Monday, October 12, 2009

Teaching Your Kids the Value of a Dollar + Mint.com: FREE Money Management Site!

I'm sure you all by now have noticed the Juice Box Video Widget on my right sidebar! Well, this weeks feature is all about saving money! They've got a fun video clip you can watch just by pressing the play button (if you don't see the video, then just keep clicking the arrow on the top of the video widget until you get to the video where the play button is displayed). The video showcases a family discussing how they incorporate inventive spending/saving habits into their children's weekly activities. They have a great idea for how to do this! I may just have to start doing this for my kiddos too! What do you all think?

Also, this weeks sponsor is Mint.com! Have any of you heard of Mint.com? If not, it's a FREE site to help with money management! Mint allows you to use FREE tracking software to see all your activity in your checking, savings, and loans, so you'll have a complete picture of your net worth! Plus, Mint updates all of your account information automatically. So you always have the most current information available.

If you use Mint.com or have previously? I'd love to hear your thoughts! Do you find their site user friendly? Would you recommend Mint.com to friends and family?

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I haven't used this, but I think it's so important to teach kids money management. It often goes overlooked and ends up with those kids growing up and going into debt and making other unwise choices because they were never taught the right way. This sounds like a great way to start them in the right direction!

KelleyJohnson07 said...

My husband and I have been using this site for a little over a year now. I would have to say it is the best thing that has ever happened to our finances. It is VERY user friendly! I got on there one day when we first started using it and just spent a while kicking out a budget. You can budget EVERYTHING! We have a monthly budget for fast food, entertainment, home, groceries, shopping, gas,and restaurants.

The site will tell you for each budget if you are on track or not for each thing that you budget. You know if you need to cut back and slow down in one area or if you can afford to go out and get that little ice cream treat you are craving.

After you have been using it for a few months you will really get an idea of where all of your money goes on a regular basis. Then you can see where you think you can start to cut back and save and you can adjust your budget. You can even make a one time change to your budget if you need to make a large or important purchase. You can see if you are having red months or green months (if you have more or less money coming out than going in overall). It is awesome because you can actually see EVERYTHING in one place. I can say, "Wow babe, we are doing great this month, we are half way done with the month and not even half way done with any of our budgeted areas!" Or I can look and say, "Okay, no more fast food for us, we are 3/4 of the way through that budget and it is only the first week of the month."

In the "Ways to save" section, the site also looks at things like your checking accounts, savings accounts, and credit cards and sees how much money you could save if you changed to a different account or card.

In addition, this site has helped us multiple times when we have been overcharged for things. You can go online and see EVERY transaction from all of you accounts all in one place. So, we look over it every now and again and make sure everything looks normal. One time redbox charged us $25 for one movie that they did not think we returned. Mint pointed this out to us and we were able to call and get our money back.

Sorry for the long post, but I just can't say enough about this site! It has pretty much changed our lives and we recommend it to EVERYONE! It is so much easier to save money when you can really see where all of your money is going!

Angela said...

Thanks for your long post Kelley!

I'm glad to hear so much about this site, I'm going to definitely check this out today and start using it :)

My favorite thing that you mentioned, is that it warns you when odd things show up, like your redbox example. People aren't perfect, so we always need to keep an eye on our account!

tds said...

It looks interesting & I appreciate Kelley's review. I think I would feel leery of allowing a 3rd party to have access to my account information. Anyone else feel this way? I would need to look at Mint to see how they protect your info.

Anna said...

Kelley pretty much said it all! I absolutely lovely Mint.com. It really helps me see exactly where my money is going.

Stephanie & Nick said...

Good Morning America featured Mint.com a couple of months ago and they explained that they have the same security encrypting features as any online banking site.

Jaden Paige said...

I love Mint.com! I have been using it for a couple of months now, and I find it VERY easy to use! It will even create a budget for you, if you don't have the time or inkling to do it yourself, based on what you spend each month. I like that it pulls all your info from different places and organizes it so it's easy to see it all at once. I also love the graphs :) I would HIGHLY recommend this site to anyone who is thinking about trying a financial site or software!

Anonymous said...

tds- I'm with you. I always figure the fewer people that have my info, the less likely I will have any trouble.

Kate said...

Oh, awesome!! We used to pay $10+ a month for a service like that (Mvelopes) and we absolutely loved it but decided it wasn't worth the money once we really had things under control. I'm using Quicken now and it just isn't as good. Thank you SO much for this post!! I'm super excited to try out mint.com!

Phil and Jen Singer said...

My husband and I use Mint.com. And we love it! It helps us keep track of our budget without having to do all the work ourselves!

The only negative? We haven't been able to successfully link up our ING accounts. But that's ok since we don't necessarily spend out of this account.

tds said...

Just thought I'd update that I spent a lot of time checking out Mint last night & decided to sign up. Security seems great and there isn't any personally identifiable information (name, etc.) needed to sign up. It was pretty easy to set up my accounts, too. Here's crossing my fingers this helps with the personal finances! Thanks for the post!

Anonymous said...

thank you! what a wonderful tool! I thought only in my dreams would such a thing exist lol.