Our 2020 Financial Tool kit For Savings, investing, and budgeting

This year is going to be interesting for us. We’ve been tackling debt for several years, had to deal with some home repair issues, but now we finally get to focus on investing quite a bit.

High level goals for 2020:

  • Max out traditional IRA’s (our income disqualifies from Roth IRA)
  • Max out employer match for wife’s 401k
  • Max out my 401k (no employer match)
  • Remodel master bathroom in our house (badly needs it and I’ve been patching since we bought the house)
  • Increase emergency fund to plan for new baby

In order to accomplish the above, we’re largely relying on automation this year. It allows us to pay ourselves first for 401K’s and savings.

We also tend to have the real and unfortunate habit of spending money if we see we can afford to, so to offset this we use automation everyday to check our spending patterns vs historicals to increase savings or investing where possible.

Our Financial Tool Tech Stack For 2020


  • Digit – We use digit to pull savings daily, generally it just skims the top of our checking account compared to historical spending habits. If it finds an opportunity, it pulls the money and shuttles it into a holding account. I transfer it out monthly, but am willing to pay digit the $2 to help pull this money that we’d otherwise spend.
  • Raise – We use raise to buy giftcards for discount purchasing. Raise offers 1% or more off pretty regularly, and occasionally has sales. We try to take advantage of the sales when possible to stack for savings on common stores we shop at.
  • Ally – This is where our non-emergency fund savings goals live. We keep separate accounts for vacation, 529, near term savings here.
  • Wealthfront – This is where our emergency fund lives. We keep it here primarily due to the interest rate we get. When we originally signed up, it was substantially higher than Ally, it still is but much less so now days.


  • Payroll Provider Bank/Acct allocation – Both of our payroll providers offer the ability to send your paycheck allocation to different bank accounts. We leverage this to keep money out of sight / out of mind. It’s a fantastic tool.
  • Vanguard – This is where our IRA’s live as well as our 529 and my 401k.
  • Fidelity – This is where my spouses 401k lives.

Net Worth Tracking / Retirement Simulation

  • Personal Capital – Useful tool for measuring net worth, cash flow, and retirement simulations.

Credit Score Tracking / Monitoring

  • Credit Karma – We use this is a credit score monitoring tool. They pull 2 of the 3 major bureaus in the USA.
  • Credit Sesame – We use this for credit score monitoring and credit alert monitoring tool. They pull 3 of the major bureaus in the USA and are useful because they help you understand the reporting timing of your tradelines.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.