If you are someone who cares about personal finance, you probably know about the importance of budgeting. You may have also heard about Every Dollar, which is supposed to make budgeting easy compared to using excel spreadsheets. However, there is some competition in this area, so you want to know everything you need to know about Every Dollar before deciding to use it. This Every Dollar review will cover how Every Dollar works, its pros and cons, and how it compares to the competition.
Keep reading for the full scoop on Every Dollar.
How Does Every Dollar Work?
Every Dollar is an app and website that allows you to budget your monthly finances. Once you sign up, all you need to do is input your budget amounts into the available categories under the “Planned” section. Once you spend money, you would input the quantity into the “Spent” section. The “Remaining” section automatically updates as you input your spent money. This section lets you know how much money you have left before going over budget.
That’s for the free version.
The paid version allows you to connect your bank accounts so that you don’t have to manually input the information yourself. If you want the paid version, it costs $129.99 a year. If you are wondering why the price tag is so high, it’s because Dave Ramsey is the creator of the app. Therefore, some loyal fans may be willing to pay the price to use an app created by him.
To sign up, you must create an account using your name and email address. You’ll also have to input your zip code, state, and country. Once you confirm your email address, you can start budgeting. Immediately, you will need to enter an estimate of your monthly payments per category.
There are 11 main categories that Every Dollar expects you to fill out:
Within each of the spending categories (except for savings), there is more than one subcategory to help you allocate your money each month.
Within each category, you can track transactions, set a due date, make notes, and make it a fund. You can also add categories to “Favorites” if it’s one you plan to update frequently. When you “favorite” one, the category will show up at the top of the screen, so you can access it more quickly.
It is important to know that Every Dollar is currently only available in the U.S. and Canada.
The Pros Of Using Every Dollar
Now that you know how Every Dollar works, you can read on to learn about the pros of using Every Dollar.
Great For Budgeting
While there are other personal finance apps out there, Every Dollar is focused explicitly on budgeting. So if budgeting is what you are looking for, this is one of the top apps/websites for that. The subcategories provide the majority, if not all, of the possible expenses you’ll have. Therefore, you can quite literally keep track of where every dollar is going (no pun intended).
The Every Dollar App Design
The app has a clean design that is easy to use. Additionally, the app is well-organized. You can also sync the app with multiple users in your home. That way, everyone knows how much is being spent and how much is left. Another neat feature of the app is the ability to split transactions. This feature is useful for when you shop at a store like Walmart and spend money on multiple categories such as clothes, groceries, and cosmetics.
You can also do this on the website, but according to eMarketer, the average person spends 90% of their mobile time using apps instead of the mobile web. Therefore, a company that has an app is already more competitive than a company that does not.
Pre-Determined And Customizable Categories
Another excellent feature of Every Dollar is that the categories and subcategories are already pre-determined for you, so you don’t have to do as much work. You don’t need to sit there and think of all of the ways that you spend money. Every Dollar does that for you! The best part is that you can also customize the categories by adding or deleting subcategories.
While the free version is email-only customer support, you can get high-quality customer support with the paid version. That’s because the paid version comes with phone support.
Ability To Create A “Fund”
The ability to create a fund allows you to save for the long run. If you have categories that you didn’t spend all of your money in, you can transfer the money to the “savings” category, where you can either add it to the “Emergency Fund” subcategory or create your own, such as a retirement fund.
The Baby Steps
The Every Dollar app and website integrates with Dave Ramsey’s baby steps. There are seven of them, and the app will let you know how you are progressing with those steps. The seven steps are meant to help you achieve financial freedom; they are as follows:
- $1,000 emergency fund.
- Pay off all debt using the debt snowball.
- Save 3-6 months worth of expenses.
- Save 15% for retirement.
- College fund for the kids.
- Pay off your house.
- Build wealth and give.
The Cons Of Using Every Dollar
Now that you know the pros, it’s time to talk about the cons of using Every Dollar.
Only For Budgeting
Other apps allow you to do more outside of simply budgeting, such as investment tracking and bill tracking. Every Dollar is only for budgeting, so if you are looking for an app that can do more, Every Dollar might not be for you.
Limited Free Version
The free version is extremely limited. Not being able to link your accounts in the free version is a significant con because not everyone wants to manually input the information. After all, it is more time consuming, which takes away from the convenience of using an app.
Expensive Annual Fee For Every Dollar Plus
Even if you decide that linking your bank accounts is a must and you are considering getting the paid version, the paid version is expensive. There are cheaper apps out there. However, if you are a huge Dave Ramsey fan, maybe it’s worth it to you to buy it so you can support him.
Are There Apps Better Than Every Dollar?
While Every Dollar has its benefits, it does have some fierce competition. If you want to use an app strictly for budgeting and don’t mind doing it manually, then Every Dollar is your best option because the free version allows you to do that.
However, if you want an app that allows you to budget, monitor your investments, and manage your bills, you may want to use Mint or YNAB.
Mint is completely free AND allows you to link your bank accounts. It also allows you to check your credit score. You can also set financial goals that the app tracks.
YNAB only has a paid version. However, out of the three, their customer service is the best. They are also the best for very detailed budgeting. If you had to choose between YNAB or Every Dollar’s paid version, you are better off going with YNAB because not only are they cheaper annually, but you can also pay month-to-month. That means if you decide you no longer want to use it, you can cancel without having to pay for the whole year (unlike with Every Dollar).
Who Should Use Every Dollar?
Someone who wants an easy-to-use budgeting app that doesn’t mind manually inputting their expenses information should use Every Dollar. Some people prefer this method because it allows them to see where all of their money is going each month, and, therefore, have more control over their personal finances. It’s also good if you want to be able to sync your app with other people in your home.
Lastly, if you love Dave Ramsey and his baby steps, then Every Dollar is the app for you.
Wrapping Up: Every Dollar
Now you know if Every Dollar is for you or not. The truth is that, unless you are a die-hard Dave Ramsey advocate, you might want to go with one of the other mentioned apps since you can still budget and get more out of the user experience for less. Either way, whatever app you choose, budgeting is still an essential aspect of achieving financial freedom. Of course, you can always stick to your excel spreadsheets, but for those of you who prefer to use apps, why not use one for your budgeting too?