Bill Pay lacks luster the past few years [Edited]

I've been using Quicken for >20 years. The new series on the mac for the past few years is getting better but still isn't up to what it was 5-10 years ago. [Removed -Unhelpful]. I can't get half of my payees signed up to bill pay (quick pay) even when I give a valid username and password. And I'm talking about standards like American Express and Chase. I have had bills not paid several times, and bills turned into automatic payment without my doing. Really disappointing. But the big thing is just getting normal payees registered for Quick Pay; it takes forever and usually doesnt work. I've had to resort to paying bills from my bank account and just using quicken as a register.

Answers

  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    curious: why do Quicken users use 'Bill Pay'?  Why not use your Bank's bill pay....or are these quicken users who do not have a Bank alternative?????/ 
  • jmrydzon
    jmrydzon Member ✭✭
    edited July 2021
    Using the bank's bill pay, which I do, requires a manual entry into Quicken when tracking future cash flow. The previous bill pay was simple and worked flawlessly. Bill Pay Manager is an incomplete shadow of Bill Pay. I only use Quicken now to download bank transactions.
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    Mark1104: The reason is that it used to be that you only had to take care of your bills and finances with Quicken. You wouldn't have to log in to any other website, then go back to Quicken to record it. You could check your bills and pay them, and they'd be recorded in your registers all at once. Now that works using Bill pay for only like 25% of them, and I have to log in to 10 other sites to make sure my bills get paid, and then record them in Quicken if I want to track my finances. It sort of kills the whole advantage of using Quicken for me.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    CmdrEd said:
    Mark1104: The reason is that it used to be that you only had to take care of your bills and finances with Quicken. You wouldn't have to log in to any other website, then go back to Quicken to record it. You could check your bills and pay them, and they'd be recorded in your registers all at once. Now that works using Bill pay for only like 25% of them, and I have to log in to 10 other sites to make sure my bills get paid, and then record them in Quicken if I want to track my finances. It sort of kills the whole advantage of using Quicken for me.
    If you would like to issue online payments from within Quicken, you may want to consider using the online bill payment service provided over the Direct Connect connection method supported by over 500 financial institutions:

    5 Star Bank
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  • BK
    BK Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2021
    CmdrEd said:
    ... and I have to log in to 10 other sites to make sure my bills get paid, and then record them in Quicken if I want to track my finances.
    You should not have to go to 10 different sites to to make sure bills are paid.  Many institutions offer eBill capability which major banks also support, combined with the benefits of AutoPay which you set up once and done:
    - You setup AutoPay-A via your primary bank's bill pay system to pay CreditCard-A in your choice of full or partial
    - CreditCard-A sends an eBill to both, you (via email) and your Bank (in an eBill-specific format)
    - Your bank will immediately schedule a payment to CreditCard-A as predefined by you (i.e. 7 days before due date, in full) and subsequently send you an email of this scheduled event as an FYI.
    You won't miss anything since all transactions are downloaded to Quicken.  Happy to provide more detail if you wish.
    [Added: Optionally you setup email/mobile Alert notification with your bank and/or CC to inform you of the completion of the payment which both serve as your assurance, as well as the downloaded payment transaction into Quicken as the 3rd assurance.]

    - QWin Deluxe user since 2010, US subscription on Win11
    - I don't use Cloud Sync, Mobile & Web, Bill Pay/Mgr

  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @bk - what you describe is what I do....so I do not understand the benefit of Quicken Bill pay... I can either 'direct connect' to my bank from Quicken and manage the bills in Quicken....or I can manage the bills at my Bank and the transactions 'direct connect' to Quicken???????? The Bank is the cash source, so isn't the benefit to manage everything at the Bank rather than in Quicken???? Also, in this day and age, I get a variety of alerts from the Bank on my smart phone that didn't exist years ago..... 
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    BK & Mark1104: Yes I can set up those auto pays externally to Quicken, but the transaction downloads have to be done days later to reflect that. When you (used to) do it all within Quicken, by entering one transaction, say in your checking account register, it simultaneously and instantly : records the transaction in the checking account and in the corresponding credit card or other account, and actually sets up the payment. You could instantly see the resulting balances in all affected accounts and the payment is made, all at the same time. Not anymore, or now only just for a few connected accounts.
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CmdrEd - thank you for the response.  My Bank (Bofa) transmits all the future payments as soon as I set them up for Bill Pay at the Bank's portal, so my Quicken is always in synch with the Bank.  

    Let me ask the community another way, if Quicken no longer offered Bill Pay via Quicken, who would care and why?  Just curious. 

