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Mint.com - Tip of the Day

by Jean Murray on January 6th, 2009

Today’s tip is about a new free online financial management system.  It’s called “Mint.com” (I guess the mint is like the one in Fort Knox, rather than the herb.).  Mint allows you to see all your current account information for bank, credit card, investment, and loan accounts.  So it gives you a clear picture of where you are financially at any time.

I set up a Mint account for my business, to help me remember when to pay credit card bills and to warn me if my business bank account is low.

Here is what Mint says it can do for you:

  • It’s secure - your identity is not shared, you can’t move money or write checks, nor can anyone else.
  • There is no software, so you can access your account information anywhere (they also have iPhone access and tex message alerts)
  • It can send you alert messages, with weekly or monthly summaries, let you know when bills are due, when your balance is getting low, and when you are over budget.  It also alerts you to changes in credit card interest rates.
  • You can set budgeting goals and see how your spending compares.
  • They give you checking, savings, and credit card offers (I suspect this is how they make their money).

Here are my comments on this free online service:

  • It’s good to see the complete financial picture for your business at a glance.
  • Mint is set up more for personal than business purposes, so the categories are all personal ones. I had to create new categories for my business expenses.  It doesn’t link to Quicken, QuickBooks, or other accounting software, and it doesn’t put payments into tax-friendly categories.
  • They say they can “save” you money, but you have to get a credit rating from a credit service (again, I think this is a money-maker for them).  They push certain vendors -I imagine they are getting money for recommending certain vendors.  But you don’t have to go to that section.
  • I like the alert feature.  I’m always forgetting to pay my credit card bills.
  • It took me less than a half hour to set up all my accounts.  I did have to know all my logins and passwords.

I thought it was pretty cool, for a free service.  I’m not sure I’d do anything with it if I had to pay, unless I could have the ability to pay bills and transfer between accounts.  But then, I can do that with QuickenBillPay now.

If you try Mint.com, let me know what you think.

Image source: PicApp

Tags: home business accounting, Mint.com

POSTED IN: Consumer Alerts, Finances & Money, Home Business Money Saving Tips, Online Resources, Organization

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