Investment Apps and Websites

Roofstock Review: Your Ideal TurnKey Real Estate Investing Platform

A Roofstock review is essential for both soon-to-be and current real estate investors who wanted to expand their investment options. Just a quick fact, Roofstock is a company that is focused on helping investors buy single-family homes for rental purposes.

Roofstock review for investors

While there are so many investment options out there, nothing beats investing in properties. It is perhaps the most ideal investment. But of course, certain factors have to be considered like the property’s location, as well as its use.

One of the most perfect property investments is – homes. If you do not intend to reside in there, you can instead make money out of it by renting it out. It’s a passive income for you and your family.


In an article published by CNBC, it shared about Warren Buffet’s (yes, one of America’s business magnets) interview on Squawk Box wherein he said that apart from equities, at the moment, “single-family homes are a very attractive investment” as well.

Billionaire Andrew Carnegie will surely agree on that. As he popularly said that 90% of millionaires in the world got their wealth by investing in real estate.

You see, real estate is still, by far, the most effective way to make lots of money. Needless to say, that while investing in equities can sometimes be very risky, investing in properties is not as risky as it seems. In fact, property values increases as the years go by.

Before you start debating in your head about costs, and all. Here’s the thing. We understand not all people are capable to buy a property in an instant like how wealthy people do that. However, if you aspire to do something like Warren Buffett and other wealthy people want to do, but not to the same extent, well, companies such as Roofstock are the way to go.

Having said that, we are going to share with you essential information about Roofstock. We are doing, in particular, a Roofstock review to help you gauge if this one’s the best option.

Specifically, we are going to touch the following topics:

  • What Roofstock is all about?
  • How does Roofstock work?
  • How does a typical property look like?
  • What are the different Roofstock fees and pricing?
  • Who are the partners of Roofstock?
  • What is the typical return on investment?
  • What are the pros and cons of Roofstock?


Roofstock is a turnkey rental property online marketplace that specializes in single-family rental homes.

When it comes to the properties listed on their site, Roofstock makes sure that these properties meet their core requirement, which is — that a property has to be occupied by tenants who also need to meet the company’s strict screening guidelines.

Roofstock understands that their industry is not like eBay or any other online marketplace and that people rather investors are not just using a small amount of money to invest in. Thus, the company does a lot of research on each property they list in.

As mentioned, the company ensures that each house or property listed in their platform is certified. This is made possible by inspecting each property through a professional investment property inspection service. Should they find needs for repairs on maintenance on the property, those are estimated and are immediately included in the valuation of the property.

Each property comes with photos, as well as its floor plan, and title report.

For your reference, here is the list of information on every property report:

  • Property valuation & comparable
  • Interior & exterior inspection reports
  • Preliminary title report
  • Market, neighborhood, and local school insights
  • Tenant payment history & lease details
  • Visualizations of appreciation, income & total returns
  • Detailed financial pro forma & return estimates
  • Major repair cost estimates, if applicable

Apart from the afore-mentioned service, Roofstock also offers service during the acquisition process, and the company also provides references on property management companies once the sale is done.

Should you push through purchasing a property, you get to take advantage of Roofstock’s 30-day money-back guarantee as well as guaranteed rent on properties without tenants.

To be clear, most properties listed on Roofstock is not owned by the company itself. So, basically, you are buying from another seller, which can either be a small-time operator or a bigger company. Roofstock does sell properties that they bought and rehabbed, but as mentioned, this is not always the case.

To put everything simply, as stated on their website, Roofstock is an online marketplace that “delivers new levels of transparency and efficiency to create a better way to transact. Buyers access vetted homes with attractive investment profiles and cash flow potential. Sellers’ market homes without lost income or disrupting tenants. It’s win-win all around.

Furthermore, what makes Roofstock revolutionary is the fact that it enables “investors to treat their real estate investments more like stock portfolios, focusing on asset allocation, rather than dealing with the hassles of property management.”

Know more about Roofstock in this very informative Roofstock review by Graham Stephan. Watch the video by clicking the play button below:


As mentioned, Roofstock is an online real estate marketplace with a focus on single-rental properties. The company offers a wide variety of options of homes to buy, which in turn you can make money by turning them into rental properties.

Technically, here’s how Roofstock works:

– Roofstock sells homes with existing tenants.

What makes Roofstock unique is the fact that they sell properties that are already being rented out, which means you do not have to worry about finding people to rent the property anymore because someone is already there. It’s like instant income!

Essentially, those property owners who already want to move on from rental properties list their houses on Roofstock as well.

Now, if you are wondering why people would sell properties when in fact they are already earning from there. Well, the answer to that is pretty simple — some people want to diversify their investments. In some cases, they want to move on and stop being a landlord.

– Roofstock certifies every property on their list.

What’s nice about Roofstock is that it does have a comprehensive system that ensures properties are held to a particular standard. Thus, the certification process.

There are several factors that need to be taken into consideration for a property to be certified. First and foremost, the house has to be inspected by a professional investment property inspection business. The inspector will now have to assess repair costs if there’s a need, and eventually, property valuation will be done. Other important items include photos of the whole property, as well as floor plans, and a title report.

With such a process, you can see that the company ensures that the properties are up to a high standard. Roofstock is serious about ensuring that only the best single-family rental properties are available on their site. Needless to say, they do have the capacity to reject sellers who they think are selling their properties for a high price.


If you will look over the property listings on the Roofstock website, you will get to feel what an average property is like. You will find information like the price of the property, the condition of the house, the neighborhood, as well as the appearance, and more.

Mostly, the properties listed in the Roofstock marketplace are not the kind that has just gone through a full rehab. Expect that there are most likely going to be odds as well as ends that need to be replaced and updated. Also, most properties will show signs of wear and tear.

Furthermore, it is worth sharing that Roofstock also does not list properties that require big as well as immediate capital expenditures. Roofstock ensures that each property should at least be in a liveable condition.

When purchasing a property, it is important that the buyer gets as much information as possible not just about the property itself, but also about the people currently living in there.

Good thing is, Roofstock aims to be as transparent as possible. This is precisely why they provide most of this information up front. Thus, making the decision-making process easier.


This Roofstock review will not be complete if we are not going to look into the company’s list of fees as well as pricing.

First and foremost, joining Roofstock is free for everyone. Anyone can sign up regardless of investor status, which means you do not necessarily have to be an accredited investor to be able to sign up for Roofstock.

Second, when buying a property, you have all the usual fees related to buying a property such as a title insurance fee, loan origination fees (if needed), closing fees, recording fees, document preparation, etc. All these fees go to the different entities involved in the sale of the property.

Third, Roofstock collects a Marketplace Fee amounting to 0.5% of the property’s Contract Price. This is payable once you have already agreed to buy the property. This fee actually secures the property.

Lastly, if in case you thought of selling your property, Roofstock charges 2.5% for that. The thing we like about Roofstock is when selling a property, it does not require the property to be vacated, which means whoever is in their can stay regardless of change of ownership.

In addition, Roofstock also offers a 30-day satisfaction guarantee. This basically means that if the buyer is not satisfied with the property he/she purchased within 30 days since buying it, you can notify Roofstock anytime, and get your money back without any charges.

Roofstock will just re-list the property and will repurchase it if the property does not sell within a 90-day period.


Roofstock does not do all the works alone. In fact, the company has two partners in two different areas — financing as well as property management services.

These areas enable then to help facilitate the process in case you need financing. Technically, you only need a 20% down payment when buying a property. Roofstock has integrated lending partners that also provides various options. If you have your own preferred lender, you may also use it.

After-sale, Roofstock is also in partnership with various property management companies to help you with you in managing your property. Again, if you have your own, you can also use them.

All these partnerships are optional for buyers. But is very handy especially if you do not have your own.


This time around, we thought it’s ideal to include in our Roofstock review the return on the properties bought through this company.

According to reviews, the typical return of the houses from Roofstock is pretty decent. In fact, there’s positive cash flowing with cap rates that range from 3% to 4% on the low end, while 8% to 9% on the high end.

For some investors, this may not be as big. However, for someone who is working in a seller’s market, as well as cash flowing properties are a little harder to find. Thus, making it decent enough. Needless to say, Roofstock makes it easy to shop for properties with all the information you need in one place.


Just like other Roofstock reviews, our very own Roofstock review will also tap into the advantages and disadvantages of Roofstock. After all, a review will not be complete if we will not share these with you, right?


  • With Roofstock you are assured that the properties have already been inspected prior to marketing. — As mentioned earlier, all properties listed in the Roofstock marketplace have been thoroughly inspected. All these properties have gone through a rigorous process ahead of being listed. That being said, you are assured of buying a house that can give you a relentless flow of money.
  • Properties do have existing tenants already. — What’s nice about the properties you buy through Roofstock is that they already have existing tenants, which means you immediately earn from the property upon purchasing it.
  • It is available for anyone (yes, even if you are not an accredited investor). — To be honest, of all the pros on our list, this has to be the best thing of all. Roofstock offers a great opportunity for people regardless of status to start out with real estate investment.
  • Roofstock has impressive customer service. — Another notable aspect that we like about Roofstock is their customer service. The company has outstanding customer service. Well, the fact that they offer a 30-day guarantee already shows how confident the company is about their listed properties.
  • Roofstock charges low fees. — With Roofstock, buyers avoid paying the standard 6 percent charged by traditional real estate agents. Instead, sellers will only have to 2.5 percent, while buyers will just spend half of a point of the agreed-upon price of the property.
  • Roofstock offers property managers through its property management company partners. — Another thing that we like about Roofstock is the fact that they are affiliated with many property managers. Property managers are the ones responsible for professionally managing your property to ensure it gives you income on a monthly basis. Property managers act as landlords instead of doing it yourself. Although they do have one, you can always opt for your preferred property manager/s if you have existing.


  • Roofstock requires a large down payment. — Unfortunately, Roofstock needs you to pay a quite large amount to buy a property, which means, if you are someone who does not have the means to purchase a property outright, you have no choice but to look into mortgage options. This means a larger down payment and has the possibility to make things difficult for potential investors.
  • Owning a rental property requires work than you thought.  — While owning a rental property gives you passive income, it is not always easy to manage one. What most people do not know is that when you own a rental property, you need to ensure you have set aside money for emergency cases, renovations, etc. Keep in mind also that is something happens to the property, the owner is always the one responsible for it.
  • Buying a rental property needs a lot of research. – Roofstock offers essential details about every property they have, however, as a potential owner, you also have to do your own research about the property you are eyeing.
  • It is not crowdfunded shares and is illiquid. – This is not ideal for those who want a liquid type of investment. More so, if you are eyeing for a crowdfunded share.


There are so many different ways to invest in real estate. But with Roofstock, it’s a platform where you can purchase actual property. Unlike other sites you will find online, Roofstock is not using the crowdfunding real estate approach wherein you get to but just a piece of the property instead of the whole thing, which is also the very reason why you do not have to be an accredited investor to be able to buy a property.

Having said that, we find Roofstock ideal for people who want to invest in actual single-family properties for rental purposes. Roofstock is one of the simplest turnkey ways to do it.

With just 3% on each transaction (0.5% from the buyer, 2.5% from the seller), Roofstock indeed provides a very attractive option.

So, if you are looking into investing in a property that you actually own, Roofstock is ideal for you.

To sum up our Roofstock review, we got to say that this company is indeed pretty impressive. It provides you a wide variety of property options that have been thoroughly checked to ensure it is of good quality. Needless to say, if you find it dissatisfying, you can always take advantage of the Roofstock 30-day guarantee.

Investment Apps and Websites

AcreTrader Review: What You Need To Know

Investing in farmland is probably one of the best things to do if you want to earn passively. This AcreTrader review will help you not just know more about this crowdfunding real estate site, but also your options especially if you are looking at making money through investing in properties.

AcreTrader review what you need to know

A lot of people are looking for ways to make passive income. There are so many options out there, and one of them is by investing in farmlands.

Before we talk more about investing in farmlands, here are some vital facts about farmlands in the United States. We thought you have to at least be knowledgeable especially if you are really serious about investing in farmlands.


In a report conducted and published by the United States Department of Agriculture together with the National Agricultural Statistics Service, it was found that in 2018, there are an estimated 2,029,200 farms in the country. The average farm size during that same year is 443 acres. These farms were classified into six economic sales classes. Farmlands differ from one to another. Some are able to make produces, while others are not as fruitful.

Meanwhile, in an August 2019 report of the same offices regarding land values, it says:

The United States farm real estate value, a measurement of the value of all land and buildings on farms, averaged $3,160 per acre for 2019, up $60 per acre (1.9 percent) from 2018. The United States cropland value averaged $4,100 per acre, an increase of $50 per acre (1.2 percent) from the previous year. The United States pasture value averaged $1,400 per acre, up $30 (2.2 percent) from 2018.”

As you can see, based on numbers, the value of farmlands is quite impressive. Thus, it makes sense to invest and eventually make money through farmlands.

Now, when it comes to investing in farmlands, there are so many crowdfunding real estate sites out there. Crowdfunding real estate refers to a method wherein it utilizes crowdfunding to raise capital for real estate investments.  This type of real estate investing allows investors to invest their money in various properties without the need to deal with mortgage brokers, contractors, or real estate agents.

One of the popularly known crowdfunding real estate sites today is AcreTrader. Thus, we are doing this AcreTrader review so you get to know more about the company and how it actually works.

In particular, we are going to focus on the following aspects:

  • Why consider investing in farmland?
  • What Acretrader is all about?
  • How does AcreTrader work?
  • What are the features/benefits of AcreTrader?
  • How to sign up with AcreTrader?
  • How does AcreTrader Rating Work?
  • What are the pros and cons of AcreTrader?


Before we dig deeper into what AcreTrader is all about and how to go about it, we thought it’s nice to have a quick backgrounder first – this helps you appreciate more investing in farmland.

For some people, investing in farmland is radical. Well, that’s acceptable especially since we are used to the more conventional forms of real estate investment, particularly residential and commercial properties.

However, in research conducted by AcreTrader, they found out that farmland has, in fact, been one of the best performing investments since 1990. This basically means, if you have invested in farmland back in 1990, your money has grown so much by now. When we say so much, we are talking about from a five-digit investment to a six-digit earning. Impressive? Definitely.

To be honest, there are so many reasons why farmland is an ideal investment. Here are some:

  • Farmlands produce the basic commodity – food – which will never run out of customers.
  • It is a kind of investment that is not part of the financial system.
  • Farmlands have low historical volatility. Price declines are limited even during bad years.
  • Its price levels are not tied to movements in other assets.
  • There is a huge possibility that farmland values will go high faster in the future.


As we have mentioned earlier, AcreTraded is one of the popular crowdfunded real-estate investing platforms. They, however, specialize in investing in farmlands.

AcreTrader opened its doors and allowed investors to purchase parcels of farmland in 2018. The company was founded by Carter Malloy and is based in Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Unfortunately, AcreTrader is limited to accredited investors only, which means, you have to have at least $1 million net worth and/or earn at least $200,000 per year. However, a lot of the deals on AcreTrader have had lower investment minimums as compared to other commercial real estate investing platforms.

Furthermore, what makes AcreTrader all the more appealing is the nature of the asset class that it focuses on. Needless to say, according to AcreTrader itself, farmland has outdone other major asset class ever since 1990 without having a single negative year.

