Erica Christoffer is a multimedia journalist and contributing editor with REALTOR® Magazine. Connect with her via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
3 Tools for Stress-Free Money Management
Track budgets and keep your finances in order with these applications.
May 2, 2014
Successful broker-owners and managers need to keep close track of their income and expenses—both to set financial goals and to manage the daily operation of their business.
Today’s financial software can synch between your computer and mobile devices for easy tracking and consolidate all of your accounts for budgeting and monitoring. You’ll be able to see income and spending, debt and investments, accounting and payroll, and various bank accounts all in one place. Plus, you can control notifications from the apps and programs to notify you if a problem arises.
Here are three money management tools that will keep a small business on track:
This online service, which offers both personal and business accounts, lets you import your various bank and credit card accounts to track daily spending. The mobile app (iOS, Android, BlackBerry, and Windows) comes with SmartScan, where you can import receipts after simply snapping their picture. You can consolidate your receipts from other programs such as Dropbox, Evernote, and even your e-mail inbox. The application creates charts and graphs to further help you analyze your financial picture.
While these basic features are free, Expensify charges $6 per user (after the first two users) to run financial data reports using the business account. Brokers can categorize expenses and reimburse employees via direct deposit, PayPal, or payroll. The service can integrate with accounting, payroll, or CRM software.
Quicken’s Home & Business software organizes all your financial information in one place, offers bill reminders, identifies your spending categories, and helps you set up a budget. The software also helps you budget for goals or retirement or set up debt reduction plans. Whether you’re running a brokerage or handing your own sales business, the program helps you find tax-deductible business expenses and offers is a direct export to your TurboTax account. It costs $114.99 for either a direct download or a CD-ROM. Separately, Quicken offers property manager software, tax preparation, accounting software, payroll services, merchant services, and mobile credit card processing.
Zoho Books is accounting software for small businesses that allows you to accept online payments, track invoices, and track expenses. You can break your reports into specific projects, manage customers and suppliers, assign roles to various users (administrators, staff, and so on) and prepare financial reports. And, of course, you’ll be able to manage all of your bank and credit card accounts in one place. It costs $24 per month.