If you’re juggling multiple debts, you’re not alone. According to data from the Federal Reserve’s recent Survey of Consumer Finances, as analyzed by TIME magazine’s Money, the average American under the age of 35 carries $67,400 in debt.
This load increases steadily with age—from $133,100 for consumers between the ages of 35 and 44 to $134,600 for those between 45 and 54—before beginning to fall again among those 55 years and older. Across age groups, the burden is generally comprised of mortgage loans and home equity lines of credit on primary residences, loans for non-primary residences, credit card debt, education debt and auto loans.
That’s a lot of accounts to stay on top of—and it doesn’t end there. Add in retirement, investment, checking and savings accounts and it becomes even more difficult to snap an accurate picture of your financial life. Unless, that is, you’re using Personal Capital’s free financial software and tools. The online financial advisor and personal wealth management company is making it easier for Americans to keep an eye on all aspects of their finances in one secure place.
Inspired by Crisis, Powered by Transparency
Founded by Bill Harris, formerly of Intuit and PayPal, along with Rob Foregger and Louie Gasparini, Personal Capital was inspired—at least in part—by the financial crisis of 2008.
“We thought there was an opportunity to marry great free consumer software to help people manage their money with a paid investment management service that provides transparency,” Jim Del Favero, Personal Capital’s Chief Product Officer, recently explained to RewardExpert. “Our financial advisors are fiduciaries and are legally bound to operate in our customers’ best interests. We’ve married this high-integrity service with award-winning free software tools.”
Publicly launched in 2011, Personal Capital has grown significantly over the past seven years. More than 1.6 million consumers use the company’s free financial software and its advisors manage $7 billion in assets.
Your Complete Financial Picture
Del Favero said that anyone can benefit from the services Personal Capital provides.
“A typical client of our investment service is between 35 and 55,” he added. “They usually are at a stage in their life where the complexity of their finances and their short- and long-term goals are such that they want to be able to work with someone who can help.”
Free tool users range from Millennials and Gen Xers to Boomers. “We help everyone from people who are just starting out to those with a lot of debt,” Del Favero said.
Personal Capital’s software blends cutting-edge technology with objective financial advice. After connecting your financial accounts, you can easily access them all with a single, secure login through any internet-connected device.
“Our focus is a bit different than other apps that might focus only on budgeting,” Del Favero noted. “We’re really about your complete financial picture and setting and achieving long-term goals. You can set a monthly budget, but we also track your net worth over time.”
And that’s not all—not by a long shot. Other helpful free tools Personal Capital clients can access include:
- Fee Analyzer – “You can run our retirement fee analyzer to see what you are paying on fund fees,” Del Favero said. “You can then make a change in your 401(k) to move into lower cost funds.”
- Investment Checkup – If you’d like assistance figuring out the best investment allocation for your life stage, Personal Capital’s investment checkup tool is for you. “You’ll answer questions about your age and when you want to retire,” Del Favero explained. “Then we’ll take a look at your linked investment accounts and show you where you are versus the target allocation we recommend.”
- Retirement Planner – The retirement planner tool allows you to set short- and long-term goals for your savings. “Through your linked bank and credit card accounts, we can understand your spending and income data as well as how much you save,” Del Favero said. “Then we’ll show how you’re tracking against what you want to spend in retirement, when you can retire, and how much you’ll have per month once you’ve retired.”
Personal Capital’s financial advisors use the same tools to collaborate with clients of the company’s paid investment management service.
“If you’ve ever logged into other managed account sites, it’s usually hard to understand where you are with your investments and what you’re paying for them,” Del Favero said. “With us, you’re collaborating with your advisor using a set of tools you can access from your mobile phone, tablet and the web in order to improve your long-term financial outcomes. And that person is legally bound to act in your best interests and do it in a very transparent way without any hidden fees.”
Del Favero added that Personal Capital’s management fee is under 1 percent and portfolios are built from individual securities without passing along custodian or trading costs.
To learn more about Personal Capital and explore their free tools and paid services for yourself, visit www.personalcapital.com or give them a call at 855-855-8005.