This, however, does not mean to say that individual deals do not lose money. AcreTrader is known as one of the first platforms to bring it to retail investors.

For someone new to this, it might sound too complicated. So, to put it simply, investing with AcreTrader does not mean you take direct ownership of the farmland. What happens instead is you are buying shared of different farm properties. Basically, income is generated through rent from the land or from gains on the sale of the property.

Based on the Better Business Bureau, AcreTrader is rated “A-” on a scale of A+ to F.

Before moving on, here’s a very quick yet very insightful AcreTrader review from Ryan Scribner. Check the below video by hitting the play button.


As part of our AceTrader review (just like any other AceTrader reviews), we are going to look into how it actually works.

Since AcreTrader is a crowdfunded real-estate platform, investors may come anytime to make investments in farmland. Meanwhile, farmers can sell their lands to those investors.

Now, with each investment, the property is owned by an LLC that is build up by AcreTrader. Now, the company will rent the farmland to a trusted local farmer who will pay a predetermined cash rent, which is a very usual thing in the farming industry.

To ensure that there is no such thing as non-payment, rents are collected in advance — meaning, before the planting season. Basically, if a farmer does not pay, then the land will be rented out to another farmer.

To be able to invest through AcreTrader, as mentioned earlier, you must be an accredited investor. This is not unique to AcreTrader as this really is a common practice among crowdfunded real estate platforms.

So, how do you become an accredited investor? Well, you just have to meet any of the following requirements:

  • An individual income of at least $200,000 annually in two recent years, or a joint income with your spouse amounting to at least $300,000 per year for two years plus a reasonable expectation of getting the same income level in the current year.
  • Individual net worth or joint net worth with your spouse amounting to $1 million and above excluding your primary residence.

The requirement is quite tough but that’s the way it is. Now, as an AcreTrade investor, you have the option to choose among investments that are fully vetted by the company. What’s nice about AcreTrader is that they do conduct thorough due diligence on every parcel. Also, it excludes any properties that do not meet their requirements. The company’s qualifications are rigid that only 5% of farm properties reviewed are accepted for investment reasons.

When it comes to their listings, each of them displays the minimum investment required plus crops produced, location, as well as AcreTrader rating, gross cash yield, and net annual return. Further information such as an overview of the property, financial information regarding the farm, as well as location maps, ownership documents, and investment rating, are also provided.

Basically, all the essential information are well-provided for. For information tracking as well as developments regarding your investments, you can find them at the AcreTrader Dashboard. The company also notifies you through email when distributions are mane, which usually happens annually, and usually in December.


Also part of our AcreTrader review is the features and benefits of this platform. Here are some of the notable features we found:

Minimum Investment The minimum investment is 10 shares. This is equivalent to 1 acre of farmland, which will cost a minimum initial investment that ranges from $3,000 to $10,000. The cost depends on the specific parcel of farmland.  

Please take note than making an investment is not tantamount to buying a piece of the farm. What happens is you get an ownership stake in the LLC that owns the land legally.
Investment Term The moment you make an investment, the expected term will be around five to 20 years. Within that timeframe, the company will “explore a secondary marketplace”. However, this is not guaranteed at this time. You may opt to sell your shares to another investor through a private transaction.
Tax Considerations Income distribution is disclosed using IRS Form K-1 every end of the year. This form is the very same document you get in almost any real estate crowdfunding platform. Taxable during year-end are rent distributions as well as net of expenses.

Meanwhile, capital gains are taxed only during the year the property was sold. This is also subject to lower capital gains tax rates.
AcreTrader Fees Signing up is free of charge. Closing fees are usually at 2% of your investment amount. An annual servicing fee of 0.75% of the total value of the investment is charged. A 5% fee is charged when the underlying property is sold, however, it is paid by the selling farm owner.
Customer Support Customer support is available by toll-free phone as well as via email. However, there is not indicated for days or hours.


Apart from the fact that you need to be an accredited investor to be able to start investing through AcreTrade, you must also be a U.S. citizen or a legal resident of the country.

When signing up, you will need to provide the following information:

  • Full Name
  • Email Address
  • Preferred Password

Another option is signing up using any of the following platforms:

  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Account

In addition, you will also need to provide personal information such as:

  • Bank Account Number/s (for funding purposes)
  • Accreditation Documents

If you are worried about your bank details being compromised, you should not. AcreTrader does not retain your bank details. They use a third-party provider, Plaid to do the work. Plaid provides the same kind of services you will find in other investment platforms. The same goes with your accreditation documents. These, meanwhile, are handled by another third-party service called, North Capital Investment Technology.

Please note that all-important and required documents are signed and sent electronically through the website. Meanwhile, your investment account will be funded by ACH transfers from a linked bank account.

Just like any other crowdfunding platform, your investment is not final until the fundraising target is reached. Generally, a property will be offered between 30 and 90 days. Should the target is not met, your investment will be refunded.


In this part of our AcreTrader review, we are going to look into how the AcreTrader rating works.

Basically, every property is given a rating from A1 to D3 depending on the number of points every property has. Properties with A1 ratings have fewer points as compared to those with D3 ratings.

For your reference, here are where properties can earn points:

  • Historical Flooding Problems – The farm lost 20% or more of its crops in the last 10 years because of standing water or flooding.
  • Water Access Problems – The farmland lacks access to water for irrigation purposes.
  • Direct Operations Planned – Any investment funds applied must be looked into.
  • No Existing Tenant – There has to be no current tenant.
  • Debt Involved in Transaction – Amount of debt placed on the subject offering has to be considered.
  • High Loan-To-Value of Debt – The amount of debt placed on the property exceeds 55% loan-to-value ratio.
  • Non-Farming Leases or Income in Place – There should not be hunting, energy, or other non-farming-related leases in place.
  • Non-Farming Assets Valued as Part of the Transaction – Non-core assets like grain storage, house, shop, etc. taken into account in the farm’s valuation.
  • Low Activity Land Sale Market –There are fewer 10 land sales over $100,000 in value in a 100-mile radius within the previous year.
  • Direct Access to Maintained Roadway – It has to have direct access to a local or national government-maintained roadway.
  • Nearest Crop Delivery Point > 50 Miles Away – The nearest drop-off point for commodity delivery greater than 50 miles away.
  • Improvements Planned During Holding Period – More than 10% of the total offering value has to be contributed to asset improvement.


Before our final verdict, to complete our AcreTrader review, here are what we found as the company’s share of highs and lows.


  • It has a one-of-a-kind asset class with an impressive return profile. Historically speaking, farmland has an excellent track record of robust returns and minimal losses.
  • It has deep due diligence. AcreTrader is composed of an experienced management team that knows what to look for in farmland. Also, it knows where to invest substantial resources to evaluate each deal.
  • It has a very low investing requirement. As earlier mentioned, AcreTrader only required at least 10 share, which is equivalent to 1 acre of farmland that costs an initial investment of around $3,000 to $10,000. Definitely lower compared to other companies.
  • It charges low fees. AcreTrade has some of the lowest fees in real estate investing.
  • AcreTrader annual average investment returns range from 9% to 11%.


  • It is only open for accredited investors. As mentioned, at this point, AcreTrader is only available for investors with at least 1 million net worth or those who are earning $200,000 annually.
  • It is a relatively new company having only founded in 2018.
  • Your investment is not liquid, which means, you cannot easily get the money. Note that the holding period on a farm parcel range from five to 20 years.
  • There is no guarantee when it comes to income distribution as well as their timing.
  • Income distribution is done once a year only and usually in December.


AcreTrader may be relatively new to the scene, but it’s quite impressive.

The only thing that really concerns us is the fact that it is only open for accredited investors, which means it is not available for all. Although it’s totally understandable because investing in farmland is not a typical investment. It is ideal for people who have the financial strength to withstand potential losses. Investment is not always glory days anyway. Losing money is always possible.

We got to say that, after everything that we found about the company, AcreTrader is indeed ideal for those people who are interested in investing in “hard assets”. More so, it is also applicable to people who want long-term investments.

So, how do you find AcreTrader? Do you think you have what it takes to start investing with them?

Whether you invest or not, the important thing is that through this AcreTrader review, you are able to know more about AcreTrade rand understand how it works.

Investment Apps and Websites

Your Guide In Choosing Between E*TRADE Vs TD Ameritrade Vs Robinhood

In this age of digital advancement, it is not surprising that online stock brokerages exist. In fact, in this industry, there are a couple of popular names that are battling off being the best, thus we are making a comparison between E*TRADE vs TD Ameritrade vs Robinhood, three of the most well-known companies in the online brokerage industry today.

E*TRADE vs TD Ameritrade vs Robinhood choosing the best option

As mentioned, there are a lot of online brokerage companies today. Each of them does have some amazing things to offer. But, in particular, E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade and Robinhood are all known not just as online investment brokers, but also because these three give emphasis on self-directed investing.

Just so you know, self-directed investing, also known as Do-it-yourself (DIY) investing refers to the “method and strategy in which retail or individual investors choose to build and manage their own portfolios. Do-it-yourself investors commonly utilize discount brokerages and investment account platforms as opposed to full-service brokerages or professional money managers.” This is according to Investopedia.

Now, going back to online brokerage services…

In a study conducted by Advanced Analytical Consulting Group and Deloitte for the United States Department of Labor, it has found that in 2013, 17 million American households owned a brokerage account and that most of them owned an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). Meanwhile, other “actively traded through their brokerage account” and 65% “traded at most three times in the year before the survey interview.” However, if compared to 2001, that number seemed to have decreased by 3 million.

Furthermore, in a study, this time by Statista, it says that in 2018, majority of Americans who used online investing/stock trading service, which is 14.59% were within the 30-49 years old age bracket, 12.28% were 18-29 years old, while 10.86% were 50-64 years of age.

With what we have shared, there are two things that we wanted to point out. First is that many Americans own a brokerage account and that brokerage is something that is not extinct in our nation, and second, while the majority of the people who are into online brokerage services are old people, the young ones are coping up. Who knows, in a few years’ time, they may surpass the older people, right?

Anyway, having given all this essential information, let us now proceed to compare three of the most popular online brokerage service providers — E*TRADE vs TD Ameritrade vs Robinhood.

In particular, we are going to share with you the following:

  • Quick Comparison
  • Brief Backgrounder
  • Similarities
  • Differences
  • Notable features
  • Minimum Initial Investment Required
  • Trading and Annual Fees  
  • Our Verdict (Which is the best?)


Later on, we are going to share with you a more detailed comparison, particularly on some of the most vital details that one should know if he or she is planning to use an online brokerage service provider.

Meanwhile, here’s a quick comparison between E*TRADE vs TD Ameritrade vs Robinhood for your reference:

Minimum Investment $0 $0 $0
Stock Trades $0/trade $0/trade $0/trade
Option Trades $0/trade + $0.65/contract ($0.50/contract for 30+ trades/quarter) $0.65/contract $0
Mutual Funds Yes Yes None
Virtual Trading None Yes None
Security SIPC coverage$0 liability against unauthorized use of your accountComplete payment protectionInformation privacyOptional digital security IDSmart alerts by text or email SIPC coverageAdvanced firewallsAnomaly detection and intrusion detection technology128-bit encryptionAsset Protection Guarantee SIPC coverageEncryptionTransport Layer Security (TLS) ProtocolsUsage of TouchID, FaceID or custom pin codeTwo-factor authentication
Customer Service 24/7 via Live Chat; Phone Support available Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., Eastern Time; Mobile app with full capabilities 24/7 via phone, live chat, text, and email; Full-service mobile app; TD Ameritrade offices and TD Bank branches via Email only


E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade, and Robinhood are all well-known companies in the online brokerage industry. All of them have their respective highs and lows, which you will surely find out as we go through this review.

For now, we are going to share with you a little backgrounder about all three companies. This will help you get to know E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade, and Robinhood better.


E*TRADE was founded in 1982. It was particularly launched as an online trading platform. Over the years, the company has catered to a lot of clients, which is why it is not surprising that today, the company has already had over $65 billion in assets under management.

Although not yet considered as one of the largest brokerage firms in the country, with how the company is performing, E*TRADE has grown into one of the most popular in the industry. 

One of the reasons why the company has growing popularity is because E*TRADE has one of the best trading platforms in the online brokerage industry. In addition, the company does offer unlimited investment options, which allows investors to invest in mutual funds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), individual stocks, as well as bonds, options, futures, and FOREX.

Apart from the afore-mentioned, the company also provides investors with four managed investment options. This includes E*TRADE’s Core Portfolios Robo advisor, as well as Blend Portfolios, Dedicated Portfolios, and Fixed Income Portfolios for hands-on wealth management. The three latter options include active management as well as the capability to work directly with a financial consultant.

Moreover, E*TRADE also has its own online banking unit, which enables you to bank where you had your money invested.


The Omaha, Nebraska-based company, TD (Toronto Dominion) Ameritrade was launched in 1971. As stated in its name, the company is part of the Toronto Dominion Bank.

Obviously, TD Ameritrade is affiliated with TD Bank, which currently has over 1,300 branches in 15 East Coast states. In addition, it also has a branch in Washington, D.C. Currently, TS Bank boasts a $384 billion in total assets, which is why it is considered as the ninth-largest bank in the whole United States.

Meanwhile, TD Ameritrade does have approximately 360 branches nationwide. Needless to say, the company has one of the top investment platforms in the industry. On top of that, TB Ameritrade constantly ranks among the best brokerage firms available in the country.

TD Ameritrade offers full-service investment brokerage services. Since the company is affiliated with TD Bank, it is not surprising that as a TB Ameritrade member, you can also take advantage of banking through TD Bank. Just so you know, there are bank-based financial professionals available at their branches. They provide clients with a wider face-to-face capability regarding their investments.

Furthermore, TD Ameritrade also offers full-service investing for self-directed investors. Apart from that, the company also has Essential Portfolios Robo advisor as well as what they call as Select Portfolios actively managed portfolio, which is ideal for larger accounts. Meanwhile, they also have Personalized Portfolios, which provides wealth management for investment accounts with at least $250,000.


Robinhood is quite new in the investment scene as it has only been launched in 2013. While it is relatively new to the industry, it has grown rapidly since it was introduced to the market. It is not surprising though given the fact that it is a completely commission-free trading platform.

Robinhood is committed to empowering people from any background to get into the stock market. Precisely why they come up with the app. The company is very serious about its goal that it provides zero-fee accounts with no trading fees.

Unlike other online brokerage firms that charge for most buys and sell transactions, Robinhood offers its service for free. Yes, you read it right. It is a free platform as mentioned earlier. Apart from that, what makes Robinhood even more popular in the scene is the fact that it supports not just stocks, but also ETFs, options as well as for cryptocurrencies.

Although it offers a very limited menu as compared to the two previous companies, which really made people adore Robinhood is their Crypto. This particular trading service offered by the Robinhood allows you to buy and sell multiple popular currencies such as Bitcoin, Litecoin, and Ethereum. In addition, Robinhood also provides you access to all popular cryptocurrencies, regardless if you are active in buying or selling them, or not.

Another selling point of Robinhood is that it is just one of the very few micro-investing apps that have introduced fractional shares, which lets you invest in as little as $1.

