Have you ever dreamt of being completely debt free?
Wouldn’t it be nice to log into your online bank account and feel JOY – knowing that you have an extra $200 to put into your savings account every month?
The best thing you can do to start making those dreams a reality is to use a budget to control your finances.
Budgeting can be such a beautiful tool to help you manage your money.
But, as you probably already know, budgeting can also be the most frustrating thing on the planet.
It can be insanely difficult to start a budget when you’ve never done it before. Heck, it can be crazy hard to stick to a budget even when you DO start a budget.
- Budgeting takes time
- It can be overwhelming to track every single expense
- Budgeting feels restricting
- Budgeting is a habit, and new habits are hard to form.
- Looking your finances in the eye is terrifying. It’s easier to pretend everything is OK (like the kid who cleans his room by shoving everything in the closet)
What if there was an easy way to make a budget that updated automatically.
What if you actually felt empowered to reach all of your financial dreams and goals?
If any of that rings a bell or strikes a chord, Tiller Money is a great solution for you.
What is Tiller Money Automated Budget Spreadsheets
I’ve only been using Tiller for a few weeks, but I already freaking love it!
I think Tiller can make budgeting more accessible and easy for anyone. If there ever was an “easy button” for budgeting, Tiller is it.
If you go to the Tiller homepage, you get hit with their slogan:
“Your financial life in a spreadsheet, automatically updated each day.”
Read that again.
Remember some of the reasons budgeting is hard.
- No time to sit down and budget
- Forgetting to enter expenses into the spreadsheet
- Don’t know how to use spreadsheets very well
- Not knowing where to start
- Every time you try to make your own budget, you get frustrated and quit
All of those problems are solved with Tiller, or made WAY easier.
How Does Tiller Money Work?
Tiller connects directly to your bank accounts and automatically creates a budget for you. Not only that, it updates your budget automatically as you spend money.
As soon as you connect your bank accounts and download the Tiller Foundation Template, the past three months of spending are automatically entered into a spreadsheet for you.
And new transactions update daily. AUTOMATICALLY!
From there, you can manually categorize every expense to the right category in your budget. Then Tiller takes that information and enters the expense into your actual budget under that category.
Let me show you:
If I categorize an expense as Gas, then Tiller automatically adds that amount to the Gas section of my budget.
And it’s perfectly secure and private
Here’s another sweet bonus.
It keeps a running balance of your bank account balances. When you connect your accounts to Tiller, it creates a separate tab in your spreadsheet with your bank balances.
Now your spreadsheet is a one stop shop for all of your finances. You don’t need to log into online banking or constantly check your account balances.
Tiller can tell you everything you need to know. And it updates your spreadsheet daily, with very little work on your part.
Getting Started with Tiller Money Automated Spreadsheets
I’m usually a little jaded when it comes to budgeting software and apps.
I’ve used Mint.
I’ve dabbled with Personal Capital.
I know tons of people who love YNAB (I’ve never used it).
We created our own system with a spreadsheet template that works great for us, so I don’t feel like I need the extra apps and software.
But Tiller is different, and I freaking love it!
No joke. I think it has the power to change your life.
I started a 30 day free trial this month because I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I’m pretty impressed so far.
When you start your free trial, you can have your first spreadsheet in less than 20 minutes and start tinkering to understand how the software works.
Remember, anytime you start something new, it’s important to take the time to figure out how it works. Tiller is no different.
When was the last time you made a budget for yourself in 20 minutes?
Step 1: Sign up for a 30 Day Free Trial
I love that Tiller offers a free trial for an entire month.
Because seriously, how can you know if you really like a budgeting tool if you don’t use it for a whole month?
Plus life gets in the way and sometimes you just forget. It happens. And then your trial is over.
Tiller gives you 30 days to tinker and help you create a budget that works for your family.
Here’s a link directly to the Tiller Money homepage.
Step 2: Link Your Online Accounts
Linking your accounts is where the power of Tiller can help you. This is where the automation comes into play.
