Recommended Budgeting Tools and Apps

by Gary Foreman

Recommended Budgeting Tools and Apps photo

If you hope to dig your way out of debt, you really need a budget. These are the budgeting tools and apps we recommend for paying off debt and staying out of debt.

A simple budget will serve you just fine for conquering your debt.

The simplest, cheapest and most secure budget is one you create yourself on a piece of paper or in a spreadsheet on your computer or phone. But here are a few recommended tools that can help you if you feel you need it.

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A Simple, Secure Budgeting Spreadsheet

If you prefer a simple spreadsheet rather than an app or software, I recommend the Home Budget Spreadsheet from SimplePlanning.net. There is no monthly fee (just a one-time cost of $15.95 or $35.95 depending on the features you want).

You can create a budget in as little as 5 minutes and it has a comparison feature that will help you see where you are overspending any given month. You can even set spending alerts so you know exactly when your spending is over budget.

Best of all, because your personal information is not stored online as with most budgeting apps and software, it is completely safe.

Learn more about the Home Budget Spreadsheet from SimplePlanning.net here.

A Free Digital Budgeting Option

If you prefer to go digital and automate your budgeting efforts, Mint is a free option that will allow you to connect your banking, loan and credit card accounts to your Mint budget. You can access Mint online or via the Mint app.

It can take a bit of work to set up, but once it is, it can make maintaining and managing your budget very easy.

Learn more about Mint here.

A Free Digital Budgeting App from Dave Ramsey

EveryDollar is another free digital option.  You can access EveryDollar online or via the app.

One perk to EveryDollar is it encourages you to be proactive with your budgeting efforts by sending you reminders to plan each month’s expenses. If you are not so good at staying on top of your budget, EveryDollar could be an ideal tool for you.

Learn more about EveryDollar here.

An Affordable Digital Budgeting Option

Mvelopes is another great digital budgeting option. It is not free, and while I certainly do not recommend adding another line item to your monthly budget, the basic plan is only $5.97/month or $69/year. Or for the $9.97/month plan and the $19/month plan, you get access to their debt reduction center.

Learn more about Mvelopes here or sign up to try it free for 30 days.

Reviewed April 2021

About the Author

Gary Foreman is a former financial planner and purchasing manager who founded The Dollar Stretcher.com website and newsletters in 1996. He's the author of How to Conquer Debt No Matter How Much You Have and he's been featured in MSN Money, Yahoo Finance, Fox Business, The Nightly Business Report, US News Money, Credit.com and CreditCards.com. You can read Gary's full bio here. Gary shares his philosophy of money here. Gary is available for audio, video or print interviews.

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