Before we move on, here’s a quick comparison made by Stas Serfes between TD Ameritrade and Robinhood, which we find very informative for anyone deciding on which company is better. Just click the play button below to watch the whole video:


E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade and Robinhood are popular in the online brokerage industry. All three of them have managed to earn their spots in the industry. They have provided certain kinds of services that made them where they are now.

Apart from the fact that all three of them are one of the well-known online brokerage companies, they also have some things in common (either all three of them or just two), which include the following:

  • They all provide self-directed investment brokerage services.
  • They all offer commission-free stock, option and ETF trades.
  • They all have investor access online and via iOS and Android mobile apps.
  • Both E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade provide managed portfolio options.

Remember, these are just the major common denominators that we have seen among the three. It’s good to take note of this so you can better gauge your options – if you are looking for an online brokerage firm to open an account with.


While E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade and Robinhood have their similarities, all three of them are unique in their own ways. They do have, in fact, a lot of differences – whether it be major or minor differences.

Here are a few of the differences among E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade and Robinhood:

Investor Profile While all of the three companies are built for self-directed investors, E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade also gives investors an option for managed portfolio options like Robo advisors.
Investments Offered On one hand, E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade offer all types of investments. On the other hand, Robinhood offers stocks, options, and ETFs only. It also offers cryptocurrencies, which the other two do not have.
Retirement Accounts While E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade offer different types of IRAs, Robinhood is limited to taxable accounts only.
Local Branches While E*TRADE has 30 local branches, TD Ameritrade has 360 along with over 1,300 TD Bank branches, Robinhood, meanwhile, does not have local branches at all.


To make our comparison between E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade and Robinhood more valuable, here are some of the notable features you will find in each of them. Hopefully, this too will help you in choosing the best online brokerage firm.


  • The company has a huge assortment of investment options, which includes more than 4,400 no-fee mutual funds.
  • It specializes in options trading.
  • The company offers a Robo advisor plus various wealth-management options.
  • It provides access to E*TRADE Savings Bank, which offers a high-interest savings account, free checking, as well as a line of credit
  • In relation to the line of credit, the company allows you to borrow up to 50% of your total account value. This is applicable for any purpose except for buying securities on margin. Furthermore, the interest rate is lower compared to margin interest rates. Needless to say, you can repay on your preferred schedule.


  • The company offers Robo advisor and several wealth-management options, primarily for larger investors.
  • It is a tie-in with TD Bank, which offers full-service banking such as commercial banking and has over 1,300 branches all over the East Coast.
  • TD Ameritrade alone has more than 360 branches around the country.
  • With its tie-up with TD Bank, investors can also take advantage of face-to-face contact, which is not commonly practiced in the investing industry.


  • It is commission-free trading for stocks, options, and ETFs.
  • It does not charge an annual fee to maintain your account or any other fees.
  • Robinhood provides the ability to trade cryptocurrencies.
  • The platform is designed to be a pure self-directed trading tool.


All three of them — E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade and Robinhood — have their highs and lows. One more important aspect that we need to look into is the minimum initial investment required.

Let’s start with —


The company does not require a minimum to be able to open a brokerage account. However, it has a relatively high minimum with regard to their managed accounts. For your reference, here are the minimum investment required for the following managed accounts:

  • Core Portfolios Robo advisor – $500
  • Blend portfolio – $25,000
  • Dedicated portfolio – $150,000
  • Fixed Income portfolio – $250,000


Normally, in other online brokerage companies, they require a minimum initial investment. However, just like E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade does not have a minimum initial investment required as well. As with their managed portfolio, below are the specific requirements:

  • Essential Portfolios Robo advisor – $500
  • Select Portfolios – $25,000
  • Personalized Portfolios – $250,000


Like E*TRADE and TD Ameritrade, Robinhood does not require a minimum initial investment as well. While it requires you to fund your account so you can start trading, how much you will need will all depend on you.

Robinhood is ideal for those who are just starting and are quite not risk-takers when it comes to investing. It’s a good opportunity to learn and play around without fearing about how huge the money you invested in.


Let’s face it, in almost everything, we always care about the money we spend, right? As much as possible, we want to get good value.

Like anything else, fees matter when it comes to investing via online brokerage firms like E*TRADE, TD Ameritrade, and Robinhood.

The good thing is — all of these three online brokerage platforms do not charge for an annual fee to maintain their brokerage accounts. But, if you use advisory services particularly E*TRADE or TD Ameritrade, you will have to prepare for the following fees:


– An annual advisory fee of 0.30% on its Core Portfolios Robo advisor

– An annual advisory fee that ranges from 0.35% to as high as 1.125% on its other managed portfolio options


– A yearly fee that ranges from 0.30% to 1.25% for managed portfolios.


To be perfectly honest, it’s hard to pinpoint just one among the three. We do think that all three have their respective highs and lows, strengths and weaknesses.

Having said that, allow us to judge based on the following criteria:

  • For the total service level, we have to give it to TD Ameritrade.
  • For lower-cost frequent trading, it has to be E*TRADE.
  • For less-frequent traders, the best option is TD Ameritrade.
  • For commission-free trading, it is obviously Robinhood.
  • For a frequent, self-directed trader with all needed investment resources from outside sources, it has to be Robinhood as well.
  • For cryptocurrency, again, it’s obviously Robinhood.

To put it simply, you have to look into what your needs and preferences are to be able to decide which among the three is not the best, but the most ideal for you.


Have you decided the most ideal online brokerage platform for you yet?

Comparing E*TRADE vs TD Ameritrade vs Robinhood is actually a breeze, because as we have stated, while they do have their similarities, they too have their respective uniqueness that choosing the best will actually be based instead on what’s most ideal for you – according to your preferences.

Investment Apps and Websites

Schwab Vs Fidelity: The Best Commission Brokerage For You

Making a comparison between Schwab vs Fidelity, two of the most popular commission brokerages in the country, will surely not be easy as both offer impressive websites and downloadable platforms that are filled with great features, research, newsfeeds, and educational tools to help users become financially knowledgeable.

Schwab vs Fidelity best commission brokerage

Apart from the above-mentioned, both Schwab and Fidelity offer various mobile platforms, downloadable platforms, as well as full-featured websites that are aimed at regular traders. How impressive both Schwab and Fidelity are is not surprising given the fact that both are ranked as among the top brokers in the country.

If you are seriously thinking about getting into investing, you better check these two out. But you do not need to go elsewhere because that is precisely the reason why we are doing this comparison review. Hopefully, by the end of this, you get to decide which between Schwab and Fidelity is the best choice when it comes to investing.

Meanwhile, here’s an interesting fact about investing in the United States. This, we thought, is worth sharing especially if you are new in this kind of business.

A report published by Quartz says that more Americans have invested in the stock market as of the year 2019. The highest ever — Compared to years ago when only 30% of American people owned a form of stock, as of 2019 (when the articles were published), it has jumped to more than 50%! That’s a pretty good number. Still not as much as we expected, but still high enough compared to previous years.

Still according to the report, some of the reasons why such change has something to do with the following:

  • The rising popularity of index and mutual funds makes stock market investing easier and safer.
  • The increased popularity of 401(k)-type retirement plans in the 1990s, which gave many Americans easy access to the stock market. In fact, in most cases, they are automatically invested in the stock.

Furthermore, the report says that the composition of the 50% Americans who invested are retired people, as well as those who have a defined-benefit pension plan. Also among them are low-income Americans who lack access to a retirement account or can’t afford to contribute.

Regardless of who invested and their reasons for investing, the fact that more and more people are into it is a good sign.

Now, if you are someone who is new to all of these and wanted to be one of the more than 50% who got themselves into investing – here’s one important thing to know, it is vital that you choose the right company to help you with your investments. This will help make investing easier and a breeze for you.

Having said that, as mentioned, we are going to compare Schwab vs Fidelity. We are going to look into how both fair in the industry.

In particular, we are going to present to you the following:

  • A quick comparison between Schwab and Fidelity
  • A brief backgrounder about the two
  • Notable features that are unique to Schwab as well as Fidelity
  • Minimum Initial Deposit
  • Fees and commissions
  • Investments Offered
  • Mobile app accessibility
  • Education and security

In the end, we are going to share our thoughts – our final verdict on which among the two is the best option.

But before we start our own review on both Schwab and Fidelity, here’s a very useful video from Arvabelle regarding these two popular commission brokerages. Watch the whole video by simply clicking the play button below:


Before we go into a more detailed review, here’s a quick comparison between Schwab and Fidelity. This hopefully gives you an idea regarding the similarities and differences between the two investment companies.

Min. Investment $0 $0
Stock Trades $0/trade $0/trade
Options Trades $0.65/contract $0.65/contract
Mutual Funds Yes Yes
Investment Types Stocks, OTC/Penny Stocks, ETFs, Mutual Funds, Bonds, Options, Forex, Cryptocurrencies, Futures Stocks, OTC/Penny Stocks, ETFs, Mutual Funds, Bonds, Options, Forex, Cryptocurrencies, Futures
Accounts Taxable, Joint, Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, Rollover IRA, SEP IRA, SIMPLE IRA, Trusts, Coverdell, 529, Custodial, Checking, Savings Taxable, Joint, Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, Rollover IRA, SEP IRA, SIMPLE IRA, Solo 401(k), Trusts, Coverdell, 529, Custodial, Annuities, Checking, Money Market, CDs
Broker Assisted Trade $25 $32.95
Virtual Trades None Yes
No Fee ETFs 200 91
Auto Trading None None
Accessibility Web Based, iPhone App, Apple Watch, Android App Web Based, iPhone App, Apple Watch, Android App
Customer Service Support Phone: 24/7; Live Chat: 24/7; Email; Branch Offices Phone: 24/7; Live Chat: 24/7; Branch Office


One way to be able to decipher which commission brokerageis better than the other is by checking out their history. Thus, here’s a brief backgrounder so we are able to get to know more about Schwab and Fidelity.


Charles Schwab & Company or more commonly known as Schwab was founded back in 1971. It is located in San Francisco. The company is tagged as the original investment discount brokerage firm.

They owned such title after they have introduced low-cost stock trading back in the 1970s. Eventually, the entire industry adopted this. Years after, Schwab continues to lead in the industry.

Schwab lives through their purpose, which states (as published on their website):

“Our purpose is to champion every client’s goals with passion and integrity. This purpose drives us to help our clients take ownership of their financial futures, helping people at all levels of income and every stage of life because investing in the future is one of the most important things people can do for themselves and their families. We believe it is critical to the health of our communities and to our society.”

True to its purpose, the company has earned the trust of its more than 9 million clients. Along with that, they have $2.6 trillion in assets under management. Moreover, Schwab operates through 300 branches throughout the United States. In addition, the firm provides its clients with in-person contact with the company apart from an extensive online and phone accessibility.

Schwab offers individual and joint brokerage accounts, custodial accounts, trust, and estate accounts, 401(k)s, Coverdell and 529 college accounts,  as well as traditional, Roth, Simple and SEP IRAs.


Fidelity Investments, popularly known as Fidelity is a privately-owned investment management company that was established in 1946. Initially, it was only a mutual fund company. However, over the years, Fidelity has eventually offered a range of services including fund distribution and investment advice, wealth management.

At Fidelity, they promised to “innovate and challenge the status quo in order to deliver more value to our customers.”

Furthermore, they aim to always follow what their founder has once said, “Take intelligent risks, rather than follow the crowd.”

Based in Boston, Massachusetts, Fidelity has become one of the largest investment management firms in the country. It has over 26 million customers, $6.5 trillion in total customer assets, and more than $2.4 trillion in global assets under management.

Apart from the company’s investment services, Fidelity also provides retirement services and life insurance.  In fact, it has already served more than 23 million accounts for both its retail and institutional investors. In addition, it also boasts having over 140 retail locations all over the country.

Similar to Schwab, Fidelity Investments also offers individual and joint brokerage accounts, trust and estate accounts, 401(k)s, and traditional, custodial accounts, Coverdell and 529 college accounts, Roth, Simple and SEP IRAs.


Now that we already have an idea about the history of both Schwab and Fidelity, let’s move on to checking out some notable features that are unique to both commission brokerages.


– Schwab Intelligent Portfolios

To be able to participate in Schwab Intelligent Portfolios, you will need at least $5,000. What is does it that it makes use of an advanced algorithm. It also uses the management services of Charles Schwab Investment Advisory, Inc. to be able to create a portfolio of low-cost ETFs, which extends across as many as 20 different asset classes, which includes real estate as well as commodities.

– Personal Portfolio Review

With at least $25,000 in your account, you can take advantage of Schwab’s portfolio consultation. This helps you become more knowledgeable when it comes to your goals, as well as helps in evaluating your existing investments that are related to your goals. This feature also provides specific recommendations as well as the next steps. In addition, Schwab also offers 24/7 customer service to assist you with your day-to-day investment needs.

– Tax-loss harvesting

Schwab provides you with tax-loss harvesting as long as you have at least $50,000 with them. Tax-loss harvesting is an ideal investment strategy that helps minimize capital gains, which in turn enables you to set aside more of your investment earnings.

– Charles Schwab Bank

Yes, Schwab does have a banking arm. Just like any bank, it provides full-service banking. Thus, enabling you to the bank where you invest. Charles Schwab Bank provides checking through the Schwab Bank High Yield Investor Checking Account. What’s nice about is that it does not only pays interest but also requires no minimum account balance and no account fees.

More so, the account provides unlimited fee rebates from ATMs worldwide. Now, that’s really a standout, right?

– Portfolio Management Services

If you are someone who needs help in managing your investments, Schwab does have a lot of different services available for you like Diversified Managed Accounts and Schwab Managed Portfolios. In addition, the firm also offers fully managed accounts and also more specialized programs like Thomas Partners’ dividend growth strategy and their Windhaven Strategies — both focusses in global diversification.


– Fidelity Active Trader Pro

This feature lets you see real-time streaming market data, as well as advanced charting and real-time profit-and-loss estimates on hypothetical transactions, in one-click trading. This makes it ideal for investors who prefer doing it themselves.

– Fidelity Investment Rewards Visa Card

While Fidelity does not offer a bank account, they do offer a Fidelity Investment Rewards Visa Card. This card lets you deposit the cashback rewards directly into your brokerage account through the Credit Options Plus Cashback feature. If you are familiar with microwaving, it’s something similar to that.

– Fidelity Portfolio Advisory Service

Fidelity Portfolio Advisory Service is provided to those with a minimum investment of $50,000. This advisory service is ideal for investors who need help in managing their portfolio. Strategic Advisers, Inc. is Fidelity’s registered investment adviser.

– Fidelity ZERO Index Funds

As stated, this feature entitles investors to zero fees regardless of how much investment they have with Fidelity. Fidelity does have two new funds namely the ZERO Total Market Index Fund, which mirrors the total return of a large range of exchange-listed U.S. companies, as well as the ZERO International Index Fund that corresponds to the total return of foreign developed and emerging stocks. Neither of the two requires any minimum investment.


Any investors will surely want to know this. It’s safe to say that it is fundamental if you want a commission brokerage to manage your investments.

With Schwab, the firm requires a minimum initial deposit amounting to $1,000. As with the IRA, you can open one without anything as long as you enroll with Schwab’s Automatic Investment Plan for at least $100 per month.

