The following article was contributed by Leo Ostapiv from Home Finances for Couples.
While solid personal finance software (like Mint, Personal Capital or Quicken) covers many aspects, from expense tracking & budget planning to setting financial goals & monitoring your investments, I wanted to look at 5 of the best Android apps for debt management. You can use them to keep track of how much you owe, explore different debt payoff strategies and set payment reminders on your phone or tablet.
To compare the apps, I went through the following tasks using each one:
- Create one low-interest and one high-interest debt
- Repay $200 on both debts
- Plan my debt repayment schedule and set a reminder for the next payment
Since we are talking about mobile apps that are supposed to be quick and easy to use, I set a 20-minute time limit for setting everything up.
I used a full-feature paid version of each app, but all of them offer a free version with limited functions. Here is a summary of my experience with all 5 apps (you can find my detailed notes below):
|Debt Planner Pro||B||A||$1.99|
|Debt Payoff Planner||B||B-||$0.99|
|IOU – I Owe You You Owe Me Pro||C||B||$0.99|
|iQuick Debt Payoff||C||C||$2.25|
|Debt Tracker Pro||D||B||$0.99|
This app has a full set of debt management features, including tracking monthly payments, setting reminders and accounting for special APR cases. Debt Planner Pro provides 3 basic strategies for debt payoff planning – lowest balance first, highest interest first and highest balance first. You can also see how long it will take to pay off your debts and the total interest fees you will end up paying.
The interface is neat and clean and I’ve finished all of my tasks very easily. The only issue I ran into was not being able to increase my regular monthly payment beyond what I had planned it to be (for example, if it’s usually $200, but this month I would like to pay $250).
The app has a 3 start rating on Google Play, which may indicate that there were a lot more bugs in the past, although I had a very positive experience. The free version has a 4 star rating.
Debt Payoff Planner is the only app to have a clearly visible and actually useful help section. It also has great debt planning features, with 4 repayment strategies and an option for a custom schedule. You can compare different strategies and see which one will help you become debt free the fastest. Additional features include a snapshot view of all your debt, taking into account promotional rates and pre-payments and the ability to export data to Excel.
The interface is good, but the input fields and numbers could be a little bigger. The paid version promises an ability to track your payments, but I couldn’t figure out how to set it up.
Debt Payoff Planner is rated 4 stars on Google Play.
This app isn’t very helpful when trying to track and payoff your debt, as it offers no payment schedule or payoff strategy features. But I found it to be a great tool for managing micro-loans from friends & family and even physical things you may have borrowed or that somebody borrowed from you. You can associate each debt with one of your contacts, which I found to be very neat.
The interface is rather bland, but functional. I did find (what I think) was a small bug that broke email reminders.
It has a 4 start rating on Google Play, but with only a single review (the free version also earned 4 stars, but with many more reviews).
This app is the most expensive out the 5 I looked at, but I felt that its price isn’t justified. It is both a debt calculator and a planner, and gives you debt repayment recommendations based on the information you put in. You can also see how much faster you will pay off your debts if you increase the monthly payments.
The interface isn’t that great and I found many input fields to be too small. The payment tracking functionality is also very limited.
iQuick Debt Payoff has a 4 star rating on Google Play.
I’ve created my two debts and set up the payments pretty easily with Debt Tracker Pro. In addition to tracking your debt, you can also track deposits and withdrawals from your savings accounts. The app is password-protected for additional security.
The look and feel is great. Unfortunately, there are a lot of flaws – you can’t set payment reminders or plan your payoff strategy, for example. The app asks for your account number when inputting your debts, but doesn’t provide automatic synching to financial institutions.
Its paid version earned almost 5 starts on Google Play, while the free version is ranked at 4 stars.
Android Apps I Would Personally Use for Debt Management
Out of the 5 debt apps I reviewed, I would personally use and recommend the following:
- For managing debts, tracking payoff progress and setting payment reminders – Debt Planner Pro
- For choosing the best debt repayment strategy – Debt Payoff Planner
- For managing micro-loans to and from family & friends – IOU – I Owe You You Owe Me Pro
Just remember – while these Android apps can be helpful, you are the one who ultimately decides which debt payoff strategy will work best for you and how much money you will allocate toward debt repayment.
Do you use Android apps for debt management? Which one is your favorite?
Image source: Siddartha Thota