The beginning of a new year marks the perfect time to re-examine your personal finances and monthly budget. Especially for senior caregivers who might be on a tight budget to begin with, even finding small spending habits to eliminate can add up to big savings over time. The Clarity Money app offers a free tool for caregivers to examine their spending habits and recognize monthly subscriptions that could potentially be canceled to save more money.
When users first open the Clarity Money app, they need to create a profile and then log into online banking for any accounts they'd like to track. The app can pull in information from multiple banks to track on one profile. Then users will be taken to the home screen of the app, which displays most of the different features as you scroll down.
At the top, users simply see a breakdown of their Cash and Debt in the connected account, as the app pulls in checking, savings and credit card information. Then, the app shows how much money the user spent yesterday with an optional drop down menu to review all transactions on the accounts, or only the most recent.
Below that, a chart breaks down all of the user's spending for the month into specific categories. In addition to establishing monthly patterns, this also helps caregivers see where they might unexpectedly be spending more money than they realize, such as on shopping. If a number seems oddly high on shopping, ask yourself where you can save money at the grocery store, or if you can do without that new sweater.
The next section of the app offers to create a savings account with Clarity Money to meet goals, such as establishing a Rainy Day Fund or saving for an upcoming trip. The app offers several options for how to set it up, with varying dollar amounts to choose from and customizable frequency. Caregivers can set it up to pull a certain amount of money from the linked account of their choosing weekly on a certain day of the week, or monthly on a specific date, i.e. the 2nd of every month.
The app also identifies recurring charges to your account for monthly subscriptions for services such as Netflix and displays them all in one area to help caregivers see what they're paying total on a monthly basis. Perhaps you realize that you pay for a Netflix subscription, but you haven't been using it. That makes for an easy decision to cancel it and save $10 per month.
The app also features ways to check your account balances, credit card activity and your credit score. The app does an excellent job of presenting a snapshot of your overall financial picture from several angles to make planning and budgeting easy.
The Clarity app is available for Apple
Senior caregivers, let us know your feedback on this app and keep us posted if you discover additional apps that assist with caregiving duties and help relieve caregiver stress. You may also refer-a-friend to a senior caregiving job and win prizes weekly and monthly on Caregiverlist.