This Free App Analyzes Your Spending and Helps You Keep It Under Control
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It’s happened to the very best of us.
In fact, I even have a name for it: The “Monday Morning Face-the-Music Moment.” (Hey, I didn’t say it was super catchy. We’re talking about Mondays, after all.)
You know exactly the moment I mean.
And it’s not the startled response to the alarm clock going off for the first time in two days… although that sucks, too.
It’s when you sit down, grit your teeth and check your bank account, forcing yourself to once again reckon with the financial consequences of your weekend choices.
It all seemed like such a good idea at the time. But on Monday morning, Saturday night has rapidly-diminishing returns.
Those margaritas cost how much? And you had how many? They weren’t even that good!
And the pain of your bleeding wallet is only doubled when you once again face that undeniable fact. (And by “you,” I mean “I”).
I kind of suck at money.
Still. Even though I’m almost 30. Even though I’m a personal finance writer.
Money Management is Really Hard, But This App Can Help
No, we’re not personal finance geniuses. I mean, it’s not exactly focused on in American schools.
But we don’t have much of an excuse anymore. This app is going to help us get our financial (stuff) together and learn better money habits.
In fact, it uses the same technology you’re probably already using to perform that fateful Monday morning audit in the first place. (*Shudder.*)
Clarity Money is a free app that helps you see, organize, and take control of your finances.
The way it works is simple. You just sign up, connect your existing accounts, and get ready to learn more about where your money’s disappearing to… and how to keep more of it, instead.
Clarity Money analyzes and uses your spending history to provide budgetary insights. It’ll show you exactly how much you spend in different categories, like bars and restaurants, as a percentage of your total expenses.
Clarity Money (Gently) Teaches You How to Do Money Better
But it’s not just a recap of your weekend spending with pretty graphics.
It also gives you the tools and information you need to start making better financial choices. And they’re all super-easy to use, and accessible right inside the app.
For example, Clarity Money will show you a list of your monthly recurring charges, and does the math to show you exactly how much each costs you over the course of a year.
Then, it offers you an easy way to cancel that long-foregone gym membership or the magazine subscription piling up on your end table.
You can also take advantage of a fee-free, FDIC-insured Online Savings Account from Marcus by Goldman Sachs to help you reach your financial goals and crush them.
The app automatically socks away the amount you set, from the account you choose, with whatever regular frequency works best for your situation (for example, $10 from your checking account every Tuesday or every 17th of the month).
You can designate a specific purpose for the savings or simply use it to (finally) start your emergency fund. You can withdraw whenever you see fit.
Basically, it’s like having a responsible friend in your pocket telling you how much you can actually afford to spend on brunch this weekend — all while silently slipping spare change into your piggy bank before you have the chance to blow it.
… And granting you free access to your credit score.
… And who does it all for free.
How to Use Clarity Money to Learn Better Money Habits
If you’re eager to avoid the Monday morning blues, it’s easy to get started with Clarity Money.
Even if you decide it’s not for you, you have nothing to lose: It’s totally free and secured with multi-level safeguards designed to protect your data. You can also close your account at any time.
Just sign up now, and start connecting your financial information. The system is pretty user-friendly, and the support team is available via the in-app chat feature should you encounter any problems.
So go ahead, say it with me:
I kind of suck at money. And that’s totally OK.
Jamie Cattanach (@jamiecattanach) is a freelance writer who is bad at money. Her work has been featured at Ms. Magazine, BUST, Roads & Kingdoms, The Write Life, Nashville Review, Word Riot and elsewhere.
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