Part of The Bank of Missouri’s commitment to help you Live Well, Bank Well, is providing you with tools to help you manage your money. Our new mobile and online banking experience adds a whole new level of versatility to your financial toolbox.
How? By incorporating personal financial software into the mobile and online banking experience.
What exactly is personal financial software? It’s when you can tap on an app or log in on a computer, and utilize helpful financial features, specific to whichever program you’ve chosen. Some financial software programs are free, and some of them cost a one-time fee, an annual fee, or a monthly fee. But whichever one you choose, it should definitely simplify (and better!) your life. Once you choose a program, download it, and begin exploring its features, you’ll know you chose the right software for you when you say, “How did I ever live without this?” Here are just three of the many ways personal financial software can simplify your life:
Track your spending
The most basic feature that every financial software should have is the ability to track your spending. You should be able to log in and quickly see a ledger—an itemized, line-by-line layout—of every dime you’ve spent or deposited into your bank account. The best programs will even allow you to link several bank accounts from various banks, so you can easily toggle back and forth and keep an eye on where all of your money is going. Because who wants to log in multiple times on multiple sites?
One thing to remember, is that when you write a check or swipe a card, it may take a few days for that to reflect on your financial software. So if you’ve got a $50 check out there floating that your hair dresser has yet to cash, you’re going to need to remember that and mentally deduct it from whatever total is reflected currently on your personal financial software. This oversight is why even the most well-intentioned of us can experience the occasional overdraft. So consider this a friendly reminder to track your spending on your personal financial software regularly—even a couple of times a day, if needed—and also write down or keep a mental tab of spending that isn’t quite reflected in your software yet. Your personal financial software should make this process easier, because you can see exactly which charges have gone through already.
Categorize your spending
Cue the hallelujah chorus—if your personal financial software has this feature, your life just got a whole lot easier! Some programs allow you to label, tag, or otherwise categorize your charges from your bank account. So for those of us who do the envelope system, here’s a great way to keep track of which “envelope” (or budget category) a charge belongs to. And what about the folks who own their own businesses? You can log in to your software and label which charge was for “personal/home,” or “business.” Then come tax time, you will be able to view your categories easily, versus combing back through and looking for deductions all in one sitting (yikes)! There are endless amounts of reasons people are demanding this feature more and more from their personal financial software, and we’ve got to agree—it’s pretty handy.
Set financial goals
Whether you like percentage numbers, pie charts, or bar graphs, the best financial software should be able to let you set financial goals and show you what kind of progress you’re making. Want to only spend a certain amount on groceries a month? Tell your software this, and then categorize your spending (Step 2). Any time you swipe your card at the stores you’ve labeled as “groceries,” your software will automatically update your spending amount in that category. Want to save up a few thousand dollars to then be able to invest wisely? Create a goal of a certain dollar amount, move your money into that category automatically and regularly, and be able to view easily how you’re doing with reaching your goal. Did you know you’re actually over 40% more likely to reach any goal if you write it down? Take this to heart and make your software work for you: write down your financial goals, and check back in regularly to check your progress.
At The Bank of Missouri, we help you “Live Well, Bank Well.” And part of living well is giving you the tools to meet your financial goals. Why? Because we want you to get the most out of your money. That’s why we’re thrilled to announce personal financial management software is part of The Bank of Missouri’s mobile and online banking experience. Log in and look for “Budget & Save” in the main menu in the app. On the web, click into any account to find the button. It’s a great day to set your first goal!