The idea behind Walletguide

Alexander Peiniger

Alexander Peiniger

7 min read

What is the idea?

Walletguide is an app that helps you analyze your personal finances in an easy and intuitive way. With a focus on sophisticated users, it is the automated replacement for your custom personal finance spreadsheet. Walletguide enables you to get a holistic view across all your assets and therefore determines your personal, financial net worth at any point in time.

What are the unique selling points of our solution?

Get a full overview of all your assets

Our goal is to be the one central dashboard to analyze your net worth over time. We want to cover all possible asset types, from bank accounts to real estate to pensions. By looking at your net worth over time, you can see if you are saving enough for later.

See a clean profit and loss analysis

Usually when you analyze income and expenses for a certain period, you simply consider the underlying transactions at the date they occurred. The problem is that e.g. one-time transactions can easily distort your analysis in a certain date range. Therefore in Walletguide you cannot only categorize transactions, but you can also assign a “usage period” to the amounts. This works like depreciation in the business world and makes sure that in a specific period only the meaningful share of an expense is accounted for. This gives you a clean analysis that allows you to do comparisons between different date ranges easily.

Keep full control of your data

Most financial/banking apps transfer your financial data to the cloud for further analysis and storage. We believe that this data is very sensitive (especially if it describes all assets you own, your net worth), so we want to protect it accordingly. In Walletguide all financial data is managed on the client side (locally on your computer/browser) and we only store it in an encrypted version in the cloud for backup and syncing. This works similar to any of the cloud based password managers (e.g., 1Password). Only you know the master password to decrypt it on the client side. Therefore even if we would get hacked at some point, no one could access your unencrypted financial data. The only thing that we sync unencrypted is some meta data to provide you with the best possible product.

EDIT in May 2024: One decision we took in the last months is to NOT use end-to-end encryption for the start anymore. We know this has been a big point in our initial product idea, but with all the latest developments in AI and other close-by fields, we believe that we can bring much more value to our users by keeping the data more accesible. Of course, we will never share your data with anyone else beside you. Also we are still using all state-of-the-art technologies to encrypt all data in transport and in the database (Encryption at rest).

Full focus on the analysis

We want to do one thing really well and that is analyzing your assets and transactions for your own needs. Nothing more. We will never analyze your transactions to recommend any products to you (e.g., insurances, banking products). Therefore our future business model will be a plain monthly fee for the product itself. This will make sure that our incentives as a company/product are fully aligned with yours as a user. Building the best product for the most sophisticated users.

Why did we start this?

In the last years I have been working on a personal finance Google Sheet that helped me to keep an overview of our personal finances over time. When talking with other people I found out that many people build a custom spreadsheet because the banking apps out there are not powerful enough to show you the full picture.

Frustrated with existing banking apps

Most apps focus solely on importing the bank transactions and then classifying them. But the result is mostly just a pie chart or a comparison against a budget. The data import is important, but the real work and insights only start when this is done.

Learning from the business world

When running a business you are used to reports like a “profit and loss statement” or a “balance sheet”, giving you a quick overview of your financial performance. In the business world there are things like depreciation that “flatten” certain expenses over time so that they are aligned with the usage period of the underlying object. In the private world this could be e.g. a Spotify subscription for 120 EUR per year, which actually is 10 EUR a month for one year.

I didn’t find the right solution

After trying many different things, I always went back to my Google Sheet. I learned that many others made the same experience and therefore spreadsheets are still used so widely for personal finances.

What are the next steps?

As software entrepreneurs it’s hard to accept that spreadsheets are still used so widely for this use case. So Fred and I decided to take this project a bit further and want to explore if more people have the same need.

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