Having a plan for your finances is crucial, and a comprehensive financial plan may include budgeting, saving, investing, paying off debt and creating a roadmap to retirement. Working with a financial advisor can be helpful in creating your personal money plan, but DIY types might prefer to use a financial planning software instead. There are a multitude of options to choose from and each one has a different range of features. If you’re a financial advisor yourself, there are also plenty of software options that you can use to help you build plans for your clients.
Financial Planning Software for Individuals
|Fees||– 0.49% to 0.89% (depending on account balance)|
|Best For||– Those who want to integrate their investing needs with a financial plan|
Empower is a popular financial planning software option for both beginners and those more experienced with money management. The free version of the software includes all the features necessary for basic financial planning, including:
- The ability to link all of your financial accounts, including retirement and investment accounts, in one place
- A “net worth” tracker
- A tool to find hidden fees you might be paying for your investments
- Budgeting and cash flow tools to track spending
- Goal trackers for your spending and savings targets
- Tools for forecasting retirement and college savings outcomes
These features are included in the software at no charge and offer a comprehensive view of your finances. If you need help choosing investments, Empower also offers robo-advisor wealth management services for a fee.
|Fees||– Simplifi package: $47.88/yr. |
– Deluxe package: $59.88/yr.
– Premier package: $83.88/yr.
– Home & Business package: $119.88/yr.
|Best For||– Users looking for a simple software|
Quicken offers multiple financial planning software solutions, depending on what exactly you want to do with your money. The Simplifi version, for example, lets you view all of your accounts in one place, create a budget, track your spending, manage your bills and categorize your purchases.
The Deluxe package is the next step up. This takes everything the Simplifi version has and adds in the ability to formulate custom budgets, create and manage specific savings goals and manage and track your debt.
If you want to take an even deeper dive into your finances, the Premier version may be more appropriate. This version lets you do everything the Simplifi version does, while also adding in additional features and tools, such as:
- The ability to track loans, investment and retirement accounts in one place
- Access to Morningstar’s® Portfolio X-ray® tool
- Automatic bill pay
- Market comparison and investment tax planning tools
There’s also the Home & Business version, which might be helpful if you need a streamlined way to manage business and personal finances. It’s also far and away the most detail-oriented package of the four that are available through Quicken.
|Best For||– Existing Intuit customers |
– Anyone with multiple bank accounts
Mint is one of the most popular free financial planning tools on the market. There’s a lot you can do with Mint, including:
- Tracking all of your bank and credit card accounts in one place
- Setting your monthly budget
- Tracking and categorizing expenses
- Monitoring your credit score
- Tracking your investments
- Setting up bill pay reminders
“Mint is an incredibly popular online personal finance tool that’s great for all kinds of users. Aside from it being a great budgeting tool, it has a plethora of money management tools that you can also use,” says Brian Meiggs, founder of millennial finance site MyMillennialGuide.com.
Mint is more focused on basic budgeting and money management than it is on investing. You also can’t pay your bills through the software. Still, it’s got a good user interface that’s easy to navigate, and it’s great for users who are mainly interested in tracking their spending and keeping on budget. The app works on both mobile and desktop, so it might also be good for someone who wants to manage their finances on the go.
|Fees||– Basic: $189/year |
– Advanced: $229/year
– Deluxe: $289/year
|Best For||– Those looking for more in-depth analysis |
– Smaller advisory firms that want plenty of support
WealthTrace is a financial planning program that both individuals and advisors can use. Individual users can choose from three package tiers: Basic, Advanced and Deluxe. The cost of the software ranges from $189 to $289.
What WealthTrace offers in exchange for these prices is the ability to budget your money and set specific savings goals. You can plan for both retirement and college savings, as well as attain some insight into how to minimize your tax liabilities.
Like some of the advisor-focused programs on the market, WealthTrace also allows you to run scenarios on things like market downturns, life insurance needs and retirement income. If questions come up as you use the program, you can connect with a WealthTrace expert by phone, email or live chat to get help.
Financial Planning Software for Financial Advisors
|Fees||– Monthly rates: $125 to $175 per advisor |
– Annual rates: $1,400 to $2,000 per advisor
– $400 to $660 per year for various add-ons
|Best For||– Solo financial planners |
– Individual RIAs that employ multiple financial planners
MoneyGuidePro is a client-centered financial planning software used by professional financial advisors. It’s focused on alternatives to the standard methods of retirement planning. One of the features that’s integrated within this software is called Play Zone, which utilizes sliders for retirement age, financial goals and more to illustrate how financially successful a client’s retirement could be.
