Truebill Review: The Budget & Subscriptions Tracking App
Managing your finances can be challenging — especially if you aren’t sure where to start. If you’re trying to save money, stick to a budget, or just want a better idea of where your money is going, it’s important to keep track of your spending and expenses.
Of course, actually managing your finances is easier said than done. Truebill, an app designed to help you take control of your finances, claims to help you lower your monthly expenses and cut unwanted subscriptions. But is this app really worth your time? We decided to take a look in this Truebill review.
- What is Truebill?
- The bottom line
What is Truebill?
Truebill is an app designed to give you an organized look into your finances and spending habits. This app will break down your finances into categories to help you better understand where your money is going, how much is being spent, and how often you’re spending.
On top of this snapshot, Truebill can actually negotiable monthly bills on your behalf and help unsubscribe you from unwanted subscriptions and memberships, like a gym membership. This can save you time on the phone negotiating with numerous companies and ultimately, save you money each month. Consider the app acting as your cancellations concierge.
A study by Waterstone Group found 84% of us typically underestimate how much we spend each month. Truebill wants to stop that and works to save and find you extra money in areas you don't realize you are overspending, from your Verizon bill to your Hulu subscription, it claims it has an 85% chance to lowering your phone, cable, or internet bills.
How does Truebill work?
To get started with Truebill, you’ll first download the app on your smartphone or sign up via the webform. Once you’ve created an account, you’ll link your bank accounts through the Truebill app to give Truebill access to your withdrawals, expenses, and deposits.
From here, Truebill will search for any automatic payments leaving your account each month, identify these transactions, and ask you to review them. If you want Truebill to cancel or negotiate the price of any of these subscription services or monthly bills, you’ll let Truebill know by selecting “cancel” and the app will walk you through your next steps.
If you don’t find any recurring bills you’d like Truebill to help with, there’s nothing more you’ll need to do.
Truebill offers a savings feature, Smart Savings, that can help you better budget and automatically save money. You’ll be able to schedule automated savings amounts to help meet your financial goals while setting a budget for all of your spending categories to help boost your savings and decrease your spending.
Although the app's main promotion is to cut your subscriptions, the goal is to save you money and your membership comes with additional tools to create savings plans and unlimited budgets.
To start a budget, simply click on Start My Budget in your Reports tab. Confirm your income and recurring bills, add budgets, and Truebill will automatically track your budgets to keep you on track.
How much does Truebill cost?
Truebill does allow you to use this app for free, but you’ll be limited in what features you can use and will also deal with advertisements on the app. Most of the services Truebill offers require some form of payment, outlined in this pricing guide:
Premium service membership
If you want Truebill to cancel or lower bills on your behalf, you’ll need to become a premium service member. A premium subscription costs between $3 and $12 per month, depending on the services you’re interested in. You can also pay annually, upfront, for $36 or $48. Premium membership gives you access to cancellations, balance syncs, concierge help services, chat, custom spend categories, budgeting tools, smart savings features, and more.
Truebill also charges you 40% of your first year’s savings. This means, if Truebill is able to cancel one monthly bill of $10 per month and negotiate your cell phone bill from $100 to $50, you’ll be saving $720 per year ($10 x 12 = $120; $100 - $50 = $50 x 12 = $600; $120 + $600 = $720).
In this scenario, Truebill would charge you 40% of the $720 saved, or $288. This will be charged in a lump sum, though a payment plan extending to 6 months can be accommodated. Keep in mind this fee is charged upfront once automated payments have been reduced or canceled and not at the end of your first year. This percentage is only charged if Truebill is able to save you money or cancel your subscription.
Categorize your spending
Truebill not only tracks your bills and spending, but it can also categorize them and allow you to customize these categories to gain better insight into where your money is going. Truebill will sync your spending from your financial institutions each month, so you can see how your money was spent. Not only is it helping to cancel your subscriptions but this helps you with your savings goals.
Negotiate bills on your behalf
If you have bills you’re automatically paying, you might be overspending. When’s the last time you looked at your car insurance bill or cell phone statement? Truebill will negotiate with companies on your behalf to help you save money by getting you access to the best deals out there, so you can enjoy the savings without spending hours on the phone or live chat.
Cancel subscriptions and memberships
Do you know how many monthly subscriptions or memberships you’re signed up for? Truebill will analyze your automatic payments and identify all of them for you so you can decide if any are a waste of money. Haven’t been to the gym in five years? Truebill will try to cancel your bill for you.
Truebill can also help you recoup money on your internet bill if you suffer from internet outages. The app will request refunds for days your service may have been down, including your cable at top providers like Comcast. If Truebill is able to get you a credit from your internet provider, they’ll charge you 40% of the amount credited.
Free credit score
Truebill also offers you a look at your credit score so you can see how reducing expenses, paying bills on time, and canceling unwanted subscriptions can help boost your score over time. Getting your expenses under control and avoiding late fees can also help lower rates on credit cards in the future, leading to a better credit score.
