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Best Mobile Financial Apps of 2018

Best Mobile Financial Apps of 2018

Our article features the best mobile financial apps for this year. There is a ready mix of different apps to suit your varying financial needs. For example, there is an app for wealth building, another for your taxes, another for transferring money overseas, and many more. We have curated our list down to the best mobile financial apps we could find. At eCheck.org, we have spent a few years testing and re-testing apps.

As it stands, these are the best mobile financial apps in terms of the most efficient, the safest, the best software build, the best interface designs, and the fewest bugs. All of the apps may be downloaded and installed for free, but some require a subscription or payment in order to be used.

Personal Capital – A Personal Finance Software Application

Personal Capital - large screenshot of the app in action

Personal Capital is one of the best mobile financial apps because it offers a wealth of different tools for free. The software is very powerful and is ideal for investors and wealth builders who want to see their net worth in one place.

As it says on the Personal Capital home page, this software is used to help you achieve your personal wealth-building and financial goals. It is set of financial tools that will help you monitor and analyze your money, spending, and your wealth so that you may make more informed decisions. One of the reasons I like this software is because money seems to have a deceptive way of adding up backwards. I cannot count the amount of times that I have set budgets, set reasonable buffer zones, and somehow there is still money left in my budget at the end of the month. This tool helps me to see what I am missing, such as how dividends have paid up that I forgot about, or how my money appears to have earned more interest because I haven’t taken the tax off of it.

Personal Capital advert for its net worth calculator

One of the great things about Personal Capital, its unsung hero factor, is its concentration on retirement and retirement fees. Retirement planning and things such as 401Ks are big business, but the level of transparency regarding fees is utterly disgraceful in the USA. In places such as the UK or Australia, you can see where every penny of your retirement money is going, but in the US there are fees piling upon fees that nobody even knows about because consumers are not legally required to know about them. I myself was fully unaware of this situation until I read this article about hidden fees by Tony Robbins. Hidden fees as low as 1% – 3% are enough to take a serious chunk out of your retirement savings (as shown in the picture below).

An example showing how hidden fees damage retirement savings

With the Personal Capital, you are able to analyze your portfolio with free tools to see if your investments are paying off as well as you hoped. You may use the Personal Capital planning tools to work out your long-term investments and your retirement plans. There are advisers you may contact, and a wealth of other free tools and information you may use without having to pay subscription fees. You may link your accounts and investments in one place to get a snapshot of your current net worth. There is an investment service that you may use if your net wealth is above £25,000, and there are wealth management tools for long-term investment planning with the use of EFTs and individual securities.

Here is a link to the Personal Capital website
Here is a link to our review of the Personal Capital

BBVA Compass – Manage Your Many BBVA Compass Accounts From One Place

BBVA smartphone app screenshot

BBVA Compass is one of the best mobile financial apps because it puts all of your banking information and account information in one place in a secure manner. We have tested quite a few bank apps in our time, and the larger banks do tend to have the best apps. The BBVA Compass app works as a streamlined and centralized financial app. This is especially true if you have numerous accounts with BBVA.

BBVA-Compass-App-screenshot-showing-transfers-option

Since you need a BBVA Compass account in order to use the BBVA Compass app, we will not bang on about the app in too much detail. The app is almost as fully featured as their desktop website. The instant notifications are fantastic, and it is very easy to use. Some people complain that you have to reset your password and security questions every week, but you can change your settings and have your password changed every 72 days if you wish.

Here is a link to BBVA Compass

Coinbase – The App For Managing Your CryptoCurrency

Coinbase app display image showing tablet and smartphone app screenshots

Before we get another barrage of comments about us including cryptocurrency apps in financial articles, it is time to come to terms with the fact that cryptocurrency is here to stay and is now part of the national and international finance. People are being lent cryptocurrency, they are paying bills with cryptocurrency, and there are already countries that have recognized cryptocurrency as a legitimate and usable currency that people are able to pay their taxes with.

Coinbase is one of the best mobile financial apps because it allows you to send and accept payments anywhere in the world. If you are using cryptocurrency as a way to avoid expensive money transfers overseas, then the Coinbase app is the one for you. The Coinbase app has all the security features that the Coinbase website has, and there is no risk of charge-backs with the Coinbase app. If you are looking for regular payouts, then you may have payouts sent daily rather than trying to initiate them all in the moment, i.e. You may save up your cryptocurrency payments and transfer them all in bulk at the end of the day. You may also issue refunds via the Coinbase system. Merchants, customers, private citizens, military personnel and even prison inmates can benefit from the services that Coinbase offers (both on its website and via its app).

