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10 Apps to help you keep better track of your finances in 2016

Posted 04 January 2016

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If you have a smart phone, why not use these 10 apps to help you keep track of your finances in 2016?

There aren’t many of us without a smart phone these days, in fact three out of every four people (76%) now own one in the UK. So, rather than using it to play games or update your Facebook status, why not use it to help you keep track of your spending and finances? Or make your money last longer with great apps for moneysaving offers? 

Yes, you can keep track of all kinds of things, like where to get the best deals, to keeping tabs on your energy bills, all through apps on your phone. And, with the recent launch of an app that allows you to check your credit score on your mobile phone, for free, we thought we’d have a look at what else is available. The results are the following 10 apps that can help you find deals, monitor your bills and keep track of your budget in 2016.  

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1. But first, let’s start with the aforementioned credit score checker, ClearScore. This app allows you to check your credit score on your mobile for free, forever. There’s no free trial period that requires you enter your card details, so go for it – what have you got to lose? Checking your credit score is important, especially if you’re looking to borrow in the near future – a great score gets you the most competitive deals. So it’s a good idea to make sure you keep your credit score in good health by making sure you pay your bills on time. It also allows you to keep an eye on what’s being added to your credit file and, if you see anything you think is wrong, to get it sorted as quickly as possible.   

 

2. Now, when you’re out shopping you want to make sure you’re getting the best deals for your money, right? So, make sure you’ve got mySupermarket loaded up and ready to go before you hit the shops. Enter your shopping list and see who offers the best deals on what you want to buy. 

 

3. Want to get your petrol for the cheapest price possible? Use WhatGas – it’s American so gas refers to petrol in this case, not gas, if you see what I mean. This app shows you the petrol prices at all your local petrol stations so you can fill up for less. Or use PetrolPrices, it’s not an app, but if you sign-up, which is free, they will send you an email with the best prices near to you.  

 

4. If you need to go to the town centre to look for those big ticket items, you can spend a small fortune on parking, if you’re not careful. Help yourself be really careful with this free parking app Parkopedia – the free applies to the app itself and what it finds for you – free parking spaces.    

 

5. Once you’re in town and parked up, it’s time to hit the shops. Let’s start with an app that helps you stick to your budget and you could do worse than use The Money Charity’s Spendometer, to keep track of where you are up to. It allows you to input your budget for that month and then every time you spend something, add it into the app to keep track of where you’re up to. There are lots of categories you can choose from, including a ‘going out’ option that stops you from over-spending on a night out – more on that later.     

 

Okay, next – your everyday shopping has been taken care of, what happens if your washer conks out? 

 

6. Yes, we all need to buy big-ticket items, like a new fridge or washer at some point in our lives, and when that time comes around, you could try Idealo. When you find something you want, you can pop the details into Idealo and find out where you can buy it and for how much. If you’re in a shop and you find it cheaper somewhere else, you can use that information to try and haggle the price down in the shop that you’re in. 

 

7. Back to nights out – fancy going to your favourite place for a fraction of the price? There is, of course, an app for that, it’s called Vouchercloud.  The app helps you find the best places to eat, drink and stay nearby, so you’ll always be getting something great at a reduced cost.  

 

8. Or, if you fancy a quiet night in, with some home-cooked food, but you need some inspiration to create something from the left-over random ingredients you have sitting in your fridge and cupboards, Cookpad comes to the rescue. This fab little app has loads of user-generated recipes with photographs too. Just type what ingredients you have into the app and it’ll present you with a list of recipes you can make. Now, some of the recipes are in US cups, so here’s a handy converter so you can see how much you need in grams and litres.  

 

9. While your dinner’s cooking, why not give you friends or family a call for free, as long as there’s Wi-Fi, using Skype? In fact, you can use this app to make free calls anywhere you can access free Wi-Fi. How great is that?

 

10. But it costs money to keep your phone charged for all that chatting. So, keep tabs on how much it’s costing, as well as checking what your morning showers and cups of tea are piling onto your bill, using the energy track app from your energy company. The Big Six all have their own versions available for free. Here’s Ovo, a British sustainable energy company’s version, which allows you to check balances, submit meter readings and check usage too.   

So, there you have it – 10 great free apps that’ll help you manage your money in 2016. 

If you think you might need more problem debt help than these apps can offer, why not have a read about the debt solutions on offer in England and Wales and those available in Scotland too? We have trained debt advisors ready and waiting to help, so just choose one of the ‘contact us’ options from the left of the page and let us help you get your problem debts under control.   

             

 

by Shelley Bowers

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To find out more about managing your money and getting free debt advice, visit Money Advice Service, an independent service set up to help people manage their money.