For many first time renters, signing a lease brings on a new level of responsibility, and stress, to handling your finances. Managing your money now entails paying rent, along with taking care of your daily essentials, and finding some extra cash left over to spend on yourself. Although daunting for some, there are plenty of apps and websites to help you set up effective savings habits and forge a path to financial stability.
A good place to start is with CollegeInvestor, whose millennial founder helps you get out of student debt, and learn how to earn, save and invest more money. With a slew of helpful tips as well as products to buy, think of it as the basics of personal finance and the foundation to building your financial future.
If you’re more of a DIY kind of learner, then perhaps a financial app like Mint is for you. A well known and trusted budget app, Mint is an all-in-one way to keep track of everything from account balances to bills and the budgets you create to manage the flow. They also offer daily personalized tips and advice for maximizing your money, and it’s free to sign up.
Looking for something more basic? Try a savings app like Digit that analyzes your spending and automatically saves small amounts that you won’t miss. In a nutshell, It studies your money habits- both what comes in and goes out, and from there, starts skimming off the nominal excess. There is a small monthly fee but some find it worth it to save money they will never miss.
Tip Yourself takes a more manual approach. You transfer whatever you’d like into your virtual tip jar whenever you see fit. Maybe you tip yourself for going to the gym, cleaning the apartment, or not texting your crush! Although there is no fee for the app or service, if you’re not disciplined about setting money aside, this might not be the one for you.
Somewhere in the middle lies Qapital, a savings app that uses goals to make savings more fun. Thinking about going on a safari? Set up your goal and let Qapital motivate you with recommendations and tools based on behavioral psychology. To keep you on track, you can apply rules that will automatically send money toward your goals. For more serious savers, they also offer an investment account to help you reach long term goals.
Unlike traditional savings apps, Acorns is a micro-investing platform that takes small dollar investments, and spare change, and invests the money into a portfolio. Based on your financial situation and goals, they recommend what the optimal investment is for you. Acorns takes a long approach to how your money can make money and offers a retirement investment plan as well. A platform that wants to grow with you.
Whether your goal- short term savings, buying a house, or building an investment portfolio, getting started is easy. All it takes is deciding what approach is right for you, right now.
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