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How to sync Quicken with PayPal

I registered my PayPal account with Quicken (MacOS 10.13.6) Deluxe 2020 5.15.2. Also registered with Quicken is my credit union checking account. I use my PayPal credit card for most of my transactions, both locally and online. Most of those transactions trigger PayPal to initiate an instant transfer from my credit union checking account. When I look at my PayPal account in an online browser, I typically see a balance amount that does not correspond to what I see in Quicken when I update and reconcile my PayPal account! I have to enter a "reconcile adjustment" in my Quicken register for the PayPal account if I want the account to reconcile.

I think this may be caused (at least in part) by PayPal transactions that are "pending" but nevertheless are transmitted by PayPal to Quicken as if they have already completed. If I manually send money from my checking account to PayPal, this can confuse things even further, since there is a multi-day delay involved in completing that transaction. So I am totally confused as to how to always get the amount PayPal shows on its summary page as "Available in your PayPal Cash Plus account" to agree with the balance actually shown for the PayPal account in Quicken when I try to update and reconcile that account. Can anyone tell me how to arrange for this to happen automatically without my having to use "reconcile adjustments" in Quicken? Thanks in advance!

Answers

  • Eric StewartEric Stewart Member ✭✭
    I'll make my question shorter: Does anyone else have a problem reconciling their PayPal account in Quicken without having to enter a "reconcile adjustment" into the PayPal register? Thanks.
  • FrankxFrankx SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Hi @Eric Stewart,

    In answer to your most recent post - I am able to do that, but I don't use PayPal as much as you apparently do, therefore I don;t have the issues you raised in your first post.

    But let me ask a question about that "downloads" you get from PayPal - do some of the downloaded transactions have *** at the end, while others do not?  And do you receive duplicate downloads (the same transaction downloads twice on different dates)?  If so, is that adding to the reconciliation issues?

    Frankx
    Frankx

    Quicken H&B-2017 - Ver. R19.8 - Build 26.1.19.8  - Windows 10 Home - Ver. 1909
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  • Eric StewartEric Stewart Member ✭✭
    Thanks for your response. I’m not seeing duplicate transactions in my PayPal register, nor have I received any with "***" at the end. I’m guessing that at least part of my problem is that when I buy something using my PayPal card, it triggers an "instant transfer" from my credit union checking account. That transfer shows up in my checking account fairly promptly. But it’s not clear to me how soon PayPal actually receives the transferred money.

    The checking account always reconciles properly. But the balance which PayPal itself shows me online doesn’t seem to track properly with these instant transfers, nor with the balance I see in my Quicken register for PayPal after it's just been updated.

    Adding to the confusion are the occasions when I have manually sent money to PayPal from my checking account.

    There seems to be a lag in PayPal's online page when transactions are still marked as "pending" even after they have shown up in my checking account. When I update PayPal in Quicken, some but not all of those "pending" transactions do appear in the register. But should they then be check-marked as "cleared"? I can’t figure out when a PayPal transaction that shows up in the PayPal Quicken register should actually be treated as "cleared."

    In other words, when it comes to PayPal transactions, the word "cleared" seems to have an ambiguous meaning that is different from the meaning of "cleared" in regular accounts.
  • FrankxFrankx SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    So, in short - you are able to fairly easily reconcile your checking account - that's good.

    The problem seems to have a lot, if not all to do with your reconciling of the PayPal account in Quicken - and that is being caused primarily by the lag time in Paypal showing transfers (both automatic transfers i.e. "instant transfers") and periodic manual transfers.  Although challenging - you should be able to handle these when you reconcile the PayPal account.  Just keep in mind that as long as each account reconciles to its online account balance at any given point in time (and ob some regular interval), you are good.  You don't necessarily need them to balance within Quicken, and they probably will not, unless there is some pause in transactions that allows the PayPal account to "catch up" to the bank account.

    Hope this makes sense but if not, feel free to ask additional questions.

    Frankx
    Frankx

    Quicken H&B-2017 - Ver. R19.8 - Build 26.1.19.8  - Windows 10 Home - Ver. 1909
                                             - - - - Quicken User since 1984 - - - 
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  • Eric StewartEric Stewart Member ✭✭
    Frankx, what you said seems to make sense. I’m not sure you want to say online whether you also depend on "instant" transfers and/or periodic manual transfers. My experience is that my using both types of transfers is associated with problems reconciling my PayPal account within Quicken. Nevertheless, so far it looks like all my actual PayPal transactions do show up in Quicken at some point in time. They are accurate in terms of dollar amounts, and they are never duplicated. I do sometimes have to modify the payee name and/or modify the assigned category, but those are not serious problems. When I get a spare moment, I am going to try to remove some of my older "reconcile adjustments" and see whether they are really needed.

    The only real reason I even want a PayPal register in Quicken is because otherwise most of my PayPal transactions just show up in Quicken as PayPal instant transfers that don’t disclose the actual payee or category.
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