Four Personal Finance Programs You Can Use Free

It is time to get your finances into order. You work too hard for your money to handle it loosely. It is important to manage your budget properly. I know this does not sound like fun and that is before I tell you it is easier said than done. Back in the “old” days you had to either track your spending by tediously making entries in a paper ledger or investing in expensive software and making tedious entries in the computer.

Fortunately, times have changed and technology has come a long way towards making budgeting, if not fun at least easy. There are several remarkable no cost programs that can help you establish and monitor a budget. If the thought of budgeting is enough to send you into shock, do not panic yet. Certainly disciplined spending can be a real pain! However, if you want to enjoy financial success a budget is a necessity. These programs can show you exactly where your money is going. And they will help you spend your money more wisely.

My personal favorite is Mint.com. Mint is brought to us by the makers of Quicken and provides “At-a-glance insights.” This service will download and categorize your balances and transactions automatically every day- making it effortless to see graphs of your spending, income, balances, and net worth.

SimpleD Budget – If you need help establishing a budget, try downloading SimpleD Budget. This program will help you sort out your monthly income and expenses. It is good for creating a personal or household budget. Once you have entered your monthly income, you can allocate it across a number of categories such as bills, savings, entertainment and more. Finally, you can track your spending through the program and monitor how closely you are meeting your goals.

GnuCash – Maybe you want to manage all of your expenses. With this program, as with mint.com, you can track several checking and savings accounts. You can also keep on top of loans, stocks and mutual funds. This program can be labor intensive. But it is also incredibly useful. All of your financial information is compiled into reports and balance sheets with the push of a button.

This program can give you a real snap shot of your financial situation. But it does require some serious work. Just like in the old days, you will be entering a lot of data, especially when getting started. So, this program is a good fit for advanced users or those who do not want to bank online.

AceMoney Lite – This program lets you track a single bank account in detail. It is a toned down version of a more complete program (that costs money). With the free version you can watch all the activity on one account. And you will be able to generate monthly and yearly income and expense reports. It does have all the features the full version, however it is limited to one account. AceMoney Lite will assist you in organizing and managing your personal finances quickly and easily. It also supports all the functions required for home and small-business accounting needs.

I am sure there are more programs available, but these are the ones I am familiar with. Now all you need to do is take a look, choose one, and get that budget set up. You will soon be on your way to a less stressful relationship with your money. By understanding your current financial situation, making financial changes, and following a budget, you will be in a strong position to repay your debts in the most efficient manner and start building financial reserves for your future.