How to close out the year and bring forward balances in the categories

I am using Quicken starter edition on WIN10. I use it just for my checkbook and budgeting. I have been using it for 3 years now and haven't been able to figure out how to close out a year and bring forward any balances in my categories. I appreciate your help in advance. I am a beginner user, so step by step is appreciated!

Best Answer

  • GeoffG
    GeoffG SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Accepted Answer
    Quicken mirrors real-life finances. Any accounts (checking, savings, CC or investments) in real-life should be in Quicken. Do you close real-life accounts on 12/31 to start new? Of course not. There is no reason to close out any account in Quicken. Balances simply roll over to the following year. Reports are what provide the ability to segment one year from another.
    user since '92 | Quicken Windows Premier - Subscription | Windows 10 Pro version 21H1

Answers

  • GeoffG
    GeoffG SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Accepted Answer
    Quicken mirrors real-life finances. Any accounts (checking, savings, CC or investments) in real-life should be in Quicken. Do you close real-life accounts on 12/31 to start new? Of course not. There is no reason to close out any account in Quicken. Balances simply roll over to the following year. Reports are what provide the ability to segment one year from another.
    user since '92 | Quicken Windows Premier - Subscription | Windows 10 Pro version 21H1
  • Ps56k2
    Ps56k2 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 2
    I've never understood the idea of menu items for - end of year -
    As mentioned by @GeoffG - just mimic the real world - keep everything going,
    and merely create a Report of Last Year - if that is of interest to you.
    Just received an email from my Credit Card about my CC report of my spending for the year.... it's just a report - my CC is still open, has a balance, etc -
    Quicken Subscription - Windows 10
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Ps56k2 said:
    I've never understood the idea of menu items for - end of year -

    The concept for closing out a year comes from businesses/accounting.  It really doesn't apply to person finances.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/
  • MMButler
    MMButler Member
    The reason I asked this is the file of my finances will be a monster file and increasing every year. Is there no way to archive some of it to keep the file size manageable? I guess I don't want to close out the account, I just want to keep it manageable.
  • GeoffG
    GeoffG SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited February 3
    No worries, unlike a spreadsheet, Quicken uses a database structure and can contain vast amounts of data. Many users have decades worth of data with no performance issues. 
    The only recommendation would be to move away from Starter to Deluxe. Unless you simply want an electronic checkbook, Deluxe provides significantly more features. Hmm, how timely... https://community.quicken.com/discussion/7887870/starter-vs-deluxe#latest
    user since '92 | Quicken Windows Premier - Subscription | Windows 10 Pro version 21H1
  • Tom Young
    Tom Young SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    "Closing the books" originated back in the day of hand-written ledgers where you could end up with a literal book several feet thick if you didn't "close them out."  The process of "closing" is (was) as applicable to personal financial reporting as to business reporting, but now that we have computers that can hold terabytes of data the concept is somewhat passé. 
    @MMButler, I wouldn't worry overmuch about creating an unmanageable monster file.  Many SuperUsers have been running the same file since Quicken was sold on floppy disks for your DOS computer, with finances much more "busy" than you describe, and generally things work OK.  The big advantage of keeping everything together is that you can run comparative reports that span many years, find information about a particular purchase you made 5 years ago, and so forth, all within one file.
    One aspect of "closing the books" that continues however is that once you're satisfied that things are correct for a period - whatever that period might be - current "big boy" accounting programs have a "closing" process that basically doesn't allow you to make any accounting entries prior to the date of closing.
    Quicken doesn't have that same formal closing process but does have a "Set password to modify transactions.." feature whereby you establish a date, and if you try to make an entry prior to that date Quicken asks for a password to allow the change.
    If you do want to have multiple Quicken files, one for each year, you can do that.  Look at File > File Operations > Year-End Copy...
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    One word of caution should always be stated with the "Year-End Copy", and that is once you create separate data files, it extremely difficult to combine it again.  And the main reason people want to do that is they find they need to run reports that include that old data.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/
  • YingDave
    YingDave Member ✭✭✭✭
    @MMButler
    My file has 28 years worth of transactions in it and still going strong. No performance problems. Storage is cheap these days. Fly - Be free!
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