    Is Quicken making any fees off this from the Quicken community? I imagine most Banks offer the service as part of their checking account program and do not charge extra for the service.  
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    Quicken used to offer the service I've been talking about for $10 a month. It was called either Bill Pay or CheckFree I forget. With the transition to the new code a few years ago they dropped it. For me, it is the main reason I've used Quicken for the past 20-30 years. Because when I go to quicken every week or so to do my bills, they are payed and everything is registered in one quick entry per bill. Now its much more of a hassle, juggling through the different websites for each payee. And Direct Connect does not work with all of them, American Express as an example. CheckFree worked with everything.
  • BK
    BK Member ✭✭✭✭
    Mark1104 said:
    @bk - what you describe is what I do....so I do not understand the benefit of Quicken Bill pay... I can either 'direct connect' to my bank from Quicken and manage the bills in Quicken....or I can manage the bills at my Bank and the transactions 'direct connect' to Quicken???????? The Bank is the cash source, so isn't the benefit to manage everything at the Bank rather than in Quicken???? Also, in this day and age, I get a variety of alerts from the Bank on my smart phone that didn't exist years ago..... 
    @Mark1104 , I believe you and I are saying the exact same thing.
    This is only a personal opinion: Not only I do not see any benefit in using Quicken's bill pay offering for my particular needs, I view it as introducing multiple potential points of failure into the process since they too use 3rd party vendors and those vendors use others.  I don't use it as I rather go straight to the source - BofA - to pay/schedule them and not worry about possible failures as they have never disappointed me.  I love other features of Quicken and will be a loyal and grateful customer.

    Mark1104 said:

    Let me ask the community another way, if Quicken no longer offered Bill Pay via Quicken, who would care and why?  Just curious. 

    Is Quicken making any fees off this from the Quicken community? I imagine most Banks offer the service as part of their checking account program and do not charge extra for the service.  
    Perhaps you and I don't but I am sure many users would be furious since (a) they are using it frequently and (b) some may not be banking with banks that have robust and feature-rich bill pay systems.  As such Quicken's bill pay is providing them with additional features and benefits a few don't have access to.
    I don't know about the fees but I think Quicken has the right to do so in order to thrive and I support that.

    CmdrEd said:
    BK & Mark1104: Yes I can set up those auto pays externally to Quicken, but the transaction downloads have to be done days later to reflect that. When you (used to) do it all within Quicken, by entering one transaction, say in your checking account register, it simultaneously and instantly : records the transaction in the checking account and in the corresponding credit card or other account, and actually sets up the payment. You could instantly see the resulting balances in all affected accounts and the payment is made, all at the same time. Not anymore, or now only just for a few connected accounts.
    @CmdrEd , When we initiate bill pay thru Quicken, we are not guaranteed that the transactions will be successful for the reasons I wrote above.  Yes, the Q register reflects the debit and credit records and the updated balances "simultaneously and instantly" as you wrote, but we have to wait and have faith that the transactions have been transmitted by the 3rd parties and are successfully received and executed by the financial institutions "later".

    - QWin Deluxe user since 2010, US subscription on Win11
    - I don't use Cloud Sync, Mobile & Web, Bill Pay/Mgr

  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @bk - thank you for the feedback! Interesting and much appreciated! 
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CmdrEd - so your Bank doesn't offer a 'bill pay' service????? just curious. 
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    yes it does; my whole issue is that I used to do everything from one place; in Quicken. I would write one transaction and that would simultaneously: issue the payment, record it in my register, and if it was to another account (like a credit card) in quicken, it would record it going there as well. One step. Now, if Quicken Bill pay doesn't work with a given payee (now 75% of the time), I have to go to my bank page or the payee page and authorize the payment, then go back to quicken to make sure everything is recorded right. Some places like American Express dont do Direct Connect so now its a mixed bag and I have to check every payment, versus previously it was a simple one step deal.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    CmdrEd said:
    yes it does; my whole issue is that I used to do everything from one place; in Quicken. I would write one transaction and that would simultaneously: issue the payment, record it in my register, and if it was to another account (like a credit card) in quicken, it would record it going there as well. One step. Now, if Quicken Bill pay doesn't work with a given payee (now 75% of the time), I have to go to my bank page or the payee page and authorize the payment, then go back to quicken to make sure everything is recorded right. Some places like American Express dont do Direct Connect so now its a mixed bag and I have to check every payment, versus previously it was a simple one step deal.

