Bankrate.com is good for calculating faster debt pay-off amounts. is good for comparing federal student loan repayment plans. Upromise.com offers cash back from online shopping towards college savings and student loan repayment. gives a way to compare prices at local grocery stores on everything from produce to meat. I’d name
Mint’s Budgeting App
Mint.com is the best free budgeting site available. I find it valuable because it takes all the charges on my credit cards and bank accounts, and summarizes my expenses in categories. It’s a great way for families to see what they’re really spending. When I first used Mint, I realized I was spending far more on dining out than I originally thought. I quickly cut back by watching what I ordered and started using restaurant.com and Groupon coupons.
The Grocery Game
I’ve always veered away from grocery coupon clipping because it doesn’t help me much when I mainly buy fresh meat and produce. The Grocery Game app and website does. It tracks sales at local grocery stores, so you can stock your freezer with the fresh meats that you buy. You can also stock-up on eggs, and figure out which of the two or three closest stores to you has sales on the produce you regularly buy. It will also tell you where to find coupons that are relevant to your purchases.
My Pantry 2
It’s easy to go through the grocery store and accidentally buy produce you already have. I’ve done this way more than once. The solution? Reverse grocery lists. The My Pantry app has you keep track of what’s in your pantry. When you use an item, you delete. When you go grocery shopping, you add back in what you purchased.Add the app to your spouse’s app, too. The average person throws away over a quarter of their groceries. When I do reverse grocery lists, I reduce my spoilage by nearly 100 percent.
VITA and Free Tax Software
If you do your taxes yourself without the help from a tax professional or tax software, you may miss out on a tax deduction or tax credit you didn’t know about. The good news is that tax help may be free. Turbo Tax and Tax Cut offer free versions if you have a simple return. You can also look for specials or discounts by comparing tax software prices on various websites. The Volunteer Tax Assistance (VITA) program offers free tax help to individuals making less than $60,000 per year and to senior citizens.
Your Bank’s App.
It seems simple, but your bank is one of your best budgeting tools. Just remember to look beyond the balance. Some charges may take a few days to post, and tips you gave at restaurants may not be included in your balance until the charge is fully processed. If you or your spouse sharing your account also charges on cards, you can look at your total balance of charges on Mint instead.