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NerdWallet, for example, lets you link your goals to the appropriate spending account so your progress is automatically tracked. Quicken Deluxe includes additional planning tools that help you accelerate debt reduction, plan for taxes, and establish a comprehensive lifetime financial plan. None of the sites we reviewed offer bill-paying tools, but some let you at least record bills and bill payments, because those can figure into your personal finance picture so significantly.
Mint is especially good at this. You can set up a connection to online billers or enter offline bills automatically.
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The site alerts you when they're due to be paid and lets you record payments manually if they don't get downloaded as cleared transactions from your bank. An excellent credit score is gold.
Beyond helping you get approved for a credit card, mortgage, car loan, etc. 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. One of the ways you can improve your credit score is to use financial products—credit cards, mortgages—that have attractive interest rates and other benefits, making it easier for you to pay off debt as quickly as possible. The three free websites we reviewed Mint, Credit Karma, and NerdWallet help pay for the services they provide by displaying ads for products that might appeal to you based on your credit profile.
You can also browse marketplaces for additional candidates. Of course, frequently cancelling credit cards to get new, different ones can affect your credit score. Still, it's good to learn about these suggested products so that when the time comes, you'll know what the best options are. 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. Are all of the applications reviewed easy to use? The short answer is yes. Credit Karma and Mint are the most user-friendly, incorporating state-of-the-art interfaces with can't-miss navigation tools.
CountAbout is certainly easy enough to use, but its user interface looks outdated. And because Quicken has been around for so long and offers so much, its user experience is a little uneven. This blending of old and new content can be a little jarring when compared with a solution built from the ground up to live online. Each of these personal finance solutions offers something the others don't.
But their skill at delivering the tools consumers need, and the cost at which they offer them, varies widely. Mint has won our Editors' Choice before, and it does so again this time for free personal finance services. Quicken, on the other hand, wins the Editors' Choice for paid personal finance services.
We'd absolutely send people first to Mint if they're considering online personal finance because of its usability, its thorough selection of tools, and the feedback it provides users who keep up their end of the bargain by visiting it regularly. And, of course, it's free. If you're looking to keep your life further organized, you can also check out our roundup of the best to-do list apps.
Highly automated. Simple budgeting tools. Checks credit score. Good mobile support, including Apple Watch. Cons: Only supports US and Canadian accounts. Discontinued bill pay. Weak investing tools. No account reconciliation. No rival provides such a comprehensive collection of tools if you want to track your spending and budgeting or want a comprehensive overview of your net worth. Pros: Robust set of personal finance, planning, and investment tools. New companion site. Flexible transaction tracking. Useful reports and graphs. Excellent support options. Cons: Expensive. Inconsistent user experience.
Electronic bill pay not available in all plans. However, online banking is only available via Direct Connect and we found this can be tricky to setup in Moneydance. Investment tracking is also easier to navigate and more powerful than Quicken, with support for stocks, bonds, CDs and mutual funds among others.
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You can see the total value of your investments or the performance of individual stocks and mutual funds over time. Moneydance will also download stock prices automatically in real time. Moneydance also has some powerful reporting tools that compare favorably with Quicken and it can generate reports for any of your accounts, savings or investments. You can also extend its functionality with add-ons and extensions for such things as a Balance Predictor, Debt Insights and a Find and Replace extension. Overall Moneydance is a solid financial software for Mac to replace Quicken especially if you need reliable online banking integration.
You can also check out our full Moneydance review. Mint is owned by Intuit the makers of Quicken and is basically a free, lighter and less powerful version of Quicken. The biggest difference between Mint and Quicken is there is no automatic online bill pay feature in Mint so if this is a deal breaker for you, move on. In fact many people use Mint for day-to-day budgeting alongside Personal Capital to manage their finances.
Mint also has one of the best mobile apps out there for budgeting. The Mint iPad and iPhone app looks good, gives a clear overview of your finances and is easy to navigate. Like many personal finance apps, Mint can take time to update your balances and transactions and can be affected by changes made by your bank to the way third-party apps communicate with it.
Sometimes this means you have to delete an account in order to reconnect it and the problem with this is that you lose your account history in Mint. They are completely separate products. Overall however, as a more basic free alternative to Quicken, Mint is an excellent budgeting tool for Mac users. SEE Finance 2 is designed specifically for Mac and used to be the closest thing you could get to Quicken before Intuit finally released Quicken for Mac.
Despite the launch of Quicken, the makers have continued to develop SEE Finance into a very reliable, robust and feature packed personal budgeting app for Mac. In fact the latest version of SEE Finance 2 has been built from the ground up and is a big improvement on SEE Finance 1 in terms of both looks, functionality and affordability.
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Investment tracking is also very well done in SEE Finance 2 with a clear and varied overview of your investments with lots of different reports. SEE Finance 2 is also very good at handling multiple currencies with over different currencies supported. You can connect to banking institutions via Direct Connect which will automatically download transactions and import data from others. This is easy to setup and use in SEE Finance and pretty reliable at syncing and updating account.
