Top Finance Apps You Should Be Using
We compare some of South Africa’s top finance apps to help you control your spending. The winners are easy to use, and seamlessly integrate all of your cards and accounts.
Published: Tuesday, August 30th 2016
They say July, August and September are the longest financial months of the year and we all know the uneasy feeling of having to ration until payday.
Long gone are the days of keeping a stack of till slips to tally up with a calculator. These days, it is wiser to opt for a more technically advanced method.
Welcome to the great era of apps - and finance apps are a growing marketplace in South Africa.
Here are a couple finance apps we tried this week
By far the best is Old Mutual’s 22Seven (Boss your Money) which allows you to sync any bank account or even reward card to keep track of all your debit or credits.
Sporting a beautiful design, easy integration with accounts, and external related financial services, this app makes it easy and also quite fun to track your incomings and outgoings.
Essentially, it provides you with a holistic and detailed overview of your daily, weekly and monthly spending.
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I downloaded this app because my partner and I share monthly spending money on one credit card, and I don’t have access to the balance. With this app, I was able to add my partner’s bank card to my interface and now I can see how much is being spent and how much is available on the card.
The app also shows you a 'spend'-ometre indicating your average spending and how much you have spent to date.
1. Spent so far; 2. Average or planned spending; 3. Forecast spending for the rest of the month
22Seven will also split up your spending into various subcategories, e.g eating out, cellphone, bank charges, etc, to show where the bulk of your money goes to. In this way, the app will pick up trends in your spending habits that help you make informed decisions.
In addition to adding bank and reward cards, you can also add your own personal notes on loans (e.g I owe dad R1000).
What is particularly great about this app, other than the fact that it is modern, crisp and beautiful, is that you can also link your investment accounts. The drop down option includes everything from 10X investments to Coronation Fund and Easy Equities.
The only downside for me was that after adding my partner’s bank details our mortgage reflects twice. Additionally, with your mortgage in the mix, it can get a little depressing, when you have a few grand in the plus and a few million in the minus!
Without sounding too prejudiced, every single South African needs to download this app. They also have a very insightful blog which you can access by clicking here.
If for any reason 22Seven isn’t 'app'-ropriate, Moneysmart have released their very own budgeting app (still in Beta testing), allowing you to connect your accounts.
If you had to oversimplify what good household financials mean, it would come down to staying organised. This is what Stocard (Android etc) and Wallet (Apple App Store) help you to do. After all, loyalty cards allow you to save quite a bit when you tally up all your cash backs.
Stocard works with a bar-code scanner, that allows you to scan your cards, and they will then upload automatically onto the interface.
You can also manually upload any cards that aren’t listed in the options menu by typing in the card’s number. The only problem is that not all the store assistants know what to do with a virtual card, and may need to type in the number.
Wallet goes one step further, allowing you to keep your credit, debit, store cards, boarding passes, movie tickets, coupons, reward cards and more in one place. The only catch, of course, is that you need an iPhone as it is based off the Apple architecture.
With Wallet, you can use passes on your iPhone to check in for flights, receive and redeem rewards, get into movies, or redeem coupons. According to Apple, passes can include useful information such as the balance on your coffee card, your coupons' expiration date and your seat number for a concert.
These finance apps will help you to monitor and control your spending habits a lot better than ye-olde-piece-of-paper.