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- The Good
- Chat-based communication
- Great for those new to budgeting
- Automated account syncing
- The Bad
- Only works with U.S. banks
Penny is a personal finance app that is designed to help those new to budgeting. Using a unique, chat-based interface, you don’t just see the numbers, you have a conversation about your finances and what to expect in the coming month. By keeping things simple and streamlined, Penny is a very user-friendly option for those in need of basic personal finance services.
Penny is free. All of its features are free to use with no charges, ever. You can sign up for Penny+ and get access to some additional features like real-time updates, but there is no cost to use the basic service. Penny makes money through donations and referral fees.
- Financial forecasting
- Automatic organization
- Service cancellation
Penny keeps it simple. Where other apps include a long list of features, most of which you’ll never use, Penny only focuses on the basics. You can budget, or not. You can track your spending, get bill notifications and discuss how you’re doing financially, all without looking at intimidating spreadsheets or complex balance sheets. Penny organizes the information for you and gets down to the basics.
- Account Integration
- Works with more than 10,000 banks
Penny allows account syncing with more than 10,000 U.S.-based financial institutions. That makes it easy to link everything from your savings account to your PayPal account. The only downside is that it is currently limited to domestic accounts, so if you do business internationally, it might not be the app for you.
- Budget Resources
- Text-based messaging about budget
- Automatic reports sent in a friendly chat
- Automatic spending reports
With Penny, you have a friend that looks at your accounts and sends you a heads up about your budget. If you tend to spend more money when you go shopping on payday, Penny might remind you to avoid the stores until the next day. If you spend a ton on Starbucks, Penny will let you know so you can make savings decisions that make sense.
Penny: User Reviews
Penny is the best personal finance tool for the beginner. It doesn’t hit you with a lot of jargon or hard-to-read reports. Instead, you get your financial information in quick, friendly text messages and simple, but beautiful, charts. Where other personal finance tools try to do everything, Penny lets you focus on day-to-day spending, helping you get your spending under control without the stress of hours spent inputting data or crunching numbers.
How Does Penny Work?
Signing up for Penny is quick and easy. All you need to do is download the app and give it permission to access your accounts. Penny does the rest. It will look at your transaction history and create categories for your spending.
You’ll get quick tips on how to save and places where you might be overspending. You can work with Penny to create a budget and get regular reminders about upcoming bills. It’s that simple. There’s no long, drawn-out sign up or time spent agonizing about a budget.
What Makes Penny Stand Out?
Building your first budget can be intimidating. You don’t want to do it wrong for fear that it will leave you without the funds to cover a bill. But without a budget, you might be overspending and not even realize it. Penny offers a very user-friendly solution. You can start tracking your spending before you worry about a budget. Then, Penny can help you build a budget, and it will never forget about a monthly expense. After all, it can see all of your transactions, so you never miss a payment when you stay on budget.
It’s the user-friendly and text-based interface that makes Penny such a great choice for those new to personal finance.
Common Reviews of Penny
Experts may not give Penny high ratings. It only scores 2.5-stars at InvestorJunkie, but users have a very different take. It has a whopping 4.6-stars on iTunes with 840 ratings. It scores similarly at the Play Store with 4.3-stars and 1,008 reviews. Experts might want more functionality, but Penny does well in its target market — those inexperienced with budgets and finance.
Is Penny Right For You?
Penny is designed to be less intimidating and less complicated than other options. If spreadsheets and ledgers make it challenging for you to get a clear picture of your spending, a more streamlined approach might be exactly what you want. With Penny, you can get to the bones of your financial picture without having to wade through excessive features.
If your personal finance needs are fairly basic, then Penny could be the mobile friend you’ve been looking for.