As with Fidelity, they do not require a minimum investment, which makes it a winner between the two if you are to gauge the best based on this aspect.


Another important thing that every investor needs to know when dealing with commission brokerages is annual fees, as well as commissions.

For your reference, here’s how much you need when dealing with either Schwab or Fidelity:


Schwab does not charge either account fees or inactivity fees.

Meanwhile, here’s how much the commissions are based on the account type:

  • Stocks and ETFs — $4.95 per trade
  • Preferred stocks and REITs — $4.95 per trade
  • Options — $4.95 + $0.65 per contract
  • Mutual funds — $76 to buy, but no fee to sell
  • Schwab OneSource Funds — No fee
  • US Treasury Securities — No fee
  • Other fixed income securities — $1.00 per bond, with $10 minimum and $250 maximum

In addition, Schwab also offers more than 200 ETFs at $0 commission.


Just like Schwab, Fidelity does not charge either account fees or inactivity fees.

As with commission, here’s how much Fidelity charges:

  • Stock and ETFs — $4.95 per trade
  • Options — $4.95 per trade + $0.65 per contract
  • Mutual funds — $0 – $49.95 per trade
  • Bonds and CDs — No fee on new issues, $1.00 per bond on a secondary issue

In addition, Fidelity does offer 91 commission-free ETFs.


As an investor, you have to be fully aware that there are various investment types out there. Thus, it is important that you know exactly what you want and where to put your money into.

To give you an idea, Schwab offers just about every investment security there is, which includes stocks, as well as bonds, exchange-traded funds (ETFs), options and real estate investment trusts (REITs). More so, Schwab also offers over 3,000 no-load/no transaction fee mutual funds. Mutual funds are ideal for any investor who invests most or all of his or her portfolios in funds.

Just like Schwab, Fidelity also offers stocks, bonds, ETFs and options. In addition, they also have over 4,700 mutual funds offered by both Fidelity and non-Fidelity sponsors.


In this day and age, mobile app accessibility is very important. People nowadays prefer anything mobile.

Good thing is, both Schwab and Fidelity offer their own Mobile Apps.

Schwab is available in Apple iOS and Google Android. They are also available on Apple Watch.

As with Fidelity, it is also available in both Apple iOS and Google Android. However, based on customer reviews, Apple iPad seems to work better because it has more functionality as compared to an iPhone.


Schwab provides 4 to 7 hours of video content every trading day through their Schwab Live Daily. It is available for both clients and non-clients alike. They also have the Schwab Learning Center, which covers a broad and deep range of educational content focusing on different skill levels.

When it comes to security concerns, Schwab’s security guarantee covers losses in any Schwab accounts due to unauthorized activity. The firm does also supports the Symantec VIP app and physical tokens for two-factor authentication.

Meanwhile, Fidelity does have an online Learning Center, which provides useful articles, infographics, videos, as well as webinars. Just like Schwab, Fidelity has a security guarantee, wherein you will get reimbursed should an unauthorized activity happens. The firm also offers two-factor authentication via the Symantec VIP app.


Both Schwab and Fidelity do offer amazing features for their members. To be honest, it is not surprising at all given the fact that both are among the best in the industry.

To choose one between the two is quite a challenge because both are really good! We thought perhaps you should look into your investment preferences instead to be able to pick the perfect commission brokerage.

Just a quick run-through, Schwab is ideal for investors who need help in managing their portfolios, while Fidelity is good for self-directed investors, especially those who trade on a regular basis.

Again, it’s hard to pick between the two. While we did a very insightful comparative review between Schwab vs Fidelity, at the end of the day, we got to let you pick your choice based on what your needs and preference are.

Investment Apps and Websites

Wealthfront Vs Personal Capital: Which Investment Platform Is The Best?

When it comes to web-based investment management platforms, two names are battling it off – these are Wealthfront vs Personal Capital. Both are very promising in their own respective ways, but which one stands out? That we will find out.

wealthfront vs personal capital best investment platform

Back in the days, investing is quite challenging. Thanks to digital advancement and the internet, today, people who want to invest and manage their investments do have the means to do so wherever and whenever they want to.

There is a growing number of web-based investment management platforms, and with so many options around, it can get a little challenging to choose one. But you know, the thing is, there are companies, rather an investment arms that have earned popularity over the rest. Among them are Wealthfront and Personal Capital. Later on, we are going to do a head-to-head comparison between the two to know which one is better.

Before we get into our comparison review, here’s an interesting fact about Americans’ attitude towards investing.

In a report published by Gallup, it says that in the study they conducted back in April 2019, only 55% of Americans reported that they own stock. This number is just one percent higher compared to previous years. According to the report, the number was based on “a question asking respondents about any individual stocks they may own, as well as stocks included in mutual funds or retirement savings accounts, like a 401(k) or IRA”.

For some people, this statistic is quite surprising given how people thought of American people. You know, a lot of non-Americans thought that we are better at handling money and that we are goo in investing as well. Obviously, only a few of us are.

However, with the advent of web-based investment management platforms, plus more resources coming out about investing and personal finance management, the numbers may change in the future. Today, investing has become like a household name, and more people are becoming interested in it. So, who knows, our prediction may be right!?

Anyway, going back to Wealthfront and Personal Capital, we are, in particular, going to look into the following details as we go through this comparison review:

  • A quick comparison between Wealthfront and Personal Capital
  • Brief backgrounder on Wealthfront and Personal Capital
  • Wealthfront and Personal Capital Investment Management
  • Notable features of the two platforms
  • Pricing
  • Promotions
  • Accessibility
  • Customer Service

Having said all that, let’s begin.


Before we go into a detailed comparison, you may want to check the table below to have a quick idea of what to expect on both Wealthfront and Personal Capital. The table will also show how similar and how different Wealthfront and Personal Capital are from one another.

Minimum Investment $500 $100,000
Account Fees 0.25%/year Days Wealth Management: First $1 million: 0.89% ; $1-3 million: 0.79%; $3-5 million: 0.69%; $5-10 million: 0.59%; Over $10 million: 0.49% Days
Account Available Taxable, Joint, Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, Rollover IRA, SEP IRA, 529, Non-Profit Taxable, Joint, Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, Rollover IRA, 401(k), Trusts, 529
Advice Automated Automated
401(k) Guidance None Yes
Portfolio Rebalancing Yes Yes
Retirement Tools Yes Yes
Automatic Deposits Yes Yes
Clearing Agency Yes Yes
Self-Clearing None None
Smart Beta Yes Yes
Socially Responsible Investing Yes Yes
Invests in Commodities Yes Yes
Invests in Real Estate Yes Yes
Fractional Shares None None
Two-Factor Authentication Yes None
Assets Under Management $11,022,761,706 $8,500,000,000
Number of Accounts 272,792 37,793
Robo Advisor Yes Yes
Human Advisors None Yes
Tax Loss Harvesting Yes Yes
Goal Tracker Yes Yes
Access Web-Based Web Based, iPhone App, Apple Watch, Android App
Customer Service Phone: M-F 7A-5P PT; Email Phone: 24/7; Email
Promotions $5 Managed for FREE Join for FREE

Looking at the above data alone, it may be hard to decide yet which one is better. However, that’s opposite to those who already know what they want when it comes to a web-based investment management platforms.


Meanwhile, let’s take a look at the history of both Wealthfront and Personal Capital. This will give us an idea of how trusted the brand is.


Wealthfront is one of the popular names when it comes to the Robo-advisory industry, also known as automated investment service. Basically, it means putting your money into an account, and all the other aspects of investment management are handled for you by the Robo-advisor.

Wealthfront was founded in 2008 by Andy Rachleff and Dan Carroll. It was initially called, “KaChing!”. The idea behind Wealthfront was intended to mimic the portfolios of stock professionals while using your money.

In 2011, the company was renamed to what it is now – Wealthfront. Apart from renaming and rebranding, Wealthfront also started molding the company to be an all-in-one financial solutions provider.

Fast-forward to now, the company is focused on three automated services, which include:

  • Free financial planning,
  • Investment management, and
  • Lending.

Once you sign up with Wealthfront, it means you are allowing your money to be invested in a globally diversified portfolio of ETFs. However, it is important to take note that your portfolio varies depending on the kind of account you open – whether it is a tax-deferred or a taxable account.

If you are interested to know more about Wealthfront, you may want to check the below video by Chris Guthrie as he shares his personal review on this investment management platform.


Personal Capital is primarily a fee-based wealth management platform. However, it also offers free financial software for budgeting and personal finance management.

As compared to other online platforms, Personal Capital’s free financial software is quite comprehensive. Needless to say, it also offers very extensive investment tools. What’s even good about it is that you have the option to either use the free financial software in conjunction with wealth management, or you can just use the software itself.

Furthermore, Personal Capital was launched in 2011. As mentioned, it is an investment management service platform that at the same time, also provides a free personal finance dashboard.

Personal Capital comes with two important elements — the personal financial aggregating and advisory services to manage your finances. While the personal financial aggregator is great, Personal Capital excels when it comes to tracking every aspect of your investments.

In addition, free online money tools are standard when it comes to helping you understand your investments. Personal Capital breaks down your asset allocation, calculates your net worth, and shows your portfolio performance by every account or across accounts. It also provides you with a high-level overview of your cash flow on a per-category basis.

Essentially, all you have to do is connect all your financial accounts, and let Personal Capital take care of the rest.


To have a better idea of which between Wealthfront and Personal Capital is better, let’s look into their respective investment management features.


Wealthfront makes use of modern portfolio theory. They follow a passive investing strategy that includes matching underlying investment benchmarks instead of trying to outperform them. Wealthfront is able to do so by investing their members’ portfolio in low-cost, index-based ETFs.

Asset Classes

Wealthfront spreads your portfolio in as many as 11 various asset classes, which include the following:

  • U.S. Stocks
  • Foreign Developed Market Stocks
  • Emerging Market Stocks
  • Dividend Growth Stocks
  • U.S. Government Bonds
  • Corporate Bonds
  • Emerging Market Bonds
  • Municipal Bonds (taxable accounts only)
  • U.S. Treasury Inflation-Protected Securities (TIPS)
  • Real Estate (through a real estate investment trust)
  • Natural Resources

What Wealthfront does is they use a corresponding ETF for every asset class. Wealthfront provides both periodic rebalancings as well as automatic dividend reinvestment on all accounts.


PassivePlus is designed to increase returns without increasing portfolio risk. This feature uses time-tested, rules-based strategies to invest beyond index funds. Furthermore, it includes smart beta.


Personal Capital makes use of a tactical weighting approach with customary indexing of U.S. equities. They get to do this by sustaining more evenly weighted exposure to every sector and stock. Generally, Personal Capital favors passive investing.

What Personal Capital does is that they customize investment strategy by basing it on your overall financial situation as well as your personal goals. Moreover, they will include medium-term investment goals, such as financing a college education or buying a home.

Investment Mix

The portfolio of its members will be done according to the Modern Portfolio Theory. This means equities will incorporate a well-diversified sample of 90 to 120 individual stocks for tactical weighing, tax optimization, and small-cap index ETFs.

The different asset classes that are included in your portfolio are as follows:

  • U.S. Stocks
  • International Stocks
  • U.S. Bonds
  • International Bonds
  • Alternatives – This includes “hard assets”, such as real estate investment trusts (REITs), gold and energy, as hedges against inflation.
  • Cash, for liquidity

Investment Custodian

With Personal Capital, they do not require you to deposit your investment funds with them. What happens instead is that your account is held with Pershing Advisor Solutions, a Bank of New York Mellon company.

Portfolio Rebalancing

This basically means your portfolio is monitored on a daily basis, and it is rebalanced as needed to ensure asset classes are within target allocations.

Investment Performance

You can check how Personal Capital is doing in this aspect on their website by checking the “Performance” button.


So, we’re done discussing both Wealthfront and Personal Capital’s investment management aspect. This time, let’s look into some of the notable features of both web-based investment management platforms.


Portfolio Line of Credit

This is one of the unique features of Wealthfront. This basically means you are given the freedom to borrow against your Welthfront investment account without any application process, no fee, as well as no need for a credit check. Since it is considered as a secured like, currently, the interest rates range between 4.25% and 5.50% APR.

To be eligible for this feature, you have to have an investment account balance amounting to $100,000. Also, you are allowed to borrow up to 25% of your account balance at any time and for any reason. In addition, Wealthfront allows you to repay your debt on your preferred schedule.

Wealthfront Path Tool

This tool helps you plan out, as well as track your financial goals in life such as buying a home, retirement, as well as saving up for college.


As earlier mentioned, Personal Capital is primarily a wealth management service. However, it also offers free financial software and provides budgeting as well as investment applications.

In Personal Capital’s free version, you will get to enjoy the following features:

  • Budgeting
  • Goal setting
  • Investment management
  • Planning and managing retirement accounts
  • Creation of income, spending reports, and upcoming bills

What makes Personal Capital different from Wealthfront is that it lets you assemble all your financial accounts in one place. This includes your bank accounts, investments, credit cards, mortgages, retirement accounts, and other loans

In addition, Personal Capital lets you track your net worth. Being knowledgeable about it allows you to compare your net worth to the median U.S. household net worth according to your age bracket.

Furthermore, there are other interesting features you can find in Personal Capital free version:

Fee Analyzer

This helps you identify investment fees, as well as recommends alternative investments to cut fees, and also in improving your long-term investment performance.

Retirement Planner

This provides you with different retirement-related tools like the Retirement Calculator. This allows you to track your progress when it comes to your retirement goals, so you can make necessary changes if needed.

Investment Checkup Tool

This helps analyze your portfolio, as well as recommends improvements to help you meet your financial goals.


Comparing Wealthfront and Personal Capital is not complete without looking at pricing and fees. Let’s admit it, in everything, we always consider pricing. In fact, some people consider it a major factor in making decisions.

Having said that, here’s how Wealthfront and Personal Capital fair –


Wealfront charges a flat yearly advisory fee amounting to 0.25%. Compared to other Robo-advisor companies, this fee is at the lower range.

Apart from this, Wealthfront does not charge any additional fees like trading commissions.

In addition, according to Wealthfront, the expense ratio of the ETFs they use is 0.09% annually. This pertains to fees charged within the ETFs used.


As mentioned earlier, Personal Capital is financial software that is available to anyone without a fee. Yes, it’s for free! That includes not just its budgeting capabilities, but also the investment support services.

Meanwhile, Personal Capital’s Wealth Management versions use a tiered advisory fee, which can be as low as 0.49% annually for very large account balances. However, most investors will pay 0.89%. Please note though that the fee only applies to actual investments that are under management with Personal capital.


Another thing you may consider when choosing a web-based investing tool is their promotions.

Wealthfront offers free management for the first $5,000 invested with them. However, this is applicable to DoughRoller readers only.

Meanwhile, Personal Capital, as of this writing, do not have any promotions. But that should not make us feel bad. After all, the platform is free for everyone.


In this time and age, people prefer anything that is convenient to them. Do you agree? Thus, it is not surprising why we are talking about the platform’s accessibility now.

So, let’s start with Wealthfront. Wealthfront is available for mobile devices (both iOS and Android), as well as desktop and tablet.