Coinbase BitPay Screenshots

If you already have a Coinbase account, then setting yourself up with the Coinbase app takes less than two minutes. You may initiate 2-click payments if you are a heavy user of the app and wish to save time. You may accept any bitcoin payments and make bitcoin payments as well as Litcoin, Bitcoin Cash, and Ethereum. It will not accept Ethereum Classic.

Here is a link to Coinbase

Credit Sesame – Track Your Credit Score For Free

Credit Sesame screenshots on mobile devices

Credit Sesame is one of the best mobile financial apps because it allows you to track and monitor your credit rating and your credit history from your mobile device. It allows you to do this for free, and there is no catch such as a free trial or credit card required.

The app does the same thing as the Credit Sesame website. The app just does it in a less sophisticated and more minimalist way. See your credit score and your credit history, and then find lenders who are willing to lend to you based on your current credit rating. The Credit Sesame app runs a soft search and gives you the same information that websites see when they run a soft search on your credit. Using Credit Sesame shouldn’t hurt your credit rating in any way.

creditsesame app screenshot showing a debt overview

There are very few downsides to using Credit Sesame. One of the biggest downsides of this credit monitoring service (and all credit monitoring services), is that your email will be spammed. When you run searches for services/lenders who will take you on, they are given access to your email address and either they spam you themselves or they sell your email address to spammers. We have not yet signed up for a free credit monitoring service that doesn’t somehow result in us getting more spam emails.

Being able to see which companies will lend to you is a big time saver if you are looking for thing such as credit cards, loans, mortgages, and things of that nature. Plus, the fact you can do it all on your phone means you can do it on the move.

CreditKarma screenshot showing TransUnion and Equifax

You do not have to be sat at a computer at home or at work in order to run a soft search on your credit and start looking for lenders. Another downside is that you are limited to the lenders that Credit Sesame has on offer, but their affiliate list is long and they are going to expose you to lenders that you may have had a hard time finding via other means. For example, there are lenders who are perfectly reputable, but they are on page 100,000+ on Google because the lender is bad at SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Here is a link to Credit Sesame

Currency Fair – A Fair Way To Transfer Money Quickly

CurrencyFair screenshots on three smartphone devices

Currency Fair is one of the best mobile financial apps because it offers fantastic deals and a very transparent service. If you are looking to transfer money overseas, then there are a great many online services that promise great deal. However, there are so many ways to legally trick customers into thinking they are getting a better deal than they are, that transparency has become the biggest selling point in the international transfer industry.

At the time of writing, there are only two companies that do not use trickery or legally-deniable hidden charges. They are called CurrencyFair and Transferwise. These are currently the only two companies that offer complete and truthful transparency so that you may see exactly how much you are sending, how much is going towards the transfer company, and how much will be received.

CurrencyFair steps showing the exchange process

Every other transfer company, bank or credit union uses legally acceptable tricks to make people think they are getting a better deal than they are. If you are testing companies other than Transferwise and/or CurrencyFair, then the only way to do it is this: you make a note of exactly how much you have to upload, and make a note of exactly how much is received. All other numbers are completely irreverent.

Only the original upload amount and received amount are what matter when testing transfer companies. Make a note of those figures, ignore all the other figures you are presented with. See which company actually transfers the highest percent of each currency unit (e.g. dollar) you send. This means that when you are shopping around for international transfer companies, the only way to truly know which is offering the best deal is to try each one out, complete transfers with each, and then work out the amount sent per dollar by using division and the starting/finishing amounts you took note of.

Alternatively, you can avoid all of this testing, fuss, and hidden charges by using a company such as CurrencyFair or Transferwise.

currencyfair app shown in somebodys hand

What is more, the CurrencyFair app allows you to send transfers very quickly. It allows you to set up recurring transfers, and to check on the status of your transfers. The app is a winner because the CurrencyFair service is so transparent and honest. Plus, the speed at which you are able to initiate transfers helps to make the CurrencyFair app very convenient too.

Here is a link to CurrencyFair

Discover Bank – Another Banking App That You Should Consider

Discover bank app screenshot on mobile devices

Discover Bank is one of the best mobile financial apps because it is a surprisingly good banking app considering that the Discover bank has inherited a decade’s worth of having a shaky reputation thanks to the Discover card.

It is a little surprising to find such a good app being produced by a bank that used to have one of the worst reputations in the mainstream banking business. These days, it is easier to get your Discover card accepted in stores than it is to have your American Express accepted.

Just like with the BBVA app, I will not bang on about the Discover Bank app because if you do not bank with Discover or if you do not have a Discover credit card, then the app will be pretty useless to you. Suffice it to say that the app is well built, efficient, secure, and allows you to quickly manage your Discover Bank accounts from a mobile device.

