Budgeting is a necessity for students, particularly those who take out loans or pay out-of-pocket for their education. If you’re trying to navigate your finances while funding your schooling, here are some apps that might help you stay on track.
Mint is a popular app from the creators of TurboTax® and Quicken®. It can track all of your budgetary information, from checking accounts to bills to loan amounts. It also keeps track of your spending with the goal of helping you better understand where your money goes. Mint can be accessed online, but it’s available for Android, Apple and Windows phones as well. The app is free.
Remember when people used to put cash in real envelopes as a savings strategy? Goodbudget is the 21st century version of that. You can make “envelopes” for each of your spending categories—tuition, groceries, spending money, rent, etc.—and plan your budget that way. You can also sync your budget with multiple users, which may be useful if you have a spouse or children to track. This app is available for Android and iOS, and it’s free, with a $5/month Plus option.
Do you like the features of Mint and Goodbudget and want to combine them? Then Mvelopes might be a good option for you. It offers in-depth tracking and budgeting similar to Mint with an envelope function like GoodBudget. You can go with the free version, which allows up to four online bank accounts and 25 spending envelopes, or you can upgrade to the Premier or Money4Life Coaching options for more financial help. Mvelopes is available for Android and iOS systems.
Level's purpose is to help users find their financial balance. Level tracks your spending and helps you make adjustments where necessary. The app is well-designed and fairly simple to use, and less complicated than budgeting tools like Mint (though also with fewer features). Level is available for free for Apple and Android phones.
Left to Spend
If you’re looking for a less complex interface, Left to spend could work for you. Left to Spend has a simple concept: Set your spending budget and then enter each purchase you make. The app does the math and lets you know how much you have left. It’s $4.99 and available for iOS.
Hopefully these apps can help you track your budget while attending school. Do you use an app we didn’t mention here? Let us know in the comments!
Note: Entering your financial information into an app always carries risks. You should verify the security features on your budgeting app before inputting any personal information.