Do you have a difficult time budgeting and managing your finances? You may find it difficult to save money each month, and to get the returns you want from the money you invest.
It is the same story for every newbie investor. Don’t you wonder how useful it would be to have a personalized system to help you out and teach your everything about finances and investment? Mint is just the right software for you, your free personal finance app that can guide you on your investment journey. It helps you avoid the common investment pitfalls and make the right decision.
Continue reading this Mint review to find out if it meets your requirements.
What Is Mint?
Mint is a personal finance program that budgets and tracks your expenses by categorizing it into different sections. It is has a free sign-up program that allows you to check its cool features. When you sign-up on Mint, you are asked to create a username and password, banking and credit card details, and investment details.
Once you are logged into the system, you can customize the setup and enter other details like your demographic information, contact details, and notification choices. Make sure to sign-up for email, on-site updates, and text updates. The updates notify you regarding upcoming bills, credit score changes, and any drop in minimum bank balance requirements.
It isn’t necessary for you to add all the financial information, which is the biggest advantage of Mint. For example, if you want to only manage your credit card, you can only add credit card details. If you want to manage monthly installments, you can add information related to that.
At the end of every month, Mint sends you an in-depth analysis of your spend, which is valuable as you get to know areas in which you can save money. The more money you save, the faster you reach your financial goals.
3 Key Features of Mint
What makes Mint special is its ability to help you track your budgetary finances just right. You get to create the right goals for yourself, and it is this customization that makes Mint a good bet.
- Budgeting and Tracking Expenses
The primary feature of Mint is to help you budget and track expenses. This is also our favorite feature of the finance app. Once you sync all your transactions on Mint, it will automatically categorize them into different expenses, which are pre-made on the app. You can create sub-categories or new categories depending on your requirement.
- Creating and Managing Goals
Creating and managing goals is the next important feature offered by Mint. This feature is very beneficial to young graduates, you have a difficult time funding their goals, paying rent, and repaying loan along with other small expenses like groceries and utilities. You can create your goal, which can be anything from buying a car to a house and add it to your monthly expense chart. You can automate monthly installment to the fund.
- Monitoring Credit Scores
Will you believe it when we tell you that you can track your credit score for free when you sign-up for a premium account on Mint? It is incredible, isn’t it? When you log in, you get a summary of your current credit score. Click on Show Details tab to get a full picture of your monthly expenses and how they influenced your credit score. You also check the age of your credit cards. Check the score before and after you make a big purchase to learn more about how it works.
Mint is available in premium version as well, which comes with more features.
How Does Mint Make Money?
You would be wondering how does Mint make money if it is free to use. Is it even profiting? How long before Mint starts charging money for the free account? As we mentioned earlier, it has a premium paid version, which is one way to earn money. One of the biggest ways Mint earns is through referrals. Mint users are recommended third party products or financial services. When you purchase them through their website or app, Mint receives a percentage of the profit.
The website has ad banners that pay on a pay per click and pay per view basis. They also sell aggregate data to several financial research organizations. Don’t worry, it isn’t your personal data but the average of their users. This information includes an average of credit card balance, consumer spending pattern and habits, number of retirement accounts per user, and average expense reports among other things. Mint also has access to your history, so it can use those details as a part of the survey as well.
All data is collected by maintaining complete anonymity, so you don’t have to worry about information leak. All the Mint reviews that we have received until now have expressed any concern regarding the financial app’s security.
Is Mint Safe?
Now that you are clear about how Mint makes money, let’s move onto the next question? Is Mint safe? If you had asked this question a few years ago, we wouldn’t have a definitive answer. Most apps were hosted locally and since not everyone’s computer system is highly secure, your information was at a higher risk.
However, that’s not the case now. The app is a combination of local and cloud-based technology, so it is safe to say that it has a bright future. Mint recently made two-factor authentication a part of its security system. Until and unless you don’t verify your computer, it won’t let you enter the website, which makes it so much more secure.
There are two ways you can validate as a part of the feature, including
- A random code on your email address
- OTP (one-time password) SMS text to your mobile number
You have to enter this code on the website to log into your account. You would still be wondering, what will happen in case the website gets hacked?
The hacker will only get read-only access to user information. This means they won’t be able to see all the details. To get the complete information, they need to send an email to your bank for the details, which can bust their scam.
Pros and Cons of Mint
Every person has different opinions about the products they use. After using the app, we have developed a list of pros and cons that will help you decide if Mint is right for you or not.
- Financial goal setting
You can set short and long-term financial goals on Mint, which is our most favorite feature. It helps you to cut down your expenses and come up with a practical budget.
When you sync your bank and credit card details on Mint, it shows you a summary of your past and current spending habits. You can analyze the details and draw a budget to use your hard-earned money effectively.
- Monthly credit score updates
When you sign-up for the premium version, you get access to free credit score updates. Mint will let you know when your score dropped and its cause. You can also track monthly credit updates as well.
- Strong security system
The two-factor authentication system is an absolute winner. You have to authenticate it via a random code on email or mobile number to log into your system. Even if someone else is using your computer, your account is protected from misuse.
- No investing features
It is a very simple financial app and doesn’t offer any investment offers.
- Limited report generation options
There’s only one way to generate a report, which is converting a CSV file to a MS Excel file.
- No bill pay
You can’t pay your bills on Mint, which limits its use as you will need another app to do that.
Mint is the perfect choice for a newbie, someone who has a small amount to handle every month and expenses are limited. It is a very basic app but has done well in terms of security. It is a good software for tracking and budgeting your expenses but its no investment feature is a big disappoint. You don’t need to have a large sum of investment to use Mint. Even a few thousand dollars work great –
Overall, we liked Mint. However, you may not want to use it for a long time, primarily if you have a healthy salary, and are looking for a one-stop solution for managing their financial profile. Mint offers some great advice, but isn’t the right option when it comes to your meeting all your financial needs. Plus, the app has consistently faced synchronization issues after it was acquired by Intuit purchased it. They replaced the third-party Yodlee system to link accounts with their in-house system.