From free to reasonable to pricey, Mac users have plenty of choices to balance the checkbook, keep a budget, and track where the money went. This is the story of yet another money app to love.
Love Is A Fickle Pickle
Back in the day, when computers were expensive and computer stores had carpet and all the sales people wore white shirts with ties, one question was always asked.
What do you want the computer to do? And, back then computers didn’t do all that much when compared to the least expensive Mac of the early 21st century.
When it comes to money management, what do we want an app to do? Balance the checkbook?
Or, something more esoteric like track expenses, payments, bills, savings, and give us some graphically visual representation as to why there’s so much month left over at the end of the money.
My expectations for HomeBudget are high. There’s an iPhone version, a Mac version and even an Android OS version (and it attempts to sync them all together in a collaboration effort).
HomeBudget is colorful and straightforward complete with icons and color charts.
A quick glance at a budget will give you an idea of how an expense category fares to budget (green good, red not so good).
My favorite view is the 12 month trend which displays graphics for income, budget, and expense, side by side.
HomeBudget makes it easy to create expenses and recurring expenses and keeps track of each.
Browse through expense entries by month or by category and simply click to drill down into more detail for each. Here’s a goodie. Attach a photo of receipts to each expense entry.
As with expenses, income and recurring income are easily created and edited. Bills can be created and edited and set up as recurring. Click the Calendar View to see a list of the bills. Or, just wait around for the reminders.
HomeBudget supports the standard accounts for checking, savings, credit cards and the like. And, it spits out reports, actually trend reports, for expenses, budget, and income for the previous 12 months.
Navigating the app is straightforward and there’s little to the learning curve. It could easily be called Quicken Lite. It won’t manage your stock portfolio or download account information from the bank, but it will give you a quick picture of your financial health, and track where the money went.
It’s a new money management app that looks slick and has plenty of the basic features we need, but no track record, no history, and more than a few problems listed in the app’s support forums (support is always a good place to look before plunking down hard earned money on an app).
HomeBudget is an app I want to love for all the right reasons. But love is fickle.