Money is one of the leading causes of stress in relationships. In fact, a study conducted by SunTrust Bank found that money is the number one topic couples argue about. If you're looking for ways to reduce stress and arguments in your relationship, one solution might be to start managing your money together.
There are a number of great finance apps out there that can help make this process easier. In this blog post, we will discuss some of the best finance apps for couples and how they can help you both better manage your finances!
Before finance apps: first things first
Although it can be helpful to manage your money together using a finance app, it's important to make sure you're aligned on your financial goals and priorities before doing so. Sit down with your partner and discuss what you both hope to achieve financially. Are you looking to save for a down payment on a home? Or maybe you're aiming for retirement? Whatever your goals may be, make sure you are both on the same page before you even start looking.
In addition, some transparency around savings rates and risk tolerance will allow you both to sleep more comfortably at night. You don't necessarily need to agree on everything, but it's important that you're both aware of where the other person stands. If one partner is a saver and the other likes living in the moment, there may be conflict. But if you understand each other's priorities and work together as allies instead of adversaries, you'll both know more clearly where to focus. If this is too difficult or becomes a sensitive topic, it might be worth booking a one-time session with a financial consultant.
How they can help you manage your money better
"Out of sight, out of mind," as the adage goes. Except that isn't really what you want when it comes to personal finance, arguably the most important piece of life admin you'll encounter as a couple. The number one thing a unified platform will do is give you a holistic picture so you know what exactly is going on. What's your savings rate as a % of your income? How are you tracking towards that new house or retirement? Is your portfolio allocated correctly to match your risk preferences as a couple?
It's also much easier to hold each other accountable with a finance app. If you're trying to save for something specific, like that long-awaited honeymoon, the app can automatically set aside funds from your paycheck without you having to think about it. You'll be less likely to overspend and you'll be able to review progress together in real time.
Examples of the best finance apps for couples, including Mint and Personal Capital
These are the top-rated financial management apps which cater for couples:
Mint is one of the most well-known personal finance apps there is. It offers a ton of features like budgeting, bill pay and saving goals. The app is also free to use with no hidden fees or charges! You can even link your bank account so you'll never miss another payment again (or forget about one). It is however, only available in the US.
If you're looking for an app specifically designed to help couples manage their finances together, then check out CoupleMoney. This app offers budgeting, goal setting and tracking tools to help partners stay on track with their finances. It also lets users store photos of receipts in case they ever need them later on down the road - perfect if one person does all shopping for both people, or vice versa! This app is free to download and use for up to two accounts per couple.
Qube Money offers budgeting and goal setting features to help couples manage their money better. Budget categories include food, household expenses, transportation costs and more! The app also includes an option called "Goals" where you can set up specific targets to work towards as a couple. Qube Money is free to download and use, with no hidden fees or charges.
MoneyWise is another one of the best finance apps for couples, in fact designed specifically for this purpose. The app offers budgeting, goal setting and tracking features, as well as the ability to connect directly with a financial advisor. This can be extremely helpful if you're not sure where to start when it comes to managing your money as a couple! MoneyWise is free to download and use, with no hidden fees or charges.
If you and your partner are looking for the best finance apps for couples, consider looking into one of the above.
Why are these some of the best?
The personal finance market is incredibly crowded and there are a whole variety of different options to choose from when it comes to a unified family platform. The ones that rise to the top do so as a result of a superior customer experience and widespread adoption in their given market. In fact, often the features sets and prices are so similar that it can come down to personal preference as to which one you end up using. You should also check what permissions these apps have: most provide read-only access to your data through Open Banking or similar, but when dealing with sensitive financial information it's important to make sure that the platform you choose has robust security protocols in place. The best finance apps for couples, or anyone for that matter will publish these on their site and make them available to read through.
Drawbacks from using some of these types of apps together as a couple: what are they missing?
Firstly, be wary of any platform that offers a service for free. Read closely into the T&Cs and be aware that such companies often monetise by offering your data to up sell you targeted additional products and services. If this is a concern, you might be better off investing in a more premium service. They are also often limited in coverage, both by country and asset class. This is worth bearing in mind because your experience will be diminished by limiting the extent to which you can upload your accounts. The best finance apps for couples will have some strong combination of features, coverage, price and security in the allocation that works for you.
Conclusion: what we've learned about this topic, why it's important, and how you can make it work in your relationship!
These platforms are for the most part, pretty good. They're great for aligning with your partner, setting a budget and taking control of your daily spending. They also might spark some important conversations that hopefully you've had before but if not, need some forethought.
However, they're largely focused towards management of day to day spending. What's wrong with that? Well, it largely ignores the macro view that you'll want to take when planning your family's finances for the longer term. We realised that pretty early on - and that's why we built Strabo. All the ease of a personal finance platform and the simplicity of a budgeting app, while dealing with the more complex and far reaching aspects of finance. We want people to be able to manage their bank accounts, investments, pensions, property and even alternatives like cryptocurrency in one place, in the click of a button. And if you do want to engage your financial advisor, they can also have access to the platform with restricted access so that everyone knows exactly what's going on, all the time. Go ahead and try all the options above! Sign up, see if you can choose from the best finance apps for couples and if there's features that you and your partner are missing, we'd love to hear from you so we can build them ourselves!