Use Your Phone to Save A Down Payment Without Really Trying

Use Your Phone to Save A Down Payment Without Really Trying

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Anna Buckley
May 29, 2018
(Image credit: anyaberkut/Getty Images)

Saving enough money for a down payment on a home can be daunting. But the metaphorical white picket fence —in whatever form that dream manifests for you, personally—is a goal worth working towards: It's often a stable investment that builds equity and provides stability. And though saving that much money might sound tough, guess what? There's an app for that.

We researched the best money saving apps on the market so you don't have to. Why not put your best foot forward when it comes to saving up that nest egg?

Mint

If you use TurboTax, you'll probably love this free financial tracker made by the same folks (Intuit). The best feature about this money manager is that it pulls together all of your accounts, bills, investments, and credit cards so you can easily see where all your money is going. The app also provides savings tips based on your spending history and enables you to create a customized budget that takes your down payment goals into account. Saving for a house doesn't sound so scary after all, does it?

Clarity Money

Clarity Money is all about improving the health of your finances. The makers behind the app have utilized "data science and machine learning" to provide you with personalized money-saving suggestions. It's basically a financial advisor in your pocket that you can defer to 24/7. You can even set up a savings account for your down payment through the app that will pull funds from a personal account of your choosing. There's definitely a reason the app has more than 1,000,000 users.

NerdWallet

First of all, this app is just soothing to look it because it's designed so well. Those pastel colors! The app promises to help you reach your financial goals faster—perfect for saving up for a home. NerdWallet categorizes your spending history every month, allowing you to compare how you're doing each month compared to the last, and taking note of any extra cash you might have left over to sock away. They do the calculations, you do the saving.

Prism Bills & Money

Prism is all about saving you time (and money). One cool feature is that they'll remind you about any upcoming due dates on bills, which means you can avoid late fees (and put the saved money into your down payment savings account instead). If you're a visual learner (and/or not great with numbers) then you'll definitely appreciate their graphs, which make it easier to understand your finances at a glance.

Albert: Spend Smarter

If you prefer to consult with real humans, as opposed to highly-specialized algorithms, Albert is for you. You can actually text a financial advisor in the app if you want personalized advice, like how to best save for a down payment. Their feature, Albert Savings, allows you to withdraw money from any account and place it in your savings account (without racking up any transfer fees). A bonus feature? Their design theme is a calming blue, which definitely can't hurt if you're feeling stressed about your finances.

Zillow Mortgages

Zillow Mortgages is specifically designed to help you plan for a down payment. As Zillow says themselves, financing a home can be complicated, but they're here to throw you a life raft. Their customized calculators help you determine what you can afford to spend on a mortgage, which can factor into your down payment savings plan. However, as the name suggests, this app is geared towards finding you the right mortgage, so this app is most likely best for people who are a little farther along in their home-purchasing journey.

So, if you're serious about saving up for a down payment on your dream home, a quick virtual trip to the app store might make the financial journey a little less winding.

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