I thought I’d kick off this week of budgeting software reviews with my review of Budgetpulse. They hit the scene last year and have come on strong as a major player amongst the free budgeting tools.
With Budgetpulse you can set up a budget for your finances, manually import banking transactions, create a dashboard style view of your assets and liabilities, and create and fund individual savings goals. And you get to do this all for free, and without ever sharing any personal information.
What Does Budgetpulse Offer?
Create a Budget – Budgetpulse has a nice budgeting feature that allows you to set a budget amount for each spending category. I tested it out today and found it was easy to set up the budget amounts.
Import Transactions – You’ve got to see how you did against your budget, right? That’s where this feature comes in.You can manually upload or input your actual transactions. I had the most trouble with this feature. I tried importing a month of transactions from my Capital One 360 Checking account using the QIF and CSV data file types. I was never able to get the CSV file type to upload, although I’m sure it was user error. However, I did get the Quicken file type (QIF) to upload. But I still had to manually enter all the categories. This took a bit of time, but this is what you’re going to get with a manual budgeting tool.
View All Accounts in One Place – There is also a dashboard you can set up that will have all your asset and liability accounts in one place. You’ll get a quick snapshot of your net worth. Like importing, this has to be done manually, which can take some time and effort to set up and maintain.
Without Security Risk – Because Budgetpulse is manual, no personal information is needed. No connecting to bank accounts. You don’t even have to use your real name at anytime. The only thing that has to truly be yours when you set it up is your email address.
Uses Different Currencies and Time Zones – Budgetpulse comes with different currencies you can use. So it’s not restricted to USD.
Beyond Budgeting: Additional Features
Savings Goals and Fund-raising – Budgetpulse has a Goals section where you can set up different savings goals. You can also share these goals with friends and family (like, SmartyPig). Others are also able to contribute to your savings goal, turning it into a fund raising tool if needed. If you want more information on this feature, Craig Kessler explains the savings goal function on the Budgetpulse blog.
What Others Are Saying About Budgetpulse
- Budgetpulse Offers Savings Goals by The Centsible Life
- Budgetpulse Online Budgeting and Financial Management Software by Moolanomy
- Budgetpulse Review by FiscalGeek
- Bugdetpulse’s New Fund-raising Feature by Green Panda Treehouse
- Raise Money with Budgetpulse by Free From Broke
- Budgetpulse Review by Cash Money Life
How Much Does Budgetpulse Cost?
Right now Budgetpulse is completely free. Although, they do intend to release a premium version of the online software in the future. I doubt this would affect current users.
What Makes Budgetpulse Different?
There are a few factors that stand out for me. First, Budgetpulse is free to use. Second, I really like the interface. It’s clean, fresh-looking, and quick. Lastly, I think Budgetpulse differentiates themselves with their:
- Savings Goal Feature – I don’t think any other budgeting tools have this type of feature.
- Multi-Currency Use – Use whatever currency you like.
- Secure Use – Some people aren’t yet comfortable using automated financial aggregators like the one Mint.com offers, which require you to hand over your banking credentials. Budgetpulse is manual and impersonal (with the exception of the optional public savings goal feature), making it a perfect option for the risk averse.
- No Ads or Product Push – Most other free online budgeting tools come with a back end product push. Budgetpulse is free of any commission-type suggestions or even simple ads.
In my opinion, you won’t find a nicer, manual, online budgeting system out there that is also free like Budgetpulse. To check it out simply visit www.budgetpulse.com and sign up for free.