When you link your accounts with Tiller, it gives Tiller the ability to enter your transactions into your new budget automatically. You literally don’t have to do a thing for them to update your budget.
It’s freaking AMAZING!
I honestly wish I would’ve discovered Tiller years ago before we figured out our own budgeting system. It would’ve saved so much time and energy.
Step 3: Download the Tiller Foundation Template
Tiller has worked hard to make this process as easy as possible.
There is only ONE spreadsheet template you can download – the Tiller Foundation Template.
It looks like this ??
This is what the Tiller Foundation Template looks like. And all of the directions are listed under “Getting Started”.
The spreadsheet will automatically open in Google Sheets.
Next, name your spreadsheet in the upper left hand corner, then click the blue button that says “USE”. This is the Tiller Money Feeds add on that opens up options that you can add to your spreadsheet.
A few options include:
- Debt Snowball Spreadsheet (called Debt Progress)
- Holiday Planner
- Net Worth Calculator
You can customize the tabs at the bottom of your spreadsheet based on your needs.
If you have debt, you should definitely add the Debt Progress sheet so you can calculate your debt free date.
I was amazed that they had a Debt Snowball Spreadsheet. Alongside a budget, it’s the best tool to get out of debt.
And the good news is, you can create as many tabs as you want.
All of your transactions are downloaded into the “Transactions” tab so you can see every purchase you make in one spreadsheet.
Step 4: Get Familiar with Your New Spreadsheet
A budget or a debt snowball spreadsheet is only useful if you know how to use it.
There is a learning curve to any spreadsheet template you choose, so remember to take the time to learn how to use it.
The first step is to create budget categories under the “Categories” tab.
There’s a video close to the top of this post that explains that process.
You can also find it here – Creating Budget Categories in Tiller Money.
There are videos available, sometimes directly linked from the spreadsheet, to help you learn how your spreadsheet works and teach you to use it to the max potential.
And if you’re more of a visual person, here’s a quick video of Tiller in action.
Those are the steps to get started using Tiller Money and getting control over your finances.
Once everything is set up and you know how to use it, you need to schedule time every week to log into your spreadsheet to make sure you’re staying within your budget.
I usually do this on Saturday or Sunday.
If you still spend willy nilly, your budget won’t be very useful.
Is Tiller Really for Me? Is it Really Worth $79/Year? Should You Take the Risk?
You might still have questions and hesitations. I get that.
Ask yourself these questions to help figure out if Tiller Money can really help you with your finances.
- Do you feel trapped because you have so much debt you can’t breathe?
- Have you ever felt defeated and helpless trying to save money?
- Have you gotten frustrated trying to make a budget for yourself?
- Do you want to take control over your finances instead of letting money control you?
If you answered YES to any of these questions, I think Tiller is worth the investment.
A big hurdle for me in promoting Tiller is that it costs money.
One of my primary goals is to help people save money, not spend it. It seems counterproductive to spend money to create and use a budget.
But in the long run, your budget will help you SAVE money, and I’m willing to bet you’ll save more than $79 in a year using a budget. It comes down to $6.58 a month. (that’s cheaper than Netflix, and will provide way more value).
Let’s look at a quick example.
If you saved $400 a month by using Tiller Money, would that be worth it the $79?
Is Tiller Money the same as YNAB?
Another popular budgeting software is YNAB (You Need a Budget).
I honestly think Tiller is better, and I’ll explain why below. Ynab stands by the same message as Tiller; that if you use a budget, you’ll save more money. And they have the proof to back it up.
“On average, ynab users save $6,000 a year.”
That’s $500 a month!
How much does ynab costs? $84 a year.
If ynab users can save $6,000 a year, why can’t you do the same thing with Tiller (and pay less for it)?
The principles are exactly the same.
- Use a budget to track your spending (so you actually know how much money you spend)
- Find areas where you overspend and adjust them
- Eliminate unnecessary spending
- Form better money habits with consistent budgeting
And I Think Tiller Offers You More for the Money than Ynab
No other budgeting software creates a budget for you and automatically updates your spreadsheet.
