Save & Invest
What are the Best Budgeting Apps in Canada?October 14, 2022
Money is one of those things that impact our lives greatly. While most of us can’t afford personal finance managers, we do have to find a way to structure our money so we can afford to do things like save for retirement, purchase a home, save for a vacation, attend university or anything we want to do that involves money. The way we do this is by budgeting.
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When we consider making a budget it usually involves receipts, notebooks, and a bunch of other things that can make it super daunting, but did you know that there is an app for that? Recently, budget apps are becoming increasingly popular and help us to meet our goals, but which one is the best? Are they easy to use? Are they safe?
List of Best Budgeting Apps
While there are plenty of personal finance apps out there that focus on budgeting. There are a few that are considered to be the best.
This app is extremely popular for a few reasons, but the main one is that it can collate all of your financial information and create accurate predictions of your financial future up to 30 years in the future. Because of this, you can test different scenarios until you find the one that works the best for you.
While this app does come with a free version, you get way more out of it when you pay for a subscription. The free version only allows 2 financial accounts and will only predict your finances up to 6 months in the future. The subscription is a little pricey though. It is $75 USD, but if you are super serious about budgeting it is accurate and effective.
This app is free to use and rivals most other budgeting apps. This app was designed by Intuit and links to
- Bank Accounts
- Credit Cards
The information it gives you is extremely detailed and accurate because it syncs automatically and updates your financial status. The way Mint showcases the information is straightforward and easy to understand. On top of keeping track of your finances, the app also checks credit scores, provides bill reminders, and notifies you of unusual account activity.
While overall this is a great app, it does have some difficulty connecting to some of Canada’s smaller banks and credit unions. It also isn’t known for its customer service which is quite common for a free app.
YNAB (You Need A Budget)
This app has a bit of a different method than the others. While it also connects to your account and tracks your finances, it focuses on making sure every dollar has a job. That way you aren’t tempted to make frivolous purchases. It also advises you to pay your bills as soon as possible and to save your money.
This app focuses on educating you on finances and gives you financial skills to create and develop good spending habits. If you are a member they even offer free courses and to become a member it only costs $8.25 USD Monthly which is billed yearly. They do have a 34-day free trial so you can decide if this is the budgeting app for you.
This is another free app, except this one is meant for couples to stay on top of their money together. It tracks all of your accounts and supports over 20,000 financial institutions in over 5 countries. They offer bill reminders and allow you to chat with your partner regarding your finances.
Honeydue also offers joint bank accounts for couples and uses best practices to ensure your financial information is kept safe.
Not only does truebill help you build and balance a budget, but they also follow your subscriptions and are there to help you cancel them. It provides balance alerts to let you know that your account is getting low and allows you to auto-save your money after it has learned your habits.
Not only is truebill great for budgeting but it gives you access to your free credit score report and credit history. They also identify any bills that you seem to be paying too much for and negotiate those for you.
While the truebills base app is free, it does cost anywhere from $3 to $12 per month if you choose to subscribe, depending on the features you wish to use.
Like most of the other budgeting apps, Wallet offers a free version as well as a paid subscription. The free version only allows you to upload your financial information while the subscription version will sync automatically. Both versions let you create different budgets and organized debt and bill payments. It even lets you upload receipts if you choose to.
The great thing about this app is it allows you to set goals, and it also acts as a digital wallet to store your different loyalty rewards cards. To download on IOS or Android is free but it is $4.99 USD monthly to subscribe or you can pay yearly for $28.99 USD.
Pocketguard is similar to YNAB, but it is less complex. It has the same features, but it also keeps you updated on how much you can spend without going into the red. This app also makes a budget for you automatically based on your income, bill payments, and savings goals. The basic version is free but you can purchase it for $3.99 USD monthly or $34.99 USD annually.
Everydollar is just like most apps and is available in free and paid versions. This app can help you create a budget in less than 10 minutes. It also allows for budgeting in a user-friendly way that makes it easier for customers to use. Like the other apps, it depends on what you are looking for in a budget app to determine if this is the one for you.
Personal Capital is known for 3 things. A dashboard that links all of your accounts, free analysis done by an advisor to help make a usable budget, and personalized advice. Not only do they help with budgeting, but they also help you with your savings to save for retirement.
Security is also the main priority for personal capital. They make sure all passwords are safe, use top-of-the-line encryption and operate a year-round bug bounty program. They want to make sure any system bugs are found by them first.
What is the best free budgeting app?
Not surprisingly, the best free budget app is Mint. While we went over a lot of the logistics of Mint above, the main reason it is the best is that it offers all the features other apps charge for at no cost. Mint is available on IOS and android platforms and has no in-app purchases or upgrades.
