While browsing Business Week, I ran across what I now think as the best personal finance software. It actually is an online money management tool. The product is great: it is easy to use and has all the necessary functionality. And, the best thing is that it is FREE.
The best (free) personal finance software: Mint.com
Over the years, I have used a wide variety of tools and software for managing my personal finance. I have used MS Money as well as Quicken. Though I really enjoyed the tools, they did not always sync correctly. Plus, they cost money. Being somewhat of an expert with MS Excel, I often resorted back to Excel spreadsheets for managing my finances. I often found it easier, faster, and cheaper to manage my finance with Excel spreadsheets. I guess not anymore.
So, here are my ratings for Mint.com
- Importing account data: 9/10, everything looks great; the only knock is that I have an overdraft protection on my checking account with the same exact account number as my checking account, and it will not show up in my list of accounts. Probably only 1 in 10,000 has the same setup as me, so you are probably OK.
- Types of accounts: 10/10, can sync in all your personal finance accounts, from checking and credit cards to your 401k, mutual funds, and money market accounts.
- Security: 9/10. It seems very secure. After the login, your pages show in Secure Socket Layer in http (note the https instead of http in the URL). Also, Mint.com is verified/certified by VeriSign, TRUSTe, and McAffeeSECURE. Honestly, how secure is your Money data on your PC? If you do not have your PC adequately protected from malware and hijack attempts, then ALL the data on your PC can be stolen.
- Reporting: 10/10, informative and easy to use. Unlike free tools provided by credit card companies, the reports are layed out to give you the information you need that include/promote saving money. There are transaction, trending, and investments pages that allow for easy editing of details and viewing.
- Usability: 10/10, extremely intuitive and easy to use. Heavy use of ajax results in the website design makes the site very fast to use. The changes you make will appear without the entire page refreshing.
- Affordability: 10/10, can’t beat free when it comes with quality
All in all, I am very impressed with this free money management tool. I recommend everyone to try it out. Go to www.mint.com.