Welcome to our Personal Capital vs. Mint showdown! Which do you think is likely to emerge victorious?
Personal Capital and Mint are without a doubt two of the best financial management software options available. Whether you’re looking to rein in your budget or plan for a retirement that’s still many years away, you should take advantage of every free service you can get.
If you’ve lurked around financial blogs for the past few years, you already know that Mint and Personal Capital are giants in the online money-management game. And, there’s no question that we all can benefit from tools to help us save more, spend less, and manage our finances for now and into the future.
But, perhaps you’ve been wondering, which of these two is right for you? Read on to find out!
Personal Capital: A Quick Overview
Personal Capital provides financial tools and services for wealth management. Founded in 2009, they currently serve about 1.9 million users, handling a total of $8 billion in assets. Personal Capital enables users to organize everything about their financial lives in one place.
This platform offers free services such as investment checkups, a 401(k) fee analyzer, and retirement planning. They even have a mobile app to simplify your account management.
Personal Capital’s Key Features
Net Worth Tracker – This allows you to keep tabs on your net worth. Knowing the value of what you own (minus what you owe) paints a broad but very important picture of your financial health. It’s vital information for those who want to really understand their money.
Cash Flow Tool – This is where Personal Capital can help you manage your monthly finances. Track your expenses and income to build a budget and find out where you are spending money. It’s hard to think about retirement planning or that awesome vacay you want to take if you don’t know where your hard-earned dollars are going.
Retirement Planner – Personal Capital’s retirement calculator measures whether your current savings and investment strategy is keeping you on track to meet your retirement goals. It’s another powerful tool that can teach you where you need to make adjustments. You can also use this to track your progress towards being able to pay for other major expenses (think weddings, higher education, and the like).
401(k) Fee Analyzer – Personal Capital searches through your retirement accounts to discover how fees are affecting your rates of return. A cool aspect of this is it will even calculate how much longer you’ll need to work before retiring, based on the level of fees you’re currently paying. Hey, seeing an extra two years of work ahead of you just might make it worthwhile to seek out lower-fee managers for your accounts!
Investment Checkup Tool – Want to learn how to start investing and properly diversify your investments for optimum returns? Personal Capital shines in this area, providing in-depth analysis of your current investment portfolio along with suggestions and recommendations for improvement.
Personal Capital: Fees for Usage
Something you might not realize about Personal Capital is it’s totally free to use! Yes, they also offer fee-based wealth management services, but for the impressive tools mentioned above, it’s completely free. It’s tough to beat that!
From the retirement planner and investment checkup to the “budgeting and cash flow” tools and fee analyzer, Personal Capital’s tools provide a great way to keep an eye on your overall financial health. There’s zero obligation to add their wealth management services, so you can always use these tools for free.
If you have significant levels of investments to handle, Personal Capital’s fee-based wealth management services are competitively priced. In this program, you’ll receive more specific guidance on managing your investments and your wealth. Again, it does involve some fees, but they’re straightforward, which means no surprises.
Personal Capital charges one all-inclusive fee for their investment management services. There are no hidden charges shoved in there that’ll surprise you. Their fee structure is based on how much money you have invested under their umbrella.
Here’s the breakdown of Personal Capital’s fees:
- 0.89% of the first $1 million
- 0.79% of $1-$3 million
- 0.69% of $3-$5 million
- 0.59% of $5-$10 million
- 0.49% on balances over $10 million
Remember, you’re not obligated to use the wealth management program with Personal Capital. It’s just another choice that’s available to you!
Mint: An Overview
Now, let’s take a closer look at Mint.
Mint is run by Intuit, the same folks who brought us TurboTax and Quickbooks. Similar to Personal Capital, Mint’s suite of financial tools enables customers to manage their money better, take care of bills, monitor their credit scores, and more. Essentially, they help users manage their money more effectively with less hassle.
They also aggregate your checking accounts, savings accounts, credit cards, loans, and investments to show you the overall state of your finances in one platform – which makes Mint one of the best alternatives to Quicken that you’ll find.
Mint’s Key Features
Budgeting – Mint sorts your transactions in real time, categorizing each expense so you can see where you’re spending your money. You can customize your expense categories and make adjustments along the way to best fit your needs.
Mint Bills – With this feature, users connect an unlimited number of accounts and manage their bills there. Alerts for due dates of upcoming bills and payment scheduling are two great aspects of this tool.
Custom Tips and Savings – Using their analysis of your expenses and goals, Mint offers useful recommendations for saving you money. Strategies for saving money as well as earning higher returns on investments can really go a long way.
Credit Score Monitoring – With Mint, you can keep an eye on your credit score. Just sign up for regular monitoring and get reports from one of the three major credit reporting bureaus.
Mint Alerts – Credit scores aren’t the only thing you should monitor carefully. You can utilize Mint Alerts to receive notifications of any unusual spending activity. If there are any charges or spending amounts that are out of the ordinary, Mint will let you know. Same with approaching a spending limit you’ve set or getting close to going over your budget.
