Different default categories showing for different Quicken files

markswot Member ✭✭
I manage Quicken files (Quicken Deluxe - Windows) for a few family members. Personally, I have been using Quicken for over 10 years. I recently created new QDF files for my other family members (under new names, of course) to help track their finances separately.

When I look at the "standard" category choices, they are different for the newly created file than for the one I have been using for 10+ years. For example, if I want to categorize something as a Doctor expense, under the newer files, I see a Doctor subcategory under Health and Fitness.

On my older file, I see Doctor as a subcategory to Medical.

This is one fairly simple example of many other differences.

These are not categories that I created but rather ones that are presumably on the standard list provided with the Quicken program.

I am not sure why I am seeing this difference. I am guessing that at some point, Quicken changed the standard categories.

I know I can manually go in and modify my older files to be consistent with the current file. but was wondering if there was some other way to convert the old categories to the new ones. or maybe use the new ones for future transactions on my original file.

This is not a big problem, but it would be helpful to be consistent between the files. There have been times I looked up how to do certain things, using the categories, and the answers assume the newer categories are the ones in use.


  • Rocket J Squirrel
    Rocket J Squirrel SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Personally, I would not convert the old categories to the new ones. My categories are very different from the current default categories, and I like them just the way they are. To achieve consistency across files, I'd be more inclined to change the categories in the new files to match the old ones. (E.g., I want Doctor under Medical so I can get a total of medical expenses in reports for income tax purposes. Health & Fitness does not suggest a tax deduction.) If you change your old categories, you'll have to re-categorize lots of transactions. But that's your choice.
    You can do File > File Export > QIF File... and choose to export only the category list (Tags will also be exported). Then you can import that QIF file into another Quicken data file.
    When you do the export, do not choose <All accounts> as the account to export from. That will cause the account list to be exported as well, which you probably don't want. But QIF is a plain text file, which you can edit, if you wish, prior to import.
    If you do want to add the new categories to an old file, you can do that easily in the Category List. There's an Options menu in the lower left which includes Manage Categories. That provides the list of current default categories and you can choose which to add.

    Quicken user since version 2 for DOS, now using QWin Biz & Personal Subscription (US) on Win10 Pro.