Last Updated on 9 February 2022 by Dan
Hello everyone! Today we continue the latest in our series of reviews of financial apps which could help maximise the number of pounds in your pocket. Today I’m going to be looking at an app called ilumoni which combines your bank account data and credit reports to provide information and strategies to help reduce the cost of your borrowing or time to pay off debt.
With a New Year upon us, now is a great opportunity to help manage some of the financial traps that life can give us in the form of debt.
So even if you’re now desperately hitting the gym trying to lose a few festive pounds, let’s see if ilumoni can help us shed some of those all important financial pounds when it comes to interest!
I’ve actually been keeping an eye on ilumoni for a while here at the Wilderness – they kindly invited me to their QA to provide some feedback on the app and how they do things, so it’s been really interesting to see a good piece of FinTech evolve.
(Please note: The post is sponsored by ilumoni who have paid to feature on the Wilderness to promote their #GetDebtFit campaign. In line with our editorial policy, we know that your trust is incredibly important when it comes to writing about financial products – our terms mean we always write honestly about what we think – the good and the bad).
How can the ilumoni app help me manage debt?
The debt management thinking behind the ilumoni app
One of the things we cover in our guides to managing and getting yourself out of debt is the importance of keeping the cost of debt as low as possible.
What this means in practical terms is that the interest payments (the amount of money you pay to your bank/card provider etc. in exchange for having the credit) should be kept as small as possible. Doing this is good financial sense in any case but, additionally, if we can keep these costs down, paying less each month to service the debt can form the backbone of a good plan to get rid of the debt entirely. It’s a strategy that we’ve long maintained makes good sense and cover already in our guide to managing credit card debt.
How the ilumoni app could help you manage debt better
As the app provides information on the interest you’re paying across all your accounts, you can also identify which accounts you’re paying the most interest on.
This is really key information to understand, because you can use this to target paying off your most expensive debts first, a strategy known as the “debt avalanche method”.
illumoni are even introducing a new feature, the reallocation nudge, soon to mimic this method of debt repayment directly in the app which could help you navigate the process of identifying how to potentially save money on any debts you have.
ilumoni’s ability to provide personalised, actionable insights into your borrowing is achieved through analysing your accounts and balances and credit score together. From this, it will calculate the interest rate you are paying at the moment and this information is then used to determine whether any of the app’s ‘nudges’ could help you improve the way you manage your debt.
Identifying the most expensive bits of your debt and making your debt as cheap as possible are two big wins in any debt management strategy!
What key data do I see in the ilumoni app?
ilumoni’s app otherwise helps analyse your borrowing to show three core things:
- Whether your present level of borrowing looks manageable relative to your income, and how that stacks up across the accounts you’ve linked to the app .
- Provides an overview of all debts across your bank accounts and cards, so you’re always in control of your borrowing.
- Provides “nudges” which are suggestions of actions you could take to help improve your financial position.
How do ilumoni’s nudges work?
The nudges ilumoni provides are practical suggestions to help reduce interest payments, simplify borrowing or clear debts faster.
They’re not always as drastic as changing a card – for instance a nudge demonstrated below is a suggestion to make changes to your repayments and how fast you’re paying off a credit card balance if you have spare available income, potentially saving significant amounts you would spend on interest charges. The important thing about nudges is that they’re directly tied to you and your financial situation based on the data within the app. You can learn more about the nudges available within the app on ilumoni’s website here and they plan to add two new ones very soon in the New Year too.
Overall review of the ilumoni App
The ilumoni app does what it does very well – we always love an app that could simply save you money by using it and we found the information the app generated was clear, actionable and appropriate for the user.
Knowing your debt is one thing, but the app provides a good call to action to do something about it.
Those who’ll get the most use out of it are those who haven’t reviewed their finances in a while – if this is you it’s well worth a look, as the changes from a few small adjustments can really be quite staggering. Done with a plan, the suggestions ilumoni makes can be the start of a real debt management strategy.
The only downside I found is that there can be relatively little in the app for those whose finances are already in a good place – I haven’t deducted any stars for this as it’s not where the app is aiming or claiming to target, though they do have a new loans feature now which provides additional detail to help you borrow well if you do want to take out a personal loan.
How can I sign up for the ilumoni app?
How to download ilumoni
To see if you could ‘skip the sweat’ and #GetDebtFit with ilumoni, visit the illumoni website here for download links or search for ilumoni on the relevant app store from your phone.
Other key questions regarding the ilumoni app.
Will ilumoni set me up with high cost credit?
No, we’re happy to feature ilumoni on the website because the app only acts as an introducer to products which reduce your overall cost of debt from respectable lenders.
Suffice to say, anything promoting high cost lending will never appear on The Financial Wilderness!
What credit rating agencies do ilumoni use?
In terms of the data you can see about your credit score in the app, this is based on data from the Equifax agency.
However where ilumoni is making suggestions on changes you could make, the data behind the scenes takes in information from a wider range of credit rating agencies.
You can read more about why it’s important to review your credit score here!
How do ilumoni make money?
ilumoni take a referral fee from your new provider if you choose to take out a financial product via the app, however as per the above you will only see suggestions or nudges that will save you money or simplify your borrowing based on your information and the goals you share with the app.
Is using ilumoni safe?
As I mentioned above, the ilumoni App uses the Open Banking initiative to read bank account data, so I wanted to include a note on the safety of Open Banking.
Open Banking is now a well-established part of new rules brought in by legislation under the Payment Services Directive to allow organisations to access and make better use of financial data. The access you grant to apps like ilumoni is very highly regulated to keep it secure, however nothing can ever be said to be 100% risk free.
All you provide to the ilumoni app is read only data – I.E it’s the equivalent of letting the app take a peek at your statement for a short period of time which you must re-permit each 90 days – you don’t give any access to the actual management or the direct login of your bank account.
ilumoni is also authorised and regulated by the FCA, and subject to their oversight.
If you have any questions about the ilumoni app or any of it’s features, we’d be very happy to help – equally let us know if you’ve had success managing your finances with it! Just leave us a message in the comments below.