Smartphones have officially taken over the world. It is very rare that people go anywhere without their phones. They’re used for everything from taking pictures to posting on social media to texting to banking. Did you know you can also use your phone to save yourself money? I mean if you’re going to have it with you at all times, you might as well be gaining something from it. I’ve rounded up 10 great apps that will save you money, ranging from managing your finances to helping you travel for less. Download these apps on your iPhone or Android phone today and get saving!
Mint is a free personal financial management app. Once you link your banking and credit cards to Mint, it allows you to see exactly where your money goes with a nice visual. The app will suggest a budget based on your average spending habits. Mint gives you the ability to set spending limits and will provide a warning notification when you approach those limits. In addition to budgeting, you can also use the Mint app to manage and pay bills, as well as check your credit score. And if you’re worried about security, Mint is a product of Intuit, which is the maker of TurboTax. If you trust them with your tax information, you can trust that they are a secure place for you to view your finances all in one place.
This app is the perfect tool for home decorating. Houzz allows you to search millions of photos, from either interior designers or product manufacturers, to give you inspiration for your own home. When you click on a photo, you will be given the product’s cost, and in some cases you can even purchase that product directly through the app. You can sort by room, style, size and budget! This helps you keep within your desired budget for home décor, whereas magazines can sometimes entice you only for you to find out the product you just fell in love with is way out of your price range.
Zillow is arguably the most popular home app. Whether you’re looking for a home, renovating, or trying to sell your home, Zillow has got you covered. Browse Zillow for “Zestimates” (which tell you a home’s estimated worth), listing history, photos, and more. It allows you to see comparable homes, so when you’re searching, you can see if there is a less expensive house in the same neighborhood. You can also explore pricing of certain upgrades for your home. According to business consultant Cultural Outreach Solutions, Zillow has the largest database of homes on the market, including those for sale by owners. Another interesting thing about Zillow is that if you have an account with them you are able to view foreclosure and pre-foreclosures. While there is some risk purchasing these homes, they often have some great deals if you don’t mind purchasing a fixer upper.
RetailMeNot may be the Holy Grail of coupon apps for shoppers. It provides savings, promo codes, coupons and all sorts of other discount for retailers and restaurants alike. RetailMeNot can be used for physical stores and online, too. When shopping, you can use the app to show you savings nearby, which enables you to get discounts on things you were probably going to buy anyway.
ShopSavvy is an app that lets you scan the barcode on an item in order to compare prices from dozens of online competitors and local stores (Amazon does not participate, sadly). This ensures that you always get the lowest price for the things you buy. ShopSavvy also offers special cash-back deals from some retailers and you can set up notifications to alert you when a specific product goes on sale.
This free app, which used to come standard on iPhones, can actually help you save money! By checking in on how your stocks are doing and reading the latest news about them, you can determine if it’s a good time to sell. You can also add stocks on there that you have on your “watch list,” or stocks that you are interested in, but want to monitor to determine if they are a good buy.
Personal Capital is a popular app in the personal finance blogging community. There are both free and paid services provided. In the free basic service, Personal Capital gives you a “dashboard” that allows you to see all your investment and other financial accounts, including your retirement accounts, on one screen by sharing your login information. This gives you the ability to check all your stocks and bonds in one place, so that you can check that your overall investment mix is what you want it to be, even if they are in different accounts with different brokerages. In the paid service, in which Personal Capital manages your money for a fee of up to 0.89% of assets a year, the app pairs investors with financial advisors online and over the phone.
Ebates is a website that rewards you with cash back for your purchases. It’s quite simple. You go to the Ebates website, click on the store you want to shop at (you have to click on the store directly on the Ebates website, which then forwards you to the store’s website), shop and make your purchase, then you will receive an email confirming your purchase. Also, there is a downloadable button that makes it even easier to ensure you get cash back. The Ebates cash back button pins right onto your browser, so if you forget to go through Ebates first you press this button once you are on the store’s website and then continue the process. Once a quarter, Ebates sends you a check rewarding you with cash back for your purchases. If you’re going to shop anyway, you might as well be rewarded for it! The Ebates app gives you the ability to use in-store coupons and scan products to compare prices. If you sign up through my link here, you will automatically receive $10 when you sign up!
OpenTable is my go-to app for making reservations. My husband and I LOVE going out to eat, so it makes me happy that OpenTable makes reservations easy and convenient. Each time you make a reservation you typically earn 100 points, but you can earn as much as 1,000 points depending on the time slot and restaurant chosen. These points, once accumulated to a minimum of 2,000 ($20), can then be turned into either restaurant or Amazon gift cards. Pretty nice that a free app that makes my life more convenient will reward me just for using it!
Hopper is an app that finds you the best time to buy your flight based on cost. It’s easy: first, you search for a trip by tapping dates on the color-coded calendar. Next, Hopper provides a prediction about when your flight will be cheapest. The app will recommend whether you should wait or book. If the app says to “wait”, you tap the binoculars to watch. Hopper will send you notifications as soon as the price drops. If Hopper says to “buy,” choose your flights and book right then and there. It’s simple and convenient because they do the data analyzing for you. As of right now, Hopper is only available for iOS users.
Do you use any of these apps? Do you use any others to help save you money? Share in the comments below!