Frequently Asked Questions

How is Otto better than a budget?

#10 Otto works perfectly in a touchless financial world.

Some budgeting systems have you to use cash to take control of your spending. But with COVID concerns, cash just isn’t safe or practical anymore.
Otto is designed to give you all the control of cash, without the cash. In a sense, Otto turns your bank accounts into digital cash envelopes and your credit cards into debit cards. Otto was designed long before COVID, but Otto is perfectly suited to help you move into a more touchless financial world.

#5 Otto motivates you to spend wisely.

With a budget, if you are “under-budget” one month, it’s impossible to know where the money you didn't spend is. It’s in the ether somewhere. As a result, with budgeting, you learn that you better spend every dollar you have budgeted, because if you don’t, you will never see that money again. On the other hand, Otto incentivizes you to spend wisely. With your money set aside in separate accounts, you can physically see the money you didn't spend sitting in your accounts. You can spend this money next month or watch it grow.

#1 Otto organizes your actual money.

A budget is just numbers on a spreadsheet or app. Your actual money is all mixed up at your bank or credit union. Otto is the actual money at your bank or credit union organized in separate bank accounts.

#2 Otto is quick.

It can take hours each month to budget your money. Once set up, Otto helps you organize your money in just a few minutes each month.

#3 Otto keeps you going month after month.

Countless people have started a budget, only to quit after a short time. Budgets require a lot of self motivation. Otto was specifically designed to keep you going month after month, no motivation required. Otto collects your income in a separate account. This keeps the money you earn from getting mixed up with the money you need for bills and the money you plan to spend. When the money you’ve set aside for bills and spending is gone, you know it’s time to organize your new income.

#4 With Otto you’ll never go “over-budget.”

The most common phrase in budgeting is “over-budget.” That’s because budgets are just numbers. There are no physical limits. Otto gives physical structure to your money. With Otto, you can’t overspend or go “over-budget” because when the money is gone, it is gone.

#6 Otto is simple.

Budgeting is complicated. With all its spreadsheets and categories budgets can feel very overwhelming. Otto was designed to be simple. Otto uses a few short forms to help you organize your income. Once your money is organized, all you need to do is decide which account will cover each of your credit card charges. Otto makes it easy to always know how much money you have and what it's for.

#7 Otto focuses on the present.

When you budget, you spend a lot of time guessing about the future and then looking back at the past to see how reality matched up with your guesses. With Otto you know how much money you have TODAY and what it is intended for.

#8 Otto keeps you from asking, “where did all my money go?”

When you collect and spend your money from the same account, it is a lot like pouring water into a leaking bucket. It is next to impossible to know where your money goes. By collecting your income in a separate account, Otto gives you a chance to make deliberate decisions with your money before you spend it.

#9 Otto improves your financial situation.

You can budget for years, and never see a change in your financial situation. We know, because that is precisely what happened to us Otto makes it easy to see your finances improving. With your money organized it is easy and motivating to watch your money build in your different accounts. In just a short time you’ll be able to see the difference Otto has made. We are so confident that Otto will improve your financial situation, and that you will save AT LEAST the cost of your subscription (but trust us, you will save a lot more that this), that if you don't, you can have an Otto subscription for FREE. Learn more.

Other questions

Can I use my current bank accounts as part of the system?

Yes. Often people have automatic bills already coming out of their current checking account and don't want to go through the hassle of switching these to a new account. As a result, many of our users use their current checking account as their Bills Account. You may also use a current savings account as any one of your new savings accounts. As a general rule, you can use any current accounts you have. Just make sure you keep the required minimum balances in each account so you don't incur a fee. You can get more information on the recommended accounts here.

Can I really have this many accounts?

Yes! Even 10 years ago, having this many accounts would not have been practical. But today, with online banking and Otto, you can have and manage as many bank accounts as you wish. You can get more information on the recommended accounts here.

If you have additional questions, please contact us. We would be happy to help.

With Otto, you always know.

After a 30-day FREE trial, Otto is billed monthly at $5.99.

Otto pays for itself, or you can get it for FREE.  Learn more.