Meanwhile, Personal Capital is also available for mobile devices (both iOS and Android users), desktop, and tablet. In addition, it can also be accessed through Apple Watch. The app is downloadable through the App Store and Google Play.


To cap off our comparison review between Wealthfront and Personal Capital, we are going to look into their respective customer service support.

Wealthfront does have a customer service, which can be reached either through phone or email, Monday until Friday, from 7 in the morning until 5 in the afternoon (Pacific Time). Wealthfront also has a Help Center page wherein you can find answers to commonly asked questions on different topics.

In addition, Wealthfront does have a Learning Center, which provides you with articles and videos on a wide variety of topics like IRAs, 529 plans, 401(k) plans, and general investing.

As with Personal Capital, they can be reached through phone or email 24 hours a day, seven days a week. In addition, they do have a comprehensive FAQ page, which main focus is on Wealth Management.

Personal Capital also provides a Support Portal wherein you can find a large amount of information regarding the software.


There are so many options when it comes to web-based investment management platforms. But among the many options, there are two names that are popular in this industry – Wealthfront and Personal Capital.

The two offers impressive services. While they both have similarities in different aspects, they do have a lot of differences as well, which makes one unique from the other.

Are you looking for a web-best investment management platform? How do you find Wealthfront? How about Personal Capital? Have you decided which one is the best yet?

As for us, both are very promising, and both are amazing finance tools. Picking just one between Wealthfront vs Personal Capital is a little challenging as they are both good!  Thus, to conclude, the best between the two will depend on you, the user, based on your preferences, needs, and of course, your financial goals.

Investment Apps and Websites

Chime Review: Is This Free Mobile Banking Ideal For You?

This Chime review will make you appreciate the bank’s efforts in ensuring you do not have to worry about monthly banking charges that keep growing month after month. Chime Bank understands the plight of bank clients, thus, they are trying to address it the way they know-how.

Chime review what you need to know

Do you have a savings or a spending account or you have both? How do you feel about it? Do you find the charges overwhelming or you’re okay with it? Well, while some may be fine with bank charges, a lot of us would rather now have such fees. After all, it’s like forfeiting the very reason why we are trying to save money or manage our money by putting it in the bank, right?

In an article published by Forbes, it mentioned about a 2018 study conducted by Deposit Accounts wherein it says that “the average bank or credit union customer pays nearly $34 for an overdraft, $2.28 for an ATM Fee, and $4.58 in monthly fees”. For an ordinary citizen or individual, that is so much money spent paying charges and fees when they could have just saved them, right?

To be honest, bank charges and fees are quite frustrating. Good thing, there’s Chime Bank. A mobile banking app that offers both spending and savings accounts. Chime is said to be one nuisance bank that hopes to solve bank charges and fees dilemma among clients/customers.

Sounds very promising, right? That is exactly why we are going to do this Chime review — to help you understand better what Chime is all about, how it functions, and more.

To be specific, we are going to tackle the following:

  • What is Chime?
  • How does Chime work?
  • What are Chime Bank’s key features?
  • How is Chime Bank’s pricing? What about fees?

In addition, we are also going to look into the following:

  • Signing Up with Chime Bank
  • Chime Bank Security Feature
  • Chime Bank Mobile Support & Accessibility
  • Customers Service Service
  • … and lastly, the Advantages and Disadvantages of Using Chime Bank


Chime Bank is an American technology company that provides financial services through a mobile app. Chime Bank has earned its popularity as it does not charge overdraft or maintenance bank fees — unlike most of its competitors.

Chime Bank was founded in 2013 by two brilliant men, namely Ryan King and Chris Britt. Chime Bank aims to be an alternative to traditional banks. Since its inception, Chime has been considered the leader in the US challenger bank space.

As mentioned earlier, Chime Bank offers both spending and savings accounts. When you open an account with them, you get to have a Spending Account, a Visa Debit Card and an optional Savings Account, which we find pretty impressive.

Chime was designed for banking using your smartphone instead of the usual brick-and-mortar bank.

To put it simply, Chime Bank is an online or “mobile-only” kind of bank that offers you an alternative to traditional banking. While it is tagged as a bank for millennials, it’s definitely open for anyone — especially those who are tired of paying high bank charges, as well as those who are sick of dealing with overdrafts.

Before we move on to our Chime review, here’s a very insightful one from Shay Budgets that you may want to check out. Click the play button to watch the whole thing.


How Chime works is pretty simple. All you have to do is sign up, and then automatically, you will have access to a checking account, which is called “Spending Account” by Chime, a savings account, as well as a debit card.

All the money that you put into your Chime account will primarily be placed in your checking account. You can use the money to make everyday purchases using your debit card. You can also use it online like the usual checking account that allows you to send money to someone else. In addition, you can also write paper checks using Chime Checkbook app.

The money in your checking account is transferrable to your savings account. You have the option to either let it sit there or you can set up external transfer accounts. Don’t worry about charges because transferring cash through Chime does not have any fee.


As part of our Chime review, we are also going to look into Chime Bank’s key features. We are particularly checking some features that make Chime Bank set apart from other online banks and even traditional banks.

– Automatic Savings Feature + Checkbook

This feature lets all its members/users enjoy direct deposits placed into their checking accounts. From there, users have the freedom to set up an automatic savings feature. This allows 10% of your direct deposit to automatically be placed in your savings account. This is applicable for direct deposits over $500.

Furthermore, Chime Checkbook lets you send a paper check to anyone for free. All you have to do is download the app, or you may also find it in your Chime online account. If you are worried about limitations, set that aside as there are no limits to how many checks you can send every month. However, you can only send up to $5,000 per check, and $10,000 per month.

– Automatic Deposits and No Foreign Transaction Fees

Unlike other online and traditional banks, Chime lets you do an automatic deposit for your paycheck. This makes it convenient for Chime users.

Also, as stated, you do not have to deal with foreign transaction fees because there is no such thing at Chime.

– High Yield Interest Rate of 0.01%

Unlike other banks, particularly the traditional ones, Chime only pays 0.01% APY. This means that savings account will not earn an annual interest rate. But as compared to other online banks, it still is better than the others.

Having said that, if you are someone who’s after your money’s earning while in the bank, then perhaps Chime is not for you. The good thing is, Chime lets you transfer your savings account to an external account anytime you want to.

– Chime Savings Round-Ups

Each time you use your Chime debit card in making a purchase, the bank will automatically round the changeup (to the nearest $1) and deposit the change to your savings account.

With Chime, Savings round-up bonuses are deposited every Friday. The maximum amount of bonus money that you can earn is up to $500 annually. That is not bad at all, right? At the end of the day, no amount of money is small enough.

– SpotMe

SpotMe is a unique feature of Chime Bank. It basically allows you to make debit card purchases that may overdraw your account free of any overdraft fees.

Although SpotMe is free, it gives you the ability to leave Chime an optional tip once you are able to repay your negative balance. Tipping, according to Chime, helps them continue to offer such service to its members/clients for free.

To be able to take advantage of SpotMe, you have to have at least $500 or more in direct deposits within the past 31 days. Your SpotMe limit is from $20 and can go as high as $100 or more. This will be based on your individual account history and usage.

If you want to know more about SpotMe, you got to check Chime’s website.

Meanwhile, here’s how you get to enjoy the privileges SpotMe gives (according to Chime):

  • Open the Settings tab in your Chime app to find out if you’re eligible for the SpotMe feature (make sure you have the latest version of the app).
  • Once you agree to the SpotMe Terms and Conditions, you are officially enrolled in SpotMe!
  • When you’re enrolled in SpotMe, you will be able to make debit card purchases that overdraft your account up to $100*.
  • When we receive your next deposit, we will automatically apply it to your negative balance. No overdraft fees are applied. Ever.


Of course, our Chime review will not be complete without looking into the costing. Before you even think about contradicting information – because we earlier said that it’s free and all – you better check this out first.

First and foremost, allow us to share with you the reasons why in general, you incur a fee on your checking account. Here are they:

  • Your average daily balance plunged below the required amount to keep your account free from fees.
  • You did not make adequate withdrawals from your account in a period of one month.
  • The account you had signed up for was withdrawn, and you were automatically enrolled in a different program, which now incurs fees.

The thing about Chime is, it does not charge you for any of the above-mentioned scenarios.

True to what we have already mentioned, Chime is fee-free. Perhaps, the only fee you will encounter when using your Chime savings, checking, or debit card account is when you wake a withdrawal using an ATM that is not part of their network.

Furthermore, Chime does not also charge you for foreign transactions, which means if you travel regularly in different parts of the world, you can use your Chime account without having to worry about transaction fees.


This time around, we are going to talk about signing up with Chime Bank.

Just like any other online banks, Chime is not perfect. Unfortunately, one of its imperfections has something to do with signing up.

Generally, signing up should not be complicated, however, it is not always instantaneous. We’ve seen reports from Chime members/clients who claim that they have not received their bank account card up to two weeks after they have signed up.

For some people, this can be quite inconvenient. But if you come to think about it, Chime is still a pretty good option.

The actual application process is not as complicated as you think. However, you may wind up waiting longer to take advantage of the account than you would like.

When signing up, you will have to prepare standard forms of identification. Again, generally, signing up is easy, as well as managing your Chime account. Everything is done through your smartphone only.


Our Chime review is not complete if we do not get into this — security features!

We are not just talking about a simple account online. We are talking about money, which is very essential. Thus, it is likely that as a user or member, you would want to ensure that you can fully trust the bank you are dealing with.

Good thing is, Chime Bank has the fundamental security credentials you would expect from a bank when it comes to security.

Chime is insured under FDIC, which should make you feel confident knowing that your hard-earned money is in good hands. Needless to say, you can set up either a checking or a savings account or both without anything to worry about.

Chime is a “mobile-only” bank, except that it does not function like a typical bank. Meaning, unlike traditional banks, if you encounter security problems, it is will most likely become difficult to resolve certain issues. Unfortunately, being an online bank, it does not have the same robust support structure that most traditional banks do.

So, if you are a security freak, make sure to take this into consideration before signing up or opening up an account with Chime or even with other online banks.


Apart from the fact that Chime does not charge fees, its mobile support and accessibility are also one of Chime Bank’s amazing features.

Since Chime is a mobile-only bank, it was structured around mobile support and accessibility. This allows you to access your account conveniently anytime, anywhere.

With Chime, keeping track of your money is effortless. Chime offers a straightforward experience that lets you do what you need to do without any hassle.


As a client or as a member, especially when we deal with anything mobile, it is important that we look into customer service and support. We believe that for a mobile bank to succeed, it has to have good customer service and support. After all, unlike traditional banks, we cannot go elsewhere to have our problems settled, right?

Unfortunately, we found a lot of Chime reviews from its users/members stating that the bank’s customer service and support staff might be lacking.

One example is when you encounter problems with your account, you do not have an option to talk to someone face-to-face. Everything is solved through phone conversations only.

Unlike other online banks, Chime Bank is not a large bank, which means, it does not have essential partnerships and is a credible operation.

But whether they are a big company or not, still, the level of their customer support staff is not up to the same standard as many traditional banking options have. To be honest, this is quite harming a user’s overall experience. Needless to say, this may make more people shy away from signing up.

Having said that, if you are the type who’s worried about encountering problems with your account, you may want to consider this before signing up.


Our Chime Bank review will not be complete without sharing with you some of the highlights and downsides of signing up with Chime Bank.

For your reference, here are some of the advantages and disadvantages that we found:


It’s free! – As we’ve said, the key feature of Chime is the fact that it is free of charges and fees. You do not have to worry about monthly fees.

It’s FDIC-insured. – Since Chime is insured by the FDIC, you are assured that your money is safe with them.

It does not have foreign transaction fees. – Chime does not also charge foreign transaction fees, which makes it ideal especially for people who travel to different countries on a regular basis.

It offers a simple direct deposit. – The bank makes it easier to get a direct deposit of your paycheck to your Chime account.

It has lots of ATMs. – Apart from the $2.50 out of network ATM charge, Chime does not charge you for anything else. However, given the fact that they do have lots of ATMs around, you will not have to deal with such a non-Chime ATM charge.


The interest rate is not ideal for savings. – Chime Bank offers a very low-interest rate on a savings account, which makes it challenging to use if you aim to increase your money.

Depositing cash is a challenge. – Another big disadvantage of Chime is that it will be hard for you to deposit cash. It lacks a physical banking location, thus, making it really challenging.

It does not have physical branches. – In relation to the aforementioned, Chime does not have physical branches. Everything is mobile/online, which makes it hard for you especially if you have concerns regarding your account.

Customer service is not impressive. – Another disadvantage, as we mentioned earlier, is Chime’s customer service support. Unfortunately, it’s not as good as you hoped it would be.


Chime is very promising, would you agree? Well, who doesn’t want free services, right? It’s nice knowing that they thought about the usual concerns of bank users/members. While it has its pros and cons, we have to say that their pros still overpower the cons.

What do you think?

To end this Chime review, we just want to say that after all the information we shared, in the end, we will let you decide whether or not Chime is a great option for you. We believe that a mobile bank or online bank’s impressiveness will always depend on the users themselves.

Investment Apps and Websites

Personal Capital vs Quicken vs Moneydance: Which Is Ideal For You?

For those serious in personal finance management, there are three names that have earned good reviews in this aspect. It is a battle between Personal Capital vs Quicken vs Moneydance – finding out which among these three choices is the best in this field.

Personal Capital vs Quicken vs Moneydance comparison review

Money is an integral part of our day-to-day lives. We cannot do the usual things we do or buy stuff we need, and pay the bills without money, right? However, some of us, if not most of us, find it hard to handle money. Yes, there are a few people who are really great at handling money, but more Americans, in particular, are not that good when it comes to budgeting.

According to the 2015 National Financial Capability Study (NFCS) that was released by FINRA Investor Education Foundation, it says that people continue to find the ability to balance monthly income and expenses challenging.

Furthermore, despite a more positive statistics when it comes to meeting expenses and overall financial satisfaction, the figures have not correlated better budgeting. In the same study, it says that two-fifths of American people or roughly 40% spend less than their income, while 38% spend just about equal to their earning. Meanwhile, 18% spend more than what they earn. Unfortunately, the numbers remained as it is ever since 2009.

In a recent study from a different entity, however, it has been found that young American people today are more cautious when it comes to their finances as compared to older Americans. Perhaps, it has something to do with being more financially informed given the easy access to finance-related information. Also, we thought factor is the advent of digital or internet-based personal finance management platforms like Personal Capital, Quicken, as well as Moneydance.

Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance are three of the most popular tools when it comes to personal finance management. Having said that, we are going to look deeper into each of these tools.

In particular, we are going to tackle the following:

  • A quick comparison between three platforms
  • Brief background of each personal finance management platform
  • Similarities and differences between the three
  • Notable features of each of these platforms
  • …and other relevant information that will help you in deciding which among all these is the best tool for you


As mentioned, Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance are three of the most popular personal finance management platforms there is today. These three have proven their worth when it comes to this aspect.

While all three of them are good, of course, there will always be something that will stand out.

So, before we go into details, allows us to share with you first a quick comparison between these three platforms. Through the below data alone, you will already have a glimpse of what platform will best suit your interests and preferences.

