Whether it's the breakdown of a relationship or you were never a couple to start with, co-parenting is incredibly tough.
Co-parenting apps have became a staple part of life for many co-parents, as they tackle the challenge of managing their kids' lives while separated or living in separate houses. Even the most amicable of co-parenting relationships can face difficulties in managing their kids' lives purely because they're not living in the same house.
There are several apps available to help you co-parent, but Our Family Wizard is widely considered to be the leading co-parenting app on the market.
We gave members of the DaddiLife community the opportunity to try and test the Our Family Wizard app to see if and how it helped them to co-parent more effectively.
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Our Family Wizard is a co-parenting app designed to helps co-parents managing the daily lives of their children more effectively and peacefully. It enables co-parents to set a co-parenting schedule, manage expenses, improve communication, store information and more.
Our two co-parenting partnerships - Mark and Emma, and Remie and Simon - both saw a dramatic drop in conflicts and misunderstandings, and an overall improvement in how they manage their kids' lives.
For more information on our scoring system, click here.
Ease of use
Value for money
You can find a more detailed review of their experiences below.
First launched as a website back in 2001 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Our Family Wizard has been used to help nearly one million co-parenting partners manage their children's lives in a healthy and peaceful ways.
It is often recommended by family courts, mediators, family professionals and mental health practitioners in all 50 US states, and countries like the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
How it works
Like many of its competitors, Our Family Wizard offers a range of industry-standard features, such as a shared calendar, expense tracker, documentation and information storage space, and of course, communication over text messages and voice and phone calls.
However, what sets the Our Family Wizard app aside from the others is 'ToneMeter'. Using AI, ToneMeter flags messages that may be emotionally charged before they are sent, and recommends calmer, friendlier language. It also has 'OFWPay', a built-in payment solution that integrates with your bank account, enabling you to transfer money to/from your co-parent within the app.
Both parents are required to purchase their own subscription, which starts at £79 for the 'Build Your Own' bundle and £99 for the pre-bundled one year subscription.
Now that we've explained what Our Family Wizard is, how it works and its key features, let's find out how out community members got on with the app.
Mark and Emma's experience
Mark and Emma are co-parenting their five children, ages ranging from 24 to two years old. With Mark working offshore for 2-3 weeks at a time, they needed a co-parenting app to help them manage the children's schedules.
They both admit they weren't expecting big things - not because they had any pre-existing thoughts or feelings about the app, they were just skeptical that an app would be able to help their chaotic life.
However, they were both very pleased with their first impressions of the app.
Mark began: "If I’m honest I was quite skeptical about this app and wasn’t sure it would have that much of a positive impact on our lives.
"I was initially surprised at how welcoming, inclusive and simple the app is. I also couldn’t believe how much information it could hold and all its functions and uses."
Emma added: "It was very aesthetically pleasing, very easy to navigate and immediately put me at ease using it. I’m actually not that great with technology so I worried slightly that it will be difficult for me but I needn’t have worried.
"I had anticipated that it could be used to schedule childcare, keep track of information and note specific plans, but I was pleasantly surprised when I realise it was a lot more than that. Expenses could be noted and claimed, medical records and appointments, messages sent to each other and insurance details added."
In fact, Mark and Emma struggled to find fault with the app.
"It's very effective and does exactly what it says it will," Mark explained. "The shared calendar and instant access immediately made things more effective. It's very easy to use and the user experience is intuitive. It has made complicated communication much less complicated."
Emma added: "There are so many key features to choose from. The diary and scheduling was the main thing for us, but there was also expenses to bill, messages to send to each other, large notes, important information, medical notes."
Mark: "I'm so glad we started using Our Family Wizard, and thankful for the help, constancy, and harmony it has brought to all our lives. I cannot recommend it highly enough and I just wish we had discovered it sooner. It's such a brilliant tool to have for every co-parenting journey.
"It's very good value for money, considering what you get for your money.
Emma: "Our Family Wizard has done exactly what I had hoped it would and more. With everything both co-parent needs in one easy-to-find place, it has made our quite complicated family life a lot easier for us all. I would recommend this to every co-parent to help simplify their lives and help organise and keep things in order. It's a please to use and something that will always be in place to give us a helping hand."
Remie and Simon's experience
Remie and Simon have been co-parenting their five year old daughter since she was roughly six months old. Remie admits they had an "old school way" of scheduling their daughter's life, using notebooks and sending text messages, and needed a more modern approach.
"Initially, I found it easy to set up expenses and create a calendar with clearly marked half-term and holiday dates, which were the main two aspects that attracted me to the app in the first place. Events were easy to input, too," Remie began.
However, Remie did experience some issues when it came to schedule rotations. She explained: "I was surprised there were only two options when it came it schedule rotations as I would require a custom calendar. After seeking advice from the support team, I found some customised options."
