10 Best YNAB Alternatives

Some links included in this article are from our advertisers. Read here for how we make money.

Have you ever heard of You Need a Budget (YNAB)? YNAB is a budgeting tool created to help you have better control over your finances. It’s one of the most popular budgeting apps, but are there better YNAB alternatives?

Depending on your budgeting style, you might not find YNAB a good fit.

We’ll show you some similar software programs to help you decide which budgeting program will be best for you.

There are many reasons why budgeting is important, and these tools will help you to do it better.

Editor’s Top Picks

empower logo 150

Free to use and automatically categorizes your expenses.

Automated spreadsheets help with debt payoff and budgeting.

Digital cash envelopes to manage your money.

Top You Need a Budget Alternatives

There are a few different options you may want to check out if you’re looking for an alternative to YNAB. Each one helps you reach your financial goals better, but they all work differently.

Here are some details on each of the five You Need a Budget alternatives we found.

1. Empower

empower home page

Empower will help you manage your money. However, it does so in a much more comprehensive way than YNAB as you get to see the long-term financial results.

It also does provide budgeting tools where it will automatically categorize your expenses for you.

When you sign up with Empower, you start by linking all of your financial accounts. You’ll include checking, savings, credit card, loan, retirement and investment accounts.

Now you’ve got a complete picture of your entire financial situation in one place.

Next, you need to choose between the services Empower offers. One is a free financial tracking service. The others are paid financial advisory, wealth management and private banking services.

The free financial tracking tools help you keep an eye on your overall financial situation. It’s nice because you don’t have to check each account manually online.

Instead, you just pull up your Empower account and get a full view of your net worth and financial picture. This service is completely free.

Learn More: Empower Review

2. Tiller

Tiller homepage

Tiller Money is an awesome alternative to YNAB. It’s great for budgeting, expense tracking and debt payoff.

The main difference between Tiller and the other options on this list is that it uses Excel and Google spreadsheets.

When you sign up with Tiller Money, you link up your accounts, just as you do with YNAB. Next, you’ll create customized spreadsheets to help you manage your money.

Here are some examples:

  • Monthly budget spreadsheet
  • Debt snowball spreadsheet (yes, it’ll help you get debt-free using the debt snowball method)
  • Net worth tracker
  • Weekly expense tracker

The worksheets are attractively designed and super easy to view and use. In fact, I signed up for Tiller a while back and am loving it. It’s thorough but easy enough for tech novices like me to use.

And it’s affordable. Tiller Money costs $79 a year. That averages out to $6.58 per month.

Bonus: Tiller Money is cheaper than YNAB by about $2 a month. That’s not a lot, but we budget-obsessed people know that it all adds up.

Learn More: Tiller Review

3. Qube Money

Qube Money homepage

Qube Money was founded by financial health coach Ryan Clark, who has a passion for helping people overcome spending and budgeting problems.

He calls Qube Money “envelope budgeting for the 21st century.” You set up Qubes for all of your budget categories by using the Qube app.

When you need to make a purchase, you go to your Qube app and see how much money is left in the Qube for the coordinating category.

Put in the amount of your purchase, and Qube automatically transfers the money from your bank account, providing you’ve got available money in that Qube.

With Qube, you can always see how much money you’ve got left in each spending category. That way, you can help ensure you stay in line with your budget.

Qube has three different plans to choose from:

  • Qube Basic: Free and includes 10 Qubes
  • Premium: $6.50 per month for unlimited Qubes
  • Family: $11.50 per month and includes cards for adults and teens

Learn More: Qube Money Review

4. Mint

Mint homepage

Mint.com was founded in 2006 and is currently owned by Intuit. It offers you a way to budget and track your money in one place. And it’s one of the most popular YNAB alternatives.

Like the other services listed here, Mint gives you easy access to your bank, credit card, investment and loan accounts all in one place.

It’ll also send you alerts if your bank account is running low or you have payments due on loans or credit cards. This is a nice feature because it helps ensure that you won’t accidentally forget to make a payment.

Late payments often result in late fees and raised interest rates. So in that way, Mint can help you save money.

In addition, Mint will let you know how much you’re paying in ATM and other fees. And it’ll alert you if there are any large or unusual transactions on your accounts.

Bonus: Mint helps you keep track of your net worth. It’s displayed at the top of your account every time you sign in.

Related: YNAB Versus Mint: Which is Better?

5. CountAbout

CountAbout homepage

CountAbout was founded with its main goal is to be a step up from Quicken. In fact, you can seamlessly migrate from Quicken to CountAbout.

The site will automatically sync your Quicken data into the CountAbout system. One nice thing about CountAbout is that you can rename spending categories as you see fit.

CountAbout’s prices are also very reasonable. It costs $9.99 per year for the basic budgeting plan.