Budgeting Yes Yes Yes
Investment Monitoring Yes Yes Yes
Retirement Planning Yes Yes None
Bill Payment None Yes Yes
Manual Entries None Yes Yes
Bill Management None Yes Yes
Price Personal Finance Tool – Free; Paid Investment Management Service – Minimum of $100,000 $34.99 to $99.99 for each year’s subscription $49.99 Flat Cost
Customer Service Email Support Live Chat, Phone, and Community Forum-Based Support Developer’s Support Forum

While the above table may be sufficient for some, if you want to know more about Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance, continue reading down below for a more detailed review.


When deciding what personal finance management tool to use, it is important that you also look into the background of the platform. This will help you, even more, determine the most ideal tool for you.

Having said that, here is some essential information that you may want to know about Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance.


Personal Capital was launched back in 2011. Personal Capital is an investment management service platform that also provides a free personal finance dashboard.

Personal Capital comes with two elements — the personal financial aggregating and advisory services to manage your finances.

Between the two elements, we have to say that while the personal financial aggregator is great, Personal Capital really excels when it comes to tracking every aspect of your investments.

Furthermore, free online money tools are exemplary when it comes to helping you understand your investments. It breaks down your asset allocation, calculates your net worth, shows your portfolio performance by every account or across accounts, as well as provides you with a high-level overview of your cash flow on a per-category basis.

Basically, all you have to do is connect your financial accounts, and let Personal Capital take care of everything else for you.

If you want to know more about using Personal Capital, here’s a tutorial video from The Worth Project. You may watch the whole thing by clicking the play button below:


Quicken has been around for a long time now. In fact, a lot of people thought that Quicken is the original money management app. Well, it’s not far from reality as dating back to its history, it’s very first version came out in 1983. Yes, that’s way beyond before a lot of us had computers.

The nice thing about Quicken is, since its inception, it had continuous regular updates as well as releases to add features as well as to address user issues, which is precisely why the average tenure for Quicken users is ten years.

By the way, if you are familiar with Intuit, the current owner of both QuickBooks and Mint, they are the very same company that developed Quicken until they sold it to another company several years ago.

Quicken offers software for both PC and Mac users. However, a lot of Mac users complain about limited features plus glitches that make it less than stellar as compared to those using it through PC.

Quicken is subscription-based personal finance management too. Having said that, it means you will need to pay annually to be able to access it. Recently, Quicken has been switched to a cloud-based model.

If you are looking after an awesome budgeting tool, then, we have to say that Quicken is ideal for you. It comes with a ton of budgeting features, plus, it allows you to connect all your accounts and then, it automatically download balances and transaction details to your computer.

Unfortunately, unlike other personal finance management platforms, Quicken does not offer a free trial period. So, if you want to really know about the platform, you will have to pay to be able to download it. The good thing though is, it offers a 30-day unconditional money-back guarantee, which means if in case you are not happy with it, you can cancel your subscription and have your money back anytime.


Moneydance was created by Scotland-based company named, Infinite Kind, and has been around for more than 20 years already.

Since its inception, it has already gone through a series of updates and software releases to ensure that it provides its users with even more functional and comprehensive financial tracking and analysis.

Moneydance comes with a price tag, and it is available for Windows, Mac, and Linux versions, as well as iOS and Android mobile apps.

One important thing that you need to be aware of about Moneydance is that it is not cloud-based, which means, your data is stored on your server. Although, you can still link and sync your accounts just like other personal finance management platforms.

Unlike other personal finance management platforms, Moneydance is not subscription-based. You basically have to pay for a one-time fee only, and then have free access to the next updated version. You will also receive a discount on future software updates, which is optional. This means you can either avail the update or stick to what you have.


Perhaps by now you already have an idea about the similarities and differences of Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance. However, to be more specific, here are some of the major similarities between the three platforms:

Budgeting Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance offer provide tools to help make budgeting easier.
Investment Tracking Personal Capital, Quicken and Moneydance do all have the ability to track your investments across your accounts.
Online Synchronization Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance have the ability to sync with outside online accounts.


Now that you already have an idea of the major similarities of the three personal finance platforms, this time around, let us look into their major differences.

Bill Payment Both Quicken and Moneydance allows you to pay your bills. Meanwhile, Personal Capital does not offer such kind of option.
Retirement Planning Both Personal Capital and Quicken offer tools to help you plan for your retirement. Unfortunately, Moneydance does not offer such.
Mobile Apps On one hand, Personal Capital and Moneydance were built/created thinking about mobile-app uses. On the other hand, Quicken’s app not as efficient to use, at the same time, it lacks some features. In addition, you will still need to download the desktop software.
Multiple Currency Support Both Moneydance and Quicken offer multiple currency support, while Personal Capital deals only with U.S. dollars.
Customer Service Personal Capital can be reached through an email form, which is accessible once you are logged in on your account. Quicken offers live chat, phone, as well as community forum-based support. If you want a better customer service experience, you have that option but you have to pay $49.99 annually. Moneydance support comes through the developer’s support forum only.
Security Personal Capital uses bank-level security, while Quicken holds the user’s data locally. As with Moneydance, it is a desktop platform that also uses cloud sync for its mobile app.
Price Personal Capital: Free for the basic app; Wealth Management services range from 0.49% to 0.89% annuallyQuicken: $34.99 to $99.99Moneydance: $49.99


Apart from the above-mentioned major similarities and differences between Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance, we thought you may also be interested to check out below notable features of each of these platforms.


– Portfolio Performance

This feature is like a check-up on the asset allocation of your investment portfolio. Through this feature, the app gets to see where you have invested your money and helps in making sure that you are thoroughly optimizing your investments.

Through this feature, you get recommendations about various kinds of investments to boost up your portfolio’s long-term health.

– Retirement Fee Analyzer

Through the Retirement Fee Analyzer, you get to have an idea of how fees are affecting your overall investment.

In addition, Personal Capital provides you with tools that will help slide those fees up to and down by small percentage points. By that, you get to see how it will affect your retirement savings.

Apart from that, this feature also lets you adjust the following:

•             Earnings

•             Contributions

•             Projected retirement age

•             Employer matches

•             Additional investment fees

•             Annual growth

– Retirement Planner

Personal Capital lets you link your accounts on the app. Once done, the Retirement Planner feature automatically gets information from each of your connected accounts. It will then ask you regarding your projected savings information, as well as your current retirement savings, your age, and your planned retirement age.

Once you answered all questions, the planner analyzes your data, and then, it will tell you if you’re on track for retirement, and will also advise you to make necessary changes if needed. This feature also allows you to play different scenarios to have a glimpse of how much you need on a particular scenario.


– Budgeting

Quicken provides you with pre-set and customizable budgeting categories. It also allows you to set limits, get notifications when you overspend and edit if there is a need.

Furthermore, this Quicken lets you run reports and future forecasts using your budget information. Meanwhile, if you wish to have access to more than a monthly budget, you will then have to pay for the Deluxe or Premier plan.

– Investment Tracking

To be clear, Quicken Starter version does not include an investment tracking tool, however, Deluxe and Premier do have.

In particular, Deluxe and Premier plans allow you to do the following actions:

  • Tracking of investments and retirement accounts
  • Comparing buy-and-hold options to improve your portfolio analysis
  • Comparing your returns to market averages
  • Accessing of Morningstar’s Portfolio X-ray tool to evaluate your investments
  • Seeing your cost basis and create tax reports

– Debt Reduction Plan

Currently, this feature is only available on their PC version. It’s a great feature especially if you need help in paying off your debt.

Basically, you can connect all your debts so Quicken can access your interest rates as well as balances, and then through this feature, Quicken will help you pay it all as soon as possible.


– Graphing and Reports

Moneydance allows you to easily create an individual graph as well as reports for different aspects of your finances, which include:

  • Checking account balance
  • Currency history
  • Income and expenses
  • Asset allocation
  • Networth

You get to choose the type of transaction, date range, as well as any other additional settings you want to include.

– Developer’s Resources

For advanced users, Moneydance provides its users with a developer’s kit that allows you to create your very own extensions. This free kit comes with sample code, necessary libraries, and an ANT build file. This also entitles you access to Moneydance’s Extension Development support forum.

– Foreign Transactions

Unlike the other platforms, Moneydance supports multiple currencies. It also makes automatic conversions.


To be brutally honest, we cannot find a single, specific winner between Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance. We thought one can decide on which is the best or ideal choice based on certain criteria, like:

  • If you are someone who is wary about cost, then Personal Capital wins without a doubt. This platform is free to use and have the strongest investment analysis tools.
  • If you are more after on the performance and do not mind spending, we have to say it is a battle between Quicken and Moneydance. Quicken is better at giving a well-rounded look at your finances. Meanwhile, Moneydance gives you everything you need for one price only.
  • If you are more into tracking investments, then this has to be Personal Capital, because that is where this tool really excel.
  • Meanwhile, if you want to take control of your data and keep everything on your local computer, the best choice is Quicken.


Personal Capital, Quicken, and Moneydance are all great personal finance platforms. They all offer amazing jobs when it comes to helping you handle your money better.

As we have mentioned above, it’s hard to choose just one of the three. Each of them has their respective unique features. Needless to say, each platform, we believe, is well-thought-of based on their target market.

Did you find ideal personal finance management yet based on your needs and preferences?

If you are still unsure, remember this, while we are battling off Personal Capital vs Quicken vs Moneydance, at the end of the day, if you come to think of it, they all are great platforms with equally the same goal – that is to help their users have a better personal finance journey.

Investment Apps and Websites

Mint Vs YNAB: Finding Out The Best Budgeting Tool For You

While there are so many contrasts made between Mint vs YNAB, one thing’s for sure, both of them offer budgeting solutions to those who find it hard to do or are just finding their way towards personal finance management. Thank Mint and You Need a Budget (YNAB), handling finances now is made easier.

Mint vs YNAB best personal finance tool

Personal finance management or budgeting is not an easy thing especially for people who are not used to it. While others feel like it’s not important, more and more people are becoming warier when it comes to their money – especially the younger generation.

Well, we cannot blame them. Times have changed. Today, the future is even more uncertain, thus, it is better to be prepared than sorry.

Many studies have shown that American people are not good when it comes to budgeting and personal finance management

In fact, according to the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) 2018 Consumer Financial Literacy Survey, “one in four Americans admit they do not pay their bills on time and nearly one in ten (eight percent) now have debts in collection, both showing a slight increase from 2017“. You see, this only shows how essential personal financial literacy is in the country. If people know how to properly manage their money, this may not exist.

But as we have mentioned a while ago, times have changed. Thanks to technological advancements, more and more people are becoming financially responsible – with emphasis on the young generation because studies show that they are more financially literate than older people.

Anyway, with the existence of smartphones, and the emerging digital technology and the internet, personal finance management solutions are in place. In fact, according to an article published by Bankrate, 63% of smartphone users (based on the survey they have conducted) in the country have at least one financial app on their phones.

Among these users, 55% of them have at least one full-service banking app, 40% have at least one peer-to-peer payments app, 17% have at least one stand-alone budgeting app, and another 17% have at least one stand-alone investing app.

Now, there are so many budgeting apps and personal finance management platforms out there – Mint and YNAB included. These two are actually among the popular ones. Precisely why we are going to make a comparison between Mint vs YNAB.

In this comparison review, to be specific, we are going to tackle the following:

  • Quick comparison highlighting major features that people usually look for in a budgeting or personal finance platform
  • Brief background of the two platforms
  • Similarities of Mint and YNAB
  • Differences between Mint and YNAB
  • Cost
  • Educational references
  • Security features of both Mint and YNAB
  • …and of course, our final verdict about which among the two is better.


Before we go into more specific details, as well as choose the better option between Mint and YNAB, here’s a quick comparison first between the two personal finance software. The below table will quickly show you how the two differ from one another, at the same time, it will show their commonality.

Budgeting Yes Yes
Investment Monitoring Yes Yes
Retirement Planning None None
Bill Payment None None
Bill Management Yes Yes
Manual Entries Yes Yes
Tax Reporting Yes None
Reconcile Transactions None Yes
Custom Categories Yes Yes
Import QFX, QIF Files None Yes
Two-Factor Authentication Yes None
Currency Support US/Canada US
Fee FREE $5 monthly or $50 annually (First 34 days is free.)
Customer Service Email or Chat Support Email Support
Education Online training videos and tutorials are available Comprehensive training videos and tutorials are available

Based on the above table we presented, do you already have your bet? Well, we thought it is better for you to check a more detailed comparison to be enlightened and to be able to choose the perfect personal finance and budgeting app for you – according to what you need and your preferences as a user as well.


While the specifics are important when it comes to making decisions, it is also vital to know where these platforms are from or a little of their history. Thus, here’s a brief backgrounder on Mint and YNAB.


Mint has been existing since 2006, and as of today, it has already more than 10 million users. Mint is an online personal finance service tool that can be used for free. It is likened to Quicken, which is also a popular personal finance and budgeting platform, sans any installation of software. Mint is accessible using either a browser or a mobile device.

Although Mint was launched in 2006, in 2009, it was acquired by the famous finance software company, Intuit. Intuit is the owner of Quicken, which was eventually sold.

When it comes to functionality, Mint functions around the premise that to be able to see where you are financial, you have to put everything in one place. Thus, to make the most out of Mint, you better link all your finance-related accounts like bank accounts, loans, investments, credit card accounts, etc. Don’t worry, adding all your accounts was made simple and manageable by Mint. Based on our experience, it was pretty seamless.

What is nice about the platform is that ones you are done downloading and syncing your accounts or transactions, the software will automatically separate each of them into predefined categories.

Although you can create and add your own subcategories, Mint does not allow modification of top-level categories.

Basically, Mint allows you to do the following:

  • Track your spending
  • Set reminders for your bills and payments
  • Build a budget based on your preference
  • See your credit score standing
  • See what’s happing with your investments

With all of these functionalities, it makes Mint ideal for people who want to put everything in one place. It’s a great option for those who want everything organized in just one app or platform.

Mint can be used free of charge.


You Need a Budget or better known as YNAB is an application that allows its users to take advantage of monitoring your income and expenses, at the same time, allows you to learn more about personal finance by providing instructional support, which makes it ideal for those who are just starting out their personal finance management journey or wanted to continue learning about this aspect.

Unlike Mint, YNAB is not free for use. Yes, it comes with a price tag.

Also, compared to Mint, which is relatively new in this area, YNAB has actually been around for quite a long time now. However, it was only recently when YNAB earned users’ recognition being one of the best budgeting tools out there.

YNAB has changed over the years. In fact, it’s the last version, which was the YNAB 4, which was a desktop-based application. The latest edition was rebuilt from scratch. If then, everything has to be done manually, today, all you need to do is click the “Import” button at the top of your account. The platform safely and securely connects to your bank through a third-party provider and right there and then, imports all your transactions.

If you are looking at opting for YNAB over Mint, it just right that you should be aware that YNAB’s budgeting strategy is built on three rules, which were designed to help you live within your means, save money, get out of debt, and stop living on a paycheck to paycheck basis. For your reference, here are YNAB’s three rules:

– Rule 1: Give Every Dollar A Job

This basically means every dollar you have must be allocated to a particular purpose until you are left with nothing — if you are familiar with zero-based budgeting that basically is it.

– Rule 2: Embrace Your True Expenses

This allows you to set your budget goals to be able to prepare for your expenses on a monthly basis, which includes big expenses like parties, insurance premiums, as well as vacations.

