Top Ten Free Finance Apps and Tools
These days there’s an app for pretty much everything. Choose a subject and you’re bound to find a wide range of available apps, varying in price and complexity.
When it comes to finance tools and tricks, you will be surprised at just how beneficial they can be. We’ve rounded up 10 of the best finance apps and tools to help you manage your cash – and they’re all free, so it won’t cost you a cent to give them a go.
Pocketbook (personal finance)
This app helps users stay on track of their spending by automatically categorising their transactions, and detecting for anomalies like larger-than-expected bills, unpaid salary or large bank fees through the use of algorithms.
Pocketbook also offers a Tax Return app enabling users to lodge their tax return from their mobile, without a computer. There’s a short questionnaire and the ability to attach relevant documentation to the right sections directly with the phone’s camera. The user is able talk direct with a registered tax accountant through a messaging service. The return will be fully reviewed by this accountant to make sure all returns are maximised.
This simple app was developed by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission (ASIC) in association with its MoneySmart website, offering quick and easy tracking of expenses. It’s easy to use and allows the user to nominate favourite expenses as well as track smaller items. You can also record expenses as either “needs” or “wants”, allowing you to reduce unnecessary spending.
It’s not a comprehensive budgeting app, but it offers an easy-to-use interface allowing you to keep track of your spending.
Users can also export data into a spreadsheet enabling transfer of the information to another accounting system if required.
Unsplurge (goal setting)
Unsplurge offers a unique platform to set goals and keep track of your progress in a social setting. The app allows you to input your goals, including the amount required to achieve them as well as add comments and include a photo.
What’s different about this app is that it has its own community, so users can share their goals and successes with other likeminded goal-setters. Users can also create their own communities – making saving for goals a bit of fun.
This online personal finance management and budgeting app connects to user’s bank, credit card or loan account, securely downloading all transaction details and automatically classifying their spending into different categories as well as different merchants.
This allows users to see where their money is going. It also reminds them of any upcoming bill payments, so you can avoid paying late fees. You can create a budget for just about any category and be notified as you get close to overspending.
Invoice2go (small business)
This simple invoicing app allows small businesses to create and send invoices on the spot. The app helps to simplify the admin process and solve cash flow problems, allowing small business owners get paid on time.
While major accounting software solutions can be over-engineered and expensive, Invoice2go is focused specifically on an area that small businesses care about the most – managing income and getting paid.
Switchmyloan.com.au (home loans)
Switchmyloan.com.au compares the health of your home loan and how your rate compares to the rest of the market. The service is designed to help users save on their mortgages by comparing their home loan to hundreds of other offerings from over 18 lenders including the Big 4 banks and their subsidiary brands.
Customers enter their details and a customer service representative will give them a call to collect additional information. The company takes that information and negotiates discounted rates with the lenders. Users receive three free quotes outlining each product feature as well as how much money they would save if they were to refinance with a different bank.
Expensify makes recording receipts, tracking time or mileage, business travel and creating expense reports quick and easy. You scan your receipts and Expensify will pull out the amount, the date, the time, the merchant and place it into a CSV file, that keeps all the important information in one place.
This is quite handy as thermal receipts can fade over time, but this app allows users to store all the important information in one simple location.
BMT Tax Depreciation (various)
BMT Tax Depreciation has created a selection of handy apps designed for property investors, property professionals, accountants or individuals involved in the property and construction industries.
Rate Finder: this app identifies every plant and equipment item, its effective life and rate of depreciation for both residential and commercial property.
Resi Rates: tailored for residential properties, the app identifies every plant and equipment item and its effective life. Resi Rates also assists with disputes over damaged assets and maintenance scheduling.
Tax Depreciation Calculator: estimates the likely depreciation deductions from any investment property, allowing users to easily project their after-tax cash flow.
HomeBudget Lite (household budget)
Home Budget (which offers a more comprehensive version for around $6) is a colour coded system to help manage the day to day household budget.
Easy to use, the app allows the user to set up payees for bills and recurring expenses. It also includes reporting tools, bill schedules and reminders.
The complete version allows you to sync your budget across numerous devices so the rest of the family is working off the same budget.
Simply Wall Street (investing)
This online tool is designed to help new investors make profitable non-emotional long term investments in the stock market, by turning complicated financial data into easy to understand infographics.
Each day Simply Wall St produces over 10,000 infographics and visual analyses on all companies listed on primary US, UK and Australian stock exchanges.
Using a simple shape called the Snowflake, investors are given an instant overview of a company, helping them decide if it is worth researching further.