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Mvelopes.com

Free
Reviewed
May 2012
by ConsumerSearch

Pros
  • Creates envelope-based budgets
  • Automatically aggregates and updates account data
  • Offers online bill pay
Cons
  • User must provide login information for all accounts
  • Users report trouble canceling subscription/trial

Mvelopes.com uses an envelope-based budgeting tool that allows users to allocate income to expenses and savings using virtual envelopes; users can check the balances in pre-specified envelopes from any web-enabled mobile phone. Mvelopes.com is strong in budgeting and tracking your net worth, but lacks tools for managing investments.

Like other personal finance management services, Mvelopes.com allows you to enter details of your bank and credit card accounts, and automatically downloads your spending and deposit transactions from them. The free basic membership with Mvelopes.com allows you to organize your finances into up to 25 categories or envelopes, and can link to up to four bank or credit card accounts. Paid membership (*Est. $10 per month) gives an unlimited number of envelopes and accounts, as well as bill pay and access to the Debt Center to help you organize your debts.

Mvelopes.com provides mobile apps for iPhones and for Android devices. Unlike some other mobile apps, Mvelopes.com's apps allow you to update all your data from your smartphone, including creating new manual transactions or new envelopes.

We found the most helpful reviews for Mvelopes.com at Lifehacker.com and About.com. Other sources include an opinion offered by Forbes columnist Sramana Mitra on her personal blog and a review by PC World. A discussion thread on Epinions.com has scores of user comments about Mvelope.com's billing policies.

Our Sources

1. Lifehacker.com

Jason Fitzpatrick describes Mvelopes.com as a "robust" personal finance management service, based on the envelope principle of budgeting. The review mentions that Mvelopes.com is the only such service without a free account, though that has now changed and you can use it at no cost.

Review: Five Best Personal Money Management Sites, Jason Fitzpatrick, July 11, 2010

2. About.com

Shelley Elmblad describes Mvelopes.com's features and recommends it to "those who are looking for a strong budgeting tool in a personal finance online application." She does note some "wonky behavior" when it is used with certain browsers, however, and her comments regarding costs are now out of date. She rates Mvelopes 4 stars out of 5. (Note: ConsumerSearch is owned by About.com, but the two don't share an editorial affiliation.)

Review: A First Look at Mvelopes Online Budgeting App, Shelley Elmblad, Sept. 15, 2011

3. SramanaMitra.com

Guest reviewers Charles Bush and Kathy Hwang critique the design of the Finicity (now called Mvelopes.com) user interface; according to them, "it's complicated to use and needs a serious redesign." On the other hand, they note that the site forces users to be aware of every cent they spend, which creates accountability.

Review: Redesign That: Online Personal Finance, Part 3, Charles W. Bush and Kathy Hwang, Feb. 14, 2009

4. PC World

This review analyzes and compares Mint.com, Quicken Online (now closed) and Mvelopes.com, which won a World Class Award from PC World in 2006. Based on her evaluation of each, Yardena Arar gives Mint.com a score of 87 out of 100 and Mvelopes.com an 84 -- all in the "very good" category. She notes that Mvelopes.com is the only one of the three that offers online bill pay.

Review: Online Finance Services Show Where Your Money Goes, Yardena Arar, Jan. 29, 2008

5. Epinions.com

Users posting to Epinions.com both attack and defend Mvelopes.com. Most complain about the company's billing and refund policies; a few defend them. Some say the automatic bill-pay feature malfunctions occasionally, and others say that customer service is not always responsive. Note that while some of the posted comments are from the last few years, some date from as far back as 2006.

Review: Discussion Thread: Mvelopes Poor Customer Service, Contributors to Epinions.com

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