She added: "It does take a bit of navigating at first to input your personal data and find your way around the features but once you are set up it runs smoothly."
Having been managing their child's life with written notes and texts, Simons review of Our Family Wizard is glowing.
"The app's intuitive interface makes it easy to organise and track shared expenses, creating a transparent way to manage financial responsibilities. Additionally, the shared calendar feature has been a game-changer, allowing us to sync schedules and stay updated on our children's activities and appointments. It has significantly reduced misunderstandings and conflicts," he said.
Remie was also positive about the impact Our Family Wizard (and ToneMeter) had on their communication: "The messaging feature has facilitated smooth and respectful communication between my co-parent and me. It has helped us streamline discussions about our children and their wellbeing, reducing potential tension and misunderstandings.
The ability to store and access important documents, such as medical records and school information, all in one place has been incredibly convenient. It's reassuring to know that crucial information is readily available to both parents whenever needed.
Remie: "I think for less than £10 per month, it is superb value for money. I can't emphasise enough how valuable it has been for me. It's been an incredible tool for coordinating schedules, sharing important information, and maintaining effective communication with my co-parent. Overall, Our Family Wizard has truly been a lifesaver, promoting cooperation and organisation in our co-parenting journey. I highly recommend it to any co-parent seeking a comprehensive and user-friendly tool to navigate the complexities of shared parenting."
A staple feature of any co-parenting app, our parents raved about the impact the shared calendar had on their ability to manage their schedules. [NAME] even described it as a "game-changer".
All of the reviewing parents reported an improvement in their general communication with their co-parent. They said it helped to streamline and focus conversations about their child(ren), but also helped to reduce misunderstandings and conflict.
The 'Info Bank', storage space for all the important information about your child, was another big hit with the parents.
There are a number of features on Our Family Wizard that hold co-parents to account for court or legal proceedings. Messages cannot be edited or deleted, meaning you can't hide any abusive behaviour; co-parents need to 'check-in' for handover times and visitations, and the expenses tracker ensures bills get paid.
Both parents need a subscription
Our Family Wizard does require both parents to have their own subscription and link accounts, which is something both Mark and Emma raised issue with. Many of the app's competitors only require one subscription between two co-parents.
Relies on both parents' input
While the purpose is to promote healthy and cooperative co-parenting, some co-parenting apps can be used by one parent - meaning they can still take advantage of the app, even if there's a change in circumstances and the other parent stops using it. However, that's not the case with Our Family Wizard. It does need both parents to contribute to work.
As someone who admits she's not the best with technology, Emma would have liked to have seen some video tutorials embedded into the app to help her get to grips with it.
Our co-parents agree that Our Family Wizard is a simple but incredibly effective co-parenting app with a range of features that have a dramatic impact on how they communicate, manage schedules and important information.
With Our Family Wizard's risk-free trial period and a money back guarantee, there's no reason not to at least try it out.
Our Family Wizard has had a significant impact on the way our parents manage the day-to-day lives of their children. Misunderstandings, conflicts, notebooks and text messages have been swapped for streamlined, effective, efficient communication and management.
Ease of use
Despite a few minor issues here and there, our parents found Our Family Wizard simple and straightforward to use, with an intuitive interface. Some video tutorials would be a nice addition, though.
Value for money
With both parents having to buy their own subscription costing at least £79, it may seem like a lot of money. However, when you break that down over a year, it's less than £10 a month. And our parents all agreed that what you get for your money is fantastic. There's also a discount available for families in need.
As Emma said, "there are so many features to choose from". Our Family Wizard is arguably the most-loaded co-parenting app in terms of features. And ToneMeter really sets it apart.
Our Family Wizard is considered to be the leading co-parenting app, with around a million co-parenting families having used it so far. Its features are a huge hit around the internet. It's only being scored down slightly as none of our parents had heard of it before, despite co-parenting for quite a considerable amount of time.
Do both parents have to pay for the Our Family Wizard app?
Yes. Our Family Wizard does require both parents to pay for their own subscription. However, they don't have to be on the same subscription.
What is the Our Family Wizard fee waiver program?
Our Family Wizard's fee waiver program allows families or individuals who are experiencing financial hardship to access the app. In order to qualify, you need to be receiving Legal Aid, Help with Court Fees, Government benefits or have a lawyer doing pro bono work for you. If you are paying for legal representation, it's highly unlikely that you will qualify.
Our Family Wizard also offers a generous discount to military families, both veterans and those still serving in the armed forces.
Who can access OurFamilyWizard?
While both parents need to pay for a subscription, you can create child accounts for free meaning older children can access, edit and add to the shared calendar and other areas of the app. You can also add your legal professional or health professional related to your family life.
What can a professional see on Our Family Wizard?
Professionals, like lawyers, mediators or mental health professionals can be given access to your account for free. It allows them to check the status of the subscription, access certain client activities, review communications and download certified records.