In the end, your Tiller budget can help you save money; more money than you invest to use the software.
Even if you only saved $100 extra dollars a month with Tiller, that’s an extra $95 after you pay for Tiller.
That’s $1,140 in a year that you save.
How would that change your life?
What could you do with the extra money?
There are a lot of possibilities, and I think that’s estimating on the low end.
Plus Tiller offers so many more spreadsheet options like the Debt Snowball Spreadsheet and automatically updating your spreadsheet for you (I know I’ve mentioned the auto-updates a lot, but it blows me away).
Why I LOVE Tiller! (And think it’s an amazing product for anyone who needs a budget)
After tinkering with Tiller for a couple weeks, I want to share my honest opinion to give you a good idea if it’s a good fit for you.
1. It Simplifies Budgeting
Budgeting gets a bad rap for being restrictive and hard. If you’re in that camp, Tiller can help because it does most of the work for you.
Budgeting won’t take you hours and hours every week. You can check in with your budget, categorize your expenses in just a few minutes, and double check to make sure you’re not overspending.
2. Tiller Creates a Usable Budget FOR YOU
You don’t have to worry about formatting, creating formulas to calculate expenses, or spending hours creating your own budget.
Tiller connects to your bank accounts and inputs everything to the spreadsheet template of your choice. And it only takes a few minutes.
Once you get your budget, you’ll need to take some time to set up your categories and budget limits. But overall, that doesn’t take a ton of time. And you only need to do it once.
3. Tiller Automatically Enters Expenses and Income
If you like hands off automation, then you’ll love Tiller. In college I set autopayments for everything I could so I didn’t have to remember due dates or to mail a check. It was beautiful.
Tiller automatically tracks your bank accounts and enters your expenses directly into your spreadsheet.
All you need to do is select the right budget category to put each expense into. (And if you’re into more advanced tips, you can set up Auto Cat, which puts expenses into your categories automatically).
4. Tutorial Videos to Help You Get Set Up and Use Tiller to Full Potential
In the Monthly Budget spreadsheet I created, there were directions and links to help videos right in the spreadsheet.
I liked that I didn’t have to search the web and youtube videos to understand how the spreadsheet works. Tiller provided all the help I needed.
5. Support Emails After You Sign Up
I know your inbox is probably already flooded with emails from all kinds of companies selling you stuff. At least mine is.
But these emails from Tiller are actually helpful. One reason I like the emails is because it reminds me that I just created a new budget and need to check it and actually use it.
Another reason the emails are helpful is they are designed to help you fully understand how to use Tiller so you can start saving money.
Small Negatives of Using Tiller Automated Budget Spreadsheets
No product is ever going to be all rainbows and unicorns. As a teacher I always search for the perfect lesson plan that doesn’t require any changes or modifications. But it just doesn’t exist.
There are a few minor drawbacks to Tiller, but nothing that can’t be overcome with a little work and adapting to the learning curve.
1. Tiller Money is Easier if You Know How to Use Spreadsheets
I’m a spreadsheet nerd, so Tiller is right up my alley.
If you don’t know the basics of using a spreadsheet, you might struggle at first. But there are enough training videos and tutorials to help you get comfortable. The biggest learning curve is honestly just figuring out how to use a spreadsheet with multiple tabs.
Even if you have basic spreadsheet skills, Tiller’s budget will take a little time to get used to, which leads me to my next bullet point.
2. It isn’t Perfect. You Still Need to Tinker and Learn How it Works.
There’s never going to be a secret formula that is completely automated. You need to be a little hands on and figure out how your budget works.
If you don’t know how it works, you’ll never be able to use it to reach your financial goals.
Imagine saving $200 a month…
Make your dreams of becoming debt free a reality…
Start investing in your retirement…
Stop the cycle of living paycheck to paycheck…
But it doesn’t come without a little work and preparation. Once you take the time to understand your budget, you’ll be on your way to saving money.
