying to curb your spending so that it comes in below your income. Note: Freelancers and sole proprietors might find that a small business accounting website is a better fit.

The mechanics of creating a workable budget are much easier than the process of specifying your limits. Mint, for example, treats each category as a budget. You select one, choose a frequency for it (every month, etc.), and enter an amount. The site shows you how well you’re adhering to each budget by displaying a series of colored horizontal bars that show where your spending is currently compared with your budgeted amount. Green means you’re doing OK, and red means you’ve gone over your self-imposed limit. You can tweak each budget as you learn more about your spending habits by clicking up and down arrows.

An Important Number

An excellent credit score is a gold. Beyond helping you get approved for a credit card, mortgage, car loan, etc., it often helps minimize the interest rate you’ll pay. So it’s important to know not only what it is at any given time, but also to understand how it gets calculated and what you can do to improve it.

Credit Karma and NerdWallet, both free websites, can meet all of these critical needs. Credit Karma is especially comprehensive and efficient here. It pulls your score regularly from two of the three major bureaus and gives you access to your credit reports.

Other Considerations

You may only want to use a personal finance site for day-to-day income- and expense-management, budgeting, and goal setting. But financial sites like Quicken and Mint let you track all of your assets, including homes, vehicles, and investment holdings. If you keep your financial data updated, the applications keep a running tally that, when combined with your debt, give you your total net worth.

You probably don’t need advanced tools when you’re away from your computer or laptop. But when you’re out spending money, it’s good to know how much you have. All of the solutions we reviewed offer both Android apps and iOS apps. They don’t have all of the features found on the browser-based or software versions, but you can at least check your account balances, view and add transactions, and see graphs illustrating numbers related to things like spending and cash flow. You may also be able to get your credit score and check the status of pending bills.

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *