I love waking up and looking at my financial accounts before starting my day. I was amazed to find out that most people don’t actually like having to monitor their finances every day! For those that want a simple way to manage all of your finances in one location and get a financial snapshot once in a while, Truebill or Mint might be no-brainer solution.
Mint offers a simple way to track all of your financial bank accounts, investments, and bills in one place and provides you with the best free budgeting interface to manage your cash-flow. Truebill allows you to track your spending and trim away unwanted subscriptions, negotiate better rates, and find refunds for fees and outages.
Truebill and Mint are apps designed for iPhone or Android that allow you to get a quick look at your finances, so you don’t have to waste precious time balancing your checkbook each night, verifying your balances and tracking your bills and investments.
They’re both pretty similar though so which one should you choose? In this review, we put them up against each other and help you compare their features so you can make that decision with ease.
What Is Mint?
Mint is an app designed to track all of your financial accounts in one convenient place. All you need to do is signup and start syncing your various accounts and they will be added to your Mint App.
Mint also has a website that’s easy to use but the point of this review is to focus on their ease as a portable and convenient addition to your life rather than another thing to check on your desktop before bed.
You can track your bank accounts, investment accounts, loans, credit cards, and retirement accounts all in one place. The more accounts your sync up, the more Mint can do for you!
Mint also helps you budget your cash flow by tracking your income and expenses and helping you ensure you are making more than you are spending!
What is Truebill?
Truebill is an app designed to help you monitor your cash flow. You can signup and start syncing your financial accounts. Truebill will help you track all of your bills, see all of your subscriptions, and is designed to help you lower your bills and reduce inefficiency that you didn’t know existed.
Truebill is available as an app on iPhone and Android. There is an easy to use website as well but as stated before, we are focusing more on the apps. The website does basically the same thing just a little easier to see!
Truebill also has a budget feature that allows you to track your income and expenses but to unlock its full potential requires a monthly payment. We’ll go into more detail on that in a little bit (Hint: It’s as little as $3/month).
Mint vs Truebill
Chances are that if you are reading this review, you already know basically what these apps can do and what their purpose is. Let’s dig into how they stack against one another and which one is better. I am currently using both and at the end of this review, I will be deleting one off my phone! Let’s find out which one I like better and which one I’ll be saying goodbye to!
First let’s set some parameters. I’m going to review them based on their Features, Security, Ease of Use and Customer Service. So, let’s get started!
What Does Mint Do?
Let’s cover all of Mint’s Features. If a Feature is Unique to Mint, it will be prefaced with the term “Unique Value.”
Unique Value: Track Your Net Worth With Mint
You can sync all of your bank accounts, credit cards, loans, investments, and retirement accounts.
This gives you a snapshot of what your Net Worth is by showing you all of your assets and liabilities in one place.
The benefit of syncing them is that they are constantly being updated so when you open the app, you have a real-time glimpse into your financial health.
You can see all of the transactions that occur in your bank or on your credit card to track your spending.
If you click on investments, you can see all of the dividends you’ve received or any gains you’ve made.
Budgeting with Mint
This is the best part of Mint. You can create a budget on a very granular level and track every single transaction that comes in and out of all of your accounts.
It shows you if you are on track to complete the month in the green or red. You can see how much you have left to spend and account for bills that still need to be paid and plan out your weekend.
The Cash Flow section shows you how much has come in and how much has gone out so far for the month. In my example, bills were paid early in the month and so it appears negative but there will still be more cash flow coming in during the last couple weeks of the month.
Tracking your spending is easy and Mint does it for you most of the time. If it can’t recognize the category of your transaction, you can tweak or relabel it so that it is applied to the right portion of your budget.
Overall, for a free app, the budget feature can’t be beat. There are other budgeting apps that are slightly better but you will need to spend upward $100/year and then that’s another thing to add to your budget!
Unique Value: Use Mint to Set and Accomplish Financial Goals
One of the features that struck me was the ability to choose a goal and have it tracked on Mint.
You can set a goal that you make up on your own or use one of the following preset goals:
- Crush credit card debt
- Save for a rainy day
- Conquer my loans
- Prepare for retirement
- Save for college
- Buy a home
- Take a trip
- Buy a car
- Improve my home
- $5k in 12 month challenge
Use Mint to Keep Track of Your Credit Score
Mint has partnered with TransUnion to show your VantageScore (not to be confused with FICO score). It will update each month for free and does not affect your credit rating.
One of the best parts about this feature is that it shows you 6 factors that affect your score and shows how you stack up in each factor. Those factors are:
- Your on-time payments – It shows what percentage of payments have been made on time. The higher the better!
- Your credit usage – This gives you the percentage of credit that you’ve used. If you had an available credit of $20,000 and had balances that total $5,000, then it would show 25%. The lower the better!
- Average age of your credit – This shows you the average age of all of your credit lines whether they be revolving credit cards or fixed-term loans. The higher the better!
- Your total accounts – Shows how many accounts you have. Believe it or not, the more the better! You just need to be responsible with them and don’t close accounts that are paid off.
- Your credit inquires – This tracks all of the times someone is checking your credit (usually for applications for jobs, loans, or additional credit. In this category, less is better. The update of your VantageScore does not count against you.
- Your derogatory remarks – This shows any bad entries on your credit report such as not paying a debt greater than 90 days or having an account charged off. I hope its obvious that less is better here!
Does Mint Offer Alerts?
Mint offers alerts to help you know when you are over budget or have high spending. You can even sync up notifications for when you have a new VantageScore or a bill is due.
Mint offers push notifications for your phone, texts and email notifications. You can even sync bills to your calendar as well.
How Does Mint Make Money?
Obviously, it’s awesome using a free app but you have to ask yourself, “Why is this free?”
Mint does need to make money for providing you this resource and money management system.
The way they do this is through ads sprinkled between the features and a marketplace where they direct you to offers with their partners.
If you are looking for a new bank, credit card, or lender, they have some recommendations.
You can find credit cards with 0% APR or cashback rewards or you can find a bank with higher saving rates.
When you sign up for a new service using Mint, they get a commission.
What Does Truebill Do?
Truebill focuses on tracking your spending and helping you identify waste and areas to cut costs. Let’s go over their features in detail!
Track Your Accounts and Cash Flow With Truebill
See all of your cash accounts and all of the transactions in each account from your Truebill Dashboard.
You don’t need to login to each bank account separately. It’s all done right from this one app.
See all of your recurring bills, so you can identify subscriptions you forgot you even had and track which bills are coming up and which one’s you recently paid.
You can even track your Investments from here. I’ve only synced up my Acorns account in Truebill to test it out but when I click on Acorns, I see that it shows every transaction into the account so I can see how much I invested this month.
Since it monitors your cash flow, Truebill tells me how much I have left to spend this month which is nice for those that don’t keep a tight budget.
I wish it gave me an overall Net Worth value, but I guess I’m just being picky.
Can You Create a Budget with Truebill?
This is one of the features that Truebill boasts about but it does have limitations. You can track your spending in a few categories of your choosing but in order to unlock unlimited categories to really narrow down your budget, you will need to upgrade to their Premium Membership.
Also, you can sync your bank accounts to see your transactions but this is only done when the financial institution that you are a member of sends them the data. If you want to sync transactions manually, it requires you to upgrade to the Premium Membership.
Track Your Credit Score with Truebill
With a few clicks and a short form to fill out, Truebill will track your Credit Score using VantageScore and Experian. If you want a full report and credit monitoring, you will need to upgrade to Premium.
If you just want a quick glimpse of your score, then this is a convenient feature.
Is it Worth Upgrading to Truebill Premium?
First, let’s go over what a Premium Membership Offers:
- Unlimited Budgets and Categories – Very helpful if you are using their budget features
- Automated Cancellations – Have a bill you want to cancel? Truebill will do it for you!
- Full Credit Report & Monitoring – Accesses your Experian Report and monitors for fraud
- Smart Savings – Allows you to save for specific goals with auto-deposits
- Overdraft & Late Fee Refunds – Do you get these types of fees often? Truebill will contact your bank and attempt to have these fees reimbursed.