Although Truebill cannot negotiate to get any overdraft fees refunded, by tracking your balances and upcoming bills in the app you can see if an overdraft may take place and make changes to avoid it. You can also set your account to provide you with balance alerts so if your account drops below a number you set, you'll get a notification.
Truebill offers a Pay Advance service to borrow against your paycheck early. Once you receive your paycheck you pay Truebill back with no interest or extra fees.
At any time you need to speak to someone at Truebill you can do so on the app using Premium Chat.
Who is Truebill best for?
Anyone with multiple monthly payments
If you have dozens of monthly subscriptions, memberships, and other automated payments you haven’t reviewed recently, Truebill might be a good tool to help you start cutting back on used memberships.
Anyone struggling to cancel memberships
Some companies make it difficult to cancel your membership, requiring in-person visits, long waits on phone lines, or even certified letters. Truebill can’t guarantee they can cancel every single unwanted membership, but they have helped many people get out of subscriptions and memberships that were hard to end.
Anyone finding budgeting difficult
Whether you’re a premium member or not, Truebill does offer you access to budgeting tools that can help you finally get a grasp on where your money is going each month, so you can make even better financial decisions.
Who shouldn’t use Truebill?
Anyone with mobile banking budgeting tools
Although Truebill’s budgeting features are helpful, if you already have access to free budgeting tools from your bank, it might not make sense to pay for this app.
Anyone struggling to pay monthly bills
While I love how easy it is to use the Truebill app, I don’t recommend signing up if you’re struggling to pay your bills on time or if you’re being charged late fees due to the 40% upfront payment Truebill takes for its service. Instead, I recommend looking through your subscriptions and memberships yourself to find out what can be cut and put in the work yourself. While it will require more time investment, you won’t be paying an app to help you save money, and you won’t lose a portion of the savings.
Pros & Cons
Easy to use
Once you sync your bank account, Truebill is a breeze to navigate. The app is intuitive and well laid out, making it easy to take advantage of all of this company’s features. Canceling or negotiating a bill requires a simple click and reviewing your finances is downright simple.
The savings are hard to beat
Truebill really can save you money each month and help you get unsubscribed from dozens of unwanted memberships without needing to invest hours of your own time. This is a great tool for anyone who fell victim to subscription boxes or monthly memberships that simply aren’t benefiting your life or bank account.
Truebill also offers automated savings features in its Smart Savings feature that works hand-in-hand with its budgeting tools to help you grow your savings while also reducing your monthly expenses. Again, this feature lets you schedule how much you want to save and the app will ensure it happens.
No true free version
It’s time-consuming to negotiate bills, which is why Truebill charges a percentage of any bills cut or reduced. With this in mind, I think they should offer a free version to show users how much they can save, perhaps offering a limited number of cancellations (while still charging 40% if money is saved).
Truebill vs. competitors
|Company||Free Download Available||Monthly Cost||Fee for Cancellation Service||Savings Account Option|
|Truebill||Yes||$3 - $12 for premium||40% of savings||Yes|
|Trim||Yes||$10 for premium||33% of savings||Yes, with 4% APY up to $2,000|
|BillShark||Yes||No monthly fee||40% of savings||No|
Free to download
Truebill, Trim, and BillShark all offer free app downloads and free versions of their services. Trim also offers a free trial you can set up to test out some of their premium features before committing to a paid membership.
Depending on the services you need, Truebill might only cost you $3 per month for a premium membership, though it could cost up to $12. Trim has a one-size-fits-all premium membership of $10 per month. BillShark has no monthly fee.
All three services will charge you a percentage on any bill they cancel or reduce. Truebill collects 40% of your first year’s savings while Trim collects 33%. BillShark will also charge you 40% of all subscriptions canceled (no yearly limits).
Savings account option
Both Truebill and Trim offer savings account options for premium users, but Trim offers up to 4% APY on your first $2,000 saved. BillShark does not offer savings accounts.
Is Truebill free?
Truebill does offer a free account, but to take advantage of their bill cancellation and reduction services, you will need to pay a monthly fee of $3 to $12 and a percentage on the amount saved.
Is Truebill safe?
When connecting your bank account to Truebill, a 256-bit SSL encryption is used to keep your login and password information safe.
How often does Truebill sync bank information?
Your bank information will sync to Truebill once a day. If you’re a premium member, you can press the “sync” button on the app to get up-to-date account information.
Is Truebill FDIC-insured?
Yes, if you choose to open a savings account with Truebill your money will be insured by the Federal Deposit Corporation (FDIC).
Is Truebill better than Mint?
Truebill and Mint offer some of the same services. Both allow you to budget, track spending, and monitor savings. However, while Mint is primarily a personal finance tracking tool, Truebill is primarily meant to help you cancel any unwanted subscriptions and reduce automatic monthly bills.
The bottom line
If you know you have more than a few monthly subscriptions, memberships, or bills you’ve been wanting to cancel but never seem to have the time to do it, Truebill might be a good solution. I’d encourage you to first sign up for their free account to review all of your subscriptions to find out if you might prefer to cancel these subscriptions on your own.