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Monarch Money App Review: Budgeting Made Simple

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You’re not alone if you find it hard to keep track of your cashflow. Luckily, there are plenty of budgeting apps on the market that can empower you to manage your hard-earned money. Launched in 2020, Monarch is still the new kid on the block—so let’s use this Monarch budget app review to give a special look at how it stacks up.

What is Monarch?

Monarch Money (or simply Monarch) is a money management platform that helps you create a budget. It also helps you track investments and create a big-picture financial plan.

To date, Monarch has partnered with more than 10,000 banks and financial accounts to allow syncing. This means that more people than ever can use the platform to track their spending, stay on budget, set financial goals, and more.

How does Monarch work?

You can use Monarch on its web platform or through its iPhone, iPad, or Android app.

Upon logging in, you’ll be faced with your money management dashboard. This includes information from your primary bank accounts as well as your credit cards and other loans. You will also be able to see your investments at quick glance.

Once connected, Monarch tracks your spending and sorts it within categories. The most common categories include things like housing, groceries, entertainment, and more. One of the great things of Monarch is that it allows you to customize your categories—over time, the app learns to know your spending habits and can deliver you insights.

Monarch is a general budgeting app, which means it can help you with long, medium, and short term goals. The app allows you easy access to asset tracking, whether it’s through connecting Zillow to see your property investment or inputting valuables like art or jewlery into the app. It also allows you to see your investment portfolios at a glance.

Monarch Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Offers a free 7-day trial period
  • Available on iOS, Android, or web platforms
  • Live chat customer support is available
  • Includes option for financial advice (beta mode)
  • All-in-one financial platform
  • Ad-free platforms
  • Dashboard is customizable
  • Option for collaboration

Cons

  • Costs $7.50 per month (or $89.99 per year)
  • No telephone support
  • Not many crypto options (only Coinbase)

Monarch Fees and Pricing

Monarch offers a free version with limited capabilities—it only allows for two bank connections and 10 transaction rules and doesn’t offer rollover budgets, investment portfolios, or crypto tracking, among other features including customer support. You can try Monarch’s Premium version for free for seven days. Otherwise it will cost you $7.50 a month or $89.99 a year.

Monarch Features

Financial Advice and Planning

With Monarch, you can create a financial plan that’s personalized for you. Monarch’s financial plan looks like a spreadsheet, though it’s much smarter than one. It automatically syncs with your bank account and tracks your spending in line with your goals so it can tell you right away if you’re off track.

Monarch also offers a financial planning tool that they call the “advice wizard”. This feature is in beta, so it’s still being worked out. But it uses advice from professional financial planners to offer catered recommendations for your financial situation.

Wealth Tracking

Monarch Premium allows you to track your investments, even if they’re from different brokers. It can also monitor your portfolio’s performance. Monarch also lets you track your home value thanks to an integration with Zillow. For a holistic picture of your net worth, you can manually input other items of value like art or collectibles.

Customizable Dashboard

With Monarch, you can customize your dashboard however you’d like. Whether it’s tracking your spending, seeing your savings at a glance, or looking at your goals, you can see it all on your dashboard. Transaction rules allow you to specify your spending categories—set them once and the app will remember them forever.

Collaboration

Do you share finances with somebody? Monarch makes it easy to collaborate with other people in your household by giving them a separate login that gives them access to your data. They can also add information about their own accounts to your dashboard. This feature also allows you to easily share a snapshot of your finances with a financial advisor.

Monarch vs Mint

Given its similarities to other popular budgeting apps, we’d be remiss to finish this Monarch budget review without comparing the app to its most famous counterpart, Mint.

Both apps will help you create a budget and stick to it, but they offer different bells and whistles. Mint, for example, offers free credit monitoring, while Monarch does not. As a free app, Mint also comes with advertisements, while Monarch is ad free. Mint offers loans to its customers—Monarch does not.

Both Monarch and Mint allow for investment tracking, but Monarch’s platform is more robust. Monarch offers an option for collaboration, which Mint is focused on single-use. Monarch also offers more opportunities for financial planning than Mint does.

Final Thoughts

So what’s the verdict of our Monarch budget app review? Though Monarch is new, it offers many features that other apps don’t. The app’s collaborative capabilities and customizable dashboard are major highlights.

There are many budgeting apps on the market now, and the app you use might end up coming down to your financial institution’s compatibility. But if Monarch fits with your place of banking, you’re in luck.

Frequently Asked Questions

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