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Mint financial tracking

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Pentup posted 7/15/2013 21:48 PM

Anyone use it? Pros? Cons? I was thinking about using it, but I got a little nervous about putting my banking information in.

Amazonia posted 7/15/2013 22:15 PM

Just posting to follow, because I've looked at it several times and had the same reaction.

jennie160 posted 7/16/2013 08:56 AM

I used it for awhile. Here are some pro's and con's I found.

Pro's
-It combines all of your accounts (bank, credit cards, loans, ect.) into one place so you can view them all together and get a better view of you debts to assets.
-It allows you to set up a budget and automatically shows you where you are in your budget, how much you have spent, how much you have left.
-You can set up goals (like a vacation or saving for car) and it will track your progress, tell you how much extra you need to save to obtain it faster.

Con's
-It's not very good at categorizing transactions and I found I had to go through every few days and re-categorize to get an accurate portrayal of my spendings.
-If you do a lot of spending with cash then it won't show what those purchases were, only that you withdrew the money from the ATM.
-I rent my house from my parents (pay cash) and have a loan through them as well, so these expenses won't be reflected on my mint account.

It was good for a few months to get a picture of where my money was going but after awhile it got tedious and I gave up. If you already know where all of your money is going (ie. you rarely eat out, rarely spend money on anything other than bills) it won't really tell you anything that you don't already know. I found that creating an excel spreadsheet worked a lot better for me. Also, I've never had any security issues with it.

hill posted 7/16/2013 09:16 AM

Ditto Jennie160.

You do have to micromanage the transactions so that it's able to give you valuable information over a long period of time.

It's a great tool for tracking overall- and it's great to get a good sense of your spending and where your money is going.

But it's not a "set it and forget it" type of application.

I like it, though! Not only is it somewhat useful for long-term analysis (if you put the work into it), for me on a daily basis, it's easier to log into Mint than multiple accounts if I just want a quick snapshot of how things are going.

ETA: Every once in a while it can have connectivity issues with certain banks, but they usually fix them relatively quickly.

[This message edited by hill at 9:19 AM, July 16th (Tuesday)]

Crescita posted 7/16/2013 11:25 AM

Iím pretty happy with it. Having to categorize or recategorize items is a bit of a pain, but it keeps me on top of where my money is going. It also adds a level of tangibility to my debt and savings goals because I can see progress, set a timeline, have a concrete figure to work towards. The absolute best function for me is that it provides more information about my student loans than the lenderís website. Honestly I had deferred my loans while in school so many times I didnít even know how long the term was. Mint has a loan payoff calculator, the end is now in sight.

Pentup posted 7/16/2013 11:37 AM

This is really helpful. I do not have a lot of different accts, so I am wondering if this is worth it to me. Good to hear that nobody has had issues with security.

Thank you!

Dark Inertia posted 7/16/2013 12:11 PM

I use to use it years ago... back when I had like 3 accounts with 3 different banks, and 3 cards with different companies. It was fairly glitchy at the time. For some transactions it would show it twice and there was no way of getting rid of it. It was pretty good at keeping the most updated information about your accounts, though.
In the last year and a half I have consolidated everything down to one bank and one credit card company. Even my HSA is with my same bank. Also, I have PNC's Virtual Wallet which has several useful tools in the same way Mint had. Right now for any banking needs I really only have to visit two sites. I was thinking about starting up Mint again, but honestly I don't think I need it as much anymore.

[This message edited by Dark Inertia at 12:14 PM, July 16th (Tuesday)]

hill posted 7/16/2013 13:40 PM

Pentup- you may be surprised how many accounts you have!

For example, I have my checking, my savings, my 401K, my rollover IRA, my investment account, my mortgage, my credit cards, and the 529s I set up for my kids all in Mint. It adds up fast!!

Pentup posted 7/16/2013 13:53 PM

I never thought about retirement accounts

Lionne posted 7/16/2013 15:26 PM

I started using it when I was no longer able to use Quicken. One caution I suggest. Don't set up too many categories. For instance, for anything I do around the house, I just call it "home." rather than "home improvement " or "home furnishings. " That simplifies things. Mint will usually recognize similar transactions and classify them accordingly subsequent times.
Also, it doesn't "talk." to every company. Many but not all. So you will.still have tomanually enter some loans. For instance it does merge my credit cards but won't talk to VW of America...must not like foreign cars....

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