Personal Capital Review- Why You Must Sign Up for Personal Capital – Part 1
Disclosure: Please note that this article may contain affiliate links which means that – at zero cost to you – I might earn a commission if you sign up or buy through the affiliate link. That said, I never recommend anything I don’t personally believe is valuable.
Everything You Need to Know About Personal Capital – 3 Part Series
First off, welcome to Robo-Advisor Pros! We’re here to help you with the crazy fast world of robo-investing. There are so many new services out there to help you get control of your finances without learning everything there is to know about investing. You can learn more about us and how robo-investing is going to change how we actually invest our money.
Today, we’re going to tackle Personal Capital. This is a three-part series diving deep into their platform to see how it works and if it’s the right fit for you. Without investing, you can actually sign up for Personal Capital for free. You can track all of your investments and bank accounts without paying anything. It’s a more complex version of Mint.com with a focus on investing. Here is a good comparison putting the two against each other.
Part 1- Why You Must Sign Up for Personal Capital Account
Whether you are an experienced investor or just starting out financially, Personal Capital offers something for you. You must sign up for Personal Capital – its free.
If you’re looking for a top level online financial tracking and analysis tool, the free Personal Capital tools are for you. They surpass Mint and Quicken.
You Must Sign Up for Personal Capital If:
- You want a 3600 view of your complete financial picture; bills, income, debt, investments and more.
- You’re a DIY investor who likes control of your finances.
- You have many investments across various accounts.
- You want to drill down into free retirement planning calculations.
- You might want to speak with an experienced financial advisor.
If you answered yes to at least one item, you must sign up for a free Personal Capital Account.
What Is Personal Capital?
Here’s what you need to know about this comprehensive robo-advisor platform.
Personal Capital takes all of your financial accounts and gives you information and direction about how to best allocate your money and investments to yield the greatest long term financial outcome.
More than 800,000 people use Personal Capital to track over $150 billion in assets.
The platform works seamlessly. To begin the process, connect all of your accounts with the bank-level security encryption. There’s room in the platform for mortgage, credit cards, bank accounts, investment accounts, 401(k), IRA’s and most other types of financial accounts. This process is surprisingly quick. You can also add accounts manually.
As soon as the accounts are connected to the Personal Capital program, the free service gives you personalized financial information about; budgeting, spending, saving, investing, asset allocation and even tax loss harvesting.
Listen to Bill Harris, founder of Personal Capital, discuss the benefits of the platform.
Why You Must Sign Up for Personal Capital – The Free Account
There are several reasons why you must sign up for the free Personal Capital Account.
1. It’s fast and easy to sign up.
You’ll receive tremendous financial data and information for a few minutes of set up time.
To get going with the program, answer these 5 questions.
Sign-up time; less than a minute.
You complete five screens, including selecting your risk tolerance and investable assets from drop down menus with several choices. The simple information they request is name, birth date, amount of investable funds, risk tolerance and expected retirement date.
Fast data collection is next.
From there you start inputting your account information.
A word about security here; security is their top priority. They have bank-level encryption to keep personal information, account, and money safe. Additionally, both of this website’s owners have accounts with Personal Capital.
This section is so quick and easy, I was shocked.
I was prepared for hours of anxiety and difficulty linking my investment and banking accounts to the program, but it was fast and easy. I’ve got a complicated financial situation and my accounts linked within minutes.
To link your accounts, fill in the name of your financial institution.
First, I started with a TD Ameritrade Account.
Next, for each account enter your account log in information – USERID and Password.
Remember; Personal Capital has bank-level encrypted security. If you use any bank or investment broker apps, then you should feel comfortable with this platform.
This linking screen populates fast, and then you’re ready to link your next account.
Finally, repeat these steps until all of your accounts are linked.
The number of accounts you have will determine how long it takes to sign up.
Data collection sign-up time; less than one minute per account.
Now, you’re ready to enjoy the broad range of saving, spending, budgeting, investing and analysis tools.
2. You get comprehensive spending, saving, and investment performance information in a user-friendly interface.
After the sign up for Personal Capital you gain access to the following reports:
- Account Balances
- Income Report
- Spending Report
- Investment Returns
- Asset Allocation View
- Projected Investment Fees
- Net Worth
Not only do you receive a picture of your current financial situation, but you get help managing your investments and figuring out what you’re doing well and what can be improved.
The drill down into all aspects of your money life is ideal. The insights and information about your spending, saving, and information is invaluable, and the cost is free.
The idea behind Personal Capital is that once your financial life is on the right track, with information at your fingertips, you can go about the process of living.
The Personal Capital Gold Mine of Financial Information
Once you’ve input your data, you have access to a treasure trove of graphs, charts, and invaluable financial information.
The Personal Capital tools help you:
- Analyze your cash flow.
- Calculate your net worth.
- Check on and analyze your investments.
- Plan for retirement.
- Analyze your account fees.
Now that you understand the overview and account set up let’s look at the Personal Capital review pros and cons so far.
In the next Personal Capital review article, we’ll drill down into the nitty-gritty of Personal Capital. You’ll get a detailed view into how the reports and data can improve your financial life.
Pros and Cons of Personal Capital Set Up
Very easy and quick to set up, even with multiple accounts. As soon as account inputs are complete, you can view your account data in the outstanding overview charts and graphs. Had a great introductory conversation with a financial advisor (no pressure to use paid service).
A few accounts populated twice. I got rid of the duplicates quickly by clicking the edit pencil and then the remove option. One of my linked IRA accounts wasn’t downloaded. It required a quick call to customer service to get the account populated. They send regular update emails about spending and income. Since my account was new, the initial emails indicated I was spending a lot more this month than last, only because they didn’t have last month’s data. This will become a non-issue over the coming months.
If you’re interested in your financial future, Personal Capital gives you invaluable insight into your finances and set up is easy. Sign Up for Personal Capital for free and get a comprehensive financial picture. Learn more in the next 2 Personal Capital reviews:
>>>Read: Personal Capital Review-Comprehensive Financial Management-Part 2 – to find out everything you need to know about Personal Capital cash flow and investing tools.
>>>Read: Personal Capital Review – Personal Capital Advisors – Part 3 – to uncover the fee structure, advisory services and investment philosophy.