Cars. A house. Paying for higher education.
Like it or not, certain financial obligations can account for over half of your lifetime spendings. As an entrepreneur, with so much money going into these and other major business purchases, it’s essential that you not only find ways to reduce your expenses but that you’re also able to get a quality result from each investment.
Fortunately, you’re not alone in your quest to make smart decisions when making these purchases. A plethora of mobile apps and other tools for entrepreneurs are readily available to help entrepreneurs as they take on key life purchases, while also hoping to cut expenses to grow their respective companies:
8 Essential Tools for Entrepreneurs
1) Real Estate By Zillow
As one of the most popular home-buying apps on the market, Real Estate by Zillow has a lot to offer potential homebuyers. With interactive maps, home value estimates and an expansive database with millions of home listings, this app makes it easy to find homes in your area that meet your purchasing preferences.
While the app certainly doesn’t replace visiting a home in-person, it’s a great way to get started on the home-buying process.
Using personal credit to finance business expenses is often the only option for new and small companies without many assets or an established business credit history. However, it is important to compare multiple lenders before you make a choice. This way, you can find the best business loan interest rates. Too many business owners go with the first lender that approves their applications because they are either too busy to apply to multiple lenders or feel that all lenders offer similar rates to people with their credit score and income. This can be an expensive mistake.
A recent study by SuperMoney analyzed nearly 160,000 loan offers to over 15,000 borrowers who recently applied for a loan. The study revealed that the average difference between the highest and lowest APR offers to the same borrower was 7.1 percentage points. Using free comparison tools that don’t require a hard credit pull to show you your interest rates, such as SuperMoney’s loan offer engine, can save you thousands of dollars because interest rates vary so much depending on the lender you choose.
There’s much more to buying a house than simply finding a building that matches your price range. After all, don’t you want to live in an area that you’ll love? Dwellr utilizes data from the U.S. Census Bureau to help you learn more about the cities you’re considering.
Simply input your lifestyle preferences, which can cover everything from education and commuting to climate and population density, and the app will reveal which areas best meet your criteria. It’s a great way to help you find the right place.
Journaling is one of the best habits an entrepreneur can take up – and an incredibly helpful resource when considering a big purchase. Daily journaling can help you be more productive, but there are also a variety of guided journals on the market to help you set goals, save money, and make big decisions.
In an age where most helpful tools are online, going analog can be freeing. Check out some of the guided journals at Creative Primer to find one that works for you – and helps you make sense of your major purchase decision.
5) Student Loan Hero
We tend to think of college as an investment rather than a single purchase, but there’s no denying that the expenses associated with getting a four-year degree can prove quite costly.
Student Loan Hero helps users sync their student loans to more easily track payment progress, research alternative repayment methods, and even consolidate federal loans. Easing the burden of student loan debt will make it that much easier to afford other major purchases.
6) Debt Payoff Assistant
It seems that almost every major purchase requires the accrual of some debt. If you’re not careful, building up too much debt from several purchases could put you in some dire financial straits.
Debt Payoff Assistant is a free app that ensures you’ll avoid these pitfalls by consolidating your debt information and then helping you calculate different payoff plans. Payment due date notifications and multiple payoff strategies keep you on top of your financial situation.
Your wedding day is supposed to be one of the happiest days of your life, but when the average wedding costs over $35,000, it’s understandable that weddings can also get a bit stressful.
WeddingHappy uses your wedding date to build a timeline to keep you on track. A to-do checklist will help you know what you need to do (and when), while the app’s payment tracking feature will help you stay under budget.
Furniture, appliances, and other similar items may not be as expensive as a car or house, but they can still take a big bite out of your budget. With many people understandably wary of sites like Craigslist, OfferUp serves as a great alternative for finding local deals on used big-ticket items.
Each listing on OfferUp comes with a photo so you know exactly what you’re getting. Better yet, OfferUp utilizes user profiles and ratings so you can have peace of mind as you try to find deals on used furniture and other big-budget buys.
There’s a good chance that your new car will be the second-largest purchase you ever make, after a house. But how can you find a vehicle that fits your budget and matches what you’re looking for? Fender.Cars makes this process easy by taking your buying preferences and then displaying cars from local dealerships in a Tinder-style format.
Swipe right or left to indicate which vehicles you like or don’t like! The app can even help you get in contact with the dealership so you can speed up the car-buying process.
Save Time & Money
Whether you’re researching new cars or need help paying off the debt you’ve accumulated as a businessperson, these useful tools will save time and money as you make some of life’s most important financial decisions.
With these essential tools for entrepreneurs at your disposal, you’ll be in a better position than ever to ensure that your major purchases (along with your up-and-coming business, of course) turn out exactly how you’d like.