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Can computers do a better job of helping you manage your money than a human advisor? Some new internet start-ups are betting that they can. If these new financial gurus are correct, this revolutionary idea may become the wave of the future.

These companies have computer algorithms that are able to manage financial portfolios automatically. These computers do all the things a human advisor would do. The programs can diversify a portfolio, manage investments to a client’s age and help individuals meet their financial goals for retirement. Owners of companies like SigFig say that these computers are able to do everything a human advisor can do, but at a fraction of the cost. For these individuals, this is a new way to get financial planning to the average American.

However, some are arguing that the human touch is an important element in financial advising. There is no substitute for an individual who understands their customer’s family, values and goals. This information is the key to providing proper financial advisement. Only time will tell if these start-ups are able to stay in business for the long-term, or if traditional financial planning will win out.

For those who have been struggling to make ends meet due to an unforeseen life event, this may be the time to explore alternative financial solutions. Individuals who are drowning in credit card debt and unpaid medical bills may be eligible for bankruptcy. Depending on the details of your debt and income situation, a Chapter 13 or Chapter 7 bankruptcy may get you on the right financial track.

Source: NPR, “Can Robots Manage Your Money Better Than Your? Startups Say Yes,” Steve Henn, Dec. 30, 2013