is an online budgeting and personal fincance software. When you first sign in you search for all of your online accounts, enter your username and password to these sites and Mint downloads all of your transactions. I just signed up yesterday. so here’s my first take.

  • Free to use – Always a plus.
  • Automatically updates with transactions from the bank accounts/ credit cards you’ve entered.
  • Lots of cools graphs/ pie charts to analyze spending – automatically tags all of  your transactions to break them down by category. the categories it gives are not always accurate, but mine seemed to be about 90% correct and adjusting them was simple.
  • Site is simple and not cluttered with ads.
  • Mint makes its money from a Ways to Save tab that offers links to outside services.  Mint shows you the amount you could save by signing up with these services based on your current data.
  • Uses the same security programs as banks, so you know it should be safe.

It offers many great tools not listed here such as investment, net worth information and great snapshots of your current cash position.  All of my accounts except ING savings were straightforwad and signing them up only took one try.  This includes my John Hancock 401k and federal student loans. I though those two might pose a problem, but it was fairly effortless. For ING I had to log into my ING account and change all of my security questions, then match those questions exactly in MINT. It was a bit of a hassle, but being able to see all of my accounts in one place is definetely worth it.

Some other popular online budgeting tools are Mvelopes and YNAB. I chose to go with MINT because of its iPhone app and at the suggestion of MoneyCrashers