Cons of Budgeting Apps
While the best budgeting apps will give all the benefits above, they also tend to share a few general cons. These can include limitations and even risks for users, and knowing these before you get invested into a specific app can save you trouble down the road. Here are 3 important warnings to keep in mind:
1. One App Doesn’t Fit All Budgeters
When designing their apps, it’s normal for companies to try and get as many users as possible. By casting that wide net, a budgeting app might roll into the ballpark of what you need; however, it probably won’t be an exact fit for your financial situation. This is especially problematic if your situation falls outside of whatever the app considers “normal.” For example, if you get paid weekly and the app only supports biweekly or monthly pay cycles, then you’ll have to change how you organize your budget to fit with the app’s limitations. Even the most minor differences could throw you off your budgeting rhythm and cause problems down the road.
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2. Too Many Features Can Be Overwhelming
Speaking of differences, many budgeting apps today are not just budgeting apps – they are investing, bank account, or credit card apps too. If you’re dealing with debt or struggling to keep your spending under control, the last thing you need is a barrage of enticing offers for a new credit card or investment account. If you’re used to a simple budgeting system, then all the bells and whistles of a modern app could also overcomplicate or distract you, making it harder to focus on your primary financial goals.
3. Another Security Risk to Worry About
To get the full benefit of a budgeting app, you’ll probably want to link your financial accounts to it. However, this means that if the app gets hacked or your password gets stolen, all of those other important accounts will be at risk. If you lose any money in the hack, or your credit card gets compromised, you could be on the hook because you violated the terms and conditions of your banking and card holder agreements. Be sure to read the fine print of all of your agreements to see if disclosing your passwords and account information to an app is allowed. Even if you don’t link your accounts, you may be worried about how the app collects, stores, and shares your personal information. For many Canadians, these kinds of security and privacy concerns are simply not worth the benefits of using a budgeting app.
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