Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Try a MINT

So I keep track of the finances in our little family mostly because I'm super Type A and a former accounting major. I actually enjoy it. Sick and sadistic? Yes. But completely mind releasing to me? Yes. I know. I'm weird, so sue me. While things in our budgetary world are not wildly out of control in our world (yet!), the crazy economy has caused me to be a little more conscious of things as of late. I have always used some kind of software to track our budget and spending habits, produce silly trend graphs and pie charts which may seem a little over the top for some, but speak to my "Monica-esque" nature. Up to now I've found it fairly time consuming to download and run statements each month through Quicken, but have been turned on to a handy dandy site called MINT which has already made my life (and pie charts) a breeze.

In short, it's a one-stop shop to enter all your accounts: bills, loans, credit cards, retirement accounts, checking and savings accounts, investment accounts, etc. and see them in one place, tracked by the minute and analyzed based on the budget you set for yourself. It will email you (or not if you choose) when you have a bill due, when you're over or under budget in an area, and to send you a statement with your spending habits, charts, etc. You simply enter in all your account numbers and passwords to their secure site and watch the magic happen. It's really quite amazing and I've been wildly impressed with the ability of the program thus far.

I encourage you to try it. It's free...and requires very little for you. You can let it track it all or just the basics. But regardless of how you use it, I think it takes a load off of all the downloading, naming conventions, etc. associated with most of the programs out there. It operates like Quicken in that you can create and modify the categories, but just takes a few steps out of the process, buying us all a little time. And who can't use the extra time these days?

1 Comment:

  1. the baileys said...
    kara, thank you! i needed just this, i've been doing ours the same way & this looks so much better! oh, i love other type a-ers!

    happy new year!

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