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8 Tools to Help Seniors Manage Their Finances

Written by Kristen Hicks
 about the author
13 minute readLast updated April 21, 2023

Even if your parents have managed to stay on top of finances their entire life, their financial situation will start to look different after retirement. Managing finances as a senior can quickly become more complicated than expected and they could find themselves struggling to stay on top of bills and sticking to a monthly budget. If your parents are having a hard time, they’re not alone.

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Top budgeting tools for seniors

Finances are a hard topic to discuss, but there’s no shame in recognizing that your parent’s current system for financial management isn’t working. Luckily, there are a number of tools available that can make the process much easier for them moving forward.

1. Budgetpulse

While being able to link financial accounts to an app or website can make tracking expenses and bills easier, the idea of handing that information over may make your parent uncomfortable (which is totally reasonable). If they don’t mind the trade off of doing extra work in exchange for more security, Budgetpulse provides a lot of the same features and functionality as some of the other sites, but lets them import the information from their financial accounts manually.
It helps them create a budget and track their spending each month, and they can share savings goals they’ve set in the tool with close friends and family members who may be willing to contribute (in lieu of gifts, for instance).

2. Budget Simple

Budget Simple is a free online budgeting tool. Your parent can either link their accounts or enter their financial information manually. The tool will produce a budget planner to help them better understand their spending habits now, identify areas where they can start saving more, and keep up with their spending and saving goals moving forward. While what it offers is similar to some of the other tools on this list, its intuitive interface and simple budgeting advice may make it a better fit than the others for some readers.

3. Age Well Planner

Provided by the National Council on Aging, the Age Well Planner provides a customized set of resources based on some basic information your parent provides. They offer calculators to help create a budget, plan retirement spending, and find ways to cut spending. They can also point your parent toward any government resources they may qualify for to help them increase their income in retirement or save on some of their main expenses.
If figuring out their budget and resources makes them realize they could actually really benefit from a few more years of work, the website also provides resources to help your parent develop the skills they need for a job and to find employment.

4. Mint

Mint has become one of the most popular tools available for personal financial management because it’s easy to use and provides a lot of the functionality your parent needs to manage their finances. It’s an app and website that your parent can hook up to their financial accounts so it tracks their spending and status automatically. It also helps them create and stick to a budget based on their personal habits and priorities.
Part of what’s hard about managing finances is that it requires paying attention to so many different accounts and bills and trying to remember them all. Mint brings them all into one place for your parent so they only ever have to log in there to manage everything. They can also set up alerts so they get a message any time a bill is close to due or their funds are low, even if they don’t think to log in.
As an added bonus at a time when there’s news every month about some new security breach, your parent can also check their credit score easily through Mint and get alerted about particularly large charges that might be signs of identity theft.

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5. Empower

If the financial health of your parent’s retirement years is tied directly to their investment accounts, then it’s worth spending some time staying on top of their investments. Empower helps your parent track the earnings and losses on their various investment accounts all in one place, see the various fees they’re paying that they might otherwise fail to notice, and notice sooner rather than later if their investments aren’t at the level they want them to be.

6. PocketGuard

Some of these apps might do more than you think your parent needs. If what they could really use is an easy way to figure out whether they’ve already spent too much this month or not, PocketGuard is a useful tool. As with Mint, they can connect it to all of their main financial accounts, so it automatically tracks how much they’ve spent or need to spend soon each month, so it can give them a snapshot of how much they have “in their pocket” — or available to spend for fun.
The app also helps them find offers that can bring down the amount they pay in their monthly bills. It offers an intuitive interface that shouldn’t be too hard for most seniors to figure out how to navigate if they’re reasonably comfortable on a mobile device.

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7. Prism

Prism is another intuitive app to help your parent track bills each month, pay them all on time, and make sure they don’t overspend today because they forgot about one coming up next week. Your parent can pay their bills through the app, rather than having to log into their different accounts.
While Prism offers a service that your parent can find within some of the other apps, its focus on one main aspect of financial management means it has a simple design that could make it easier for them to use for this purpose than some of the others.

8. You Need a Budget

You Need a Budget is the only tool on here that requires payment to use, but it has enough enthusiastic users to merit inclusion here. For $14.99 a month or $99 a year (after the free trial), your parent will gain access to a budgeting tool that automatically tracks their spending and makes it easy for them to set and track financial goals. It’s designed less to help them stay on top of their spending (although it helps with that) than to challenge your parent to achieve their financial goals and provide the encouragement and resources they need to do that.
In addition to the tool itself, You Need a Budget provides classes, podcasts and videos to provide your parent even more information and help in reaching their goals. If they have a debt to pay down or want to commit to saving more during your retirement years, spending a few bucks a month on this app could make a big difference.
Seniors hear a lot about physical health, but their financial health is important to stay on top of, too.
If your parent can maintain a budget and keep their savings healthy well into their retirement years, they’ll be in a better place when it comes time to consider senior living options. Money isn’t everything, but managing the money they have well can improve their life considerably in the years to come.


Meet the Author
Kristen Hicks

The information contained in this article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to constitute medical, legal or financial advice or create a professional relationship between A Place for Mom (of which OurParents is a trademark) and the reader.  Always seek the advice of your health care provider, attorney or financial advisor with respect to any particular matter and do not act or refrain from acting on the basis of anything you have read on this site.  Links to third-party websites are only for the convenience of the reader; A Place for Mom does not recommend or endorse the contents of the third-party sites.