Mint Goals – You can set specific goals such as saving for a car or a down payment and track your progress toward those goals.
Mint: Fees for Usage
There are no fees to utilize Mint.com! Just sign up for an account and get started attacking your budget today. It’s a fantastic resource for anyone looking to get serious about paying off debt or creating healthy financial habits.
Personal Capital vs Mint – What You Get with Both
Both programs share several fantastic features:
- Free to Use – Naturally, the first benefit we all look at is that they are both free! When you compare Personal Capital vs. Mint, they both offer fantastic benefits at no cost to the user. And, these aren’t just lame freebies either. These are truly robust tools that could change your life by helping you gain control of your finances!
- Mobile App – Both Personal Capital and Mint have a mobile app that makes it super simple for anyone to organize their finances no matter where they go. Oh, yeah – and the apps are free, too!
- One-Stop Finance Checkup – One of the best things about using personal finance software, whether Mint or Personal Capital, is the convenience of having everything in one place. Both platforms enable users to see a fairly complete financial picture because they gather so many types of information. Aggregating all of your accounts and financial planning together helps make you the master of your financial future.
- High Security – Data security is a hot issue today, and both Mint and Personal Capital go to great lengths to ensure the safety of your information. All data with both programs is encrypted with AES 256-bit encryption. With this level of security, you can rest easy knowing your most sensitive data is well-protected.
Personal Capital vs Mint: Best Aspects of Each
When comparing Mint and Personal Capital, you see right away that they both have amazing benefits for lots of users. Now, let’s spend some time on each site’s specialty.
Personal Capital: Investing Like a Pro
Personal Capital shines brightest in the area of investment and wealth management. Growing your wealth is the platform’s primary goal, so that’s what all of their investment tools are aiming toward.
Personal Capital presents a broadly diversified approach to investing. They utilize Modern Portfolio Theory (MPT) to determine the best recommendations for investors. This includes a balanced range of investments from categories of U.S. stocks, U.S. bonds, international stocks, international bonds, alternative investments (things like ETFs and commodities), and cash.
The program also factors all of your holdings (including 401(k)s, which they don’t manage) into their calculations and recommendations, thus creating a more holistic picture of your finances. They’ll offer recommendations tailored to your specific situation, based on past success of investments and your listed goals.
Utilizing the investment checkup tool in conjunction with the net worth tracker is a sweet way to get yourself moving toward your investment goals. Personal Capital skillfully analyzes all of your investments and offers recommendations to help you reach optimum growth potential. Keeping an eye on your net worth doesn’t just help ensure that you’re moving in the right direction; it also feeds your motivation to stay on track with your financial goals!
Mint: Budgeting Like a Boss
Mint is a rock star when it comes to nailing down your budget. When you sign up with Mint, you’ll create a personalized budget that fits your needs. You’ll be able to effortlessly reorganize categories as needed from month to month and adjust spending based on Mint’s recommendations.
Mint will help you set up targets or goals for how much to spend in each of your categories. Seeing those numbers can be a real eye-opener. And, as any good budgeter knows, understanding where your money is going is the first step to saving more!
An ideal partner for the budgeting tool, you’ll find their bill management services exceptional. Tracking all of your bills on one platform enables you to organize each of your accounts and even set up alerts for when payments are due.
Think about it: Would you rather log into multiple accounts every month to pay your bills, all of which may be due at different points in the month? Or, would it be more convenient to simply log into Mint.com to see every single account, and setting up bill payment right then and there?
To me, it seems like a no-brainer. That’s a pretty powerful tool, considering how many late fees and interest charges you could avoid by simplifying your process for payments.
Personal Capital vs. Mint: The Verdict
When it comes to Personal Capital vs. Mint, there isn’t really a winner or loser! The truth is, both of them offer great services and powerful features. The “winner” really depends on what your goals are.
Are you digging yourself out of debt, or trying to save up for a specific purchase like a car or a vacation? If so, Mint is probably the right choice for you. Use it to organize your finances, which will also help you start increasing that net worth.
Do you have a higher net worth than most? If so, then Personal Capital is a powerful tool for building your wealth even further and ensuring your money is kept safe yet growing.
Again, Mint is focused on primarily your budget. It’s a valuable tool for getting your finances in order. Getting out of debt and on the road to greater financial freedom can happen if you hone your budget well with Mint. As your net worth increases and you have more funds available to invest, Personal Capital can be your guide.
Instead of considering Personal Capital as an alternative to Mint, it’s a great idea to use them both – leaning on each of them for their signature strengths. Use Mint to keep your budget in line, so you won’t stray from your goals. Look to Personal Capital to help you manage a robust investment portfolio and continue planning for a secure future.
And, since they are both free, you’ve got nothing to lose!
Do you use Personal Capital or Mint to track your budget or grow your wealth? Let us know about your experiences in the comments below!