Best Free Personal Finance Software

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Introduction

In my review of the best free personal finance managers, I found eight products good enough to warrant recommendation with the best of these being as good as any commercial product. Some choices for online money management are also included in this article. Check them out and select the one that best suits your needs.

 

Rated Products

GnuCash  

Support double-entry accounting, multiple accounts and financial reports


Our Rating: 
5
License: Free (Open source)
Double entry accounting, keep tabs of budgets, create various accounts in each category, full suite of standard and customizable reports.
Have to track stock prices manually, starting up or closing down the program takes a while, no encryption of files.
Read full review...

HomeBank  

A feature-rich program allows keeping and tracking personal accounts


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free (Open source)
Simple user interface, multiple accounts and categories, editing and setting options, automated transactions, import and export, print reports.
No ability to export to OFX format.
Read full review...

Money Manager Ex  

An open-source, cross-platform, easy-to-use personal finance software


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free (Open source)
Simple and attractive GUI; unlimited transactions and accounts; supports recurring entries, backup, encryption, reports, import and export.
Manual entries, no real-time automatic updates from user's bank accounts.
Read full review...

Grisbi  

A personnal accounting application with unlimited accounts and transactions


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free (Open source)
Multiple accounts, categories and transactions; import and export; backup and archive; built-in scheduler and file encryption.
Cannot export to non-QIF and non-CSV formats; no real-time updating; no local help file, unrecoverable if user forgets password.
Read full review...

Metalogic Finance Explorer  

An easy-to-use personal finance software with realtime online updates


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free
Fully featured, easy-to-use; automatic importing of bank financial data; downloading of stock market data; print displayed budget data.
Skimpy local help file, lacking in guidance.
Read full review...

Money Plus Sunset Deluxe  

A replacement of Premium, Deluxe and Essentials versions of Money Plus from Microsoft


Our Rating: 
4
License: Free (Limited features)
Fully-featured and easy-to-use; secured login; accounts and plannings, import and export; reporting and printing; backup, repair and restore; extensive help file.
A sunset version, no more online services, self-help online support only. One user account at a time.
Read full review...

GFP  

A Java-based personal finance manager


Our Rating: 
3
License: Free (Open source)
Simple, clean, attractive, easy to navigate and use. Program supports 41 different installation languages and 11 GUI languages. A multitude of budget-transaction and report options; supports numerous editing and setting choices. Supports themes and patterns. Help File provides ample guidance on how to use the program.
The program must be run in Administrator Mode (for Vista OS and above); looks dated to new operating systems; no import from CSV file formats and export created tables to other file formats.
Read full review...

AceMoney Lite  

Organize and manage your personal finances but with limited accounts


Our Rating: 
3
License: Free (Limited features)
Simple and attractive GUI; multiple languages; support categories and filters; password protection; payment scheduler, loan calculator and currency conversion; import and export data; local help file.
Supports two accounts only in the lite version.
Read full review...

Online Money Management

Mint is an attractive personal finance on-line service. It helps budgeting and keeping track of your finances. Users need to create a Mint account before adding bank, credit card, home loan and investment accounts. As claimed by Mint, "it works for you without requiring any personally identifiable information from you. Your Mint account is anonymous; set up requires only an email, password and zip code. Mint doesn’t know your name, address, social security number, account numbers, or PINs".

Rudder lets users review all accounts in one place, get bill reminders, budget and manage cash flow. It is an email-based system with similar privacy issues. My details could be adequately protected, but how do I know that they are and always will be? I'm just not willing to bet the bank to build some charts of my budget or an email summary of my accounts. That said, these offerings really do look like promising planning tools for the less paranoid.

Money Strands: This service is 100% free, and allows users to import their bank data automatically. In addition, the website service automatically classifies financial data into meaningful categories, based on users' information. Per the site's FAQs section: CSV/QFX/OFX formats are supported. Finally, the site's owners invite people to submit their bank's name to them if a bank is not currently supported via Money Strands.

 

Other freeware products to be reviewed:

  • jGnash, cross-platform, supports double-entry based transactions, etc.

 

Related Products and Links

You might want to check out these articles too:

 

Editor

This software review is copy-edited by Jojo Yee. Please help edit and improve this article by clicking here.

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Comments

Hi guys I was looking for Linux finance software and I landed on this page. Not sure if it's only related to Linux or any other OS, but may I suggest some more free apps, the review is nice but seems a bit incomplete. How could one miss KMymoney, the KDE counterpart of Gnucash, very complete, free and open-source personal finance app. But my favourite is moneyGuru, also available in linux, windows and mac. Very fast, simple and complete. Graphs are everywhere and constantly inform you in a glance about your finances.

Thanks for a good list Jojo.
I have used Money Manager as a replacement for Quicken over the past few years, and it is gradually maturing.
A major improvement in the latest update, is encryption, so that is no longer a minus point.
It has always been portable as well, so it might be worth changing the info in the listing. They give the option to make it portable in the install program.
It is very fast and small. I think I'll stay with it :)
For anyone considering it - have a look at their changelog.
Best wishes

Thanks Freecycler for your kind comments. The major improvement has now been updated in the article.

Hello,
I'm the author of Metalogic Finance Explorer. First of all, I'd like to say thanks for this great review.

Also, I wanted to note a couple of things about Finance Explorer:
1) It is mentioned above that there is no reporting. That was accurate when the review was originally written. However the latest version does introduce reporting. There is currently one report with more coming in future releases.
2) It's also mentioned that the portable version is not available from the developer. While it is distributed by portableapps.com as correctly mentioned above, we do build the portable version at Metalogic at the same time as the regular version and then make it available to them. So it does come from us.

All the best,
Metalogic Software

Thank you for the information. The program details have now been updated in our products database. MC - Site Manager.

Fantastic. Thank you for the quick reply MidnightCowboy.

The review of Homebank lists 2 items under Cons. I don't know what version the reviewer used, but version 4.5 has both extensive local help in HTML format and exports CSV.

Thank you. The article has been updated.

There's a mistake in the article. It says MoneyManagerEx does not support password encryption. I know it does because I currently use this feature in it, and I have done so for years.

MoneyManagerEX has one major problem, and it is major. The QIF Import and Export function cannot handle split transaction categories. It enters split transactions as "unknown" category. It does this even with transferring accounts between MoneyManagerEX databases.
This problem has existed for a long time and there seems to be no intention of rectifying it.
It is a pity, as otherwise it would be one of the best personal finance applications.