I’ve recently started using a site called Wesabe. It’s basically an online dashboard into my finances. You download a small client application and install it. You save your online banking login credentials in that application locally on your PC, and it periodically downloads any updates and sends to the Wesabe servers. This process separates any direct access to your online banking services from Wesabe’s servers, eliminating a big risk were someone to attack their system. Of course, your actual financial records are still there, but at least no one will be emptying your accounts should something go wrong.
However, Wesabe goes remarkably right. It’s dead easy to upload my account info and I’m soon tagging away. I maintain a semi-sophisticated budget each month, traditionally in Excel. I check what I’m spending against what I SHOULD be spending (always good for a laugh) and keep my overall budget in balance against some simple ground rules – how much do I want to spend on necessities, entertainment, others vs myself, etc.
Wesabe eliminates the pain of of download statements, linking them together with my budget, and trying to keep tabs on everything. Even better, everything is there online, whenever I need it (Yes, I could do that with the online banking services of mot major banks at this point, but let’s be honest about how much fun their software is to use.)
Definitely worth checking out Wesabe. You will not be disappointed. However, I also hear that Mint may be waiting in the wings to plant a big flag in this space. Should be interesting in the next few months as an increasing number of sites make a play for being the simple, straightforward personal finance aggregator.