It’s a techy world out there nowadays, no matter what line of work you’re in. There’s an app for everything, people use phones to pay for purchases and every business needs to be on Facebook and Twitter. Bonus points if they use Instagram. You can 3D print things right into existence, self driving cars are coming soon and knowing how to code is a commonplace skill now. Technology rules the world!
We in the personal finance blogosphere are not exempt either. I know I use a few different apps and completely rely on online banking to run my own finances.
Technology and the internet have welcomed me into the magical world of personal finance. When I was freaking out about life and money last summer I began googling ‘paying of student loans’ like it was my job. I found all these amazing personal finance blogs and dove straight into this little world. My heart was in it 100%! Alas, I found that I was not prepared to be a true personal finance nerd, let alone a blogger.
I didn’t use spreadsheets. I didn’t use online banking. I had the Mint app but I wasn’t regularly using it. It was more depressing than helpful when I opened Mint up so I just didn’t do it. I had no apps for my investments or for comparing flight prices and getting the best deals. I was like a newborn technology babe.
So I did what any self-respecting child of the internet age would do: I learned! I incorporated technology into my personal finance journey and it has simplified things by roughly 1000%.
I have spoken before about my Mint app and how much I love it. I use it multiple times a day. I check my bank account balances, insure that my loan payments were processed and keep track of my budgets on that thing. Mint has recently added some new features I’ve taken advantage of as well, like offering you a free credit score. (762 baby!) I love my Mint app. It has made a huge difference in my spending and saving. Seeing all my numbers laid out in a simple, clean and accessible format makes my financial life so much easier.
I also downloaded my credit union’s app. Man, that has been a game changer! Did you know you can deposit checks through your phone?! I used to drive to the bank and use the ATM every two weeks to deposit checks. Not only has this app simplified my life, it’s also saved me gas money! I switch funds around on the app all the time, deposit checks, and track my spending/income. It’s not quite as versatile as Mint but it has been absolutely critical in my personal finance journey.
Today, now that I’m beginning to step out of debt payments and into saving and investing, I’m looking for even more apps to help me in my journey. I just downloaded an app that tracks flights and lets you know when a good deal on your preferred destination pops up. (#Italy2016, here I come!) There are a million great apps like that out there, helping with everything from travel to food to cars.
Finally, the PF blogosphere has been far and away the most influential piece of my technology puzzle. While yes, technically blogs are not technology per say, without the many and wonderful bloggers out there sharing their journey’s, their tips, trials and errors and generally being amazing people, I would not be where I am today. I started my serious debt repayment after reading about other’s amazing success’, after reading about ways to save on interest or ways to make the most out of your payments. I learned and grew so much in the PF blogosphere. It inspired this site too. So a big shout out to everyone out there in our corner of the internet!
Kara Perez is the original founder of From Frugal To Free. She is a money expert, speaker and founder of Bravely Go, a feminist financial education company. Her work has been featured on NPR, Business Insider, Forbes, and Elite Daily.