Help! It's Tax Time....

DebK Member ✭✭
I've used Quicken since the 1970s and settled with Q1997 for Mac since it has always been the best for my needs. Unfortunately 2 years ago when I purchased my new computer i had to upgrade to a subscription version of Quicken for Mac.

Now that I'm trying to enter all the info for my taxes (my company, my husband's company, our work, our rental properties...) I'm finding that I cannot carry information forward from one month to another.

For example, previously my AmEx would include Medical, Drs. or Business, lunch, or Parking....
and each month those same categories would populate the AmEx payee with the appropriate categories.

NOW, however, I'm finding that I have to reenter each split category with every single entry.
Each Visa I have to create a Gasoline memo, and a parking memo and a tolls memo....and nothing is repeated from month to month,

This is taking me FOREVER!!

Any suggestions, please and thank you.


  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    Could you clarify if you have a separate credit card account in Quicken for your Visa and your Amex credit cards? And if so, are you entering each credit card charge as a separate transaction? Or are you entering only a single payment transaction in your checking account each month, with split lines for every transaction?

    It is strongly recommended that you do the former. Trying to manage credit cards via a single monthly transaction with lots of splits is truly swimming uphill.

    Please let us know how you're doing it, and we can try to help.

    Assuming you are entering each transaction separately, the key you're looking for is QuickFill rules. Each time you enter a transaction in Quicken, you can have it save a QuickFill rule to save the category — or, optionally, all the fields, like memo and amount — so that the next time you enter the same Payee, the category or all fields will populate with the data from the previous transaction. 

    When you are entering a Payee, a drop-down menu of possible Payee choices pops up. In the menu, Quicken will highlight the one with a QuickFill rule, but there will also be a plain or naked Payee you can select if you want to use the Payee but not the stored values for that Payee. Here's an example:

    I've typed "1-800" and Quicken shows a menu below with Best Matches that includes 1-800-Flowers twice. The first item in the menu is the naked Payee; if I select that, the Payee will be set to 1-800-Flowers but not category or amount or memo will be filled in. The second item in the menu, which Quicken has highlighted in blue, is the same Payee, showing a saved QuickFill rule which will apply the category "Gifts", the Amount of $51.09, and the Memo of "Flowers for Dawn" from the last time I entered a transaction for this Payee. If I press Enter or select it with a mouse click, those fields will be filled it (and I can Tab over to them to update the Memo and Amount if I need to).

    How do these QuickFill rules get created? The normal way is as you enter transactions. As you enter the Category field, a small blue menu option pops up above the Category for "Save Quickfill rule for this payee"; if the checkbox is checked, a QuickFill rule will be created when the transaction is saved:

    You can also switch between "all fields" and "category" only. In Preferences > Register, you can set the default for whether you want this checkbox checked (always create QuickFill rules) or not (never created QuickFill rules), and then you can override your default on any transaction you're entering in the blue box as shown above. In Preferences, you can also set whether you want to default to category only or all fields.

    When you imported from Quicken 2007, Quicken didn't create all these QuickFill rules automatically. So the first time you enter a transaction for a Payee, you need to enter the category and allow it to save a QuickFill rule. Each subsequent entry for a Payee will then have the rule available to be applied. (You can also go to Window > Payees & Rules > QuickFill Rules to enter and edit rules manually; usually, it's faster to create rules just by entering transactions normally.)
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • DebK
    DebK Member ✭✭
    Thanks for getting back to me. I don't use any of the automated/on-line features in Quicken, I pay my bills and enter the amounts manually. Here is an example of my problem:

    I enter my American Express payment for $5,000.
    I need to break out the bill into the correct categories. In the Splits section I enter:
    Car Payment
    Medical: doctors & dentists
    Medical: pharmacy
    Medical: medical insurance
    22nd Street: Utilities

    Then I need to further identify certain of those bills in the Amount and Notes sections. Such as

    Car Payment Rick's Audi $135
    Gasoline $102
    Medical: doctors & dentists Dr. Toth, or Dr. Bedford, etc.. (and the amount of each)
    Medical: pharmacy CVS, or Walgreens or Pharmaca, etc. (and the amount of each)
    Medical: medical insurance for which one of us (and the amount of each)
    22nd Street: Utilities DWP, or So-Cal Gas, or.... (and the amount of each)

    Right now all I can get QuickFill to do is remember the credit card name & number but not any of the other information which in Quicken 98 (or whatever was the ancient Gold version, the perfect version) would be automatically remembered from previous months.