    Quicken Bill Pay was an online bill payment service provided by Metavante Payment Services, Inc.Metavante decided to terminate their Quicken Bill Pay service.  There are still over 500 other financial institutions providing the equivalent online bill payment service in Quicken.  The functional advantage Quicken Bill Pay had over these other online bill payment service providers was that Quicken Bill Pay could draw payment funds from any ACH account.  

    With the withdrawal of Quicken Bill Pay, Quicken promoted the use of Quick Pay and Check Pay as if they were functionally equivalent or even a better alternative to Quicken Bill Pay which they clearly are not at this time. 

    These days, most financial institutions provide their own free online bill payment services at their web portal.  So, those of us that are frugal and willing to make the extra effort required have most of our regular bills charged directly to reward/cash back credit cards or a bank account.  The extra effort required is updating the payment account numbers at the multiple vendor web site when necessary.  Those few bills that remain, we pay using the free bill payment service of our preferred financial institution. 

    Again, note:  Those of us that still want to issue online bill payments directly from within Quicken like we were able to do with Quicken Bill Pay may still do so using one of the more than 500 financial institutions that still support the online bill payment service over the Direct Connect connection method.  A few of these institutions will even provide the service for free.
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    Thanks; that is true however many of the payees I need to deal with don't use Direct Connect, and the Quicken Check Pay option has proven very unreliable for me, with delivery times well over the 5 days advertised and in some cases not done at all. Quicken Bill Pay was awesome. There are other services that could do what it did if Quicken would hook up with them.
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CmdrEd - so why not just use your Bank's online bill pay capabiltiy (or move to a bank that offers it)????
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2021
    CmdrEd said:
    Thanks; that is true however many of the payees I need to deal with don't use Direct Connect, and the Quicken Check Pay option has proven very unreliable for me, with delivery times well over the 5 days advertised and in some cases not done at all. Quicken Bill Pay was awesome. There are other services that could do what it did if Quicken would hook up with them.
    If a business doesn't support online bill payment, the online bill payment service should automatically send them a paper check just like Quicken Bill Pay used to do.

    If your attempting to send an individual an electronic payment, you may want to consider using a peer to peer payment service.
  • BK
    BK Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CmdrEd , From what I am reading, it appears that you already established that Q's current bill pay offering no longer meets your needs, and @Sherlock provided some great background where this might not be their strongest suit.  So as @Mark1104 suggested, it may be a good idea to 'test drive' the online bill pay system of your current banks and perhaps research others.  It won't cost you anything and you can revert back at anytime.  Keep in mind that even if some of your accounts are not Direct Connect (DC), chances are they offer Express Web Connect (EWC) connection to Quicken which still automatically download to Quicken during One Step Update process, end result being the same.
    Cons: You deal with two systems where you manage your bills from your primary Bank instead of Quicken; but continue to view all the transactions in Quicken exactly as you do today.
    Pros: You don't have all your eggs in one [Q] basket and hopefully achieve the reliability you are seeking.
    - QWin Deluxe user since 2010, US subscription on Win11
    - I don't use Cloud Sync, Mobile & Web, Bill Pay/Mgr

  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    BK and everyone: Thanks. Yes I know about and use the online bank bill pay services as well as those from individual payees. I'm bemoaning the fact that I have to do that, where in the past 30 years I could do it all from within Quicken by writing one transaction.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2021
    CmdrEd said:
    BK and everyone: Thanks. Yes I know about and use the online bank bill pay services as well as those from individual payees. I'm bemoaning the fact that I have to do that, where in the past 30 years I could do it all from within Quicken by writing one transaction.
    Again, you may not have to do that.  If you use the online bill payment services provided by one of the more than 500 financial institutions that still provide online payment to online payees, you could do it all from within Quicken by writing one transaction.
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    can you name a couple of them? my bank is Chase and provides free online payments, but I can't write them from within Quicken
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    CmdrEd said:
    can you name a couple of them? my bank is Chase and provides free online payments, but I can't write them from within Quicken
    I provided a complete list earlier in this discussion.  Chase does support online bill payments from within Quicken over the Direct Connect connection method.  You should be able to issue your payments to online payees just like you did with Quicken Bill Pay.  My understanding is the Direct Connect access to Chase is free for non-business accounts.  To complete the setup of the Direct Connect connection method with Chase, you may want to review: https://www.quicken.com/support/adding-chase-accounts-quicken  Once you've successfully switched the registers associated with Chase to use the Direct Connect connection method, you should be able to set the online bill payment to the Chase Payment Service.
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CmdrEd - I use Bank of AMerica and use their Online Bill Pay feature.  All the transactions, even the ones that are future dated download to Quicken.  It is quite easy. 
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    > @Sherlock said:
    > I provided a complete list earlier in this discussion.  Chase does support online bill payments from within Quicken over the Direct Connect connection method.  You should be able to issue your payments to online payees just like you did with Quicken Bill Pay.  My understanding is the Direct Connect access to Chase is free for non-business accounts.  To complete the setup of the Direct Connect connection method with Chase, you may want to review: https://www.quicken.com/support/adding-chase-accounts-quicken  Once you've successfully switched the registers associated with Chase to use the Direct Connect connection method, you should be able to set the online bill payment to the Chase Payment Service.

