Disclaimer: The statements made in this post are the opinion of the author. They should not be viewed as financial advice. Please consult with a financial specialist before making any financial decisions.
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For those that have read my reviews before, I don’t gloss over the features and tell you what you can do then push for a potential sale to make a buck. Instead, I get into the nitty gritty of what using a product is like. Then I’ll tell you when I would recommend it and when I wouldn’t.
You decide if you like it, and that is enough for me.
That being said, there is a pretty new contender on the block for personal financing tracking called Status Money that has some really interesting twists on the traditional method. So let’s figure out if it is worth it.
What Is Status Money?
Statusmoney.com is a website that combines personal finance tracking, social media, and goal setting to create an environment meant to inspire you to do better with your money.
You can use Status Money to track everything in your financial life, get advice on your personal financial situation, find better deals on financial products you use often, and earn rewards for participating.
To do this they track your personal finances from accounts that you have linked to Status Money through a secure third party called Yodlee so they don’t even have access to your accounts or log in info.
Then they compare that with anonymous aggregate data, in other words they compare your money habits with other people in the same category without sharing anything personal about you or the people you are being compared to.
In this way you can motivate yourself to do better without having to ask all your friends personal questions to get into the competitive spirit.
The downfall to this is you have to link ALL of your accounts or your information will be inaccurate and therefore completely useless.
For example, I’ve recently bought a house and I’m waiting for my mortgage to be officially sold so I have a log in to link that account. So at the moment I look houseless which is not an accurate picture of my net worth which makes me look like a dork compared to my peers.
You can also interact with other Status Money users in a kind of social media platform. You can get feedback and ideas on money moves you’re making from your peer group or from everyone. It is quite versatile if you’re in to that kind of thing.
Setting goals is a huge part of Status Money. You can set investment goals, spending goals, net worth goals, and more.
Your goals go into your net worth, or retirement forecast to help you know how much money you should have at the time of retirement.
Once again, unlike most trackers, Status Money has a more game or social aspect to it. This is one of those features.
Lastly, you can earn rewards. If you consistently interact with their ads you can earn rewards that usually range from $1-10.
Once you’ve reached $10 you can cash out. I’ll explain how that whole process works later, but the idea here is you interact with an ad, usually getting a quote or even buying a product, and you get cash back essentially. Kind of like Ibotta or Fetch Rewards, but for financial products.
Now that we have an overview of the different pieces of Status Money, let’s look at how they actually work and if they’re worth it.
Status Money: Personal Finance Tracker
This is by far the largest portion of the platform. It can be broken down into three pieces: overall all finance tracker, advance financial tracking, and goal setting.
Overall Finance Tracker
The overall spending tracker is where you link your accounts and track your personal finances. Everything is put into a main dashboard that you can view and interact with.
This dashboard gives you warnings on your financial path and updates on using Status Money. A quick view of your spending and transaction. A quick view of your net worth. assets, debts, Credit Score, and total rewards earned.
If you have linked all of your accounts, this is where you can get motivation to do better.
Once again, this dashboard is only helpful if you fully use Status Money.
Under the next tab, linked accounts, you can view individual assets and liabilities. The institution (i.e. bank, etc.) the asset or liability is with, the account info, the amount saved or owed, and the type or category of the asset/liability.
For example it might say Example Bank, Savings Account ending in 1234, $123, Cash and Savings.
This gives you a good view of each account as it stands individually without logging into each account.
The next tab is the Transactions tab. Here you can view all of your transactions, much like a credit card statement, but for all of your accounts. You can use this page to organize what category each purchase is in for budgeting purposes and then set goals on how much you want to spend in each category.
Overall Finance Tracker Pros
There are many good features here that are worth pointing out.
- It is basically comprehensive for tracking your budget in one place
- You can change spending categories to be flexible
- The dashboard is easy to read and motivating
- Linking accounts is secure
Overall Finance Tracker Cons
On the other hand there are downsides to consider.
- Every account has to be linked to get a good picture of where you stand
- There is no tutorial so you have to do a lot of clicking around to figure it out
- The suggestions on the dashboard aren’t always a good reflection of your position
- Many accounts don’t link or require constant updating which can make keeping your accounts updated difficult
- You can’t customize transaction categories
Advanced Financial Tracking
The advanced financial tracking includes specific looks at spending, income, debts, assets, net worth, and your credit profile.
The Status Money website claims to be free, but these features hide behind a “premium” wall that isn’t priced, but you are required to pay a minimum of $3 per month as a “suggested donation” though more is possible as well.
I make it a point not to spend money on things that are funded by advertisement. So honestly, I haven’t personally explored these features. Based on the experiences elsewhere on the site, however, I would assume it is just a deeper break down of what you can already gather from your dashboard.