This software comes in three forms: One, Pro and Elite. One is the most basic version, as it comes with only a risk tolerance assessment tool, financial and lifestyle goals planning, holistic stress testing and more. Pro boasts all of the features of One, as well as a bunch of extras, like risk management, estate planning and net worth statement creation. The Elite edition offers everything above, in addition to secure income modeling, total income modeling, advanced lifetime protection and tax planning.
Envest, which in March 2019 purchased MoneyGuidePro for $500 million and took over its operations, is a large financial services company that focuses on various advisor-centric wealth management platforms.
|Fees||– Varies entirely depending on the needs of the advisor or firm|
|Best For||– Firms looking for a complete set of advisory services and programs|
EMoney Advisor offers a hefty suite of financial planning services for advisor firms and large advisory enterprises. The program is based around four distinct packages of services: Plus, Pro, Premier and Engage.
Customers who purchase the Plus tier receive bare-bones access to eMoney’s customer website and mobile app, basic financial planning services and advanced financial analytics. If you need more than that, the Pro version upgrades the foundational financial planning services to an advanced level, in addition to advanced financial analytics.
Premier customers gain access to everything that eMoney has to offer: basic planning, advanced planning and advanced analytics. The fourth tier, Engage, comes with the offerings above, in addition to integration with marketing services to help advisors’ businesses grow. It also integrates with a service called Bamboo, which helps advisors improve their online presence and generate stronger client acquisition.
EMoney Advisor can be integrated with other popular advisory services from Morningstar, Fidelity, Envestnet, Riskalyze and more.
|Fees||– Moneytree Plan: $1,495 per advisor, per year |
– Moneytree Advise: $695 per advisor, per year
|Best For||– Multi-advisor firms|
Moneytree is an advisor platform that uses a three-pronged approach to financial planning. The software allows advisors to complete a big picture, in-depth and advanced cash flow analysis for their clients.
With Moneytree, advisors can create a financial plan independently of, or in collaboration with, their clients. The software also features an interactive tool that allows advisors to quickly and easily run “what-if” scenarios to determine different outcomes. The program’s design is also capable of helping advisors pinpoint the potential shortfalls in their clients’ financial plans and find solutions for closing the gap.
Generally speaking, Moneytree is one of the more expensive advisor-centric financial planning programs. However, the company does offer a 14-day trial for interested firms that want to check it out before paying up.
|Fees||– Basic tier: $139.95 per advisor, per month |
– Premium tier: $179.95 per advisor, per month
– Platinum tier: Must call for pricing
|Best For||– Larger financial planning and wealth management firms|
Advisors can use RightCapital to develop financial plans through an innovative platform. It’s the software Jason Ball, a CFP at Ball Comprehensive Planning in West Linn, Ore., uses for his clients. What he likes best about the software is its “ability to integrate accounts, client vaults and strategic tax planning for retirement planning.”
RightCapital also offers a mobile-friendly user-interface, which tech-savvy advisors may appreciate. The inclusion of tax planning tools is one of the most important things that sets the software apart from its competitors.
Whether you do it yourself or work with an advisor, it’s important to build a comprehensive financial plan. Fortunately, there are several online services that make it easier to build a financial plan and track your saving and spending. Before you make a firm decision as to which software you want to partner with, it might be worth writing down what goals you want to plan for. By doing this, you can ensure that the benefits of whatever software you select align perfectly with your overall needs.
Financial Planning Tips
- Consider working with a financial advisor to build a financial plan that’s tailored for your goals and needs. Finding a financial advisor doesn’t have to be hard. SmartAsset’s free tool matches you with up to three vetted financial advisors who serve your area, and you can interview your advisor matches at no cost to decide which one is right for you. If you’re ready to find an advisor who can help you achieve your financial goals, get started now.
- Before selecting a financial planning software, assess your needs. For instance, are you looking for a program that focuses on weekly and monthly budgeting? Do you need something that includes long-term retirement planning and other tools to help you grow your wealth? The answers to these questions will lead you to the best options for you.
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