While Mint does have to connect to your accounts in order to work properly, you get to choose the accounts that it connects to. You also get to decide if you want the app to sync or not, but it does work better when you allow it to automatically sync with your accounts. They also alert you of any suspicious activity to help you get ahead.
How do Some of the other apps Rival Mint?
While we have discussed Mint and the other apps they do have some differences, other than they offer way more free features, the rest are considered to be paid budgeting apps in order to access their full features.
Mint Vs Everydollar
While Mint is one of the most popular mobile budgeting apps, Everydollar is still very popular. They offer similar features but while Mint focuses on budgeting and helping you pay off debt, Everydollar focuses on educating you on finances while helping you to reach your goals. In order to get the most out of Everydollar you do have to subscribe while Mint’s features are completely free.
Mint Vs Personal Capital
While both of these are budgeting apps, Mint has more features than Personal Capital. They don’t offer things like retirement planning, bill payments, and investment management like Mint does unless you pay for their services.
Some things that Personal Capital has though are they analyze your retirement fees, help with financial management, help you reach asset allocation targets, and offer an ad-free service. The main difference between these two is Mint is a free budgeting platform and Personal Capital is a paid Investment platform.
Mint Vs Truebill
Just like with other apps, Truebill has other features than just budgeting. Mint excels in its budgeting platform. Truebill also offers credit reporting, spending monitoring, and building savings. If you go with the premium version of Truebill the bill negation features are great perks. Both apps offer saving goals even though they hold different approaches, but the main attraction to Truebill is the subscription canceling and bill negotiation features. Mints’ main features are that you can track your investment accounts, net worth and bills all on their app.
Overall, Mint is great for budgeting and Truebill is better for overall financial clarity.
Mint Vs YNAB
Which of these is better ultimately depends on your budgeting views since they are the two biggest budgeting apps in the world. Mint offers a straightforward approach to budgeting whereas YNAB changes the way you think about money by using a different budgeting structure.
While YNAB is more user-friendly it can also take some time to adjust to a new way of thinking. You also need to log into YNAB regularly to get the most out of it, it can also be kind of pricey. Mint, on the other hand, only allows for monthly budgets, it can be less effective because it is less hands-on and there are quite a few ads since they don’t charge fees.
Both apps can be very effective in budgeting though, as long as you commit to using them. The one you choose will depend on which fits your lifestyle and budget better.
Is it safe to connect your bank account to budgeting apps?
The main risk when you connect your bank information to a budgeting app is the potential for fraud or identity theft. While there is a potential of a data breach or a hacker gaining access to your passwords, you are able to research the different companies to verify how secure they actually are. You should be able to find any information regarding previous data breaches and what they have done to combat them.
The thing is though, most of these programs have been created by reputable financial institutions. Because of this, they take security very seriously. You want to look for apps that use end-to-end encryption. This is important because this feature guards any third-party users against gaining access to your information. Most often when a breach happens it is because the user has a weak password or uses the same password for everything.
Some apps, like Mint and PocketGuard, become read-only if they are hacked. This means you or the hacker cannot move any money. Any information like account numbers, usernames, and passwords also aren’t shown.
If this still makes you nervous, do not worry, many Canadian financial institutions offer budgeting programs right on the app, sometimes even in multiple currencies. It tracks your sending, keeps track of your habits, and lets you know when you are getting low on money. Unfortunately, you can’t always get rid of risk, but you can mitigate it.
Can you use budgeting apps without connecting to a bank account?
Yes, you can. There are a few apps out there that allow you to just enter your financial information instead of just linking accounts. Two of these are Dollarbird and Goodbudget.
This app allows you to add and enter current, past, or future transactions to your account. The AI then helps to categorize them for you. It calculates your budget based on what you enter and helps you understand your financial future based on these numbers. You can also share calendars with family members to help keep the budget on track. The one thing is that Dollarbird isn’t free. Prices range from $39.99 per year to $59.99 per year.
Goodbudget is another option. This app uses the envelope method without the envelopes. It helps you to sort your money, pay your bills, pay off debt and do anything else you choose to do. They allow you to sync and share budgets, as well as create an affordable budget for you. They offer a free version as well as a version that is $8 per month or $70 yearly. It all depends on what you need from the app.
Why Use A Budgeting app?
Overall, budgeting apps are a great way to keep your finances on track and take control of your financial future. You can track spending, make goals, pay bills, make bill alerts, and even save money for retirement. The different apps we discuss all have their own unique features that can help you make the most of your money. Which app you choose ultimately depends on your personal goals and your reasonings for creating a budget. No matter what they are, one of the many budgeting apps out there can help you get your finances in order.