Since its January launch, social-finance tool Bundle has hooked users -- and FastCompany.com -- with a tantalizing premise: See how your neighbors spend their money. Once we answered a few simple questions, the site crawled spending data gleaned from the U.S. government and Citigroup to find different demographics adults who lived near us, like us, and on a similar budget (e.g., single New York males making $40,000 a year). Then, it let us "go deep" into their pocketbooks to find out, say, where they buy groceries, and what percentage of their monthly income goes toward rent.
It's a valuable tool: Once you've peeked at your neighbors' bills, you can adopt their most relevant spending and savings habits, or just rest easy knowing your life is not a freakish pursuit of status and comfort. But it wasn't a very practical one, since you couldn't sync to a bank account or catalogue specific expenses. (You could create some pretty cool infographics.)
That's all changing this week as Bundle unveils its "Version 1.0" redesign, which offers a host of new features including -- at last! -- the option to sync to multiple accounts. Below, an exclusive preview:
Once you sync Bundle with your checking and credit-card accounts, you'll get a custom budget page. Clicking each of the colorful bubbles lets you "go deep" into different expense categories, so you can see specific transactions.
Switching to the monthly view lets you visualize how and when you're spending your money, so you know where to start cutting back. Expenses that aren't automatically categorized -- marked here with white asterisks -- can be quickly dragged and dropped into the appropriate tab on the right.
Bundle will also help you create a new spending and savings plan, which takes into account all your relevant expenses. But it's not set in stone: Category allowances can easily be adjusted if, say, you overspent on shoes, but underspent on travel.
You can also set aside a little money each month for assorted "goals" -- an Xbox, a vacation -- and scroll through a road-like visualizer to see how long it'll take before you can buy them in full.
Then, per usual, you can see how you stack up.