I previously mentioned mint.com, the online budgeting system. It’s pretty easy to use: link Mint to your checking account, credit card and other online accounts and the site categorizes your expenses. So if you swipe your debit card for $50 at Whole Foods, Mint registers that expense into a grocery column. Cool, right?
But here comes Texthog, another online tool that lets you track expenses and stay on budget. After spending money, you alert the site to what you shelled out via email, text or Twitter. For example, if I’m using Twitter, I would DM @texthog “dinner, 10” or “clothes, 30” and Texthog then adds that expense to my account. At the end of the month, they produce a crafty pie chart showing exactly where your hard-earned money has gone. One month I realized the little fatty in me was spending way too much dough eating out, so I cut back.
I’ve tried both sites and there are pros and cons to each:
- Pros: uploads your expenses automatically, sends you alerts when bills are due
- Cons: you have to link your private accounts to Mint and not all of your expenses are accurately accounted for (example: if you deduct $200 from the ATM, that expense just gets compiled into a miscellaneous category, until you manually define what the $200 was allocated for)
- Pros: more comprehensive of all of your spending and integrates features you already use on a daily basis (Twitter, texts and email)
- Cons: you have to remember to upload all of your spending, which isn’t always easy to do
Any of you guys use Mint or Texthog?