Really, I’m not sure why you’d pay $3 a month for something that you can already figure out using their dashboard or other software for free.
Advanced Finance Tracking Pros
From what I can tell, this is why you’d want it.
- Have an understanding of your money picture quickly
- Set goals and caps on your spending and income
- More information is always better
Advanced Finance Tracking Cons
Here is why I wouldn’t use it.
- The information behind the premium wall is readily available elsewhere
- They claim to be a free site then throw the “donation” word out while requiring it
- There are other sites that are devoted to those different pieces that are free
The goal setting feature can be found under the future plans tab. It is actually one of the most interesting and unique features of Status Money. While there are many sites that let you add goals to keep you on track, Status Money will show you how your goal will impact your overall financial future.
For example, you can input a goal to buy a car. Since this is a spending goal it will show how the price will decrease your overall cash and the impact that will have on your finances.
You can also add the goal to buy a home, but since this is an appreciating asset it includes the asset paydown and appreciation over time in your financial future calculations.
What makes this feature even more unique is your ability to input events that effect your finances that aren’t goals. These include inheriting money, getting married, getting a divorce, having children and more.
Goal Setting Pros
This feature is one of the best on Status Money, so it has a lot of pros.
- A dynamic goal setting tracker
- The ability to view the impact of goals on future finances
- The ability to see how events will impact your finances
- The ability to adjust your target retirement date
- The ability to create multiple scenarios
Goal Setting Cons
Still, everything has its drawbacks. Here are the goal setting feature’s cons.
- You can’t add types of goals or events
- You can’t adjust how you think the goal will impact your future (adding your projected return on investment or appreciation)
- You can’t break down how you will achieve your goal, only when and how much it costs.
Status Money: Social Media
The personal finance tracker has a lot of features that are unique and a lot of features that are sub par compared to other personal finance trackers. The number one thing that makes Status Money unique though is the kind of social media aspect to it.
On your Status money dashboard you can click on the Advice Feed tab. That will take you to the place you can interact with others using Status Money. You can even break down who you talk to.
You can talk to everyone, just your assigned peers, posts or people you follow as well as specific hashtags. You won’t find find memes or new recipes, but you will find a lot of great advice on how to approach your finances.
So if you are interested in getting some help with a financial problem from a large group of people that are actually interested then check this feature out for sure.
One caveat though, it isn’t super active like Facebook. You won’t find a new post every couple minutes, but people still check it regularly.
It is at least an interesting enough feature to make it worth checking out.
Status Money: Rewards
The thing that initially got me interested in Status Money was their rewards program. I must say it is a very interesting concept, but I’m not terribly excited with its execution.
Here’s how it works. You have different ads (called opportunities on the site) that have a certain cash value associated with them. When you interact with the ad (which usually means giving out your personal information or actually using the offered service) then you get the cash value back.
The ability to get cash back for using a financial product sounds great, but here are the problems.
First, you only get somewhere between $1-$10 back for using any of these products. While that sounds good, remember that these products are things like getting new car insurance.
You’re going to be using it for a while and spending hundreds or thousands of dollars. This might be a good deal, but they only show their partner’s products so you might not be getting the best deal.
Second, it takes forever to get any rewards. I went through the process to get a $2 reward from an insurance company. They sent me the necessary information and I filled it out. Over a month passed before they even acknowledged I had done anything.
Then I found out that there is a 60 day waiting period before your rewards even fund. And I’ve just entirely lost interest. It’s not like I’m getting financial products often enough for that to be worth my time.
Third, most of the products are for investing. The amount of money I would have to invest across difference platforms to get the required $10 minimum to pull out funds is kind of ridiculous. If I had that much money to invest regularly, I don’t think I would need to put in the extra effort for $10.
My advice is to use the Status Money opportunities only after you’ve decided to invest somewhere, or if you’re trying to decide between two options and one of them is available on Status Money for some cash back. Only then is the cash back potentially a determining factor between two identical products.
Status Money App Review
Since Status Money was made by a couple of fintech guys from New York, so the app is actually quite good.
Much of it is set up almost exactly like the website so if you can operate one then you can operate the other.
The only downside I would say is that phones can be difficult to use when inputting account information, so I would recommend doing all of your account syncing via the computer unless you are a phone wizard.
The app is most convenient for just checking your current status and as a quick reference for opportunities if you are trying to find a financial product on the go.
So to put it succinctly I would recommend using the website for set up and large adjustments and the app for day to day use. They go better together.
Status Money Vs Personal Capital
Now that you understand exactly how Status Money works, you might be wondering how it stacks up to other personal finance trackers like Personal Capital.
