I first learned of Mint.com back in 2008 and signed up around December of that year. I haven’t been an active user since my credit union began offering a similar service through online banking. I do, however, log into Mint once every other month just to check out any cool features I might be missing out on. Mint was purchased by Intuit, owners of TurboTax, back in 2009. The Mint.com platform has evolved to include improved overview section and features such as multiple account transaction details, budget creation, goal setting, trend analysis, a self-contained investment portal and a financial services marketplace.
Overall, Mint is a great platform to access detailed information around your banking, spending, credit usage and investing. If you are like me, you might have your financial life spread across a number of companies. It can be a pain to log into separate accounts and more difficult to understand one’s complete financial picture.
How does Mint do this? Mint aggregates the financial information and transaction details of accounts you’ve added. Instead of separately logging into Chase, Navy Federal or Fidelity, you’ll be able to add those accounts in Mint and view details of the accounts in one place. One thing to keep in mind is that you are not able to transfer money in between accounts or make payments from a checking account into a credit card . You will still need to log into the actual financial institution and creditor online accounts to do so. If you are looking at tracking bills and making payments check out our review of Manilla.com.
A key benefit is the ability to categorize expenses that gives a better understanding of spending habits. For example, Mint will categorize your spending on Starbucks regardless of the bank account, credit or debit card used. I find this to be helpful if you are looking at cutting back on expenses. Additionally, Mint does a good job in helping you set up goals by using actual data from your accounts. If you wanted to pay off credit card debt, you can set a goal. Once this goal is set you are then asked enter any missing information such as APRs and/or minimum payments for each credit card. You’ll get alerts when you hit milestones. It’s a great way to visualize financial goals.
Mint is doing a better job in recommending products and services. It’s important to know what options are available and recommendations based on actual personal data is a good start. In terms of personal data and banking information, Mint is pretty clear in the use of state of the art encryption security.
- Free service.
- Goal setting is made easy.
- Access to multiple accounts’ transactions in one place.
- Overview of personal financial trends.
- Creating a budget is simple.
- Some offers are actually pretty good and worth a look.
How to start using Mint:
- Open an account on Mint.com.
- Link your bank accounts, credit cards, mortgage, loans and investments.
- Complete your profile.
- Download the Mint mobile app for iPhone and Android phones and tablets .
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