    So I have my Chase account set up for payment from within Quicken. Quicken only allows "QuickPay" or "CheckPay" as a way to schedule payments within Quicken going out from the Chase account. "QuickPay" does not hook up and pay most of my payees electronically the way Quicken Bill Pay used to. That is the problem. It can only pay about 25-50% of the payees electronically as compared with what Quicken Bill Pay could do. The default is "CheckPay", which takes about 5-7 days to go out if it goes out at all. In the old Quicken you simple entered a transaction and it would go to BillPay, and if it couldn't do it electronically it would automatically switch to a check version which actually worked.
  • Mark1104
    Mark1104 Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CmdrEd - so why not reverse the process and pay everything directly from Chase....and then download the transactions from Chase to Quicken? 
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    > @Mark1104 said:
    > @CmdrEd - so why not reverse the process and pay everything directly from Chase....and then download the transactions from Chase to Quicken? 

    I could do that, but for example if I'm paying my Amex card, Quicken would put it in the register for Chase but not the corresponding one for Amex. It wouldn't show in Amex until a day or two later and I'd have to remember to look then. I don't get an instantaneous view of where I'm at overall that way
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2021
    CmdrEd said:
    > @Sherlock said:
    > I provided a complete list earlier in this discussion.  Chase does support online bill payments from within Quicken over the Direct Connect connection method.  You should be able to issue your payments to online payees just like you did with Quicken Bill Pay.  My understanding is the Direct Connect access to Chase is free for non-business accounts.  To complete the setup of the Direct Connect connection method with Chase, you may want to review: https://www.quicken.com/support/adding-chase-accounts-quicken  Once you've successfully switched the registers associated with Chase to use the Direct Connect connection method, you should be able to set the online bill payment to the Chase Payment Service.

    So I have my Chase account set up for payment from within Quicken. Quicken only allows "QuickPay" or "CheckPay" as a way to schedule payments within Quicken going out from the Chase account. "QuickPay" does not hook up and pay most of my payees electronically the way Quicken Bill Pay used to. That is the problem. It can only pay about 25-50% of the payees electronically as compared with what Quicken Bill Pay could do. The default is "CheckPay", which takes about 5-7 days to go out if it goes out at all. In the old Quicken you simple entered a transaction and it would go to BillPay, and if it couldn't do it electronically it would automatically switch to a check version which actually worked.
    It is not true that Quicken only allows Quicken only allows "QuickPay" or "CheckPay" as a way to schedule payments within Quicken going out from the Chase account.

    Again, if you've successfully switched the registers associated with Chase to use the Direct Connect connection method, you should be able to set the online bill payment to the Chase Payment Service for a payment register.  



    Note: I lifted these images from @Ps56k2's posts as we do not have a Chase account.  

    After you have set the online payment service to use the Chase payment service, you should be able to issue payments to the online payees just like you did with Quicken Bill Pay
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    Sorry, you're talking about the PC version. I'm talking about the Mac version. Totally different and inferior new code. This is what is available for my Chase account (see pic). And the Bill pay option at the bottom is "not available" when I try to activate it.
  • Sherlock
    Sherlock SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited July 2021
    CmdrEd said:
    Sorry, you're talking about the PC version. I'm talking about the Mac version. Totally different and inferior new code. This is what is available for my Chase account (see pic). And the Bill pay option at the bottom is "not available" when I try to activate it.
    Of course, we're talking about Quicken on Windows because you posted your query to a Quicken on Windows category.  Way to waste all of our time.  Thanks.

    I suggest you post your query to a Quicken for Mac category.  You should be able to enable the bank bill pay.  Perhaps you need to disable the Quick Pay option first or have not setup the Chase registers to use the Direct Connect connection method.
  • CmdrEd
    CmdrEd Member ✭✭
    OMG I'm very sorry about that, folks!
    I've seen the Windows version and it is awesome, the way the Mac version used to be. Maybe I'll start running that via Parallels, but converting the files is a real bear.
    But again sorry for wasting your time!
This discussion has been closed.