    Since I pay almost everything on credit cards you can imagine this is taking forever. Is there any workaround? Any solution?

    Thanks in advance for your prompt response.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    If you set the QuickFill rule creation to "all fields", then it will save the splits.

    But it sounds like you are entering one transaction for a monthly credit card bill. I'm just trying to understand; is that what you're doing? You don't have a separate account in Quicken for each credit card. If so, as I wrote above, you're not doing it the way it's intended to work. We'd be happy to explain a better way to approach it, if you're open to it.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
  • DebK
    DebK Member ✭✭
    I enter all of my bills into my one Quicken account. I enter the checks I write as well as the automatic payments, and the bills I pay online.

    And then I breakout each of my credit cards in the way I described earlier.

    I do not see an "all fields" selection in my Quickfill area - what am I not doing correctly?

    Thank you.
  • jacobs
    jacobs SuperUser, Mac Beta Beta
    DebK said:
    I do not see an "all fields" selection in my Quickfill area - what am I not doing correctly?
    I showed it above. When you enter a transaction, when you Tab into the Category field, the blue pop-up appears above the Category field. There are two options in this blue pop-up: check or uncheck the box to create a QuickFill rule, and click the little arrow to select whether "category" or "all fields" will be saved:

    The same options appear in Quicken Preferences in the Register tab. At the bottom, you'll be able to choose your default for creating or not creating QuickFill rules, and if so, whether to default to category or all fields.

    These global preferences are what you can override as you enter transactions, in the blue pop-ups shown above.


    Going back to the credit card payments, you're making things much more difficult by entering one transaction for the monthly bill, and documenting each credit card transaction as a split line. Since your charges aren't identical each month, I'm not sure how saving a QuickFill rule for your card payment will be helpful; you have to edit all the spit lines to correspond to all the charges for the month.

    Here is how Quicken is designed to be used... Create a new account (the + icon at the top of the left sidebar), and select it to be a manual account, meaning you'll enter transactions yourself rather than downloading them. Quicken will name the account "Credit Card", but you can Control-click on it and rename it "Amex" or "Visa". Then you enter each credit card charge as its own transaction: the date of the charge, who the Payee is, the category, the amount, and optionally a note. There are no splits, except where a single charge needs to be split for different categories. In the register, and in your left sidebar, you can see the running balance of your credit card if you enter them throughout the month. Each of your recurring transactions can have a QuickFill rule, so it will be faster when you re-enter them. You can even set some transactions up to repeat each month if you have recurring charges you charge on your credit card, like your cable bill or cell phone bill. Using QuickFill rules and Scheduled transactions can save a lot of time in manual transaction entry.

    When it comes time to pay the credit card bill, in your checking account, enter a simple transaction for the amount you are paying, and use a category of "Transfer:[Amex]", which will decrease your checking account and also decrease the balance of your credit card account — mirroring what you do in the real world when you pay the bill. And you can also reconcile the credit card account when you get each monthly statement, just as you do for your checking account, checking off that every transaction on the credit card statement is recorded in Quicken and visa versa.

    I hope you'll consider switching to having credit card accounts in Quicken as described here instead of tying to edit long split transactions they way you've been doing. It may take you a little time to mentally adjust, but ultimately, I think you'll agree that this is a better way to use Quicken. Best wishes.
    Quicken Mac Subscription • Quicken user since 1993
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