SEE Finance 2 is a massive improvement on the first version and remains a fast, reliable and slick app to manage your finances on Mac. You can also try a 30 day free trial of SEE Finance. Because of the way it approaches budgeting, YNAB has proved very effective at helping users to save money and get their finances in order which is made it very popular with Mac and PC users alike. The developers of YNAB strive to help you manage your money more efficiently by encouraging you to use a Four Basic Rule method which can genuinely help you save money or get out of debt.
YNAB is structured around these four principles and helps you to structure your budget accordingly. YNAB can import bank files and transaction ledgers and can retrieve your balances from over 12, banks. It does however allow you to factor mortgages and simple investments into your overall budget and gives you a very clear overview of where your money is going. You can also try a 34 day free trial of YNAB before deciding whether its for you or not. There is no support for Bill Pay though. The difference is that the Premium subscription includes Direct Connect which allows you to automatically download transactions from bank, credit card and investment institutions.
CountAbout is very good value for money and considerably cheaper than most personal finance software that supports Direct Connect. MoneyWell is a slick, simple but effective Quicken alternative designed specifically for Mac. MoneyWell is unique in that it uses an envelope budgeting system to help you manage your finances better.
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Rather than setting targets that you either hit or miss, envelope budgeting works on the basis that any money you save or overspend is constantly adjusted to show the effect on your incoming bills. MoneyWell also supports Direct Connect so that you can automatically pay bills from your bank account.
MoneyWell is clearly well thought out with some really smart interactive reports. MoneyWell Express was the mobile version of MoneyWell but was discontinued in early due to syncing issues. MoneyWorks was one of the first ever finance apps for Mac and made its debut on OS X way back in — before Windows 95 was even invented.
MoneyWorks is also generally very good at representing complex business data in graphs and produces custom reports via the MoneyWorks Gold report writer. MoneyWorks comes in 5 different versions aimed at differing sizes of business and all are available for standalone purchase or via subscription. MoneyWorks Cashbook is completely free to use and is ideal for small organizations that need a simple financial management solution.
You can also try MoneyWorks free for 45 days. The fact that you can use it completely for free is obviously a massive advantage compared to any other personal finance tool out there. The best Quicken alternative for you really depends on your specific needs. Some people need things like Bill Pay and Online Banking while others are more focused on investments. This is essential for those that want their accounts to be regularly updated with real time bank transactions.
Direct Connect known as QFX in Quicken products is the standard method that most banks support although increasingly, users are finding it very unreliable. Some banks such as Citibank have even dropped support for Direct Connect in favor of their own proprietary system instead. As a result, some applications such as Moneyspire, Banktivity and Moneydance have developed their own version of Direct Connect although this usually costs extra.
Of course, you can do this easily by setting up a Direct Debit with your bank for things such as utility bills but Bill Pay enables your finance app to track them more easily. When it comes to security, remember that any connection made between finance apps and your bank are only as safe as the application accessing it.
Make sure that the application takes security seriously and uses encrypted connections to your bank to prevent unauthorized interceptions. A few apps such as Personal Capital add an extra layer of protection by not actually storing your financial credentials but managing access via specialized encrypted service Yodlee. This is also used by many financial institutions and adds an extra layer of protection to your data. Alternatives such as Personal Capital, Banktivity and Moneydance all feature robust investment tracking as standard. If you like to manage your money or check accounts on the move, make sure the software you choose has a mobile app.
Some user their own servers to sync while others offer syncing via iCloud. If you like to take photos of receipts and invoices to sync with your Mac later, make sure this feature is supported.
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If you want to import your Quicken accounts into another application, you can easily do so by exporting them into QIF format. Unfortunately, Quicken has removed the option to export files in QIF format. Note that not all personal finance software supports QIF importing so if this is important to you, make sure you can migrate from Quicken easily.
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For those that travel a lot or that deal with foreign transactions regularly. The Mac edition of Quicken is still lagging behind when it comes to multiple currency transaction support. Those that imported foreign currency accounts into Quicken for example found that they were suddenly converted to dollars. Make sure foreign currencies are supported if you do a lot of trade abroad to avoid some major headaches when importing data. If you share the software with a partner, other members of your family or colleagues, support for creating multiple profiles is very useful.
You can use the software to manage various aspects of your financial life from budget creation to debt tracking, savings goals, and even investment coaching. The software features Excel exporting, which allows you to manipulate and perform additional calculations on your data.
Some of the more advanced features include bill paying, which allows you to set up payments for your bills right from the software. You can even use it to track the value of your assets to have an accurate calculation of your total net worth. The app is robust enough to manage both your personal and business expenses and even handles property management functions like rental payments from tenants. Mint is one of the most popular budgeting and expense tracking tools.
You can have the software pull in your bank and credit card information to analyze your spending and pinpoint areas that you can cut back on spending to improve your finances. For more accountability, Mint allows you to set up alerts for things like due dates and low balance to keep you on track. These features help you avoid expensive fees for late payments and overdrafting your bank account.
As you create your budget and manage your daily finances, the software provides you with tutorials that will help you tackle some of the tougher financial topics. The software automatically links to your bank account, bringing in your spending information for analysis and budgeting tracking. The traditional envelope budgeting system helps you stick to a budget by using envelopes to manage your budget.
Choose the financial goals that are most important to you, then add your bank accounts and set your income.