If you’re willing to upgrade to the premium plan, you’ll get an added benefit: automatic download of transactions. The premium plan is only $39.99 per year. That equates to a bit over $3 a month.

Along with budgeting tools, CountAbout also provides:

  • Graphs to help you assess income and spending
  • Ways to incorporate recurring transactions and split transactions
  • Apps for Android and iOS

It’s a fairly thorough system that should meet the needs of most basic budgeters.

6. Simplifi

Simplifi homepage

Simplifi by Quicken is a newer budgeting app that’s also meant to be a step above the old school Quicken budgeting system.

In fact, the New York Times Wirecutter voted Simplifi the best budgeting app two years in a row.

Simplifi is similar to Empower in that it allows you to view all of your financial accounts in one place.

You can view bank accounts, investments, 401ks, credit cards, loans and more on your Simplifi dashboard.

At just $5.99 per month (or $47.88 annually), Simplifi is cheaper than YNAB as well.

Learn More: Simplifi Review

7. EveryDollar

EveryDollar homepage

EveryDollar is one of the most popular YNAB alternatives and is the budgeting brainchild of well-known personal finance expert Dave Ramsey.

The website says it’ll help you create your first budget in less than 10 minutes. It’s a simple program that’s fairly easy to use for people of almost any technical skill level.

EveryDollar is free and allows you to add income, spending, and budgeting information manually.

Consider upgrading to Ramsey+ if you want bank syncing, budget reports and downloading transactions to a spreadsheet.

After a 14-day free trial, a Ramsey+ membership costs:

  • $9.99 for one month
  • $99.99 for one year

Learn More: EveryDollar Review

8. Goodbudget

Goodbudget homepage

Goodbudget is a budgeting app that helps you determine the “why” behind your expenditures. In other words, it helps you create a value-based spending plan.

It’s based on the cash envelope system and gives you electronic envelopes to put your spending money in when you create your budget.

You can sync your device with your partner too, so that you’re working your budget together. The free version of Goodbudget includes 10 digital envelopes and works with one account for up to two devices.

The Plus version ($7 per month/$60 annually) includes unlimited envelopes, unlimited accounts, lets you partner on five devices and more.

9. PocketSmith

Pocketsmith homepage

PocketSmith has been helping people budget since 2008. It touts itself as a budgeting app with unique features for every type of budget need, including those with multiple streams of income.

With PocketSmith, you can import your transactions from your bank using multiple bank accounts as long as they’re from the same bank. You can track your income, expenses, net worth and more.

You can make a cash flow forecast and work in multiple currencies too. PocketSmith has a free plan that allows you to budget and import transactions manually.

The Premium plan from PocketSmith is $9.95 per month or $7.50 per month if paid annually. This is their most popular plan. It allows for automatic or manual transaction importation, a 10-year financial projection and unlimited budgets.

PocketSmith’s SuperPlan allows for 30 years’ projection of your financial picture and costs $19.95 per month or $14.16 per month if paid annually.

10. PocketGuard

Pocketguard homepage

PocketGuard’s big push is that it allows you to know how much money is in your pocket at all times. You can use it to make a budget, monitor your spending, and remind you when bills are due.

By knowing what’s left in your “pocket” for the day, week, or month you can better make fluid spending decisions.

PocketGuard has a free version that allows for importing data from your bank and putting the data into preset categories.

PocketGuard Plus costs $4.99 per month or $34.99 per year when you pay annually. With PocketGuard Plus, you get added features like customized categories, unlimited goals, and more.

Comparison of YNAB Alternatives

CompanyCostBest Feature
YNAB$98.99/yr.Zero-based budgeting
Tiller Money$79/yr.Customizable spreadsheets
EmpowerFreeComprehensive financial summary
Qube Money$0 to $11.50/mo.Individual and family plans
MintFreePayment due date alerts
CountAbout$9.99/yr.-$39.99/yr.Supports small business invoicing
Simplifi$5.99/mo.-$47.88/yr.Intuitive spending plan
EveryDollar$9.99/mo.-$99.99/yr.Split transaction capabilities
GoodbudgetFree-$7/mo.Partner syncing capabilities
PocketSmith$9.95-$19.95/mo.Cashflow forecasting feature
PocketGuard$4.99/mo.-$34.99/yr.Cost-effective zero-based plan


Using a budgeting program like the ones we’ve mentioned here is important. It helps you avoid common budgeting mistakes that can have a long-term impact on your finances.

As you can see, there are several YNAB alternatives out there if you find YNAB isn’t working for you. Depending on what you need, one of the budgeting programs here will be a better solution for your needs.

Join Our FREE
5-Day Money Masterclass

Get a clear picture of your finances and achieve your goals!

    We won't send you spam. Unsubscribe at any time.