Going to a dinner with your friend and divvying up the bill is one thing, but managing shared finances with someone you live with can be a nightmare. How to best split groceries, rent, and utilities can end up being a serious point of contention and strain. To battle against potential issues regarding money and financial responsibility, a good first start is communication and a set of ground rules. Beyond that several websites exists to help you keep track of debts, payments, and bill splitting. We highlight a few below.
BillMonk – Launched in 2006, BillMonk aids you in tracking your debts and collections amongst friends and roommates. The functionality is versatile and allows users to keep track of items beyond splitting bills and borrowing cash, to loaning of physical items such as movies and DVDS. Physical items can even be categorized by your friends and roommates as a library of borrowable goods. To keep track of payments on the go if out grocery shopping or out to dinner with a roommate, BillMonk uses SMS texts to update the system of new bills, calculate tips, provide account balances, and report debts or payments. BillMonk closes the loop, enabling people to “settle up” by paying or receiving payments through parent company, Obopay, an online and mobile payment service.
Split A Bill– If you just desire something clean and straightforward to keep track of payments with your roommate, Spiltabill could fit in that category. Bills can be organized as single events or can include multiple
expenses for a large event. Splits are simply done and can be adjusted for uneven splits. This works particularly well if someone pays more rent because their room is larger. Splitabill allows you to customize how often you want email reminders to settle your debts. Payments are done outside of the system so once a bill is settled, the user needs to make note of it in the system.
Expensure is designed for sharing between roommates and travel partners. Roommates who do collective grocery shopping will enjoy the shopping lists you can create in the site, and with spending trends roommates can identify areas for cost cutting. Keeping track of who owes whom what is similar to the other sites, but Expensure has a specific algorithm which calculates debts between multiple people so as few transactions as possible are made. Also included are the capabilities for settling debts with multiple people utilizing PayPal services.
Have any of you tried these sites? What’s the verdict and have they helped you keep track of bill splitting?