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Financial Aggregate Services in the UK

RMS OceanicRMS Oceanic Registered User regular
edited July 2014 in Help / Advice Forum
So I've seen some of my US associates talk up the benefits of Mint.com, which can read your bank account and lay out all your ins and outs in several forms so you can get a feel for what your expenses truly are, and I was interested in doing the same. However Googling was unclear about whether Mint.com would work with my UK bank account, so I looked elsewhere for other sources, and a couple sprang to my attention:

- moneydashboard.com, seems to be the most Mint-esque.
- moneydance.com, an application rather than an online service, it seems to claim to be able to access my account all the same to provide similar services.

Has anybody had any experience with either of these, or with a different option I haven't considered, ideally accessible from both PC and Android phone? I'm trying to take the understanding of my finances to the next level. I'm not living hand to mouth - right now roughly 30-40% of my paycheck makes it to the end of the month - but I figured being able to get a better picture of it would improve my retention rate.

RMS Oceanic on

Posts

  • CroakerBCCroakerBC YorkRegistered User regular
    I can say nice things about You Need a Budget (which even has a demo!) . It lets you set up a series of categories, then allocate money into those categories each month - setting yourself a budget, and letting you know where your money is being used every month. You then input transactions as the month continues - and can check to see if you're over/under budget in a category. It also does a decent line in reporting - net worth over time, monthly expenditure, and so on and so forth.

    In theory you can link it directly to your bank account as well; it does have an iOS (and I believe Android) phone client.

  • RMS OceanicRMS Oceanic Registered User regular
    Input transactions? Like, I have to type in "Oh I spent £13.50 on Pizza"? Maybe I'm misunderstanding, but it feels like I could do that in a spreadsheet.

  • CroakerBCCroakerBC YorkRegistered User regular
    Well, it can also derive the transactions out of your bank account if you let it (I believe Mint does this as well) - per my above. I just do the transactions manually because it helps me to keep an eye on how much I'm spending - also I'm a bit paranoid about leaving online services hooked to my accounts!

    That said, I seem to recall that Mint (and it appears Moneydashboard et al.) are money management software, rather than budgeting software; that is, they help you track how much money you've spent, but don't provide the capacity for advance planning. MDB looks like it lets you track, for example, that you spent £60 on a haircut, where YNAB lets you set up a budget category called 'haircuts', stick £100 in it at the start of the month, and then debits £60 from the budget category when the transaction is input. It's helpful in so far as it's not just telling you what you have spent, but what you have allocated to spend, and whether you've over/underspent. (Note: I do not really spend £100 a month on haircuts)

    That said, I'm confidentthat you can do pretty much all your financial planning in a spreadsheet if you want to. All budgeting software does is collate this information and give you different view on it - YNAB works for me, because it lets me set up budgetary categories, and allocate expenses into those monthly, then track expenses per category and report on both individual categories and broader budget themes - but it might not be as good for you. Might be worth giving it a punt though.

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