The 5 Best Financial Planning Tools Online: Go Beyond Budgeting

Budgeting is an important habit of financial wellness. However, it is only one aspect of doing well with your money. Financial wellness also requires good decision making that balances today’s priorities (your month to month cash flow) with all of tomorrow’s possibilities (your financial plan).

You need a financial planning garden, not just “Mint” (a popular budgeting tool)

Think of it this way: Mint (the now closed budgeting tool) was just one small shrub and you need a complete and healthy garden of planning tools for real financial peace of mind.

best financial planning tools

A quick Google search will show you that there’s no shortage of companies vying for former Mint users. Here we’ll take you through a quick rundown of the top offerings in different categories. Whether you’re just looking for a budgeting replacement for Mint or if you are ready for a comprehensive financial planning tool, you’re likely to find what you need below.

Top 5 Financial Planning Tools

Here is a comparison of the 5 best financial planning tools. We compare on:

Comprehensiveness: Do they cover all aspects of personal finance.

Strategic decision making: How well any of these tools help you to make solid decisions about your future?

Financial monitoring: What kind of tracking is offered?

Budgeting: Which tools offer the kind of detailed budgeting that Mint offered?

Support: Who has resources to answer questions and improve your know-how?

Let’s take a look:

Comprehensive NewRetirementCredit
Karma
Personal
Capital
(Empower)
QuickenMonarch
Money
Income & Expenses
Taxes   
Investments   
Retirement   
Debt     
Credit scores  
Insurance   
Strategic Decision
Making
NewRetirementCredit
Karma 
 Personal
Capital
(Empower)
QuickenMonarch
Money 
Unlimited “what if”
scenarios
Roth conversion
explorer
 
Risk management   
Suggestions to do
better
      
Financial Monitoring  NewRetirementCredit
Karma
Personal
Capital
(Empower)
QuickenMonarch
Money
Overall financial
wellness tracking
 Coming Soon
Net worth  
Retirement chance
of success
  
Projected estate
value
 
Investment
tracking
  
Budgeting FeaturesNewRetirementCredit
Karma
Personal
Capital
(Empower)
QuickenMonarch
Money
Lifetime projections 
Historical tracking
Plan changes to future
spending
Set like to spend & need
to spend amounts
Alerting
Budget reconciliationComing 2024
SupportNewRetirementCredit
Karma
Personal
Capital
(Empower)
QuickenMonarch
Money
-> Classes
-> Coaching$175/50 min
-> Professional adviceFee only*AUM**
-> Budget Reconciliation
-> Account linking

Summary of the Top 5 Financial Planning Tools

NewRetirement

This tool aims to put financial wellness into your own hands and Forbes Magazine it, “A new approach to planning.” The NewRetirement Planner gives people the ability to make better decisions, build wealth, and find their path to a secure and happy future.

If you want to make better decisions about your future, NewRetirement is the tool for you. They offer unparalleled flexibility in modeling future scenarios.

  • Cost: A Basic plan is free. Get PlannerPlus for $120/year

Credit Karma

It is odd that Credit Karma is closing Mint since they don’t have a full suite of budgeting tools. However, their site says that “you will be able to bring the majority of your Mint financial account balances, historical net worth, and 3 years of transactions over to Credit Karma.”

If credit monitoring and improving your credit score is your goal, use Credit Karma.

  • Cost: Free, but they will promote credit card and other types of offers to you

Empower, formerly known as Personal Capital

If monitoring your finances monthly is your thing, Empower might be the right tool. Plus, it offers some planning capabilities.

  • Cost: Free. However, be prepared for sales calls pressuring you to let them manage your savings at .49-.89%.

Quicken

Quicken is a classic that has been improved over the years. If you want to customize reports and manipulate data, then try Quicken.

  • Cost: Free. Quick Simplifi (budgeting) is $30-48/year and Quicken Classic (more all around planning) is $48-84/year

Monarch Money

Monarch Money is similar to Empower – good financial tracking and monitoring – but with arguably better budgeting functionality and without the sales pitch to let them manage your money.

  • The Bottom Line: A solid tool with a good way to import your data from Mint.
  • Cost: $14.99/month vs. $99.99/year

Only Interested in Budgeting? Here Are Some Additional Mint Alternatives to Consider

If you were using Mint, you may only be interested in finding a new app for budgeting, not a more complete financial planning tool. Here are a few of your options:

YNAB: YNAB stands for “You Need a Budget.” They are passionate about budgeting and offer a schedule of fantastic classes and community groups to support you in your budgeting endeavors.

  • Cost: $13/month vs. $99.99/year

Copilot Money: Users claim that Copilot Money is extremely intuitive and easy to use with superior categorizing of budget items.

  • Cost: $13/month vs. $95/year

PocketGuard: PocketGuard promotes features that they claim will help you monitor spending and achieve goals.

  • Cost: $7.99/month vs. $34.99/year (PocketGuard also make money from third party offers that they present to you.)

Rocket Money: Rocket Money offers some unique features like their subscription management tool that monitors for services you might not be using.

  • You will pay a subscription fee plus they earn money when you sign up for products they feature.

Tiller: People are loving Tiller. It is basically a really good spreadsheet. Check out Rob Berger’s review.

  • Cost: After 30 days, Tiller is $79/year

Which Financial Planning Tool is Right for You?

The answer to most financial planning questions is , it depends. And this question is no different. If you primarily want:

  • Budgeting: Take a look at any of the tools listed below and see which one feels good to you.
  • Monthly Tracking: To monitor your finances from month to month, then Empowerl, Quicken, and Monarch Money are all good options.
  • Planning & Strategic Decisions: To plan your future, run scenarios, and make better decisions, then use NewRetirement.
NewRetirement Planner

Do it yourself retirement planning: easy, comprehensive, reliable

NewRetirement Planner

Take financial wellness into your own hands and do it yourself retirement planning: easy, comprehensive, reliable.

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