207 technicians look at both free and paid alternatives.
PORTLAND, Maine — Intuit announced this month that it would be shutting down its popular app, Mint, a decision that surprised and angered many users. 207 engineer Rich Brooks and Flyte New Media Portland joined us to discuss what happened and the alternatives you might want to consider. Here are the talking points provided by Rich:
207: “So what exactly is Mint? Why is it disappearing?”
rich: “Mint is a free budgeting app that started as a replacement for Quicken, a paid budgeting app owned by Intuit.—like me—You can connect it to your bank accounts, credit cards, and other investments, and Mint will categorize your spending and savings. You can also use it to budget for things like housing, eating out, and saving for college.
“It was so popular that Intuit decided to buy it back in 2009. And all this time, Intuit has allowed Mint to run as a free replacement.” Quicken. But apparently those days are over, as they are trying to “streamline” their service. ”
207: “And how did Mint’s 3.6 million users react?”
rich: “They don’t like it. They don’t like that this useful free app is being discontinued. Scheduling is another issue, giving users only 2 hours during the holiday season to find a replacement. It’s a month.
“Intuit says Mint users should switch to other products. credit karmaHowever, most users find it to be a poor replacement as it does not offer any budgeting tools. ”
207: “What should Mint users do?”
rich: “Okay, so if you want to move to Credit Karma.—It’s also free—Intuit makes it that much easier. However, it seems that once you switch, you can’t switch back. If you do not want to switch to Credit Karma, you have the option to back up all your information and delete it from our servers.
“You can import some Mint data into other budgeting apps, but what I see online is that the data is often unstable and doesn’t give you all the information.”
207: “What are the alternatives for Mint users?”
rich: “There are a lot of apps out there, both free and paid. However, it’s important to know that each app is different and has different strengths and weaknesses, and no two are exactly like Mint. Whichever you choose, it will take some getting used to.
“Having said that, Here are some alternatives:
“The first is, empower—Formerly personal capital. It connects to your account and allows you to create a budget and track your net worth. Also, like Mint, it’s free. Some people complain that they can’t track alternative investments like real estate.
“Another good option is Inab, previously required a budget. YNAB’s focus is to help you live debt-free. Automatically connected to your account, YNAB acts almost like a money coach, helping you put every dollar to good use. It costs $99 per year.
“The third option I would mention is Simplification. This is also an Intuit product, and many people may find it similar to Mint. However, it does not provide multi-year trends and requires manual entry of non-cash assets such as homes and cars. It’s not free, but it costs less than $3 a month. ”
207: “So, what do you recommend?”
rich: “The truth is, there is no one-size-fits-all tool. Some tools are better for budgeting, others are better for tracking investments, others are best for tracking spending, and others are best for tracking spending. We also have tools focused on helping you get started. Need help? Want to save money for your first home? Or planning for retirement? Prices range from free to annual. With prices ranging up to $100, cost is also an important factor.
“These three I listed are a good place to start, but the 207 website also includes some additional resources. So my final piece of advice is to do your own homework. Yes, but do it right away.”
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