3. It Costs Money
This is honestly a tough one for me. I know people everywhere are struggling to make ends meet, so shelling out $59 a year doesn’t sound like a great solution.
It’s find it personally hard to suggest a product that costs money.
But the true value comes in taking control of your money with your budget. Once you take control of your money (and actually understand where it goes), you’ll save so much more money than the $59 investment in Tiller.
And to put it in perspective, Tiller is cheaper than Netflix, but has so much more power to change your life.
4. Excel is Still in Beta Testing
Right now Tiller only works with Google Sheets. Excel is in beta testing and will hopefully be available soon.
If you’re a die hard Excel fan, this isn’t the greatest news. But your time is coming.
In the meantime, come on over to the dark side and try Google Sheets. It’s free and has most of the same functions as Excel.
And Tiller will help you get your budget started and help you stick with it.
Are You Ready to Take a Chance on Tiller Automated Budget Spreadsheets?
I don’t have too much more to say about Tiller. I freaking love it.
It has the ability to truly transform your finances and finally take control of your spending.
At this point one of three things will happen:
- You don’t buy the Tiller Money software. You keep tracking (or not tracking) money the same way you always have and you stay stuck in debt and struggle to put money into savings. You’ll have to struggle to make a budget on your own and be frustrated that you never have enough money.
- You buy the Tiller Money software and it doesn’t work. No problem. you get 30 days to try it for free with no risk. If you hate it, let Tiller know and deactivate your account. At least you tried.
- You buy the Tiller Money software and it works and you finally take control of your money so you know exactly what your spending looks like, and you start reaching your financial goals.
You create a plan to start climbing out of debt, saving money, and feel JOY when you look at your bank accounts.
Why not take a chance on Tiller and change your financial future. Tap the button to learn more.
What’s the worst that could happen?
What if you only manage to save $100 a month using Tiller?
That’s $100 a month every single month, or $1,200 a year. Here’s a few questions to help put $1,200 into perspective:
- How would $1,200 a year change your life?
- What would you do with the extra money?
- Add it to savings?
- Pay off debt?
- Start saving for retirement?
There’s also a Risk in Not Buying Tiller
Not signing up for Tiller also comes at a cost. Using Tiller will help you prioritize and optimize your spending. That means it will help you find more money in your monthly budget.
Even if you only find $100 a month in your budget, that still leaves you with $40 after paying for your Tiller subscription. That’s $40 that you didn’t have before.
Plus now you have a beautiful spreadsheet that will help you keep optimizing your spending so you save even more money. $40 a month adds up to $480 a year.
Plus, now you will spend less time worrying about if you’ll have enough money to pay your bills. Your financial health and mental health get a boost when you use Tiller.
But if it DOES work, it has the power to change your finances forever. Why not give it a chance today?
Click the “Learn More” button to go straight to the Tiller website and see if Tiller Money is right for you.
Just finished viewing your Tiller review. Very interesting.
I am a long time user of YNAB, since Version 3, and, I am 100 % debt free. So, yes, budgeting works.
Does the Tiller system have an APP for iOS?
For most purchases, under $ 50.00, I use cash. With my YNAB APP, I enter the amount right then and there, and when home, my APP syncs with my YNAB software. Simplifies data entry.
Thanks for your input.
I don’t think tiller has an app, so cash purchases might be a little clunkier. You might have to manually enter it.
Linking customizable categories to budgets is pretty ubiquitous across the class of tools. I’m guessing the primary value lies in manipulating the data in the spreadsheet parlance for those that prefer it?
Hey Albert! The reason fro creating custom categories is so your budget actually reflects your real life spending. A budget is more helpful when it directly reflects your spending. From there, you categorize each expense so that it auto populates the budget portion of your tiller spreadsheet. Categorizing your spending is a cornerstone for understanding your spending habits and orienting them around your goals.