Here is a link to Discover Bank

H&R Block – Tax Preparation Services Company

hrblock website homepage screenshot

The H&R Block apps are often described the best mobile financial apps because they allow you to manage your taxes from your mobile device. H&R Block is one of many tax preparation services and tax preparation programs available to people in the US. Many tax preparation programs and services have a problem trying to integrate their service into an app. H&R Block has done a good job of integrating their service into an app by willfully accepting that they cannot cram all of their software tools or services into the app.

Instead of trying to cram in all their tools and making a mess of it, H&R Block has made a simple app that allows you to monitor your tax progress and make suitable decisions. It allows you to manage your taxes in a simple manner. There is also an app built specially for preparing your taxes. Plus, one of the apps allows you to manage your Emerald Card (if you have one).

The app was built on the basis of one touch at a time. It is not a complex accounting program, it is a stop-gap solution for people on the move. It is a little like comparing a PC with a Smartphone in that the Smartphone allows you to do some things, but to work in full and most efficiently, you are going to need a PC. The same principle applies to the H&R Block service and the H&R Block apps.

You may view your completed return with the H&R Block app, and you may check on your e-file statues. During the filling process, you may upload tax documents. Plus, if you have Tax Pro, then you may share your tax documents. The H&R Block app allows you to organize your personal financial and business financial matters in preparation for tax season. You may also use the app to estimate your tax refund. If you have an Emerald card, then you may also view your transactions, pay bills, set up direct deposits, check balances and much more.

HR block two smartphone apps

There are two types of app to choose from. One has the features mentioned above, and the other is specifically for tax preparation where it helps you complete your return, upload last year’s tax return, and things of that nature.

Both of the H&R Block apps work on Apple iOS devices and Google Android devices. The H&R Block tax prep app (the second app) is also available at Amazon. Plus, do not forget that the services offered by both the H&R Block apps are also available via the H&R Block website if you sign up for the H&R Block service.

Here is a link to H&R Block

Transferwise – A Snappy And Honest Currency Exchange App

transferwise tablet and smartphone screenshot for advertising

Transferwise is one of the best mobile financial apps because it is almost exactly the same as Currency Fair. Both of these apps give you a completely transparent and honest deal when you make international transfers. There are no hidden fees, no hidden charges, and no deceptions.

As I mentioned earlier, there are quite a number of tricks a currency transfer company can pull that are perfectly legal. That is why spammers and online malcontents are always offering currency exchange (Forex) services via spam websites and in your email junk folder.

There are many ways to deceive people in the international currency exchange game. Most methods include ways to make a payment look cheaper than it is. When you use the Transferwise app, you see exactly how much you are uploading and exactly how much you are sending. The company doesn’t blur the lines in any way, which typically makes them look more expensive than their competition. However, if you actually check the amount you upload and the amount that is received, and then you compare those amounts with the upload and received amounts while using other transfer services, you will see how much cheaper Transferwise is when you work it out on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

The currency transfers market is not going to clean up its act any time soon because the market couldn’t handle it. If transfer and exchange companies were unable to deceive people about how much they are paying and how much the recipient receives, then there would only be two or thee exchanges in the country rather than the great number that there are today. If transfer and exchange companies were not legally allowed to blur the issue, then only two or three of the very cheapest exchange companies would ever get any business.

Transferwise is one of a tiny minority of companies that gives you everything upfront. For example, you will not see fees added right at the end, nor will they hide their fees in a crappy exchange rate, or claim there is a processing charge, or any of the other nasty tricks that exchange companies pull. They will not skim from what is being received, nor will they ask that you upload more than the amount you wish to send. All of these benefits are a part of the Transferwise app in the same way they are a part of the Transferwise online service. The difference is that the Transferwise app allows you to make transfers quickly and while you are on the move.

Here is a link to Transferwise

A Final Word Of Warning

Never assume that any app is safe. This is especially relevant when dealing with financial apps. Any app that requires user information, especially financial information, is always attractive to hackers, to online malcontents and to virus/malware spreaders. You should always be as cautious as possible and as safe as possible when you are dealing with apps where your financial information may be required. For example, I know plenty of people who save their passwords into their web browser for easier access to their online accounts. Yet, the emergence of the “Meltdown” and “Spectre” vulnerabilities has made it so that hackers may now see your passwords if they have access to your processor while you are signing in.

You cannot be too careful. There is no point in reading our articles and taking our advice on wealth building if you are not taking all due care and attention when it comes to the security of your personal information and your financial information.

About The Author

Ash The Great

After a varied career in different industries from the hospitality industry to the financial consultancy industry, Ash now spends his days working as a professional writer.

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