Accessible budgeting tools: managing money for the disabled

Accessible budgeting tools: managing money for the disabled 29 January 2014

Introduction

It's that time of year again when we all reflect on how quickly Christmas came and went, and our thoughts turn to getting the New Year off to a good start with a look at our finances. Not the best way to chase away the post-holiday blues, but an essential step as we all attempt to manage our money better.

There are plenty of online tools to help you manage your money but not so many for people with disabilities. Many of these tools just aren't accessible for disabled users, especially those who rely on screen-reading software.

Screen reading software enables a blind person to access content using their computer and mobile device by specific keyboard short cuts or touch screen gestures, and will speak through synthetic voice, giving feedback about the content on screen. Designers and developers have to think slightly differently about how they create applications to make them more useable for screen readers. Unfortunately, not all of them do so, which is why choice for users is so limited.

With that said, we've found some handy accessible tools for online money management to try to ease the post-Christmas blues a little by knowing how much we can spend on our summer break.

Budget management for students

Managing your budget as a student can be a burden but luckily Natwest has a useful and accessible calculator. Tell it what your student loan is, your savings, income, and outgoings and it will show you want you have left.

For screen reader users, the calculator is easy to use as each section is structured using headings and every form field is clearly labelled.

Natwest student budget calculator

Savings, investments and personal budgeting

Aviva has another useful budgeting tool that takes your monthly income and outgoings, including rent, credit cards, bills, savings, and pension and calculating the result.

The calculator makes it simple for screen reader users to calculate their budget, as it’s simple, well structured and clearly labelled.

Aviva personal budget calculator

Planning for retirement: the state pension calculator

This calculator from Gov.uk will enable you to find out various types of information, including when you will be entitled to the state pension and if on a low income when you are eligible for pension credit.

This tools makes calculating your state pension and a fairly painless process. It is divided into small, simple steps and guides you through the whole process. Links to each step are easy to find and the forms have clear labelling making it easy to use for screen readers.

Gov.uk pension calculator

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