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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

Student develops bill-paying website

Student+develops+bill-paying+website

In a world where splitting monthly bills is commonplace, a business management senior is crafting a tool to make asking for money a little easier.

Z-Split, a website that could be used to send users a notification when it’s time to pay the bills, aims to avoid awkwardness and tension between roommates when it comes time to collect money for shared expenses. The site would automatically transfer funds between roommates, and entire households could view bills and receipts, keep track of individual expenses and pay their share.

“When you go up to your roommates and you ask them for that $50 electricity bill, they’ll be like, ‘OK, I’ll give it to you later,’ and then you have to ask again and again and they never do,” said Matthew Garten, creator of the site. “Now you are creating a bad relationship with friends because of money.”

Z-Split would give users a way to ask for money that gets the point across without requiring any direct contact with roommates, Garten said. No longer will users have to worry about the monthly burden of money collection, he added.

Casey Kell, an architecture student, lives in a house with five other people. He said he and his roommates have to worry every month about the hassle of dividing their utilities bill. Kell rarely sees his roommates because of their different schedules, which creates a hassle for many students going through the trouble of dividing the bill, he said.

“If there was one centralized location where everything was organized and totaled for us to let us know how much we each owe, it would make things simple,” Kell said. “Now it’s just in one place where you can find it and if someone feels uncomfortable asking for money, it would definitely work and take that awkwardness away.”

Through a little marketing on Facebook and Twitter, Garten has met more than 300 users interested in using the site and received more than 1,000 views on the site page. This clearly shows an interest in the idea, he said.

“I want it (the site) to be used in the whole country, not just within UA students, and it can even be used in a home where parents might want to teach their kids how to pay bills,” Garten said.

Whether with roommates or friends, money is always a sensitive subject, said Jared Gross, a sociology senior. The site will definitely make it easier and faster for students to pay their bills, and at the same time take away the awkward encounters between friends, he added.

Garten hopes to launch the website and phone application by late March. The application is currently under development.

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