Splitwise – Sharing Expenses Made Easy

I cannot count the amount of times that I have bought food with my roommate, and vice versa, only to not realize how much we spent or how much we owe one another. The Splitwise team makes these uncomfortable conversations and money haggling a thing of the past with their app.

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The entire purpose of the app is to serve one purpose, split expenses effectively. It does this by letting the user create groups and invite others to the groups so that expenses can be divided and shared properly. Adding an expense is easy, and you are greeted with a couple options when you create one. For one, you can state who paid the expense, how much it was, and how the money should be split. Are you buying groceries and is it an equal share, or did you guys go to dinner and he got lobster while you got a salad, at which point you could select specific amounts for each user. Splitwise also lets you use insert images such as receipts in order to have factual proof as to the expenses. The user can also change what group the expense are added to. Once the expense is added, it will be added to a list view where everyone can see what the expense is, who paid it, how much you owe, and if you are a part of the expense.

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Options. I love options.

Creating a group is critical to organize the expenses and make it easy for everyone to see. Making a group is as simple as naming it and selecting who is a part of the group. Those who are invited will receive a notification or an email regarding their inclusion into the group and that they should make an account if they have not already done so.

 

The interface for viewing the expenses is very neat and easy to follow. When you’ve lent out money to people, it shows up as green, and when you’ve borrowed, it is colored red. Splitwise offers a couple of views for the user to use, each useful in its own way. The total balance interface for example shows how much everyone in your group owes you and whether it is settled up and the ‘you are owed’ tab shows only the people who owe you money. Recent activity shows past expenses and how much you spent or how much you owe. It is not an in depth breakdown, but it helps for general expenses and a quick look as to how much you owe from last nights’ lobster dinner.

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The college student diet sucks

All expenses is a little more in depth than that and shows who paid, and how you personally borrowed or lent out. It differs from the recent activity because all expenses shows the previous expenses by month and it is much easier to see more expenses in the same amount of space.  These varying views give the user many options to see how much they spent which was a great relief since it lets me eyeball my expenses quickly and easily without having to jump through the hoops of finding the groups I am a part of.

 

One of the best things about this application is that they have a website interface as well. What this means is that you do not have to have your iPhone or Nexus 6 on you at all times to add an expense. This also makes it easier for me to view my expenses during my downtime in between classes and whenever I want to add an expense based on a bill I receive online. Their website also has a fairness calculator, something that is not available on the app version of Splitwise. This calculator takes care of some common expenses adults would encounter such as how much each person should pay for their rent and renters insurance, and then some niche expenses such as a furniture calculator for selling or buying used furniture, and a guest calculator for that one couch surfing friend. I imagine these functions will come in handy later on in life when I get my own apartment or when I have to be ‘that couch surfing friend’.

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More options! I could definitely see myself using the “Split the Rent” one later in life!

The application is extremely handy and as a college student, it really helps me out share expenses with my roommate and friends without having to bicker about how much everyone is owed. The execution of the app is flawless and I really hope more people use it as time goes on!

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