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Top budgeting apps for couples to manage their money

Get a joint bank account, they say.

It’ll be fine, they say.

So you do it.

But then you discover your significant other doesn’t prioritize saving as much as you do. Your partner, on the other hand, can’t fathom why you consider a new outfit to be “a need” when you have a closet full of clothes.

Before the tense money discussions become full-on arguments, you and your partner need to get on the same page about your shared finances… or better yet, the same app.

Here are 10 of the best budgeting apps for couples to manage their money together.

EveryDollar

Cost: Free, or premium version for $129.99 annually

EveryDollar was created by financial guru Dave Ramsey. If you and your partner are fans of Ramsey’s favorite money management method, the zero-based budget, this app will be right up your alley.

That doesn’t mean you’d have to abandon your 50/30/20 budget if that’s what you prefer. You can customize the budget template to fit what works for you.

This budgeting app is known for providing great user experience without a bunch of distracting ads. If you opt into the premium version (EveryDollar Plus), you get automatic syncing to your bank account — which the free version does not provide — and access to Ramsey’s Financial Peace University.

Goodbudget

Cost: Free, or premium version for $50 annually or $6 monthly

Goodbudget is a money management app for couples who like the cash envelope system but are ready to stop carrying cash everywhere.

This app uses virtual envelopes for your various spending categories. If you’re using the free version, you get a total of 20 envelopes to control your spending. The paid version allows you unlimited envelopes.

Another difference between the two versions: You can only use the app on two devices with the free version; whereas with the paid version, you can use up to five devices.

Both versions include a debt-tracking feature so you and your other half can see your collective progress on paying off credit cards and student loans.

With Goodbudget, you’ll need to be comfortable manually updating your envelopes when you make purchases or uploading your transaction history from your bank. The app does not sync to bank accounts to track spending in real time.

Honeydue

Cost: Free

Honeydue helps you and your partner stay on the same page when it comes to money. Not only can you track spending and saving through bank account transactions, but you can link accounts for loans and investments to collectively manage debt and save for the future.

Like its name implies, Honeydue has a feature that reminds you and your honey when bills are due. You can also chat with your partner directly in the app about all things financial.

Honeyfi

A person uses Honeyfi on their phone.

Cost: $59.99 annually or $9.99 monthly

Honeyfi syncs your bank accounts and creates a budget for you based on your past spending. But if you’re trying to up your savings and cut down on your Uber eats, you can customize your budget to reflect how you want it to be.

To encourage money convos, Honeyfi lets you send in-app communication to your partner. You can nag them about overspending at happy hour or ask if they picked up laundry detergent during their Target run. If you want to keep some spending incognito though, Honeyfi allows you to limit what your other half can see.

This couples’ budgeting app can help with your savings goals, like putting aside money for a wedding. You can set savings rules and authorize Honeyfi to pull a certain percentage or a set amount from your checking accounts each month.

Mint by Intuit

Cost: Free

Mint has been around for over a decade and is a very popular app. You and your other half can get on budget together by syncing your bank accounts and creating as many spending categories as you’d like.

Mint sends you reminders about upcoming bills so you and your partner stay on top of paying everything on time. It’ll also alert you when you’re low on funds.

One downside of this app, however, is that it can feel a bit cluttered with ads and offers — a common criticism of free apps.

Mvelopes

Cost: Tiered plans priced at $6 a month, $19 a month and $59 a month

Mvelopes is another budgeting app that brings the cash envelope system to the digital world. You link your bank account and create virtual envelopes based on how much you want to spend in different categories.

If you and your loved one need to stick to a strict grocery budget or curb what you spend on entertainment, you can easily tell how much you have left to spend for the month in each budget category.

With the Mvelopes app, there are three different plans you can sign up for. The cheapest, Mvelopes Basic, allows you to set up your envelope budget, monitor account balances, get interactive reports and access live chat support.

Mvelopes Plus adds perks like a quarterly checkup with a personal finance trainer, debt reduction tools and access to the Mvelopes Learning Center. The premium Mvelopes Complete includes more financial education and monthly sessions with a money pro.

Personal Capital

Cost: Free

Personal Capital is for the couple that’s serious about their future together — particularly their financial future.

In addition to keeping tabs on your day-to-day spending, the app links to your 401(k)s and IRAs so you can see how you’re tracking toward retirement. It even offers a free retirement planner tool.

Personal Capital also factors in financial information like your mortgage and other loans to give you a complete picture of your net worth.

Though the app is free, Personal Capital makes its money by offering wealth management services, like sessions with their financial advisors where you’ll be charged a percentage of your portfolio.

PocketGuard

A woman uses the app Pocketguard on her phone.

Cost: Free, or premium version for $34.99 annually, $10.99 quarterly or $4.99 monthly

PocketGuard syncs your bank accounts, credit cards, loans and investments so you and your partner get an overall view of your shared finances. It automatically builds your budget based on your income, recurring bills and financial goals you’ve set.

The app has an “in my pocket” feature, which lets you know how much is available to spend on date night after covering household bills and other obligations. PocketGuard also digs through your expenses to identify savings and ways to improve your finances.

The premium version — PocketGuard Plus — includes additional features like customized spending categories and ways to track cash purchases.

You Need a Budget

Cost: $84 annually or $11.99 monthly

You Need a Budget, or YNAB, is for couples who want to stay on top of every dollar they make and make sure that money is going to good use.

This app is set up around the zero-based budgeting method and is designed to help you and your significant other save money and get out of debt. YNAB identifies areas of overspending and gives you suggestions on how to adjust. It also makes recommendations for your budget based on your goals.

You can access this budgeting tool from almost any device — including your Apple watch or Amazon Echo. With YNAB, you’ll never have an excuse not to pull up your budget.

Zeta

Cost: Free

Zeta is touted as a budgeting app specifically for couples. It’s set up so you can manage shared and individual accounts together, but you’re in control of what information you want your partner to see.

You can sync your bank accounts or choose to manually update your budget. If you want to leave a note for your significant other about a questionable transaction, you can do that within the app. Zeta also has a split transactions feature so you can get your other half to pay you back for household bills.

When it comes to planning a vacation or saving for a house, Zeta has a section for money goals so you can stay on track.

What to consider when selecting a couples’ budgeting app

We’ve given you a bunch of options to choose from. Now it’s time to nail down what will work best for you and your significant other.

Think about how you’ll be using your budgeting app. Do you want something that syncs to your bank account to capture spending in real time? Or do you and your partner have a regular household budget meeting where you’ll manually record transactions in the app over a couple drinks?

Are you okay with ads or do you prefer a platform that limits those distractions?

Cost is another factor. Free is a great price, but some people feel more motivated to actually use what they’ve downloaded when they’re forking over money for it.

If you do go with a budgeting app that charges a monthly fee, test it out with a free trial first. If it isn’t something you’d give a 5-star rating, cancel the trial and try something else.

And if you’re Team Apple and your honey is Team Android, don’t sweat. All the options above are compatible with both operating systems.

Nicole Dow is a senior writer at The Penny Hoarder. Reporting from former staff writer Jen Smith was included in this article.

This was originally published on The Penny Hoarder, a personal finance website that empowers millions of readers nationwide to make smart decisions with their money through actionable and inspirational advice, and resources about how to make, save and manage money.

 

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