Smartphones are becoming a way of life for most New Zealanders and there’s no end to the steady stream of apps that are appearing to help us manage our lives better, from health and fitness to productivity and in particular, saving some time when it comes to money management.
While New Zealand is still lagging behind when it comes to apps that sync with our bank accounts, this may not be such a bad thing after reading about the frustrations of overseas users who regularly have problems with security and sync settings – logging into a secure bank account is never going to be as easy as ‘one click’ shopping, which maybe is just as well.
Property management apps
One area New Zealand apps are certainly showing healthy growth is in the property investment sector, with a number of homegrown apps like TenanSee and Re-Leased around to help you manage your property investments.
Relatively similar in nature, these apps allow you to centralise and manage your property online, and provide you with property investment performance reports, automated financials and all your documents stored in one place.
Money management and budgeting
A couple of years ago, New Zealand Herald writer Diana Clement was lamenting the fact that smartphone apps that could sync with New Zealand bank accounts were yet to arrive, and it seems that this is still the situation.
However one app that seems to be growing in popularity with Kiwis is the You Need A Budget (YNAB) app, which deliberately does not sync with bank accounts. This is because the makers believe that syncing with your bank “kills awareness by encouraging a ‘set it and forget it’ mentality that allows you to not revisit your budget for months, leaving you right back where you started”.
The apps does import transactions from your bank in OFX, QFX and QIF formats, but YNAB is adamant this should not be the primary means of entering data.
“Use your phone and record it as the transaction happens, or make entering receipts a 5-minute daily ritual. Your money will thank you for it,” the makers say.
The popularity among New Zealanders is obvious from some of the comments on this forum.
If you have to keep track of your expenses (accommodation, mileage, food, airfares), for both your personal and or business life, then it may be worth checking out BizExpenseTracker on iPhone or Epensify for Android and iPhone.
Smart Receipts is an Android app that lets you scan receipts and generate expense reports.
Keep track of the stock markets
The New Zealand Stocks app brings you streaming quotes from the New Zealand Stock Exchange (with a delay) and synchronises with different sources like Google Finance and Yahoo Finance. The makers say that it allows quick access to charts and portfolio management and lets you keep a close eye on world markets.
Stock Watcher is stock tracker app that is synced with Yahoo Finance and covers a number of countries, including the US, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Canada Mexico, Brazil and Argentina.