Simplifi is a financial tracking service offered by Quicken. Simplifi enables you to access all of your financial accounts from one location. You can also monitor your spending, cash flow, and bill due dates while setting savings goals for that special purchase you’ve been planning.
Simplifi offers some unique features that other tracking apps like Mint and Personal Capital don’t, which I’m going to cover in this review.
Keep reading to learn more about how Simplifi works, so you can determine whether it will simplify or complicate your financial picture.
What is Simplifi?
Simplifi is a new financial services app that offers financial tracking tools to individual consumers. At the time of this writing, the app is still in beta, but you can still sign up for a free trial account.
Simplifi is owned by Quicken. Together, they’re one of the world’s largest financial software providers. Quicken, for example, has over 17 million customers.
As I discussed in my reviews on Mint and YNAB, financial trackers can help you get a better idea of your full financial picture from one location.
One reason why these types of services have gained so much popularity in recent years is due to the rise in electronic accounts—especially in the world of finance.
For example, there’s a good chance you have one or more of the following accounts:
- Online Checking Account
- Online Savings Account
- Online Investment Account (such as Vanguard or Fidelity)
- Online access to your 401k
- Car Loan with online payment options
- Several credit card accounts, with online payment options
- Online bill pay for TV, internet, and cell phone
- Mortgage payments that can be viewed online
How it Works
Once your Simplifi account is registered, you can link all of those external accounts I listed above to Simplifi. In fact, the app can connect with over 14,000 financial institutions. After that happens, the app will then automatically pull all of your real-time data from the accounts you’ve linked and will populate that data in the app.
You can now get a clear view of all your finances in one place. As a result, you’ll be able to see how much money is coming in, how much is going out, where you’re spending your money, when your bills are due, and more—all with more clarity.
The Simplifi app is available for download in the App Store, where it has a 3.8-star rating (out of 5). Android users can also download Simplifi in the Google Play Store, where it also has a 3.8-star rating (out of 5). If you’re not that into apps, you can also use Simplifi as a web app on your laptop or desktop machine.
Once your account is set up, you can use Simplifi to monitor the following items.
Accounts and Transactions
Simplifi automatically pulls your data from external accounts, allowing you to categorize your spending and set alerts for unusual activity.
Bills and Subscriptions
If you link all of your recurring monthly bills and subscriptions, Simplifi helps you make sense of all these obligations from one convenient dashboard. Never miss a payment again!
Simplifi makes it easier to develop a budget and spending plan by monitoring your cash flow and letting you know how much cash you have leftover after your bills are paid.
If you know that you need to cut spending in a particular area (e.g., shopping at Target or on Amazon), you can set Simplifi to monitor and alert you about your shopping transactions.
For example, you can set an alert to notify you when your shopping charges approach or exceed a specific amount that you’ve set—which should help you keep a better handle on things.
Simplifi also helps you view and track your investment performance right in your account dashboard.
This means that if you have several investing accounts—like some stock investments at Ally Invest, a Roth IRA at Vanguard, and an employer-backed 401k at Schwab— you can view all of your holdings from one place, which is pretty awesome.
Simplifi automatically monitors your spending behavior and produces helpful reports based on your transactions. Over time, you’ll be able to watch your net worth and savings increase.
Here’s where Simplifi stands out from Mint. In order to be a Simplifi member, you’ll either have to pay $39.99 each year or $3.99 monthly. For that price, you’ll have access to customer support over the phone or live chat. You also won’t get hit with any marketing solicitations.
Mint, on the other hand, is 100% free to use—which should definitely appeal to more users. However, customer support is limited to web-based support only; neither live chat nor phone support is available.
What’s more, while Mint doesn’t cost any money upfront, the company makes money on the back end by selling your data and sending you ads (e.g., advertisements for new credit cards, loan options, mortgage refinance options, and more).
Signing Up and Getting Started
In order to access the Simplifi portal, you’ll first have to register a Quicken account here and sign up for a free trial (either an annual trial or a monthly trial; I went with monthly). Once that’s taken care of, you’ll be walked through a quick new account tutorial.
First, you’ll have to enter some basic personal details—like your name and zip code. You’ll then be asked to link your external financial accounts. (FYI: This is a very similar process to how signing up for Mint or YNAB works.)
Next, you’ll be asked to enter your income (if the app isn’t able to pull it automatically).
Finally, you’ll have the opportunity to enter the details on the various bills you owe each month, as well as the details on any recurring monthly account transfers (like if you deposit $200 to an HYSA each month). You can also put in expenses for any recurring subscriptions you’re signed up for (e.g., Spotify and Netflix).
After that’s done, your account will be ready to go, and you’ll have access to your account dashboard. It’s that simple.
Simplifi Promotions, Bonuses, Coupons
Simplifi is currently in beta form. It seems that they are still working out some kinks before going full-scale. That said, the company is currently offering a free three-month trial, which is pretty cool because you’ll get to know the service before you actually have to pay anything.
On their website, Simplifi boasts that your data is protected by industry-leading 256-bit data encryption. They also assure you that your money can never be moved with Simplifi. That’s most likely because they only have access to data reporting and aren’t set up to make transactions.
Even still, you’ll want to take some extra security precautions to prevent any unauthorized individuals from accessing your financial data. Setting a passcode on your phone and using a strong password when you create your Simplifi/Quicken account are some easy steps you can take in that direction.
Customer Service and Support
If you have questions about your account or experience any technical hangups, you can access customer support over the phone or through live chat. This level of customer support is a step up from most of Simplifi’s competitors—including sister company Mint. As the saying goes: You get what you pay for.
Pros and Cons of Simplifi
- Helpful customer support over the phone and live chat
- Step up from Mint, with no ads
- Saves time and offers more transparency into your full financial picture
- It’s not free; cost is either $39.99 annually or $3.99 monthly
- Still in beta form
Alternatives to Simplifi
The main alternatives to Simplifi are Mint, YouNeedaBudget (YNAB), Personal Capital, Tiller, PocketSmith, and EveryDollar.
With Personal Capital, you can see your net worth, analyze investments, and discover any hidden fees you weren’t aware of before – as well as set spending and saving goals.
So, is Simplifi the Best Financial Tracker for Me?
It’s too early to tell. Simplifi is still very new, so there isn’t much data available yet about how effective the service is. At the same time, the platform seems to be easy to use, and there’s customer support available in case you get stuck.
Since they’re offering a free three-month trial, why not sign up and give the app a spin for yourself? You could even sign up for one or two of Simplifi’s competitors to see which service gives you the best user experience. Once your trial is about to expire, you’ll be able to make the call on whether you want to pay for the service over the long haul.
As I’ve written in the past, I’m a huge fan of financial tracking apps because they really do make it easier for you to get a handle on your spending. For example, I used Personal Capital and realized that I spent over $210,000 in one year. As much as I wanted to hurl, having access to that data helped me realize where I needed to cut back and how I could optimize my spending going forward.
At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter how you track your finances—whether you’re using a brand-new financial service or an old-fashioned pen-and-pad system. What matters most is being aware of where your money is going—and making responsible spending decisions day in and day out.
Here’s to spending wisely and saving up so you can live a life of financial independence!
Read 3 comments or add your own