As I mentioned in my weekly update here, I have started to use the app Pocket Guard. The purpose of this app is to sync with your individual banking accounts such as your chequing, savings and credit cards and help you track your financial situation. It helps monitor your spending habits, bills and organizes it all in easy to view tables so you can see where your money is going to. I have started to use this tool alongside Mint to gain a more comprehensive view of where my money is going.
Signing up was fairly simple as it only required me to download the app, create a login, link my bank accounts and the rest was taken care off. Once I was signed up and connected, I went to the Transaction tab at the top and changed some of my expenses to “bills”, their frequency (weekly, monthly etc.) and did that for things like my rent, car insurance, phone bill and other recurring expenses.
Some of the features that I really enjoy about Pocket Guard is that by setting up your bills, Pocket Guard lets you know how much you can safely spend that day without putting yourself in trouble come bill time with the “In My Pocket” area. It also lays out all of your accounts in one section, has due dates for credit cards listed below each card, and gives you a 90 day net worth graph that tracks your progress. It also tracks your spending habits and compares it to your current situation so you can adjust to spend less than you make.
Some issues I am having with the app is that the daily “In My Pocket” seems to change randomly. This may be because credit card expenses and payments haven’t been accounted for yet or as I make changes in my transactions. Also it is difficult to categorize my weekly contributions to my savings, RRSP and investing accounts. They are counted as expenses but I am saving the money so that’s a negative in my books. Another issue I am having is that Pocket Guard only works as an app. Their website is only useful for signing up and that is it. I like to be able to use my laptop to better see my accounts, compare expenses and view larger charts.
I will continue to use both Mint and Pocket Guard for now as they both offer features that are beneficial to my financial journey. I just started with Pocket Guard so hopefully some of the kinks will be worked out as I progress with tracking my expenses with the app. If you are looking to track your expenses and need assist with budgeting there are plenty of apps that will assist you with