5 Free Wesabe Alternatives | Goodbye Wesabe

By Craig Ford on 6 July 2010 (Updated 13 July 2010) 20 comments

A dark cloud has fallen over those who are part of the Wesabe community. The Wesabe free online personal finances tool will shut down effective July 31st, 2010.

If you are a Wesabe user, you have until July 31st to download all of your data. However, the question remains: where will you upload or export that material?

If you're searching for a Wesabe replacement, remember:

  1. Don’t just blindly use Uncle Joe’s favorite personal finance tool. What works for someone else might not be best for you. List what you liked about Wesabe and try to find a product that has similar features. Many were attracted to Wesabe because they did not collect personal information or because it allowed you to track cash spending. If you are concerned about password security then make that your priority when hunting for a new program. If you want to track cash spending, be sure that the new product has that feature.
  2. In the end, your best alternative may or may not be free. While this post introduces only free options, some of the best personal finance software might be worth the cost. You may not want to limit yourself to only free alternatives.

Here are 5 free Wesabe alternatives.

1. Excel Spreadsheet

Excel can be a great tool for making a budget and tracking spending, but if you want to track all of your financial activities including credit card activity and investments, then Excel will be too limited. As an example, here is a free household budget spreadsheet that you can use to track your spending. With Excel, you can also download a free debt snowball spreadsheet. However, it will be hard to find a spreadsheet that allows you to track everything in one document.

Is Excel right for you?

  • You don’t need all your information in one file.
  • You have some Excel knowledge.
  • You like the hands on approach and don’t mind entering all your own account information.
  • You don’t mind some time searching for budget templates to find the right one for you.

2. Mint and Yodlee

Mint is one of the best known free online personal finance tools. Like Wesabe, you can access your account from any computer via the internet. The Mint software will help you track your spending and activity from different financial institutions. Most Mint users I know speak highly of the product. The product is very easy to use and the layout is efficient. Some users complain about the number of ads you will see while using Mint. In order to make the product free, they offer ads for affiliate partners. Remember, if you have a smaller bank or credit union, you might not be able to track spending via that account

I put Mint and Yodlee together because they have many similar features and functions. Mint is probably easier to navigate, but those of you who use one or the other will probably swear by the superiority of one or the other.

3. PocketSmith

PocketSmith is a paid product, but it also has a free service. For most users the free service will be too limiting for regular use. What distinguishes PocketSmith is its calendar system that helps you forecast your spending. You can see what your budget and spending will look like in six months down the road. Since this is calendar based, it is a great tool for helping you manage your bills and schedule upcoming payments.

It is, by design, completely different than a Wesabe, so try this product only if you are looking for a program with a different feel.

4. GnuCash

If you are looking to move away from an internet based free personal finance program, you might consider trying GnuCash. GnuCash has a very extensive range of functions. With the program you can track spending by downloading transactions from financial institutions or you can manually enter the information. You can also set up and track a budget with the program.

GnuCash also has some good accounting features for small business owners.

GnuCash is an open source tool that has a pretty steep learning curve, so you need to be willing to dedicate some time to get a feel for the product. In fact, like many users, I got stuck during the installation and set up process and decided this tool is out of my technology league.

5. Pen and Paper

While a pen and paper budget may take more time, it is the easiest way to customize a budget and track your spending. At times it can be frustrating using any of these financial programs because there is one thing that it just won’t let you do. The pen and paper approach removes all those barriers and allows you to customize your finances in any way.

I hope that all our current Wesabe friends can find a new personal finance tool to assist them. Enjoy the search!

What other free tools do you use or recommend? Do you have any thoughts on any of the above tools?

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Guest's picture
Beau

Something Wesabe lacked for me, was budgeting capabilities. http://budgety.net/ is my solution to that.

Guest's picture
Ed

This isn't a particularly useful list for anyone outside of the US. I am surprised you didn't mention MoneyStrands - which to me seems to be a very good alternative, if not upgrade, from Wesabe.

