Whether you are just starting or have been on your personal financial journey for a long time, having financial tools that aggregate your data makes it easier to make decisions. Why use up good brain energy by compiling your data when it can be done for you? Being able to sync your financial accounts – your savings, checking, credit cards, loans, and investments and monitor what is happening all in one app is amazing! With built-in planning tools, analysis with charts of your entire financial portfolio, you will be able to act and make strategic decisions.
Before I found Personal Capital, I was making spreadsheets. I had to log on to each financial institution, pull the information, record the information, and then develop my own tools to analyze the data. When I discovered Personal Capital, I immediately signed up and synchronized all my financial accounts to it. Having my accounts sync automatically cut my time dramatically, not to mention the analysis tools they have available were much better than mine.
Aggregation: All your accounts in one place
Overview: Net worth, Assets, Liabilities, and Transactions
Monitor: money coming in (income), going out (expenses), Savings and Debt
Built in financial tools for monitoring and planning
Investments: see the performance, where your money is allocated and the sectors that you are investing in.
Personal Capital is a free online financial tool available from your desktop, tablet, or phone. Finances are complex, especially when you have your money in different companies. Personal Capital makes it easy with tools built to help you aggregate, see the big picture, and complete long-term financial planning.
Here are some of the tools they offer:
Net Worth: Get an accurate view of your net worth—what you have minus what you owe. This number acts as a compass and helps you navigate your finances. Your Net Worth tells you how much you have and gives you direction on where you need to go.
Financial Planning: Helps you understand your savings and investments. It allows you to use different scenarios to plan from different angles (i.e. retirement and education).
Budgeting: See how you spend money or save money based on monthly set targets.
Cash Flow: What is happening with your money – money coming in and going out.
Investment Analysis: Monitor your investment performance
Fee Analyzer: What are the fees associated with your mutual fund, investing, and retirement accounts? Are there any hidden fees?
Personal Capital also has a paid version; however, read my personal finance series completely as you may not need the paid version.
Personal Capital has two different versions:
The free version has its robust tools at your fingertips and includes a free consultation from a financial advisor. The financial advisor will look at your accounts and give you a personalized analysis of your investments with some recommendations. There is no obligation to use the second version which is called their Wealth Management although they will ask.
The Wealth Management version is their active management of your investments using the same tools that are offered in the free version. However, they have human advisors who will manage your money starting at an annual fee of 0.89% and a minimum balance of $100,000. The fees are tiered and go down with a higher account balance. There are no additional fees for transactions or commissions.
The fee structure for this service is as follows:
0.89% of the first $1 million
0.79% of the first $3 million
0.69% of the next $2 million
0.59% of the next $5 million
0.49% on balances over $10 million
Personal Capital Cons:
The free version is free. While it does come with a free consultation with a financial advisor, there is some solicitation to sign up for their Wealth Management version. Some people can find this annoying. Personally, I didn’t the first time. I listened to their insights and was appreciative of their time and then declined the paid upgrade.
Budgeting features – Personal Capital is not designed to help you with a budget. However, it has some limited features to use.
Wealth Management – Their paid version is expensive, especially when compared to other Robo-advisors even though there is a human component to the Wealth Management version.
Is Personal Capital for me?
If you want to see what is happening with your money in one place, then you should sign up for Personal Capital. Their comprehensive and robust tools are free, aside from their wealth management version, so there’s no reason not to try them.
How to Sign up for Personal Capital
Sign up through the website and provide your phone number, email address, and create a password.
They will ask for some general information (age, name, your preferred retirement age, and how much money you have saved)
Link your accounts – Personal Capital can link with more than 12,000 financial institutions.