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401k Contributions

Robert Lynch
Robert Lynch Member ✭✭
edited January 2019 in Investing (Mac)
I recently set up my 401k account in quicken 2017.  My provider is ADP retirement services, they do not support direct connect, so I am manually downloading monthly transactions.  

I have had the account since 2008 and I have uploaded all transactions and noticed that the cash balance was incorrect.  In my research I noticed that the contributions I make are not recorded.  I added in all as payment/deposits.  I added in all deposits and all reconciles now.

However, in my reports screen, I am seeing these contributions as line items.  But they should be transfers from my paycheck?  Since my paycheck is recorded in my checking as the net amount, what is the best practice that most users are working with?  Do you gross up the check with taxes, insurance and retirement dollars and create the retirement dollars as transfers to the 401k?  What is done for employer matching?  I cannot include that in paycheck as it is not part of my gross amount?  What is best practice?

I don't mind manually working the balances and / or transfers monthly, but would like to know what is everyone else doing before I begin a project that I may have to change in the future.

Lastly, what is the difference in 2019 vs. 2017?  Is it worth it for me to update yet?  One update I would love is in budgets to allow you to select accounts to remove to account for transfers such as these retirement dollars and automated savings.

Thanks!

Comments

  • volvogirl
    volvogirl SuperUser ✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2019
    Yes you need to enter your paycheck as a split transaction with the gross pay and all the deductions.  There is a paycheck wizard at least in WIndows Quicken.  

    Found this post for you,
    https://getsatisfaction.com/quickencommunity/topics/paycheck-setup-for-mac-2019-deluxe 
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    edited January 2019
    Robert, since you're using Quicken Mac, there is no paycheck "wizzard", but you basically just create a deposit transaction for your paycheck and re-use it thereafter.

    So you'd enter your deposit as the net amount of your paycheck. The first split line, enter your gross pay categorized as salary. Then, add additional split lines for each deduction from your pay, including your 401k deduction. That spit line would be a transfer to your 401k account, so the deduction from your pay would be increasing your 401k account.

    That deals with your paycheck, but you still need to account for the employer's matching contribution. There are a few ways you can do this, but if you get paid a standard amount on a regular schedule (e.g. biweekly salary), then the easiest method is probably to set up a scheduled transaction in your 401k account. You'll need a category for this income, so create one called "Retirement Contribution" or "Employer 401k Contribution", enter the amount, set the frequency for this transaction to repeat, and away you go.  (This will category will show up on a report as income, which is correct even though you may not think of it as traditional income.) 

    If any of that isn't clear enough and you need more details, post back here and we can break it down more. 

    As for your last question, no, Quicken 2019 does not yet allow user-selected transfers to show up in budgets. It's a frequent discussion topic on this forum, it's something the product manager has acknowledged as a need and something they're working on, so there's hope this may get released sometime later this year (but no certainty of delivery date).
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Robert Lynch
    Robert Lynch Member ✭✭
    edited January 2019
    Awesome.  I went ahead and created the tax related categories for grossing up my checks.  What categories are best for putting dental, health insurance and the 401k contributions?  Should they be all in grouped under a main category as subs?

    I am salaried, but my check is not always the same due to bonus, incentives and taxable fringe events.  Is a recurring easy to modify when does not reconcile to the actual amount deposited?
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    edited January 2019
    I'm not sure why you've twice said you are "grossing up" your checks. You should be entering exactly the information on your check stub: gross pay, less deductions, equals net pay. Here's a sample:



    It's pretty easy to open any such transaction and change any of the amounts. I'd suggest setting up the splits with every possible pay and deduction split you'll need; you don't have to add and delete them, you can just set a split amount to zero if it isn't present on a particular check . (For instance, my state unemployment insurance is withheld up to a certain amount, and after that it's zero for the rest of the year -- but I leave the split line in the transaction, so it's always there when it comes back.)

