The beginning of a new year is a great time to re-evaluate your finances and start setting budgets and savings goals. If you’re like many of people, the process of setting a budget sounds overwhelming. Hills Bank has a great tool to allow you see your whole financial picture, allowing you to add credit cards, your mortgage, investment products, and accounts from other financial institutions. I use it often, and here are three of my favorite features.
The dashboard is the first screen you see when logging in and is my one stop shop to see my entire financial picture. Here I can review transactions and see current balance information for all my accounts, credit cards, investment accounts, and loans. At the top of the page click add and Manage My Finances will prompt you through adding your accounts outside of Hills Bank. It is important to add everything to get an accurate view of your financial standing.
You can even customize your Dashboard through widgets. I like the Bills, Cashflow Calendar, Budget, and Goals widgets. Every time I log in, the widgets I’ve added help remind me where I stand with my goals and keep me within budget.
The budgeting tool allows me to set spending limits and will send email and/or text alerts if I have gone over budget. I have set up customized categories where overspending can be an issue for me. Through Manage My Finances, I’ve discovered dining out is an area where I spend more than I should. I do enjoy a good cup of coffee and frequently visit a coffee shop on the way to the office. Once I saw how much I was spending on dining out and coffee, I set text and email alerts that alert me if I’ve gone over my budgeted goal for the week. Perhaps it’s time for me to consider brewing a pot at home?
To set your own budgets, click the Budget tab at the top of the dashboard. Then Add a Spending Target. Be realistic about what you should be spending in a certain category each month and try to follow the limit you set for yourself. Your tagged transactions on the dashboard will put expenditures in the proper budgeted category for you.
Setting Financial Goals
The goals area allows me to set short-term and long-term financial goals and helps me track my progress. I want to save for vacation and pay off my mortgage. I tell Manage My Finances my deadline to achieve these goals and it calculates how much every month I must save/pay to meet my specific goal.
To set your own goal, click the Goal tab at the top of the dashboard. Click Add a Goal and then pick your deadline and total amount for that goal. Manage My Finances even shows the most common goals for you to choose from, but also allows you the ability to add your own. Manage My Finances does the math and monitors your progress for you. It doesn’t get much simpler than that!
By dedicating a little time to adding your accounts and setting up a few goals and budgets, you can get a better handle on your finances. I use this myself and really like how easy it is to use. It has helped me be a better budgeter and really watch what I’m spending money on every month.
Learn how to get started with Manage My Finances or check out our interactive demo. If you have any questions about Manage My Finances, please contact us at 1-800-445-5725 (1-800-HILLSBK) or leave a comment below.