I remember when I started to save for my first home. I had so many questions. How do I start saving? How do I keep track of my expenses? What’s a credit score? How do I limit myself to a budget? Thank goodness for technology where I found three amazing app’s that have helped me accomplish this goal and many others! The thought of buying a home can be so overwhelming so I hope these app’s will help make your goal more realistic.
The Mint app is a total game changer! This super easy to use app allows you to track your bills and spending, but my favorite features include setting up customizable budgets and unique goals that work with your lifestyle. Also it’s completely FREE!!
For instance, I love to shop (a little too much I might admit) so I set up a budget for myself on how much I can spend per quarter. Some months I spend more on shopping than others, perhaps I’m going on vacation or have an event to go to. This very specific feature allows my budget to be broken up over a period of time, instead of just monthly. What I don’t spend in January will carry over into February or I can set it up to disregard that amount as if I had spent it for even more savings! Pretty awesome, right?
To set up your free account on Mint just add your banking information and add as many bills to your account as you’d like. I added all of my bills, including utilities, Netflix, Spotify, etc for it to be as effective as possible. Mint will refresh your account periodically to give you the most up to date information regarding your cash flow vs bills. Everything in one place! It’s no wonder this app is so user friendly, it was created by the makers of TurboTax and QuickBooks. And extremely secure being backed by VeriSign. The days of logging into multiple accounts are forever gone!
Another great app is the Credit Karma app which allows you to monitor your credit score for free. Your credit score will play a big role in your loan approval to buy a home so it’s important to know your credit score and to make sure your accounts are all in good standing. The Credit Karma app will notify you if your credit score has gone up or down and when a new account has been opened in your name. This is especially helpful to make sure there is no identity theft occurring and to make sure all of the accounts that are attached to your name are yours. It also provides you with suggestions on how to improve your credit score!
YNAB or You Need a Budget takes a fun and innovative approach to sticking to your financial goals every month. In this platform every dollar is accounted for and assigned a “job.” Whether it be to pay your student loan, an electric bill or to save for your first home. You budget your money down to zero so you know exactly how much money you can spend on that specific item until your next paycheck. The goal of this app is to eventually spend the money that you made a month ago and stop living the paycheck to paycheck lifestyle. For a free 30 day trial click here.
I hope these apps will help you meet and exceed your 2018 goals! If you’re looking for a little more guidance in the home buying department, send us a message, we’d be happy to chat!