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5 Tips to using apps to keep track of your finances

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The first ever personal finance tracking apps were released decades ago in desktop form. They were created in software programs like Microsoft Money and Quicken. However, the world of tracking expenses experienced a sort of revolution since the early 80’s. Currently, we’ve phone and web-based expense tracker applications like TripLog that assist in attaining never before reached levels of financial preparedness and knowledge. 

Let’s explore a few tips for using apps to track your personal finances.

1. Great for capital expense planning

Supposing you got your finance situation on point but still desire to obtain graphical representation or charts of your finances, an app bodes well with you.

Apps great for tracking finances play the role of a fully-fledged wealth manager for hire. Apps come with a dashboard loaded with lots of features aimed at helping you better understand the nitty-gritty.

An app may create charts depicting your cash flow – broken down monthly and by category. In addition, apps dig into details in regards to unearthing your spending habits. While an app may not suffice in matters budgeting, it’s a powerful finance tracking tool.

2. Protect yourself

Finance app site encrypt passwords, such that if a hacker were successful in breaking in, they’d need to first decrypt the passwords. For instance, say, someone grabbed your phone at your local restaurant, you’d run the risk of personal information falling into the wrong hands.

Lesson: Protect your phone at all times by setting up a password prompt each time you log in using your phone.

3. Practise Discretion in Public Places

Refrain from logging into your app while using public WiFi. Such airwaves are open to just about everyone and prone to breaches. Use mobile data if at all you must check your account activity details and log off once done.

Additionally, pay close attention to people around you while using your app, you don’t want the wrong person enjoying he full-view of your mobile’s screen.

4. Disregard Auto-Login Prompts

Most likely you’re familiar with pop ups like, “Remember your password?” followed with the options of “Yes”, “No”, “Never for this site” or “Not now.” Always choose “Never”.

5. Pay attention

Finance apps send bank related alerts for their credit cards and bank accounts in case unusual activity is detected. Report unusual activity on your accounts on a timely basis.

Takeaway

Perhaps the biggest philosophical difference among providers of finance tracking apps is whether to lay down spending thresholds by category and list individual expenses into the files or employ a cash flow method. In the latter approach, savings and recurrent expenditure are deducted, alongside daily transactions to inform users of how much of what to spend at a time.

Supposing you hardly pay attention to your spending, contemplate starting with the category approach for the first few months. Upon grasping your triggers, you may choose to shift to the simplified cash flow approach.

Walter G. is a software engineer, startup co-founder, former CTO of several tech companies and currently teaches programming for a coding bootcamp. He has been blogging for the past 5 years and is an avid BMX rider, bio-hacker and performance enthusiast.
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