We’ve taken a look at some apps our money gurus use and recommend to help you make a decision about what might work for you.
Cleo doesn’t just want to help you get better with your money, they want you to have fun while you do it! Part budgeting app and part virtual assistant, Cleo won’t just help you track your spending and your savings, she’ll also be your personal money cheerleader when you need it.
Unlike other apps, you can ask Cleo whether you can afford that new dress or how much you have to spend on a night out, but be prepared to face her taunts if you overspend. Like most apps, you can set your savings goals and track how you’re going against them, but there’s also gifs, memes and blogs to keep it interesting.
And, maybe best of all, you can win cash prizes by playing in-app games and quizzes.
Like Cleo, Plum has a similar AI function, but offers more in terms of helping you grow your money. Plum will track your spending habits and round up spare change and put it aside for you – for example, if you spend £2.75 on a coffee, Plum will take £3 and squirrel away the extra 25p for you.
While you can keep that money aside and earn some interest on it, you can also use it to invest in one of Plum’s share packages. You can choose from 6 themes, and your level of risk, and Plum will do the rest. As with all investments though, there is a risk that you end up with less money than you put in to begin with, so be careful if you’re planning to invest large amounts.
Plum also has some creative savings challenges for you to get involved in like their “52-week challenge” which will help you save £1,378 in one year. Now what would you do with £1,378?
Yolt is a powerful money management tool, but it requires a lot more admin when setting it up than some of the others on the list. They offer 20 different spending categories for you to set-up budgets for, and you can even manually re-classify your transactions if you feel they have gone to the wrong place.
Yolt offers a lot of value-add services like investment opportunities, fixed-term deposits, foreign currency exchange, pension management and cashback. If you’re prepared to put the time into the app, it’ll help you control your spending, but if you’re looking for a plug-and-play casual helper, then Yolt isn’t for you.
Emma doesn’t have the same AI as Plum and Cleo, but it does offer a bit more in terms of you improving your financial skills, rather than simply relying on an app. Emma will help you track your spending payday-to-payday, and set your budgets accordingly. It can also combine multiple accounts so you can see your investments and pensions as well as your bank accounts all in one place.
Emma can also help you manage unused subscriptions or free trials you forgot to cancel – a handy feature given how much these can sap from your account without you realising. You’d be surprised how many people are paying for things they don’t use or even remember each month.
And if you’re looking for the best deals on things like insurance, Emma can help you compare costs across different providers. A money and time saver.
Snoop is more like Emma than Cleo or Plum, but as useful as any of them. Snoop will help you visualise where your money is going, and actively finds deals to help you save with your favourite vendors.
But it’s not just 15% your favourite clothes store, Snoop will also help you find better energy deals, and even better interest rates on your savings. Snoop doesn’t have the all-in-one budgeting as some of its competitors, but given it only launched earlier this year, they are rapidly expanding and adding new features.
Wally and Goodbudget are both powerful budgeting apps which require you to enter your transactions manually. They’ll still help you budget, and give you a breakdown of how you’re spending, but they aren’t as slick as some of the others on this list. If you don’t mind the admin, or you don’t want to trust the other apps with read access to your financial information, then either of these will work well for you.
So which one is for you?
As with any financial management decision, you need to find the product that’s right for you. Many of these apps are free or offer free trials, so you can try them out before committing to one or another.