- Sync Your Accounts – Don’t wait for financial institutions to send updated data. This allows you to manually sync whenever you want.
They do offer a lot of features and some of these are already included for free with Mint. Specifically, all of the budgeting customizations are free with Mint. Mint also syncs manually any time you want to for free.
The rest of those features are pretty unique to Truebill and the best part is that they let you pick the price that you want to pay. You can choose to pay from $3 – $12 depending on what it’s worth to you. That’s a pretty cool feature.
Unique Value: Truebill Negotiates Your Bills and Requests Refunds for Outages
Sync a bill with Truebill and upload your bill.
When Truebill thinks it can get you a better deal, one of their representatives will do all the negotiating for you.
Ever have an outage with your cable or electric bill? You still had to pay during that time of no service.
Truebill will call and negotiate refunds for that down time and you don’t even have to realize it was down to benefit.
That sounds to good to be true right?
Well, Truebill will get what’s theirs. Any profit you make from Truebill’s negotiating power will be split so that Truebill earns 40% of your savings.
If you have a bill and Truebill can shave off $50, that means they will get $20 and you will walk away with $30.
Don’t forget! You didn’t know you could get a lower bill before so its still money saved for you as well!
Does Truebill or Mint Have Better Features?
When it comes to value, nothing beats free and Mint is completely free. It offers great budgeting features, free syncing as often as you like, and has a simple interface for tracking all of your accounts and determining your net worth.
Truebill has a lot of the same features but locks some of them behind a paywall. For the other features it has such as Automatic canceling services, negotiating better rates, and getting refunds for fees and outages, upgrading to Premium is required.
Winner: Truebill but you gotta pay for the winning features…
Are Mint and Truebill Safe?
Mint uses the same bank-level security that you’d expect from any financial institution with a couple of differences. First of all, Mint does not give you access to move any money around. If someone were to get into your Mint account, all they’d be able to do is see balances and transactions. Your full account numbers are not even showed.
Mint stores all of your login in a separate database so that if your phone were to to get hacked, you could simply delete access to it from a remote computer. Mint also has 3rd party monitoring services that identify unusual activity across your lined accounts so that you will be alerted if anything suspicious occurs.
Mint is pin-protected but you can also set up your fingerprint to access the app if you prefer.
Mint does use your information to help tailor advertising to you from third party marketing firms but you can simply turn that off and receive generic ads if you prefer in settings.
Lastly, Mint is brought to you by Intuit, which is renowned for not only Mint but also Quickbooks and Turbo Tax which are huge industry names that are backed by trust.
Truebill uses bank-level encryption as well and uses a third party service that is well known in the financial space known as Plaid to login and sync to your accounts from other financial institutions. Plaid is trusted by financial companies all over the world. You can see their security page for more information.
Similar to Mint, Truebill is a read-only app so no transferring of funds or withdrawals can be done with their app.
Overall, as far as security is concerned, both of these apps are very safe and continue to make security a priority.
Is Mint or Truebill Easier to Use?
You don’t pay anything for Mint and its budgeting app is very intuitive and easy to use. Truebill has more features but a lot of them require an additional service.
Mint is easier to use for those that just want to see all of their accounts, save for goals, and monitor investments.
Truebill is easier for those that want to have help negotiating better rates, finding refunds for fees, finding refunds for outages, and canceling services. However, you will need to pay for those conveniences.
Final Verdict Mint vs Truebill
Honestly, it’s not a tough call for me. Truebill has a lot of interesting bells and whistles and for a lot of people, I think it can probably save a lot of money even after accounting for the monthly fee.
In my case though, I don’t mind canceling my own subscriptions, and calling to negotiate rates when I feel like I’m overcharged.
I’m going to stick with Mint and remove Truebill from my phone. I think Truebill was a great app but for what I care about, Mint already does it. If you’ve used both of these apps, I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Until next time, let’s start investing!
Eric Baglio has been investing for over ten years and learned a lot of valuable lessons along the way. He has helped numerous people start investing on their own and founded Let’s Start Investing to help anyone willing to learn how to build wealth. His favorite brokerage is Webull and his favorite stock advising service is Motley Fool Stock Advisor.