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Best Automatic Savings Apps to make saving easy!

As part of the 2021 DMK Budget Series, our editors put together a list of the best savings apps available for easier savings success! Select the savings app that is easy to use, suited to your goals and with features that apply to the saving's part of your budget. Many are free!

What is included in this years Budget Series?

The 2021 DMK Budget Series includes an easy-to-use guide, our budget that starts with your current budget and quickly converts it to a new simple plan, app suggestions and spending revisions to ensure your success. In addition to the guide and this article, 2021 Best Automatic Savings Apps, the series includes two additional articles, How to Save on Groceries and 2021 Best Budget Apps.

Are Budget and Savings Apps safe to use?

When choosing software or apps that require personal financial information it is best to select the app that meets your desired comfort level based on the strength of the app's systems security and encryption measures.  It is best to choose apps that have multiple reviews and recommendations from reputable sources, along with indicators available on their site or app information that indicates they have security protocol designed to keep your information safe in an effort to avoid risks of breeches and hacking.  

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2021 Best Automatic Savings Apps

1. Qapital

Automatic banking app that helps the user save money with various automatic savings methods

Features

  • Free FDIC insured checking and savings accounts currently offered with a FREE chip enabled Visa® debit card
  • "Set your own" savings parameters in Qapital savings and checking accounts (round-up, $2 round up, automatic savings deposits, spend less or guilty pleasure rules and reward goals)
  • Segmented savings allocations
  • Works with Qapital savings and checking accounts or your current FDIC insured savings account (as of June 2020, however, the app may discontinue to work with nonQapital bank accounts in the near future - there have also been reports that some banks and Qapital have connection issues based on two-factor authentication sign-ins)
  • Multiple savings tools to discourage overspending and improve short- and long-term savings goals.

Cost - There are fees and minimums to get started, currently $3, $6, $12- complete details at Qapital.com


2. Acorns

Spare change saver- investment app that deposits spare change from each transaction you make with specified bank cards

Features

  • Easy and carefree way to start a savings plan
  • Acorns Core rounds each transaction up to the nearest dollar, depositing the difference from the actual change into your choice of investment portfolios ($5 minimum)
  • Acorns Later is an option to deposit your money in an IRA (Independent Retirement Account) and set recurring deposits from a separate account
  • ETF's will adjust to meet your goals over a period of time
  • Must have Acorns Core to get Acorns Later, Acorns Core is $1 per month or both cost $2 per month

Cost - The app is Free, but the Acorns service is $1, $2, or $3 (includes Acorns Spend checking account) depending on the plan


3. Simple

App that can help the user bank, earn and budget much higher than the national average

Features

  • Goal focused savings app that makes automatic transfers based on specified future goals
  • Tracks spending in real time with easy to read limits and current expenditures
  • Simple provides it's FDIC insured accounts or will transfer funds into your accounts with a separate banking institution
  • Photo feature to help you remember a purchase

Cost - The app is Free and there are no associated minimums or monthly service charges for the Simple Checking Account 


4. Chime

Banking and savings app (online, mobile only bank) with easy sign-up 

Features

  • Mobile banking app and debit card
  • Bank account tracking and balance notifications
  • Direct deposit of your paycheck up to 2 days early
  • Automatic savings program (save when you spend, save when you earn options)
  • Pay Friends option on their mobile banking app to send money to friends and family instantly
  • Fee-free overdraft (limits apply)
  • No monthly fees or minimum balance requirement

Cost - The app is free but requires you to bank your money with Chime.  The fees associated with their account are currently for over the counter withdraw or foreign ATM fees (currently $2.50).  Transactions at MoneyPass® ATM's are currently fee free.


5. Digit

Tracks your spending over a period of time then suggests the customized savings plan perfect for you

Features

  • Simple to use app that is customized to your goals, income and expenses
  • Varied withdraws based on expenses to meet long term goals
  • Provides an FDIC insured savings account that earns 1% interest
  • The incremental withdraws can be from $5 to $30 

Cost - $2.99 monthly fee with a 30-day Free trial and 100 day money back guarantee



All-in-one Automatic Savings and Budget Apps 

1. Albert

Set it up and forget about it. This app has a built in automatic saver that makes it an all-in-one option for budgeting and saving

Features

  • Requires very little task management on behalf of the user
  • Analyzes income, budget, spending and financial health
  • Includes a Albert Savings Account that is FDIC insured up to $250,000 for auto transfers
  • Offers the paid premium service, Albert Genius™ that provides it's users the chance to text financial advisors money questions at any time
  • The app pays $1 for every $100 saved for subscribers of the paid premium service, Albert Genius™
  • The app pays .25 for every $100 saved for non subscribers of Albert Genius™

Cost - FREE for non-subscribers of the premium service called Albert Genius™ and an amount the users deems fair for the premium service with a minimum monthly fee of $4 (most subscribers pay $6)


2. Clarity Money

Budget app that has recently been acquired by Marcus, a Goldman Sachs Brand. Marcus offers no fee, fixed rate personal loans and high yield savings accounts

Features

  • Links bank accounts, investments and loans to the app for easy management
  • Pie charts to display finances that has indicators when overspending
  • Identifies reoccurring expenses and helps cancel unwanted accounts
  • Includes a non-interest bearing Automatic Savings Account that is FDIC insured for easy transfer
  • Free credit score from Experian

Cost - Free app at may undergo changes once integrated with Marcus


3. YNAB

"You Need a Budget" is a debt management and budget app designed for those who are focused on immediate savings

Features

  • Asks the user for expectations for savings goal then links appropriate accounts to transfer funds accordingly by the debt manager
  • Organizes spending categorial to assist the user recognize overspending
  • Service claims that it can save new users on average $600 by the second month and over $6000 by the end of the first year

Cost - $6.99 per month billed annually at $83.99 after a free 34-day trial

-OurDMK.com


References: A portion of this article was created with information obtained from Forbes, "The Best Budgeting Apps of 2019", updated April 24, 2019, by: Kristin Stroller



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