Top 5 Free Budgeting Apps of 2024

Creating a budget is crucial for financial health, and while budgeting apps can help, the best method varies by individual. It’s essential to find what works for you and persist, as being uninformed about your finances can lead to issues. Knowledge is empowering. Although Mint was once a top choice, it’s no longer available. Effective budgeting helps in tracking daily expenses and achieving long-term goals. Budgets should enhance, not restrict, your financial decisions. To aid in finding the right tool, the Fortune RecommendsTM team has evaluated over a dozen apps, considering factors like cost, user ratings, security, and integration features.

Here are the top 5 free budgeting apps of 2024, each offering unique features to help you manage your finances effectively:

Rocket Money

Rocket Money is a budgeting app that links to your bank accounts to automatically categorize your spending into areas like groceries or housing, simplifying budget management. Users can set spending goals, adjust budgets for unexpected expenses, and edit transaction categories. includes advanced options like custom categories, automated savings, and credit monitoring. Rocket Money also features bank-level security with 256-bit encryption.


  • Affordable Pricing: Rocket Money Premium is priced between $4 and $12 per month, with the cheaper rates available on an annual basis. All pricing tiers offer the same features.

  • User-Friendly: Both the mobile app and online platform are intuitive, presenting information clearly and simply.

  • Comprehensive Notifications: Offers a range of alerts including for bill increases, bank fees, identity theft, and credit score changes.

  • Savings Goals: Features a Smart Savings account with automatic transfers, backed by an FDIC-insured partner bank for security up to $250,000.

  • Credit Monitoring: Includes credit score viewing, credit report, and net worth tracking; credit viewing is available in the free version.

  • Bill Negotiation: Available to all users, Rocket Money negotiates with service providers to potentially lower bills, charging a fee only if successful.


YNAB (You Need A Budget) employs a zero-based budgeting system, requiring each dollar to be assigned a specific spending “job.” This flexible system allows for reallocating funds across categories, including leisure. YNAB offers a learning curve, but free workshops and features like auto-import, which syncs and categorizes transactions, simplify maintenance to under an hour weekly. Personalization options include adding emojis to category names.


  • Trial and Special Offers: Includes a 34-day free trial for new users and a 12-month free subscription for college students with an .edu email.

  • Claims of Financial Improvement: Users reportedly save an average of $600 in the first two months and $6,000 in the first year of using YNAB.

  • YNAB Together: Enables users to collaboratively manage budgets with partners or family members with whom they share financial responsibilities.

  • Auto-Import: Automatically imports and categorises transactions from linked bank accounts and credit cards, streamlining the budgeting process.

  • Ad-Free Syncing: Real-time synchronisation across multiple devices without ads.


Everyollar is a user-friendly budgeting app featuring a zero-based budgeting system, allowing for detailed budget customization and savings tracking. The app offers both free and premium versions; the premium service costs $17.99 monthly or $79.99 annually and includes advanced features like bank connectivity, paycheck planning, group financial coaching, custom budget reports, and smart tracking recommendations. Notably, EveryDollar’s unique free feature is rollover budgeting, which lets users carry over unused funds to the next month, streamlining budget management over time. 


  • Split Transactions: Users can divide a single transaction into multiple categories, e.g., splitting a $140 shopping trip into food and clothing expenses.

  • Financial Goals: Supports setting up categories for savings and debts, enabling users to manage long-term goals and monthly debt payments.

  • Rollover Budgeting: Allows unused funds to roll over to the next month, facilitating smoother financial planning.

  • Premium Features: Includes automatic bank transaction imports, paycheck planning, financial coaching, and custom reports.

  • Accessibility: EveryDollar can be accessed via both mobile and desktop, though desktop offers the best experience.

  • Pricing: The app has a free version for basic features; the premium version costs $17.99 monthly or $79.99 annually.


Goodbudget is a budgeting app that employs the envelope method, allowing users to allocate monthly income into categories like groceries, rent, and travel, each represented by a digital “envelope.” This method helps with spending prioritization and budget management, signaling overspending by turning the envelope red. Ideal for budgeting novices, it encourages active financial engagement by requiring manual transaction entries, as it does not sync with bank accounts. Goodbudget is available on iOS, Android, and desktop, and is recognized by Google, The New York Times, Forbes, LifetimeTV, and the Boston Globe.


  • Reports: Offers in-app reports to analyse spending, budgeting, and debt progress, including details like income vs. spending and envelope expenditure.

  • Virtual Envelopes: Enables the creation of digital envelopes for budget categories such as rent, groceries, and dining out to manage fund allocation.

  • Scheduled Transactions: Permits users to set up automatic transactions and funding of envelopes as scheduled.

  • Goal and Annual Envelopes: Facilitates saving for future objectives and annual costs with dedicated envelopes.

  • Fund Transfers: Simplifies the process of transferring funds between accounts and envelopes.

Monarch Money

Monarch is a versatile budgeting app that enables users to track spending by categories and share their budget access with partners or financial advisors for collaborative management. It supports extensive synchronization with numerous financial data aggregators, ensuring seamless account integration. The app uses AI to refine and organize transactions over time and allows users to customize transaction details for better clarity. Monarch is accessible on web, iOS, and Android platforms.


  • Comprehensive Account Sync: Integrates with multiple financial data aggregators, providing robust options for connecting and syncing financial accounts more effectively than competitors.

  • No Extra Cost for Collaboration: Offers collaborative features at no additional cost, making it easier for users to manage finances with others involved in their financial planning.

  • Budgeting Categories and Subcategories: Allows detailed tracking of spending by organizing expenses into various categories and subcategories.

  • Multi-Platform Accessibility: Available on web, iOS, and Android, ensuring users can manage their finances from any device.

  • Shared Budget Access: Users can share budget access with partners or financial advisors, facilitating collaborative budgeting and financial planning.

Key Benefits of Using Budgeting Apps

Budgeting apps offer a range of benefits that can help users manage their finances more effectively. Here are some key advantages:

  • Immediate Financial Analysis: Budgeting apps provide instant financial insights through charts, graphs, and reports, aiding in identifying potential savings areas.

  • Budget Planning Tools: These apps assist in forming realistic budgets by categorizing and visualizing spending patterns.

  • Spending Management: Budgeting apps track expenses and can set spending limits and alerts to help manage finances effectively.

  • Credit Management: By monitoring income and spending, budgeting apps can help allocate funds to pay off debts, thereby potentially improving credit scores.

  • Automated Bill Management: They automate bill tracking and transaction monitoring through direct bank account connections.

  • Efficiency Gains: Apps offer a more efficient alternative to spreadsheets, eliminating the need for complex formulas and macros.

  • Spending Analysis: Helps users understand spending habits and pinpoint areas susceptible to impulse buying.

  • Financial Goal Setting: Enables setting of saving and spending goals, providing motivation and helping maintain financial discipline over the long term.

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Budgeting is an essential process that serves as the practical execution of a strategic business plan. By providing a detailed and descriptive roadmap, budgeting allows businesses to set performance measures and indicators, facilitating the necessary adjustments to align operations with strategic objectives. Through careful management of revenues and expenses, and by continuously comparing actual outcomes with expected results, budgeting ensures financial discipline and health, ultimately guiding a business towards achieving its long-term goals. Effective budgeting is not just about controlling costs but also about optimizing resources to foster growth and stability in the ever-evolving business landscape.


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