Best way to remove a 401(k) account without breakage?

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I have an existing 401(k) account that has transferred to a different financial institution that does not have Quicken Access. I have, at times, regretted integrating my 401(k) into Quicken, as it introduced a granularity that I didn't really need, but I felt I had to keep up with. It was a massive drain on my resources in Quicken, as it tracked literally tens of thousands of individual stock transactions over the last five years. (I generated a register listing for 2020, and it was 4400+ transactions in that one year alone.) Opening the account to the register screen would lock Quicken up for literally 1-2 minutes, and saving or editing individual transactions took 15-20 seconds each time. With the transfer to a new unsupported institution, this seems a golden opportunity to "unwind the clock" on that process. I tested simply deleting the account, but that indicated that all transfers to that account (from every paycheck for the last five years) would be changed to "transfer to 'unspecified account,'" which seems less than ideal. What is the best way to remove it, or make it "go away" without causing an inordinate amount of harm? I've considered the outright deletion method, and then doing a find/replace search to change all the "unspecified account" listings to "retirement account" or somesuch, but is there a better way?

Best Answers

  • Sherlock
    Sherlock Member ✭✭✭✭
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    If you want to delete all the transactions that are not transfers in the 401(k) account, I suggest using a customized Transaction report: select Reports > Banking > Transaction
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
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    If you make a backup first, then you can try anything you want and see if it "breaks" anything.  If you don't like the results, do a restore and you will be back to where you started.
    If you just delete the account completely, the transactions (in the other account) that were transfers should have their category changed to something like "deleted account" and shouldn't hurt anything.

    -splasher using Q continuously since 1996
    - Subscription Quicken - Win11 and QW2013 - Win11
    -Questions? Check out the Quicken Windows FAQ list

  • q_lurker
    q_lurker SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
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    You might consider ending the use of the existing account and starting a new 401k account.  I would 'end' the old account by transferring all shares to the new account taking that account balance to $0.  It would remain available for historical review and checks, but not an account you would regularly access.  I would in your case consider making the new account a Simple Investing account that only tracks the positions, not the detailed transactions.  I don't know how that would interface with the paycheck deposits, though. 

    FWIW, I have found any investment account seems to bog down as the transactions count reaches 7,000 to 12,000.  My path in such cases is the shares transferred into a new account.  But I have never reached the 4,000/year rate in a single account.  

    Backup first and keep trying.  I too would not be too concerned about the "unspecified account' as long as you know what is going on there.    

Answers

  • Sherlock
    Sherlock Member ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Options
    If you want to delete all the transactions that are not transfers in the 401(k) account, I suggest using a customized Transaction report: select Reports > Banking > Transaction
  • splasher
    splasher SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Options
    If you make a backup first, then you can try anything you want and see if it "breaks" anything.  If you don't like the results, do a restore and you will be back to where you started.
    If you just delete the account completely, the transactions (in the other account) that were transfers should have their category changed to something like "deleted account" and shouldn't hurt anything.

    -splasher using Q continuously since 1996
    - Subscription Quicken - Win11 and QW2013 - Win11
    -Questions? Check out the Quicken Windows FAQ list

  • q_lurker
    q_lurker SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Options
    You might consider ending the use of the existing account and starting a new 401k account.  I would 'end' the old account by transferring all shares to the new account taking that account balance to $0.  It would remain available for historical review and checks, but not an account you would regularly access.  I would in your case consider making the new account a Simple Investing account that only tracks the positions, not the detailed transactions.  I don't know how that would interface with the paycheck deposits, though. 

    FWIW, I have found any investment account seems to bog down as the transactions count reaches 7,000 to 12,000.  My path in such cases is the shares transferred into a new account.  But I have never reached the 4,000/year rate in a single account.  

    Backup first and keep trying.  I too would not be too concerned about the "unspecified account' as long as you know what is going on there.    
  • just_matt
    just_matt Member ✭✭
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    Thanks. Once I make sure everything else is in line, I'm going to backup and then break things and see what happens. Appreciate all the input.
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