First, I must say that while the basics of each app are the same, they both have their own spin on how they look at your finances that makes both of them valuable.
For example, Status Money is better for projecting your future, and setting goals. On top of that Personal Capital doesn’t have similar features to Status Money like the social media aspect or the rewards.
On the other hand, Personal Capital has a financial advisor feature, a free net worth tracker (no premium membership needed) as well as a weekly email update on where you stand financially.
So really it depends on what matters to you and your finances.
Now to compare what is similar.
Both Status Money and Personal Capital operate on a linked account system. In my experience neither of them is perfect, but Personal Capital has been easier to work with. It has more options for account linking and a system that responds better to linking codes and security questions.
It is also better about maintaining your linked accounts so you don’t have to go back and re-add them.
Since I care about a sleek easy to use functionality that lets me track my net worth, Personal Capital has been better for me.
If you are more interested in bells and whistles and additional features, then Status Money is probably best for you.
Status Money Vs Mint
Status Money and Mint by Intuit are both very different finance trackers. Still, depending on your goals you may want to use one or the other, or both.
Status Money is a data aggregator. The whole point is to see how you are doing on the whole. You can view individual accounts and transactions, but break downs for those are limited. Status Money also has projections, net worth tracking, and the social media and rewards features that make it unique.
Mint on the other hand is primarily a budget tracking tool. The special qualities that Mint has are a bill pay tracker that helps you pay bills on time, an in depth budget maker and tracker which is easily customizable, and other similar budget related features.
Now, if you aren’t sure what your goals are with tracking your finances, you might need to try both. If you are on the edge about which to use, here is how their similar features stack up.
First, both have a credit score component. Both show you your current score as calculated by their credit partner. Beyond that though Mint is a clear winner. Mint’s credit tracking is entirely free and not hidden behind a premium wall. Also, Mint teaches you how to improve your credit score which isn’t a feature on Status Money.
Second, budget categorization also has a clear winner. Status Money only has so many categories you can put things in. Mint is entirely customizable. So unless you don’t want the headache of choosing categories, Mint is better here.
Third, alerts about your personal finances. This one is more of a toss up depending on what you want. Once again, Mint focuses on your budget so you will get notified of overspending, ATM fees, bills that are coming up, etc. These are very efficient.
Status Money does similar alerts, and some of them are the same. On top of that they also alert you to how you are doing compared to your peers to help you improve your overall financial picture. It just depends on what you want to be alerted to.
Fourth, investment tracking. This is where Status Money shines a bit more. With many different ways to look at your investments, view debts vs assets, tracking your net worth, comparing them to peers, doing future projections and more, Status Money has a lot of features for tracking investments.
Mint is much more basic and doesn’t allow for projections or have a dedicated net worth tracker per se. Still if you aren’t wanting to play with your numbers on the dashboard, or compare you numbers to your peers, then Mint is probably sufficient.
Status Money Overall Review
Status Money is an effective tool that lets your track your personal finances. It is an especially fun way to track your finances with the added features of peer comparison, social media interaction and earning rewards.
Still, there are a lot of things that are lacking. The most important things are first, the premium features can be found elsewhere without paying anything, and second, other trackers are more intuitive, easier to use and integrate with, and have customizable features.
Still, if you are willing to go through a steep learning curve, the additional features of Status Money can be very beneficial. If you aren’t a dedicated money nerd, however, Status Money probably goes beyond what you need and Personal Capital (for investors) or Mint (for budgeters) may be better.
Which personal finance tracker do you use? Why did you choose that one? Tell me about it in the comments below.
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A list of definitions used on this blog can be found here.
Net Worth: A simple calculation of how much money you have in assets and cash minus your liabilities. For example, you have $200,000 in assets ($50,000 in stocks, and $150,000 in total home value) and $50,000 in cash, and you owe $100,000 on your home, $10,000 on your car, and $40,000 in student loan debt. Your total assets and cash are $250,000 ($200,000 + $50,000) and your total debts are $150,000 ($100,000 + $10,000 + $40,000) so your net worth is $100,000 ($250,000 – $150,000).
Assets: Things that put money into your pocket every month (or year). Sometimes equity in your house is also included as an asset, but I prefer not to include it. A car loses value every year (depreciates) so it is NOT an asset.
Debts: Money that you owe for something you’ve purchased or used. Another similar word for this is a liability.
Credit Score: A weighted score calculated by three independent companies that is used to determine your credit worthiness, or how much someone should trust you to repay your debts.
Appreciation: When the value of an asset increases overtime. For example, your home goes from being worth $100,000 to $105,000. That is 5% appreciation. This is not the same as cash flow or dividends which are other ways that assets can pay you directly.