How to use Mint: Budget Simply


Mint is a free personal finance tool that allows you to see your work budget at a glance.

In an increasingly online world, Mint’s technology is hailed for its easy-to-use programs and simple yet informative graphs of an individual’s financial picture. Money management features help consumers pay their bills on time, save for expensive items, and monitor their credit scores in one stop.

Using Mint is simple and straightforward. Like many apps and programs, Mint initially requires additional steps to log in and connect your accounts. Syncing accounts like check, credit card, and invoice accounts is key because that’s how Mint works: curating your finances and providing an overview at a glance.

Link your accounts

Get started by using your email to register on your website or in the app and create a password. Then follow the prompts to sync your accounts. You will see that Mint already has connections to most banks and provides a drop-down search function for them.

Mint also tracks investment performance and sends alerts on any suspicious activity.

You can connect your mortgages, credit cards, PayPal, and as many bank accounts as you like, among other accounts. Mint protects its users’ account information with security features that are on par with those of a bank.

When you have all your accounts connected, Mint will provide you with an overview of your finances. The next step is to develop a budget. Depending on your finances, Mint will offer you a proposed budget, but you can adjust it. You can increase or decrease a budget item such as “Car and Transportation: Gas and Fuel.”

Key takeaways

  • Mint.com is an online personal finance tool that lets you keep track of your expenses and helps you budget.
  • Mint is a free service.
  • If you want to use Mint, you must sync all of your financial accounts, or at least the ones you want to use through Mint.
  • Mint lets you keep track of your spending and your credit score, and you can sign up for daily, weekly, or monthly notifications.

How to create a budget with Mint

You can use Mint to view your spending trends and monitor your budget progress. Over time, you can analyze your money habits and identify ways to improve your finances. Here are three ways to use Mint to help you keep up with your budget and credit.

Purchase Categories

While Mint’s simplicity has attracted more than 25 million users, according to its website, it also has more advanced features. Among its many tricks, Mint allows users to divide purchases into multiple categories to get a more accurate financial portrait.

Transaction Division

For example, consumers who purchase multiple products at Target may want to divide their transactions into different categories, such as “home improvement” and “groceries.” To split your purchases, click on “edit details” and then on the “split transaction” button on the right hand side. Enter the amount you want in each category to get a more accurate snapshot of your finances.

Entering your transactions manually allows users to keep track of their cash spending. For this trick, make sure the drop-down menu says “cash” and Mint will automatically deduct the amount from your last ATM withdrawal so it isn’t deducted from your cash balance twice.

Customize notifications

Mint users can customize a variety of notifications to suit their needs. You can set daily, weekly, or monthly alerts when you go over budget when your credit score changes or when you incur an unusual amount of fees. You can also set the notices to be sent to someone else as well, such as a spouse.

Apart from categories, a tagging feature allows users to view their finances organized in a different way. For example, you can put another label such as “fixed expenses” in the categories to see what percentage you are allocating to fixed expenses such as monthly bills.

The bottom line

Mint offers several ways to create and manage a budget. It stands out for its simplicity and informative overview of your finances, and it’s free to try.

www.investopedia.com

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Mark Holland

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