A finance app is a necessity in today’s business world. It’s basically a dashboard for your cash – it helps you track the transactions that are being made, and makes you prepared for any upcoming issues. If you are new to such programs, you may be asking yourself – what can a finance app do? Generally, such applications track and present you with your bills, savings, investments, budget, spending, banking, debt levels, and the like.
The truth is that by using a finance app, you are more likely to get richer. The habit of tracking your money results in better management. In general, there are two types of finance apps – for tax preparation and for managing your money. You can also read our related article on how AI can improve finance app performance.
There are three things that you should first consider. The first thing is whether the app is suitable for your needs. It basically comes down to what kind of app you are looking for. Do you want an extensive app, or one that specifically focuses on your budget, bills, investments or spending? The second thing to consider is whether the app is engaging and user-friendly enough, so that it doesn’t give you any troubles when using it. The third thing is the app’s security. If the app is, for example, asking for your bank account, you should feel comfortable about giving away such information.
Next, we are going to discuss the features and benefits that finance apps have, which you should consider.
You can forget all about budget spreadsheets. Most financial apps will take you through the process of creating a personal budget step by step. After you are done, you can set up budget categories to expenses and income. You should look for an application that has a feature to memorize transactions, so that you don’t have to set up the categories more than once. Generally, most financial software has a tool for budgeting. But, if this is your main reason why you are looking for a financial app, then you might want to look into dedicated budgeting software, such as BudgetPulse or PocketSmith.
If you want to make paying your bills easy, you can opt for financial apps that provide you with the feature of paying online, or use an online service for that purpose. Some financial apps enable you to easily pay bills this way, as you enter a transaction into your account at the time of the payment. This is very useful, because a lot of banks provide you with the service to pay bills online. You should, however, keep in mind that some will charge you for it. As for online bill paying services, they remind you when you need to pay, and can automatically do this for you at a scheduled date.
One of the main aspects of financial apps is that they show the balances of every account that you want to track. However, there are two types of software when it comes to accounting. On one hand, there are apps that automatically download payments and purchases from banks, and instantly calculate and show you the balance. If, however, you aren’t comfortable with the automatic process, you can opt for the apps that allow you to import or enter the transactions manually. As experts at BrokerCo say, it is up to you to choose between better accuracy and comfort.
Apps that have the feature for account reconciliation, make the whole process a lot faster, easier, and leave little space for mistakes. When using an app that has this feature, all that you need to do is check off transactions that match the financial statement with just a click of the mouse. The process of matching the account balance with the bank or credit card company is quick, and the app does the math for you. Keep in mind that, while this feature is most often available in Windows and Mac software, it’s rarely an option with online apps.
Tax time can be made a lot simpler if you use a financial app. Some of the software incorporates transaction categories for taxes, and enables you to make categories on your own. These categories are essential for creating reports on, for example, tax deductions. Categorizing tax-deductible expenses, such as health insurance or charitable donations, makes annual income tax preparation a lot simpler. You can run a tax report on a yearly basis and know what your tax return is.
Another benefit of some of the financial apps is that you can download or input investment transactions, and enjoy the comfort of having automatic internet updates keep account values up to date. Some include features such as on-screen and printed graphs and reports that make it easy for you to track your investments. Stock analysis software is the solution if what you need is an app for stock trading and scheduled investment decisions.
While it is not a feature of every financial app, there are still extensive programs that you can use to track your capital and liabilities, in order to be aware of what your net worth is. You need to know that software that offers net worth reporting in detail usually isn’t for free, and will cost you about $20. However, since tracking your net worth is of essence, you should get an app that will provide you with reports and charts that enable you to know what the numbers are.
One thing that you are probably looking for in a finance app is a solution for late payment fees and interest. The good news is that most financial apps enable you to set up reminders for pay checks, bills, deposits, and the like. They can remind you via your smartphone or email account, or at least pop up with an alert within the app when it’s time to pay your bills. You need to schedule transactions for all the bills that you are expecting.
Using a financial and accounting software app has a lot of benefits, but first you must consider what exactly you need it for. It could be for planning your budget, paying your bills electronically, tracking and analyzing investments, and the like. In the end, you could even opt for applications that teach children about money, so that your kids learn all they need to know about managing cash, in order to be better prepared for what expects them when they become responsible adults.
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