As far as budgeting and finance software goes, it’s a tough choice between Personal Capital vs. Mint. But which one is best for you? At first sight, they may appear to have the same functionality, design and such. However, there are distinguishable features that make a better choice depending on the situation. Let’s take a look at each before we dive into the comparisons, then we’ll see which stacks up highest in the end.
Let’s begin with Mint. Mint is a free service that launched all the way back in 2006 and was bought by Intuit three years later. You may know Intuit as the creators of the widely used Turbo Tax software. Mint has a user-friendly and aesthetically pleasing interface that makes keeping track of your finances fun and easy.
This is done through its website and mobile app. You can use Mint to integrate your bank accounts, brokerage accounts and credit cards. and other financial instruments you may use. The app makes it easy to stay on top of bills, keep track of your credit score, and budget your finances.
Personal Capital: Overview
Like Mint, Personal Capital is available to use as a website or mobile app. The company was founded in 2009 in Redwood City, CA, near Silicon Valley. Personal Capital allows you to link your various financial accounts, analyze your investments, and like Mint, budget your finances.
The website also includes a retirement planner and intuitive graphs and data analytics. The company even offers assistance with financial planning from financial advisers. Its homepage dashboard makes it easy to keep track of all of your financial activities in one place at the same time.
Personal Capital vs. Mint
To reiterate, both websites allow users to integrate all of their financial accounts in one location. Both Mint and Personal Capital assist users in staying on top of bills and budgeting through mobile phone alerts. They can both generate insights about your finances such as where your cash is flowing to and from.
Simply put, Mint is a better option when it comes to budgeting. The primary focus of Mint is budgeting and saving money. It is mostly designed for younger individuals. The programs budgeting tools allow users to breakdown all the categories of their spending and create limits by category. Users can easily access a dashboard from which to assess their overall financial situation. These features are accessed via website or mobile app.
Unlike Mint, Personal Capital’s main focus is not budgeting software, so naturally it comes second. That being said, Personal Capital does offer a tool on its mobile app that allows users to track their spending habits and set limits. Personal Capital’s budgeting system does not let users break down their budget by category. However, Mint’s budgeting tool includes all the features users can need, and is also available on mobile and computer. Making Mint is a better option for users focused on budgeting.
Both programs are designed to alert users to bills and can even tell users about bills that have not been received yet. For users who want this feature, both services are viable options. You’ll be hard pressed to find a flaw in the ability of either software to help with tracking financial transactions.
Integration of Financial Accounts
Because Mint is owned by Intuit, it is able to make use of Intuit’s widely used services. These include synchronizing financial accounts. That said, Mint has been reported to have more frequent issues with integrating financial accounts. Personal Capital appears to have the more reliable service. Especially when syncing to your already existing accounts. Both services are able to sync the same types and amount of accounts.
Both integrate with tax software, including all of our picks for the best tax software for small businesses. But Personal Capital is reported to be more reliable. Because of this Personal Capital is the better choice for users who wish to integrate their financial accounts with ease.
Mint does not have any tools for analyzing investments or making decisions about your investments. While you are able to at least track your investment portfolios with Mint, the software does not offer any tools for retirement planning. Nor does it analyze investment opportunities, or forecast your savings.
Personal Capital, on the other hand, is built with investment management in mind. Its software allows you to project the value of your portfolios out across time to make retirement planning easier as well as assess your investment strategies. The application even offers access to financial advisers that will assist you in your investment decisions. Personal Capital is clearly the better option for users who are looking for more investing tools in financial software.
Privacy and Security
Due to the nature of finance software, many users will prioritize security in deciding between Mint vs. Personal Capital. Mint has additional security measures such as requiring an SMS text message code sent to your phone in addition to your username and password. This makes it nearly impossible for someone to access your account even if they somehow gain access to your username and password.
Personal Capital, has extra security measures built as well, such as requiring that it recognizes your device before logging in to your account. Mint’s security measures are slightly more secure. Fortunately, users do not need to be too concerned about security issues. Both Mint and Personal Capital only have access to the information in your financial accounts. They are unable to do things like pull money from accounts.
Despite being two of the most useful finance software options available to consumers, both services are free for the main features we have discussed. While Personal Capital offers more services to users who invest more assets through its service.
Access to financial advisers and college tuition planning are some perk that users who invest more than $200k can enjoy. It also offers a paid version with a wealth management program. In this version, you can hand over your investments to Personal Capital’s advisers. Because these are paid features and not available through Mint, they simply receive an equal rating in terms of cost.
From user reports, Personal Capital’s customer service is quick to respond. And are also quite helpful in assisting with any issues that users may have. Personal Capital support offers answers to Frequently Asked Questions in their “support portal”. There is also a phone number for users to call for customer service. Mint does not have a full-fledged customer service program. It provides answers to Frequently Asked Questions, but not much more.
From user reports about Mint, any support users receive is not particularly helpful. Because of this, it is not a great choice if you do not feel that you will be able to navigate the finance software without issue. If this is the case Personal Capital is a safe option for you to pick.
Ease of Access
Mint and Personal Capital both offer mobile apps that are available for Apple iOS as well as Android phones. The Mint app may be more aesthetically pleasing for most users, and certainly “gamifies” the process of budgeting and saving. For some, this is a priority in picking a finance software app. Personal Capital is more straight to the point.
If you are a user who prioritizes simplicity over design, Personal Capital will win for you in terms of ease of access. Both apps are rated 4.7 stars out of 5 on the Apple App store, so one cannot be objectively ranked over the other.
Mint focuses on assisting users with everything related to budgeting. Whereas, Personal Capital is primarily focused on investment management and retirement planning. If your primary concern is getting control of your monthly and day-to-day finances Mint is tailored for you. If you are looking for finance software to keep tabs on your investments Personal Capital is ideal.
This is because Personal Capital will also analyze in addition to keeping track of your finances. While Personal Capital offers assistance with budgeting to a certain extent, and Mint offers some investment assistance, their different areas of expertise are where they truly shine. Personal Capital offers investment management for investing-focused individuals. And Mint allows users to breakdown their various spending categories when it comes to budgeting.
You will notice these differences in priorities in the Personal Capital vs. Mint’s homepage dashboards. Personal Capital’s homepage focuses on tracking your net worth. As well as investing and retirement planning. Mint’s homepage involves more information about bills and spending habits. Mint offers extra features like paying bills directly from the dashboard. It also offers free credit score checks and adding “goals” to save up for certain milestones.
Personal capital offers extra features as well. Its investment fee analyzer will look at your investments in-depth. It will assess how much you are paying in fees, which can add up over the course of your lifetime. Its retirement calculator can run through hypothetical scenarios.
Our Two Cents
Mint and Personal capital perform many of the same functions for users. They both offer users a way to aggregate nearly all of their financial data in one spot, which enables users to make better financial decisions. Both services are free and are available on desktop and mobile.
The winner between the two really comes down to your personal preferences as well as your financial situation. Through breaking down the various strengths and weaknesses of the two software options, you have hopefully been provided with a more clear distinction between the two services. Hopefully, this will make it an easier choice when it comes to making a decision between them.