Accounting for 401(k) deposits in a budget

Paul Kleeberg
Paul Kleeberg Member ✭✭✭
I have come up with a really clunky way to do this which I won't bother to share.

How can I account in my budget for the amount of money that goes into a 401(k) when entering my paycheck. When I enter the transaction, I "transfer" the amount into the 401(k) however it will not show up as an expense in the budget. I want to be able to manage my budget and putting money aside into a 401(k) is, in my mind, reducing my spendable income. How do I represent that?
Quicken user since 1997 when Dollars and $ense died.

Best Answer

  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Answer ✓
    @Paul Kleeberg @Quicken Jasmine Hang on a second… you absolutely can show Transfer amounts in a budget. Go to Edit Budget, click on Select Categories and — here's the non-intuitive part — scroll down to the letter "t" where you will find the "categories" of "Transfer In" and "Transfer Out" for each of your accounts. In this case, you'd want to include Transfer Out > To 401k. This will show up in the expenses in your budget.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993

Answers

  • Hi @Paul Kleeberg,

    Thank you for contacting the Community, I am sorry that you are experiencing this. 

    In order to further work towards a resolution, I require some more information. When you say, "I "transfer" the amount into the 401(k)", are you using a transfer category to make that transfer?
    Transactions that are made using transfer categories are automatically excluded from the budget.

    I look forward to hearing your response.
    Quicken Jasmine
    -Quicken Jasmine
  • Paul Kleeberg
    Paul Kleeberg Member ✭✭✭
    That is correct.  I am using that however. If, say I have 10K of income and transfer 2K into the 401K, it looks as if I have 10K of my money to spend on expenses which I do not.
    Quicken user since 1997 when Dollars and $ense died.
  • Quicken Jasmine
    Quicken Jasmine Moderator mod
    edited February 11
    Hi @Paul Kleeberg,

    Thank you for the response. 

    If you want it to show, you have to use a spending or income category (whichever is most appropriate). If you still want to maintain the transfer without entering separate transactions in each account, then you can add a transfer column and enter the account it's getting transferred to in the transfer column, but you must use a spending or income category in order for it to show up in the budget.

    I hope this helps,
    Quicken Jasmine
    -Quicken Jasmine
  • Paul Kleeberg
    Paul Kleeberg Member ✭✭✭
    That is actually the ugly solution that I came up with. Each transaction has two additional categories one is a spending category for the 401(k) that is in the budget and one is a "x non-budget income" account that is not in the budget.
    Quicken user since 1997 when Dollars and $ense died.
  • Quicken Jasmine
    Quicken Jasmine Moderator mod
    edited February 11
    Hi @Paul Kleeberg,

    Thank you for responding. In terms of getting it to show in the budget the way you want, you would need to enter 2 separate transactions (one in each account) using a spending or income category since budgets doesn't show transfers by default.

    It sounds like you're trying to accomplish categorized transfers which, unfortunately, is not currently an option as this idea was rejected. Below I have posted a link to Marcus' (head of Mac development) response as to why it was rejected.

    https://community.quicken.com/discussion/comment/20120665/#Comment_20120665

    I hope this helps and I apologize that I could not be of more assistance.
    Quicken Jasmine

    -Quicken Jasmine
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Answer ✓
    @Paul Kleeberg @Quicken Jasmine Hang on a second… you absolutely can show Transfer amounts in a budget. Go to Edit Budget, click on Select Categories and — here's the non-intuitive part — scroll down to the letter "t" where you will find the "categories" of "Transfer In" and "Transfer Out" for each of your accounts. In this case, you'd want to include Transfer Out > To 401k. This will show up in the expenses in your budget.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • Paul Kleeberg
    Paul Kleeberg Member ✭✭✭
    @jacobs. Wow!  Great solution.  Thanks.  The other half of the equation is when I take out of a retirement account to augment my income, I discovered I can use a [Transfer from...]. Thanks again!

    A flow-up question which may be more appropriate for new thread:

    Categories can be grouped under headings so they can be collapsed.  For example option-click expenses and then expanding it, one only sees the high level items and then can drill down to Taxes:Federal:REI so that I can see the total REI, federal or all taxes.  It also saves screen real estate. However it seems that all these [transfer to/from] are high level and I have not found a way to collapse than under a category.  Is there a way one can do that?

    Paul
    Quicken user since 1997 when Dollars and $ense died.
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