– Rule 3: Roll with the Punches

This refers to the flexibility of your money — make sure to make adjustments for overspending in particular categories in some months, but making sure you are on track with your long-term financial goals.

Before proceeding to our very own comparison review between Mint and YNAB, here’s an insightful comparison by You Need A Budget itself. Click the play button to watch the entirety of the video:


While Mint and YNAB have their share of differences, the two personal finance platforms do have something in common as well – which was actually evident in the table we presented to you earlier.

So, just so you know, here are some of the most evident similarity of Mint and YNAB:

Budgeting Both Mint and YNAB provide a program that allows you to know exactly where you are spending your money in an easy-to-understand graphical presentation.
Online Synchronization Both Mint and YNAB let you link your accounts (bank, credit cards, loans, etc.) as well as import transactions automatically, synchronizing your entire financial picture in just one place.
Device Compatibility Should you make any changes on any device (e.g. smartphone, desktop, tablet, laptop), both Mint and YNAB automatically carry over the changes made to other devices you’re using.
Mobile App Both Mint YNAB offer smartphone support via iOS and Android.


Having presented some of the major similarities between Mint and YNAB, this time around, let’s look into what makes these two platforms differ from one another.

Let us start off with MINT:

Cost/Fees While Mint is free for use, using YNAB will cost you a few bucks.
Weekly Email Summaries Mint provides information on what has happened to your finances for the week that was.
Alerts via email or SMS Mint app lets you know should you have pending bills and/or fees. It will also suggest different ways for you to be able to save money, particularly on transaction fees.
Investment Tracking Mint’s investment tracking feature is ideal for those who are a buy-and-hold type instead of an active investor.
Credit Score Tracking Mint lets you see and monitor your current credit score standing, as well as your payment history, account usages, and errors.
Apple Watch If you own an Apple Watch, lucky for you as Mint is accessible through it as well.
Net Worth Report Mint has the capability to calculate your current net worth. It also displays the figure obviously at the top of your account to keep you reminded.

Meanwhile, here’s what makes YNAB different from Mint:

Cost/Fees To be able to take advantage of the YNAB app, and enjoy its services, you will have to either pay $5 monthly or $50 annually. However, it gives a 34-day free trial period so you get to decide whether or not it works for you.
The Inspector This is a special feature that is unique to YNAB. This lets you see summarized information regarding your budget. At the same time, it also provides you with quick options. This feature also lets you know if you have budgeted enough for an upcoming expense or not.
Budgeting Services YNAB is all about budgeting. They focused on this alone, which is why they have mastered the craft.
Innovations As compared to Mint, YNAB is not a static web platform kind of thing. In fact, there are already four versions of YNAB out there, and nothing’s the same. The continuous innovation and evolution only indicated that they are responsive to customer suggestions and concerns.
Category Codes YNAB uses color codes, which is ideal for users to know a category’s current fund standing. For instance, if a category is colored yellow, it means it is unfunded, while a red color will appear if you have overspent.
Customer Service Compared to Mint, YNAB has a better customer service response, which should be the case given the fact that the app is not free.

The above-mentioned aspects of each app are only some rather the most notable differences between Mint and YNAB. This hopefully gives you an idea about which is indeed ideal for you as a user, based on your needs and preferences.


Now that we already know what both Mint and YNAB are all about, what their similarities and differences are, plus a few more relevant information about the two platforms, let’s talk about pricing.

To be honest, if we are going to judge the two personal finance and budgeting platforms based on cost, we have to say that automatically, without a doubt, Mint will win the battle.

As we have mentioned, Mint can be used by anyone at any time for free, while YNAB comes with a cost. YNAB charges $5 per month or $50 per year. However, it gives a first 34 days free trial so you can test it out, and gauge whether or not you’re okay with it.

Now, probably you are wondering, how then Mint earns from the app if they are giving its services for free? Well, the answer to that question is – they have a lot of other means to earn money, which include the following:

  • Mint recommends different financial services from which they earn a referral fee.
  • Mint has banner ads in different parts of their website. Ads provide them with revenue.
  • Mint offers premium access to your credit report, which costs very little.
  • Mint sells collective financial data to different providers. (Don’t worry the data collected are done anonymously so you are ensured your personal data or identification is protected.)


Both Mint and YNAB offer educational references — anything related to personal finance as well as budgeting. Both Mint and YNAB do publish their respective blogs namely, MintLife and The YNAB Blog.

More so, both also provides educational articles to help you improve your personal finance management skills. In addition, both also offer training videos as well as tutorials, which makes learning about personal finance quick and easy.

However, comparing what both have to offer, we have to say that YNAB’s training is more comprehensive as compared to Mint, which is expected because after all, they are a paid service provider.


Like any other online app or website that requires your personal information, both Mint and YNAB ensures that your personal and financial data are well-protected and are far from being compromised.

With Mint, below are some of their key site security measures:

Two-Factor Authentication – Apart from your password, Mint will not let you access your account without validating the device that you are using. Validation may be done either through email or through SMS.

Touch ID Sensor (For iOS Users) – This feature reads your fingerprint to be able to unlock your phone, which also provides you quick access to your Mint app.

Meanwhile, here are some of YNAB’s key site security measures:

Data Encryption – This ensures that your data will not be read by anyone even if your hard drives are stolen.

One-way Salted and Hashed Passwords – It uses multiple iterations of a key derivative function for passwords, which makes it hard for hackers to compromise an account.

In addition, YNAB’s staff members are not given any access to customer data unless there is a request sent by either the customer or as required by the law. Also, once you terminate or delete your account, your data is automatically wiped clean from YNAB’s database.


Both Mint and YNAB offer amazing features that are really helpful when it comes to personal finance management and budgeting. To be honest, it’s hard to tell whether Mint is better than YNAB or the other way around.

It is perhaps safe to say that the best between the two will depend on you, the user.

While Mint may win because it’s free, YNAB does also has the chance especially when it comes to their very responsive customer service, as well as their glitch-free synchronization.

You see, it’s really hard to decipher the best between the two. So, we’d rather leave it to you.


It’s nice knowing that today people have various options and tools when it comes to personal finance management and budgeting. With so many options around, this hopefully helps people become even more interested in becoming better in handling money.

Anyway, based on the data and information we presented, which between Mint and YNAB wins for you? Have you decided as well or you are still thinking about it?

To end, we just have to say that comparing Mint vs YNAB was a bliss. You know why? Because both offer essential services, and both are amazing money tools. At the end of the day, it’s really just about finding what suits you best.

Investment Apps and Websites

Quicken Vs Mint: Which One Is The Best Budgeting Tool For You?

There are plenty of really good budgeting tools out there, but there are two names that are really battling off of becoming the “best” in this industry. It is a battle between Quicken vs Mint.

Quicken vs Mint comparison review

The United States is known for its prosperity economically. Our country is considered as one if not the most powerful in the world. For some nations, they look up to the United States. Their people even look up to the Americans. They have this impression that when you are living in the U.S., you are well-off.

While it may true for some, in reality, there are still a lot of Americans who do not find themselves as well-off. More so, a lot of Americans struggle when it comes to their personal finances.

Yes, that’s true! In fact, there are a lot of reports supporting this. For one, according to an article published by the U.S. News, it says that Americans are not good when it comes to saving for retirement or setting aside money for emergency purposes — which is why there are so many American people who live in debt.

Meanwhile, in a report published by PR Newswire, it says that there were only a few American people who budgeted in 2019. Surprisingly though, in the same article, based on a survey conducted by, it was found that young people do like budgeting than older people. Fifty percent (aged 22 and below) of the total survey respondents use a budget.

We thought that the reason why younger people like budgeting more than older ones is because of the rise of budgeting apps. We all know that young people are more into anything digital. They love the internet. They love technology. Whatever that makes life more comfortable and easy, they’re into it.

Don’t get us wrong there is totally nothing wrong with that. It’s actually a good thing because as you can see, they become more responsible.

Anyway, having said that, we are going to talk about two of the most popular budgeting tools today – Quicken and Mint. We are going to look into what these two apps have in common, and also, what makes them unique from one another. At the end of this, we hope we get to find out which one is better when it comes to overall performance.


Before we get into details, here’s a quick comparison between the two apps first:

Budgeting Yes Yes
Investment Monitoring Yes Yes
Bill Payment Yes None
Bill Management Yes Yes
Retirement Planning Yes None
Manual Entries Yes Yes

From the table above alone, you should already have an idea of which among the two is best for you based on your needs and personal preferences.

But of course, we will not stop there. Let’s proceed to a more detailed comparison review between these two well-known budgeting tools.

Before we start with our detailed comparison and review on Quicken and Mint, here’s a helpful review is done by Focused Spender. To watch her insights on both Quicken and Mint, just click the play button below:


This time around, let’s look into what Quicken and Mint are all about. It is important that as a user you fully understand what the tool is all about – including a little history about it. This way, you can better gauge whether or not Quicken or Mint is ideal for you.


Quicken is one of the most popular names in budgeting software since it was launched in 1983. Quicken is tagged as the “granddaddy” of personal finance software. Back in the days, it is a known desktop application that anyone can easily install locally on their Windows or Macintosh computer.

But as we all know, times have already changed. Thus, Quicken has changed as well. From what it was before, it has grown to have multiple versions of its application. From a desktop application on Windows and Mac to what it is today — an app for the iPhone, iPad, and Android. What’s nice about it is — Quicken’s desktop software can be sync up with their mobile app, which makes personal finance management even more manageable.

Quicken offers a number of features. More so, the app itself is aimed to help you keep track of your money, pay your bills, as well as set and keep track of your weekly or monthly budget. Apart from these, the Quicken app also allows you to manage your investments, and to track the value of your most valuable asset — your home.

Before we proceed to specifics, below are some of the things you can expect from Quicken:

  • Strong budgeting software that is ready for basic users as well as for power budgeters.
  • Investment tracking system
  • Syncing capabilities with your bank accounts and bills
  • Net worth tool
  • Bill-tracking and reminders
  • Visuals that are very simple and easy to use
  • Debt reduction plan (a super cool feature, however, it is only available on the PC desktop version as of the moment)
  • A cost of anywhere from $35.99 to $74.99 per year (but they are currently offering a 40% discount for new users)
  • Desktop, web, and mobile options


Mint has always been on top of the list of budgeting apps as well as personal finance tools. This is not surprising though given the fact that Mint offers a broad and clear overview of its users’ finances.

Mint was launched in 2006 but was eventually acquired by Intuit in the year 2009. It is a free online-only personal finance app. It is only accessible through web browsers, or through its mobile app, which is available both for Android and iOS users. Mint is an all cloud-based service provider.

What makes Mint standout from other budgeting apps and personal finance tools is its ability to incorporate all your financial accounts such as a bank, investment, loans, as well as credit cards all in one place. More so, it provides you with a big picture view of your whole financial situation.

Initially, you are allowed to add your accounts — regardless of how many accounts you have. Don’t worry as the entire process is easy. Once you are done downloading and syncing all your transactions, Mint will automatically separate them into predefined categories. Yes, Mint does the work for you.

Unfortunately, you are not allowed to modify the top-level categories. However, you can create and add your own subcategories.

To simply put it, here are some of the things Mint offers its users:

  • Budgets
  • Syncing capabilities
  • Allows you to see your net worth
  • Bill-tracking and reminders capabilities
  • Credit scores
  • 100% Free to use


Although Quicken and Mint are two different things, they do have some similarities. Some of their common features are:

Budgeting Capability Quicken and Mint provide a program that allows you to know exactly where you are spending your money in an easy-to-understand, graphical presentation.
Direct Import/Synchronization Quicken and Mint let you link your financial accounts (e.g. bank, credit cards, loans, etc.). Both tools also allow you to import transactions automatically, and synchronize your entire financial picture in one place.
Multi-Device Capability Quicken and Mint allow you to make changes to your account on any device (smartphone, desktop, tablet, laptop) and the changes will be automatically carried over to other devices you are using.
Credit Report Monitoring Mint and Quicken allow you to monitor your credit score.
Weekly Email Summaries Quicken and Mint allow you to see what has happened in the past week with your finances.
Mobile App Quicken and Mint are available for both Apple iOS and Google Android users.


Now, let’s move on to what both Quicken and Mint has to offer to its users. Let us talk a look at some notable features between Quicken and Mint:


One of the major strengths of Quicken is that it is one of the most comprehensive personal finance app available today. More so, it stores your information on your own computer instead of storing it on Quicken itself or onto the cloud, which is more common these days.

Quicken does have four different packages available, each with its own services. Some of the major services include:

– Tracking the Market Value of Your Home

By simply entering your home address, Quicken will regularly update the estimated market value of your home. This feature is available on Quicken’s Premier and Home and Business plans.

– Bill Pay

Quicken allows you to pay bills directly from any checking account that you have inputted on the platform. Like the above feature, this is also available on their Premier and Home and Business plans.

– TurboTax Tie-in

Quicken allows you to export data directly into TurboTax for tax preparation purposes.

– Reconcile Bank Statements

Quicken allows you to look into your recorded transactions against your current bank statement.

– The Inspector

This allows you to see a summary of information about your budget, and provide you with quick options. It will also allow you to see if you have budgeted enough for an expense or not.

– Investment Features

In Quicken’s Premier and Home and Business plans, you can take advantage of the following:

  • Track loans, investments, as well as retirement accounts
  • Evaluate investments using Morningstar’s Portfolio X-ray tool
  • Understand how your returns compare to market averages
  • Track investment cost basis as well as generate Schedule D tax reports
  • Compare buy-and-hold options with improved portfolio analysis
  • Create better buy/sell decisions with market comparisons

– Business & Property Management Features

You will get to enjoy below features that are exclusive to Quicken Home & Business edition:

  • Categorize and separate personal and business expenses
  • Keep track your business profit loss and tax deductions
  • Manage lease terms, rental rates, and security deposits
  • Track outstanding and paid rents
  • Add payment links directly to invoices
  • Run Schedules C and E reports streamlining tax time
  • Generate and email custom invoices and estimates
  • Save rental documents directly to the Quicken app


As mentioned earlier, Mint is a popular personal finance platform and budgeting app as it brings all your financial records in just one platform. With Mint, you can link various financial accounts. Also, every time you visit the site, the system automatically updates the information.

Some of the interesting features of Mint include:

– Investment Tracking

Mint allows you to include taxable brokerage accounts, mutual funds, IRAs and 401(k) accounts — all of these in one place. More so, you can compare your own account performance to different market benchmarks, and see for yourself how you are doing.

Mint also has a fee analyzer service that allows you to see fees being paid to investment advisors, brokerages and even 401(k) providers.

– Bills Tracking

Mint enables you to keep your bills organized in just one place. The app indicates both the due date and the amount to be paid, and also allows you to get bill reminders to ensure you won’t miss any of your bill obligation.

– Mint Find Savings

This feature enables you to find better deals on various service providers. This feature helps you find better deals with bank accounts, credit cards, brokerages, loans, as well as retirement plans, and insurance.

– Net Worth Report

This feature allows you to see your calculated net worth and displays this at the top of your account to stay informed.

– Apple Watch

For those using Apple Watch, Mint is available in there. Yes, you can check your financial status through the watch.


