Saving money is a crucial task. Regardless of where you might find yourself in life, there’s always something to save for, including creating an emergency fund for the unknowns that you’ll almost certainly face off against in the future. The median savings figure for those under 35 is $3,240, while those in the 55 to 64 age bracket have a median savings of roughly double that amount. Experts recommend putting aside enough cash to see you through three to six months of regular expenses — meaning that savings are an entirely personal endeavor.
Finding solutions to help save money can be difficult though. There are seemingly endless pieces of wisdom out there, and many can even contradict others’ advice. One approach that can give tech-savvy Android phone owners an edge when it comes to saving money is through apps that live on their phones. From tools that help track spending to others that can automate some parts of the savings process itself, there are plenty of options to supercharge your efforts at financial literacy. These are some of the best apps out there that Android owners can take advantage of in their daily life.
Honey is an application that lives on your Android phone or web browser. Adding the extension allows the app to scour the internet for discounts and deals on your behalf. Honey can be downloaded to your phone for both Android and Apple iOS users. Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari, and Opera browser users can take advantage of the savings that Honey offers on both mobile phone and desktop systems.
For online shoppers, the Honey app provides discounts, rewards, and price research on a huge selection of items available from digital retailers. On your Android phone or computer, when working through a purchase, the Honey app will automatically search for coupon codes that can be applied to your cart. You can also search for better deals through Honey itself. Either approach quickly and effortlessly helps you save money on the purchases you already make on a daily basis. It’s free to use Honey, and once you’ve installed the application, it simply lives in the background, seeking out bargains while you shop online. Honey was purchased by PayPal in 2020, and since integrating the systems has continued to progress. Today, users will find that activating PayPal rewards program offerings can pair the benefits of cash back rewards and the savings power that the Honey app provides, making it an even more effective savings tool.
Mint is the budgeting app from Intuit, the company behind TurboTax, QuickBooks, and CreditKarma. The Mint app is one of the most popular budgeting apps found on the Google Play Store because it can be used to seamlessly integrate all your accounts together into a single financial hub. The app is immensely easy to use, and it doesn’t cost anything to download and sign up with a new account. The app has been downloaded more than 10 million times from the Google Play Store and Intuit claims that it’s the “#1 most downloaded personal finance app.”
Mint offers a unique clarity to asset management, from investment balances and cash flow numbers to outgoing expenses and credit card and loan balances. With Mint, keeping a firm grasp on your financial status is made simple. The app also offers a look at your credit score, meaning you can do almost all of your financial planning from this one application on your phone rather than switching back and forth to gain scraps of information from various sources. Mint users are also able to keep track of subscriptions and bills, along with a negotiation feature that can help reduce expenses on things like TV and the internet through a partnership with BillShark.
Acorns is a round-up app that helps you save money without having to actively think about the task. The Acorns app is linked directly to your payment cards and accounts, and then every time you spend money the purchase is automatically rounded up to the nearest dollar and deposited into a savings account. Acorns boasts more than 20 million downloads and has a 4.6-star average rating from more than 266,000 reviews.
Acorns starts at $3 per month and users gain access to investments and learning resources that will enable a continually improving relationship with savings and money management. Roundups continue to accrue with each purchase, and when your saved capital reaches $5 you can invest it in companies and funds that meet your savings goals. Acorns also offers digital banking and bonus earnings incentives programs that can supercharge your savings. The roundup tool is a powerful weapon in any saver’s arsenal. By moving spare change into a savings pool with every purchase, you will start putting aside significant capital on a daily basis without having to think about it. In many cases, this small trickle of extra savings isn’t even felt in your bank account. The app is simple and highly effective for launching a brand new savings habits that will make a big difference over time.
Another key resource in everyday consumers’ fight to save money is Tally. The application helps credit card users consolidate repayments with a singular line of credit that sports a noticeably lower APR on average than typical credit card interest rates (Tally reports an average APR of 14.9% versus the 22.2% from traditional credit card issuers). This app is beneficial for two reasons. First, users are able to make one payment to their Tally line of credit, which then distributes payments to all of their cards automatically before their due dates. Second, with a lower interest rate, the line of credit works similarly to a revolving balance transfer that moves higher-interest credit to a lower-interest resource, and without charging any additional fees to use the service.
You can continue using your cards as normal, and the payments will be made by Tally to keep you current with your financial obligations. This is a great way to consolidate debt while saving a significant amount of cash over the long term. In the same way that only paying the minimum payment every month can balloon the actual amount you must repay to eventually bring your credit card statement down to zero, leaving balances on high-interest lines of credit is a recipe for paying out more in interest than you actually have to. Tally estimates that using the app can save you as much as $4,300 in credit card repayments over seven years of use. Using the app reduces interest additions and will save you money every month as you make a single repayment.
You Need a Budget (YNAB)
The You Need a Budget app (YNAB) helps Android users rethink their relationship with money. The mindset instilled by the platform centers on four rules for managing money. Using this tool begins with assigning every dollar you earn a job. Rather than leaving cash as a lump sum in your account that will be spent independently throughout the week or month until you’re paid again, users of YNAB set a plan for every cent of their earnings. Micromanaging the process of budgeting might sound a little overbearing at first, but with this shift in your mindset, you’ll see a rapid change in the way you approach routine spending and your bills more broadly. However, the tool also endeavors to give you a sense of flexibility while using the app. YNAB users are asked to remain undeterred by costs that rise above the anticipated expenditure (or come in under budget). Finally, the fourth rule tells you to begin thinking of the age of your capital rather than simply focusing on the amount of cash you have in your account. Using the money from last month’s paycheck to pay for this month’s expenses creates a buffer that provides enhanced financial mobility.
The app offers a free 34-day trial, and after that, the annual plan will cost $8.25 per month (in a yearly $99 payment). But for the cost, users are given a potent app that helps jumpstart a new way of thinking about money. Changing your mentality here can revolutionize the way you budget, spend, and save for the better.