    As for what splits and categories you want, it's largely up to you. I prefer to have a split and category for everything in our paychecks; it makes it easy to make sure the data is right for any pay and at the end of the year.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • smayer97
    smayer97 SuperUser, Mac Beta, Canada Beta ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2019
    volvogirl said:

    Yes you need to enter your paycheck as a split transaction with the gross pay and all the deductions.  There is a paycheck wizard at least in WIndows Quicken.  

    Found this post for you,
    https://getsatisfaction.com/quickencommunity/topics/paycheck-setup-for-mac-2019-deluxe 

    There is no paycheck wizard in QMac but this video should help:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ksi1uFXEync

    Also take a look at other helpful related videos:
    https://www.youtube.com/user/QuickenMac

    You can add your VOTE to Add a Paycheck Wizard.

    First, click on the underlined link above to go there, then click VOTE at the top of THAT page, so your vote will count for THIS feature and increase its visibility to the developers by seeking to have the features you need or desire end up in the latest version.

    While you are at it, you may want to add your VOTE to related IDEAS found on the 
    List of Requests for Bill Reminders (aka Scheduled Transactions) and Graph Features (aka Cash Flow Forecast or Projected Balance). Click on the underlined link, then follow the instructions to add your vote to more related ideas. Your VOTES matter!

    (If you find this reply helpful, please be sure to click "Like", so others will know, thanks.)
    Have Questions? Check out these FAQs (links now fixed):COMPLETE list of Product Ideas - Quicken for Mac to VOTE on

    Object to Quicken's business model, using up 25% of your screen?
    Add your vote here:
    Quicken should eliminate the LARGE Ad space when a subscription expires

    (
    Canadian user since '92, STILL using QM2007)


  • smayer97
    smayer97 SuperUser, Mac Beta, Canada Beta ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited January 2019
    As for differences with QM2017, take a look at Release Notes for Quicken for Mac Subscription (2018+).

    (If you find this reply helpful, please be sure to click "Like", so others will know, thanks.)
    Have Questions? Check out these FAQs (links now fixed):COMPLETE list of Product Ideas - Quicken for Mac to VOTE on

    Object to Quicken's business model, using up 25% of your screen?
    Add your vote here:
    Quicken should eliminate the LARGE Ad space when a subscription expires

    (
    Canadian user since '92, STILL using QM2007)


  • Robert Lynch
    Robert Lynch Member ✭✭
    edited January 2019
    Happy Sunday!  This is all great - I have all my checks set up with splits and transfers...but just hit a snag today.  My checks are deposited on the 15th & 31st.  But the 401k activity is plus one day. Now that all the transfers are in, my monthly balances are not reconciling back to my retirement statements.  The only work around I can think of is to classify my checks with the splits but not transfers and manually create the transactions in the retirement fund and in reports and budgets this will net to zero naturally.

    Any thoughts or suggestions for a better path to be able to utilize transfers?

    Thanks!
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    edited January 2019

    Happy Sunday!  This is all great - I have all my checks set up with splits and transfers...but just hit a snag today.  My checks are deposited on the 15th & 31st.  But the 401k activity is plus one day. Now that all the transfers are in, my monthly balances are not reconciling back to my retirement statements.  The only work around I can think of is to classify my checks with the splits but not transfers and manually create the transactions in the retirement fund and in reports and budgets this will net to zero naturally.

    Any thoughts or suggestions for a better path to be able to utilize transfers?

    Thanks!

    One option is to simply deduct the last transfer transaction of the month when you compare your 401k statement to the balance in Quicken.

    If you really want to make it work pristinely, here's something you could do: Create a new asset account and call it Exchange. Make your paycheck 401k deduction split transfer to the Exchange account. That will make your checking account work, and because it doesn't hit your 401k account, that, too will match the month-end statement. Now, add a scheduled transaction for the 16th and the 1st to transfer the funds from the Exchange account to your 401k account. The Exchange account will zero out after being a holding tank for a day.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
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