Some of us, our primary factor in choosing a budgeting app or a personal finance platform is — cost. If so, then this has to be very easy to decide on.

Quicken and Mint are totally opposite in this matter. While Mint can be used for free (without hidden fees), Quicken retails at $34.99 to $99.99 (although Quicken offers promotions, which you can check on their site).

Perhaps you are wondering how then Mint makes money if they offer their service for free. Well, there are various ways wherein they get to make money. This includes the following:

  • They offer “ways to save” by recommending different financial services wherein they get a referral fee.
  • They offer premium access to your credit report for a very little fee.
  • They do have banner ads located in different parts on their website.
  • They sell aggregate financial data to different providers.

Meanwhile, Quicken offers four different plans to choose from. These are:

  • Starter Plan – $34.99 per year
  • Deluxe Plan – $44.99 (originally at $49.99) per year
  • Premier Plan – $67.49 (originally at $74.99) per year
  • Home and Business Plan – $89.99 (originally at $99.99) per year.

Quicken offers a 30-day money-back guarantee if in case you are not satisfied with their product. You are also allowed to change the plan any time you want to.


With Quicken, they offer a live chat through My Pure Cloud, which is an app. Through it, you can get in touch with customer service representatives regarding any concerns. Unfortunately, Quicken does not offer phone support.

Quicken does have an FAQ page, Common Help Topics page (under the Learn & Support tab), and the Quicken Community wherein you can ask of find answer to some app-related concern.

In addition, Quicken also provides a Money Management Tips page, which offers personal finance-related topics like how to stop living from paycheck-to-paycheck, teaching your children how to save and spend wisely, how to save money, and many more.

Meanwhile, Mint offers customer service via email or live chat, which is available seven days a week from 5 in the morning until 9 in the evening.

Furthermore, “Mint Help” is also available with a limited number of topics, which are related to the operation of the Mint app.

Unlike Quicken, Mint does not offer various educational resources.


As users, one of our major concerns when using digital platforms is security. All the more in this case when we are divulging not just personal but financial details as well.

Having said that, we looked into both Quicken and Mint’s security details. Here’s what we found:


Through the below processes, Quicken is able to protect your personal and financial information:

  • Use of 256-bit encryption
  • Firewall-protected servers in its data center
  • Password issued by your financial institution that has to be entered every time you connect to the Internet
  • Integrity checks, which helps ensure that a message received is not changed after it leaves the sender
  • Offers an option to password protect your data files
  • Information is transmitted using an encrypted, secure socket layer (SSL) technology


Meanwhile, Mint follows below security measures:

  • Multi-factor authentication that requires special security questions or code supplied either via email or text
  • Security screenings using VeriSign, which helps ensure security for the transfer of sensitive data
  • Information in a read-only fashion
  • Four-digit code to look into your information
  • Offers an option to set up your account with TouchID


Both Quicken and Mint offer amazing features. Based on what we have shared with you, the two apps differ a lot when it comes to pricing or cost.

Thus, if you are looking for a no-frills, and free budgeting app, we got to say Mint wins.

However, if you are after a personal finance app or budgeting app that includes investing activities, then, Quicken is the best option.

As you can see, at the end of the day, the better one between the two will depend on you.


As we have mentioned, both Quicken and Mint have notable features. Thus, it is so hard to choose between the two.

Basically, you just have to look into your needs and preferences, and based your decision in there. Because we have to say that…

The winner between Quicken vs Mint will be determined based not on what works for us or the majority, but what will work for you according to your needs, preferences, and of course, your financial goals.

Investment Apps and Websites

Mint Vs Personal Capital Vs YNAB: The Best Personal Finance Tool For You

Finding out the best between Mint vs Personal Capital vs YNAB is no easy feat. Each of these personal finance tools has their respective highlights and downsides. Thus, the question has to be which one is ideal for you?

Mint vs Personal Capital vs YNAB comparison review

We all are different from one another. That’s true, right? It also includes being unique when it comes to handling our finances. Some of us are experts in budgeting and saving money, while others find it difficult to handle their money.

Whether you belong on the former or the latter, one thing’s for sure, we all need – in one way or another – a personal finance tool or platform to ensure we are able to dispense our money correctly, rather, according to our preference.

Meanwhile, in an article published by CNN Money, it says that unfortunately, Americans are not great savers. In fact, almost 70% of American people do not even have at least $1,000 in the bank! It’s quite ironic that while our country is tagged as one of the most powerful in the world, more so, what other people call as the “Land of Milk and Honey,” as well as the “Land of Opportunities,” yet a lot of our people are not money-savers. A lot of us are not good at handling money. Sad, but true.

Furthermore, based on a study conducted by the U.S. Bank, there are only 41% (yes, not even half) of Americans who use a budget even if budgeting is known to be one of the most effective ways to keep track or to manage our finances.

If we are going to rely on these data, this only means that there is so much work to be done. Financial literacy is indeed a serious topic. But, there is nothing to worry about because in reality, being financially literate is not as challenging as you think.

To be honest, all you need is a strong will to do budgeting.

Here’s a very amazing fact. In this day and age, we are lucky enough to have plenty of personal finance tools such as Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB. These tools are efficient ways to help us change our attitude towards budgeting, and towards money. These are platforms that we can use to be more responsible with our personal finances.

Having said that, we are going to dissect what Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB have to offer. Hopefully, by the end of this, we are able to help you choose the best personal finance tool for you.

But first —


Some people think that budgeting money is irrelevant. But in reality, budgeting can do so much especially when we have financial goals that we want to achieve. But of course, as they say, there is always an exemption to the rule — that is if you are someone who earns a lot of money but does have very little spending. If you are just like that, then, you are one of the very few lucky ones.

Budgeting basically refers to the act of managing your money — expenses, savings, investments, etc.

Budgeting helps you become well-aware of how much you are spending on things, at the same time, it gives you the opportunity to identify items to cut back. Budgeting helps you see the real numbers, where your money is going, and at the same time, you are able to determine ways to free up cash to be able to increase your savings.

You see, budgeting is not just about writing down your expenses and all, it does really work if you will make it work for you.

Anyway, let’s proceed on battling off three of the most popular personal finance tools available today – Mint vs Personal Capital vs YNAB.


Before we go into specifics, take a look first this table below and see for yourself some of the similarities and differences between Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB:

Budgeting Yes Yes Yes
Investment Monitoring Yes Yes Yes
Bill Tracking Yes None None
Goal Setting Yes None Yes
Retirement Planner None Yes None
Retirement Fee Analyzer None Yes None
Portfolio Performance None Yes None
Manual Entries None Yes Yes
Promotions None FREE FREE for first two months
Price $0.00, 0.00, free/month $0.00/month $6.99, 6.99, month/month
Trial Period None 34 days None
Two-Factor Authentication Yes None None
Customer Service Email only Phone: 24/7; Email Email only

In the table alone, you will already know what personal finance tool is perfect for you – that is, of course, if you know exactly what it is that you need based on your financial goals.


While the above table can be helpful in choosing the right personal finance goals for you, it allows us to share with you a brief backgrounder of Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB. This will help you appreciate more what these tools have to offer.


Mint holds the record as the “original budgeting app”. It was founded in 2006, however, in 2009, it was purchased by Intuit, the company that also produced TurboTax and QuickBooks, both are very popular finance tools.

To date, Mint boasts its more than 10 million users, which actually is a piece of evidence as to why Mint is tagged as one of the most well-known personal finance tools today.

Mint is 100% free to use — yes, we said it’s free. In addition, there are also no upgrades and/or additional services to pay for.

Apart from the fact that it is free for use, Mint has become known also for its budgeting features. Mint allows you to connect the app to your bank, credit cards, as well as other financial accounts. It automatically categorizes your purchases into specific budget categories based on your preference.

In addition, the app also automatically track financial goals, which makes it ideal for those who really want to focus on achieving their financial goals like paying off debt or down payment savings.

Basically, Mint aims to give its users a full financial picture, and it does by helping you with the following:

  • Goal setting
  • Budgeting
  • Bill-tracking
  • List of your assets and liabilities
  • Free updated credit scores
  • A broad overview of your investments

By the way, once all your accounts are linked, you get to see everything on your dashboard. Thus, it makes logging in easier and it also makes checking your financial situation easier.


Personal Capital is an investment company that was founded in 2009. Since then, its users have grown to over two million people this day. Personal Capital takes pride in having more than $10 billion of assets under management through the company’s paid wealth management services.

Personal Capital allows you to connect your financial accounts to automatically download, at the same time, categorize the user’s transactions.

Just like Mint, Personal Capital is free to use — regardless if you subscribe to the investment management service or not.

Personal Finance’s detailed focus on investment is honestly quite impressive.

Unlike other personal finance tools that focus on budgeting, Personal Capital focuses on the user’s cash flow, which makes it ideal for people who want a high-level view of their income as well as their spending instead of detailed budgets.

Another thing that we like about Personal Capital is that it does not have ads like other personal finance apps. However, if you have investable assets amounting to $100,000 or more, you may be encouraged to buy Personal Capital’s investment management service.

Before moving on to the next personal finance app, know more about Personal Capital and Mint through this very insightful review made by Social Nope. Watch the whole thing by clicking the play button below:


You Need A Budget or popularly known as YNAB is another commonly used personal finance tool especially for people who wanted an alternative to Mint. YNAB encourages its users to focus on budgeting with less emphasis on other parts of personal finance.

The tool offers various features, which include billing, payment, and planning tools. These tools help encourage the user’s financial stability, as well as in paying off debt.

YNAB uses the zero-based budget philosophy, which means every dollar is assigned to a particular job, and then you get detailed control over every transaction.

Unlike Mint and Personal Capital, YNAB is not free. YNAB charges its users $6.99 per month or $83.99 annually. But the good thing about it being paid is that you do not see or encounter any ads like you do when you use Mint, and it does not sell you anything like what Personal Capital does.

YNAB app is ideal for users who want or need detailed budget controls, needless to say, to those who do not mind spending for a personal finance app. The app makes you responsible for your money, and also, it puts you deep into the whole budgeting process.

Unlike other apps, setting up and getting started with YNAB may get a little complicated. However, once you get familiarized with the system, everything should be good.


This time around, let’s look into what Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB do have in common. Check out the table below:

Budgeting Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB offer at least one budgeting tool.
Investment Tracking Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB can help you stay on topmost of your investments.
Mobile Apps Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB are available through the mobile app.
Synchronization Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB allow you to sync them with your outside accounts.

All three — Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB – do offer various features, but it’s nice knowing that they do have something similar to one another (and they are the ones mentioned above).


While Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB do have some things in common, it is not surprising that they do have differences as well. After all, all three of them are uniquely made.

Here are some of the major differences of Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB:

Pricing Mint and Personal Capital are free for use. Meanwhile, YNAB charges users $6.99 every month.
Credit Score Monitoring Among the three, only Mint does have a credit score monitoring feature.
Investment Management Among the three apps, Personal Capital is the only one that allows you to manage your investments for a fee.
Bill Management Both Mint and YNAB offer bill management tools. Unfortunately, Personal Capital does not.

In the table above alone, you should have an idea already what among the three is ideal for you – depending on your needs when it comes to your personal finance management.


After tackling the similarities and differences between Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB, this time around, we are going to look into some of the notable features offers by each of these popular apps.


 – Bill-Tracking

What we like about Mint is that it helps you keep track when your bills are due, which is very helpful in ensuring that you get to pay them on time, and never miss a payment.

Through its Bill-Tracking feature, Mint allows you to:

  • Set up a bill by linking it up to an existing account, then entering an offline bill, or other payments.
  • You have to name, categorize, and set a due date, as well as the amount due if possible.
  • A notification will be sent through the app once the due date is coming close.
  • A notification will also be sent if your funding source is running low, or if there are overdraft charges, as well as suspicious activity in your account.

– Free Credit Score

We all know that credit score is very important in one’s overall financial health. What’s nice about this feature is that Mint updated your credit score every after a few months. Mint sends you your credit score, as well as your credit report so you get to see what’s helping or hurting your score.

– Goal Setting

Mint allows you to set any number of financial goals either for yourself or for your family. More so, Mint will help you create a plan to help you achieve your goals.

What’s nice also about this feature is that it breaks down your goals by how much you need to save on a monthly basis, and it shows you your progress through the app.


– Portfolio Performance

This is basically a check-up on the asset allocation of the user’s investment portfolio. The app looks into where you have invested your money. By doing so, it helps makes sure that you are optimizing your investments.

Through this feature, Personal Capital recommends a mixture of investments to shore up your portfolio’s long-term health.

– Retirement Fee Analyzer

Retirement accounts such as 401(k) usually come with huge fees. With Personal Capital’s Retirement Fee Analyzer, you get to see how fees affect your overall investment.

More so, Personal Capital offers tools to help slide those fees up to and down by tiny percentage points for you to see how it impacts your retirement savings.

Furthermore, this feature also allows you to adjust the following:

  • Earnings
  • Contributions
  • Employer matches
  • Additional investment fees
  • Annual growth
  • Projected retirement age

– Retirement Planner

Once you are done linking your accounts on the Personal Capital app, the Retirement Planner feature automatically pulls information from each of your connected accounts. It will then ask you about your projected savings information, current retirement savings, your age, as well as your planned retirement age.

Once you are done answering, the planner analyzes your data to tell you if you’re on track for retirement, as well as how to make changes if needed.

This one also allows you to play different scenarios to have a glimpse of how much you need.


– Goal Setting

YNAB does have six various goal categories, which include two for savings goals, two for spending goals, and two for debt.

Once you have set a goal, it automatically becomes part of your budget. Thus, when you budget your funds for the next month, for example, you automatically should put money into each category. YNAB then tracks your progress through the app.

– Zero-Based Budgeting

It is important to be aware that YNAB’s first rule is to “give every dollar a job”. This basically means that once you receive your income for the month (for instance), you automatically subtract all your expenses until you are down to $0. Yes, you have to ensure nothing’s left.

Just so you know, Zero-Based Budgeting is a very powerful budgeting technique that works well in paying off debts as it ensures you prioritize extra payments rather than seeing what is left behind every end of the month. The same idea goes when you want to save money.

– Education and Support

As compared to Mint and Personal Capital, YNAB has the best education and support department. They provide you with upfront and sometimes funny podcasts, articles, videos, as well as weekly webinars.


As we have mentioned earlier, determining the “best” among the three personal finance tools will depend on the user’s personal preference, as well as his or her personal finance goals.

For us though, we thought, based on the data we presented, Mint and Personal Capital are apps ideal for people who are “money nerd”. However, between the two, we have to say that Mint is better as compared to Personal Capital.

Meanwhile, YNAB is best for those who want to keep or have the most detailed budget.

You know, all three are very promising and good by all means. How efficient they are will then depend on the user — will depend on you.


Mint, Personal Capital, and YNAB are three unique and effective personal finance tools. While they all have their share of similarities, in the end, they all are different from one another. They offer different ways when it comes to personal finance management.

Now, if you are deciding which among the three tools is the best, we thought it’s best to ask yourself these questions: What are my needs? What are my financial goals?

At the end of the day, it’s not a battle between what is the best between Mint vs Personal Capital vs YNAB, rather it is a battle on what is the best personal tool for you (the user) based on your needs and your financial goals.