5 Apps For Managing Personal Finance

If you are looking for an easy and convenient way to keep track of your finances, both at home and on-the-go, use your iPhone, Android or Blackberry phone to organize your financial life. There are hundreds of personal finance apps available for download, but only a few can provide a comprehensive picture of your current and future financial life. 

1. Mint.com (iPhone, BlackBerry and Android)

Mint.com is an impressive personal finance app that allows users to manage and track spending and savings. The app syncs with the Mint.com website, allowing users to access their profile directly from their smartphone device. This handy app compiles a wealth of financial information including user’s bank accounts, credit cards, loans and retirement accounts. 

5 Apps For Managing Personal Finance

In addition to providing a comprehensive picture of user’s financial information, the app tracks and charts spending, provides handy bill pay reminders and categorizes debit and credit card transactions. One of the app’s coolest features is its ability to create charts and graphs that track your spending trends. The app also allows users to compare their spending habits with other Mint.com users. The Mint.com app is free and can be downloaded from your smartphone’s app store.

2. MoneyStrands (iPhone)

MoneyStrands is a personal finance app that compiles and categorizes information from your checking and credit card accounts. In addition to compiling financial information, the app provides a visual spending analysis to help users better understand their own spending and saving habits. 

One of the app’s best features is its ability to compare user’s spending habits with other people who share similar demographics. MoneyStrands is available for the iPod Touch and iPhone and can be downloaded for free. 

3. RetirePlan (iPad)

If you are close to retirement or looking to get a better picture of your post-retirement budget, RetirePlan can help you gain a better understanding of your future financial life. This handy app allows users to upload their financial data and run scenarios to see how different variables will impact their retirement plans.

The app helps users determine the best age to retire, charts annual retirement savings goals and projects how long your retirement savings will last. One of the app’s best features is the variable calculator. The variable calculator allows users to see how changes in their pension, social security, interest rates and inflation will impact their retirements saving. RetirePlan is only available for the iPad and can be downloaded from the iTunes Store for free. 

4. PayPal (iPhone, BlackBerry and Android)

If you like making online purchases but don’t want to use your credit or debit card for your transaction, then you probably already have a Paypal account. If you have a PayPal account, be sure to download the PayPal app to your smartphone to keep track of your PayPal account information and online spending. 

This handy little app allows mobile users to check their Paypal balance on-the-go, withdraw and add funds to their account and transfer cash between their PayPal account and bank account. Download the free PayPal app from your smartphone’s app store. 

5. Smart Money Retirement Planner (iPhone and Android)

Whether you are fresh out of college or ending your career as a business professional, it never hurts to think about retirement… and the SmartMoney Retirement Planner app can help you do it! This powerful app helps users understand how their day-to-day financial choices impact their plans for retirement.

The app compiles user’s demographic and financial information, including assets, 401K and home equity, to run scenarios which determine how inflation, changes in social security, debt and taxes will impact their retirement plans. SmartMoney Retirement Planner is available for iPhone and Android phones and can be downloaded for free. 
About the author : Rosie writes on behalf of a number of businesses ranging from Auto Enrolment Administration to holiday destinations. She enjoys reading design and technology blogs and baking sweet treats. Any opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily represent the businesses Rosie writes for.
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Business Budgeting: Monthly Copier Lease Rates

For many business owners who don't have the budget to buy a large, high-capacity commercial copier, leasing is a smarter and more affordable alternative. Leasing is also great for small to medium offices in need of equipment on a limited budget.

However, it's very important to become familiar with average monthly copier lease rates to make sure you are getting the most competitive deal when signing a lease for office equipment.

Average Monthly Copier Lease Rates for Small to Large Offices

So what are the prices? Glad you asked:
  • To lease a business copier with a 2500 count paper capacity, 45 CPM, and network printing functions, it can cost $208 a month for a 39 month lease.
  • An even larger commercial quality color copier can be leased for $309 a month with a 60 month minimum lease, with additional 6 cent charges for color copying and 1 cent charges for black and white copies.
  • Smaller offices can take advantage of a cheaper $70 per month lease for a low-volume copier with 20-30 ppm.
If you're still at a crossroads and can't decide whether it’s the smartest business solution to lease or buy a copier, it’s essential to assess if your business can afford paying a monthly lease throughout the entire term of the agreement.

