Three unusual tech tips for managing your money as a couple
New advancements in tech have opened many new doors to make managing personal finances easier – for both single people and couples who now have easy access to joint financial information through their mobile devices.
These three unusual tech tips may be helpful for couples looking to manage their money jointly.
1) Master the EAD philosophy
EAD is an acronym for eliminate, automate, delegate, and is a highly useful approach when it comes to money management. I use it to manage my personal life and am a big fan of this method because it works exactly as it sounds.
First, find ways to eliminate unnecessary expenditures. For example, print subscriptions you don’t read or movie channels you don’t watch, going out to eat, and buying entertainment when there exist so many free options are all items that can be reduced or eliminated from your budget to save more money.
Automate is the second step. Great ways to automate your finances include enrolling in bill autopay and instructing your bank to automatically deposit part of each paycheck into savings and retirement accounts.
By automating everything you can, you will get into healthy financial habits and will never forget to make essential payments on time.
The third part of the EAD philosophy is delegate. Effectively delegating tasks to others is always crucial for success.
For example, a couple might designate which duties and responsibilities each will have. Other ways to delegate tasks include hiring personal accountants or stock portfolio managers and using the services of a personal financial advisor.
2) Get on the same page
Couples must agree on money management strategies, so it is imperative that you each arrive at and remain on the same page how you will handle your money. Make these decisions together and establish your rules and goals in advance.
I highly recommend reading “A Beginner’s Guide to Profit First,” which advocates focusing on making profits instead of growth because profit will lead to growth. Among other things, the book also outlines a useful digital “envelope system.”
To fully use the profit first system, you must use a bank that supports the approach. Banking features to look for include the ability to name individual accounts so you can use them as envelopes.
Having no minimum balance fees on both checking and savings accounts are also critical. If your current bank or credit union does not support these features, then you may be better off finding a new home for your money.
3) Use money saving apps for couples
Many apps exist out there that allow you to manage and save money. You can either use just one for simplicity’s sake or have a toolkit of several that each serves a specific purpose and works in tandem to help you and your partner manage money.
Mint is one of the most popular budget tracking, financial planning, and credit reporting apps available on the market.
Developed by Intuit, the company behind the popular TurboTax and QuickBooks programs, this app enjoys a level of prestige compared to others. Users may be more trusting of such an app with their sensitive personal financial information.
The downside is that Mint was not specifically designed with couples in mind, so using it for two people can be challenging.
Honeyfi is a solid money management app built specifically for couples, so it is worth checking out. With useful features for budget creation, the app also provides notifications of upcoming bills and transactions.
Joint account holders can even comment on each other’s transactions, while also being able to share only certain accounts or transactions.
A downside is that your partner could hide transactions from you.
A final app you should use is the one provided by your bank. These apps typically offer the most direct access to your finances, and many banks include mobile check deposit, automatic bill pay, and budget creation all through the app.
Sometimes the bank-developed apps can be basic when it comes to features, and quality varies by institution.
Advanced techies can develop their own apps and software when existing programs do not meet their needs. While it may sound crazy, it is far from impossible, especially because app development follows a logical pattern and is not as difficult as it might seem.
Several options are available to create a mobile app, and you or someone you know can build one. For instance, my nephew is learning to code and routinely offers to make custom apps for the family.
If you want to learn how to do it yourself, then there are plenty of resources, both free and paid, that can get you started.
For example, online builders, such as buildfire.com, offer great tools as well as countless free online resources on how to code.
Without even needing to write and deploy code, the advanced formulas in Google Sheets can cater to your individual needs, such as SUMIF, which gives you a sum but only when specified criteria are met.
Another option is to hire a freelancer to create an app just for you. Network sites such as Upwork and Fiverr can connect you with thousands of freelance professionals who are ready to develop your app with precisely the features you request.
Today, it is incredibly easy for professionals in South America, Southeast Asia, and Eastern Europe to develop a simple yet functional app that will cost only $500.
If the app performs well for you, then you might find significant success by selling your new app to others. An app that is well designed and becomes a best seller can be a considerable source of income.
Just remember that apps on the major app stores must be updated regularly, so you must be prepared to contribute to the ongoing app maintenance and development if you choose to launch it commercially.
Ready to automate your finances (and reduce mistakes)?
Automating aspects of your life will save you time and money. So, if you find something that can be automated, then do it!
This is especially true and helpful for finances. Automation and digital budgeting management can eliminate human errors and weaknesses to help you and your partner gain better control of your finances.
Ashley Wilson is a digital nomad writing about business and tech. She has been known to reference Harry Potter quotes in casual conversation and enjoys baking homemade treats for her husband and their two felines, Lady and Gaga. You can get in touch with Ashley via Twitter.
Photo by Dương Hữu