Guest's picture

Hi guys!
I am very, truly sad about Wesabe going away. I have been using it for over two years now and it's become part of my life.
Last week I spent quite some time testing other alternatives. Since I don't live in the US, I can't use Mint.com. So it was a little bit harder for me.
I finally found https://money.strands.com/
It's free and is very much like Wesabe. You can automate accounts or add transactions them manually, your accounts can be in any bank, even if your bank is nos listed (unlike Mint.com) and you can also set different currencies (US dollars, Euros, Colombian pesos, Venezuelan bolivars, and so on).
I am still trying it, but I think it will remain as my replacement for Wesabe.
I hope it helps!

Guest's picture

Umm... since when is Excel free!? It's part of a very expensive proprietary software package - and before you say it comes pre-installed on many computers, the software is factored into the price. Free would be something such as OpenOffice or Google Docs.

Guest's picture
Kate

I used Mint and I like it - very easy interface as I can access from any computer.

Craig Ford's picture

@Ed and Andrea. Thanks for pointing our MoneyStrands. Ed, doesn't everything but Mint/Yodlee work for non US funds? I don't live in the US, nor am I American so I'm surprised I came up with such a US based list -sorry.
@Guy. Good call on the Excel. Yep, I should have wrote Spreadsheet, not Excel.

Guest's picture
Jayson

I'm bummed Wesabe is gone. I've been looking at alternative sites. I checked out Mvelopes, Thrive, GreenSherpa.

They're all good. I liked Greensherpa, they seem to have the security thing really well figured out too. Check them out:

http://www.greensherpa.com

Guest's picture
heaps!

Yes it is mostly American products, except for Excel.
I'm old school myself so I feel pen and paper will be easiest. You can make your own charts and fill it in however way you like.

There is other software that are similar for people outside the U.S., banks usually supply some kind of budgeting tool. Here in New Zealand, heaps!
( http://www.heaps.co.nz ) is available for Kiwibank customers.

Cheers,
Wahid

Guest's picture
Jeff

I personally use clearcheckbook.com and love it. Free, with lots of great features.

Guest's picture
fatbob

Buxfer - http://www.buxfer.com
Projects cash flow
Allows you to store your passwords only on your own computer

Guest's picture
Shadoglare

GnuCash sucks for somebody who just needs to keep track of a checkbook, and is much closer to a business bookkeeping program like Peachtree or something. There are better, much more user-friendly alternatives out there for people who basically just need to balance their checkbooks using the PC.

Guest's picture
Kerry

I love Gnucash! And as far as I know, it works with any currency. I may be part of the computerized generation, but it's a really great tool once you get used to it.

Guest's picture
Patricia

I use http://www.spendingdiary.com/ to track my expenses. It's free and they don't ask me to share my bank account information. It's also very basic. You input your expenses.

Guest's picture
Guest

I too am sad to see Wesabe go, I'm surprised we didn't see advertising, Freemium or subscription money making models before their announcement to close.

My basic Criteria for a Wesabe alternative:

Cost:
The price should be somewhere between free and $20/year max.

Privacy:
Doesn't ask for my bank passwords, Chase actually charges 10$/mo if I do. I usually upload the microsoft money exports from each of my banks, the wesabe firefox downloader made this very easy.

Guest's picture
Cory

You might also check out BudgetSketch: http://www.budgetsketch.com/

Guest's picture
Guest

Bummer about Wesabe. I'd recommend checking out GreenSherpa. They've got some really cool features not available anywhere else.

Guest's picture
Amy

GreenSherpa just announced they have a CSV uploader Wesabe users can use to transfer their data. Even though GreenSherpa isn't free, I'd highly recommend checking it out.

http://blog.greensherpa.com/index.php/other/greensherpa-welcomes-wesabe-...

Guest's picture
Helena

Shame about Wesabe, they had a great product. at the moment I'm using iCashbook Personal. www.icashbook.com. It's easy to use and free. Great budgeting tools as well.

Guest's picture
Matt

There is also another free alternative: simplechecking.net. Very new and has most of the features that the average home user needs for personal finance.

Guest's picture
Tony

I personally use InEx Finance, since it offers a great mix of money management, expense tracking and budgeting tools. And it works great for people outside of the US also. Check them out at https://www.inexfinance.com/