Copier Leasing versus Buying

Most copier leases are long agreements that will extend from one to three years with monthly payments required for the duration of the contract.

Business Budgeting: Monthly Copier Lease Rates
For businesses that don't have thousands of extra dollars in their budget to purchase a large-scale commercial copier outright, leasing may seem to make more sense. However, the cost of a lease for several years must be tallied and compared to the total investment of purchasing a commercial volume copier outright.

In many instances, a copier lease may work better for an established business or a company that has short-term copying needs. But if you are a small to medium-sized company that has the means to put a down payment on a commercial copier, it will be wiser investment of your funds since you will own the equipment in full.

How to Compare and Find the Best Copier Lease Rates

Taking into account that a copier lease could range from as little as $70 per month to over $300 per month for a 60 month lease, it's important to compare average prices from leasing retailers before entering into an agreement.

As you begin to compare copier lease rates between leading companies, take the time to calculate the total cost of buying a copier compared to how much you will pay for the entire length of your monthly contract. This will give you actual numbers that you can use to determine if the expense of a copier lease makes more financial sense than setting up a payment plan to buy a copier brand-new.

About the author: Sylvia enjoys writing about ways business owners can save money. Researching copier lease rates is just one of the methods she’s written on.
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Tips For Buying Laptops on a Budget

Cup of coffee? Check. Pen and sales papers? Check. Internet browser open and ready? Check. Now you’re ready to learn how to find the best laptop deals! While it may seem simple to some to blindly wander into their local electronics store and choose the first laptop they see with all the bells and whistles, there really is an art to finding just the right laptop to fit your needs as well as giving you all the fantastic “perks” that you’re looking for at just the right price.

Set your budget.

The first thing to do, as you should anytime you’re making an investment purchase, is to set your budget. Laptops vary in style, color, even screen size and of course, memory and processor speed. Setting a budget will affect the type of laptop you actually end up with as opposed to the one you want. Most laptops average in price from a few hundred to a couple thousand dollars. Factors that play a major role in the price will be the amount of storage space and the speed of the processors.

Know your product.

Tips For Buying Laptops on a Budget
Would you buy a house without doing a walkthrough? Or buy a car without test-driving it first? Buying a laptop is no different, it is an investment. What good is your hard-earned money if you spend it on something you know absolutely nothing about? Make sure that you are not just buying, but buying smart. If all you need a laptop for is to do homework assignments and surf the web, then you probably don’t need to buy a high-end laptop with a processor that works faster than the speed of light, leaving you with a large hole in your wallet.

Laptops come with different “abilities”, that is, different amounts of memory and speed to fit your purpose. Find out if it comes with software you need pre-installed or do you have to purchase programs separately. Remember the more programs you install the more memory you should have. Knowing your product will help you stay on budget and get you the laptop you need and not the laptop that makes someone a sizeable commission. Determine what you will be using the laptop for and how long you expect to get good use out of it before it needs to be replaced or upgraded.

Get back to basics…stretch your dollar.

Remember those days in school when your teacher gave a research assignment to the class for homework? Making your money work for you is all about getting back to basics. Know your budget, know your needs and then start searching. Sunday paper advertisements are always a great place to start, but even better than that is the good ‘ole internet. The internet gives you access to not only local deals, but worldwide as well and as long as your research skills are up to par, you can luck up on the perfect laptop.

In today’s economy, everyone is shopping smarter. There’s no reason you should be paying full retail for laptops (or anything else for that matter). Again, let the internet work to your advantage by searching for online coupon codes. Many highly sought after brand names offer online coupons or some sort of discount. This includes Dell, HP, Toshiba, even Apple. If you’re a student, check with your college or university for amazing student discounts. Compare online prices to in-store as well. Often, the in-store price or savings can outweigh purchasing online. Sign up with online rebate websites like Fatwallet or Ebates; they can get you some of your cash back, anywhere from 1-5% on items you’ve purchased. Now, how’s that for savvy shopping?

Finally, try not to do the brand name shuffle. A laptop from Dell or Toshiba is just as good as one made by Acer or Apple. Sometimes, all you’re really paying for is the brand name. Read product reviews by consumers and see what experiences they’ve had with the product themselves. There’s no better advertisement than word of mouth, so if someone thinks a laptop they’ve bought is crap, you best believe they’ll tell people about it on the web. Use all the tools at your disposal, both in print and online and you’ll be all the wiser for it. Happy shopping!
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