How to change date of "Opening Cash Balance" entry when the deposit amount is $0.00?

I used Quicken's Express Web Setup to create accounts from my brokerage. [Yea, I know that was a serious rookie mistake... accounts should always be created manually, and then add the online connection after the account is created.]

Because the Web Express Connect only goes back at most 90 days, the date it used for the Opening Cash Balance is recent. In my case, just 30 days ago. However, this account we created nearly 3 years ago.

So, one would think the easy step is to simply change the date. But, Quicken hates allowing easy changes.

My issue: Quicken will not let me change the date of the opening cash deposit entry. More accurately, it will not let me save the changed date because the deposit amount of $0.00 is an "Invalid Amount".

Questions:
1) does the Opening Cash Balance entry have any unique characteristics? That is, can I just delete this line outright?

2) if I should keep the initial Opening Cash Balance entry, how can I change the date while keeping the initial balance at $0.00?

Version: Quicken Premier - R40.21 (Build 27.1.40.21)

Best Answer

  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Ok, I missed that this was for a brokerage account because you mentioned Express Web Connect.  Normally they would be Direct Connect, with the only exception being Schwab which is Express Web Connect.  Brokerage accounts are a bit different as in you enter different transaction types and they can take different values, but it should still work.

    Here is a test I did, and I had no problem changing the Opening Balance.


    And just to make sure it doesn't have to do with it being connected to an online account.
    Before:

    After:


    One possibility popped into my mind when I was doing this.  Are you trying to do the entry in the register?
    If you are, instead select the Edit button and enter the amount in the dialog box.  I almost never use the register entry because of some flaky stuff like this with it stating it needs an amount.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/

Answers

  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    1) There isn't anything wrong with creating the file while setting up the online account.  That is in fact the most common way of doing it.
    2) How far back the initial download will go back depends on the financial institution, but 90 days is pretty common.
    3) The opening balance is set by looking at what the financial institution said the ending balance is, and back calculate the opening balance using the transactions downloaded.
    4) The normal way of backfilling the transactions is to change the date and amount on the opening balance transaction and downloading by getting them in "Web Connect/QFX" format (the financial institution may or may not have this format available).  I have notice it the most recent versions of Quicken that they have stated that if you download QFX transactions for a past period they will try to update the opening balance automatically.  I would certainly check to make sure it is correct.
    5) There should be no reason you can't change the opening balance transaction.  The only secret to is that the category has to be [Account Name], where "Account Name" is the account you are in.  It will warn you that you are transferring the same account, but it should accept it.

    What kind of error are you getting when you try to change it?
    A screenshot of the error might help, you can drag and drop an image on the text box of a comment to attach it.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/
  • rcstevensonaz
    rcstevensonaz Member
    1) ... IMHO, jury is still out on whether using autocreation is a good idea :-)
    2) ... Agree, never expected this to pick up 3 years of data going back to 2019
    3) ... Wrong, fortunately!!! The opening balance was set to $0.00 with a separate XIN transaction to establish the initial balance. That is the correct way to do it IMHO, since the account was created ($0.00) and then funded by a transfer transaction from a different account. I never want those actions combined.
    4) ... Agree, the normal fix is to just change the date (while leaving the $0.00 amount since I will adjust the calculated XIN transaction amount later)
    5) ... Agree, it should work; but saving the change FAILS with a "Requires Amount" popup. [Note: I have verified the category is set to be the account.]

    The message "Requires Amount" pops up when I try to save the transaction with the corrected opening date (i.e., changing 4/7/2022 to 1/1/2019). Please note that I still get the exact same message if I manually enter 0.00 into the amount field. So the issue is not that I did not enter an amount, but rather, that the amount is $0.00 (even though that is what the transaction was already set as).
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Answer ✓
    Ok, I missed that this was for a brokerage account because you mentioned Express Web Connect.  Normally they would be Direct Connect, with the only exception being Schwab which is Express Web Connect.  Brokerage accounts are a bit different as in you enter different transaction types and they can take different values, but it should still work.

    Here is a test I did, and I had no problem changing the Opening Balance.


    And just to make sure it doesn't have to do with it being connected to an online account.
    Before:

    After:


    One possibility popped into my mind when I was doing this.  Are you trying to do the entry in the register?
    If you are, instead select the Edit button and enter the amount in the dialog box.  I almost never use the register entry because of some flaky stuff like this with it stating it needs an amount.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/
  • rcstevensonaz
    rcstevensonaz Member
    Bingo!!! Your last possibility was the answer.

    YES, I was trying to make the change in the register (which is how I've always made changes). And YES, it worked without any issue when I instead used the EDIT button and made the change using the dialog box.

    Now a separate question if I could: this is a Wells Fargo Advisors account that I setup using Web Express (which is how I've always done online updates). Should I be using Direct Connect instead? And, what is the benefit if I am only using this for reconciling?
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Now that is a surprise.  I thought for sure the only financial institution using Express Web Connect for a brokerage account was Schwab.

    Direct Connect is more reliable than Express Web Connect, but your financial institution might charge for it.

    If you want to try it, you would deactivate the account for downloading transactions in the Account Details -> Online Services tab, and then select Tools -> Add Account.
    From there you would select to use the Advanced Options like this, so that you can select Direct Connect on the next dialog.


    Note when switching connection types like this it is likely that you will get the transactions again, so maybe it would be best to let it create a new Quicken account instead of linking to the existing one.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Actually, I'm going to warn you about switching to Direct Connect.  With Express Web Connect (not Direct Connect) in banking accounts I know that sometimes just deactivating and reactivating can cause duplicate transactions.  I have no idea if this would be the same in a brokerage account setup with Express Web Connect.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/
  • rcstevensonaz
    rcstevensonaz Member
    Good caution. Which means it is all the more critical to get the connection method correct at the beginning.

    Since these brokerage accounts were just created, I can easily delete them outright and then start over with brand new accounts under Direct Connect if that has advantages.
  • Damian
    Damian Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited May 8
    @rcstevensonaz - if you have any other accounts at WF (checking, savings), in my opinion it would be a good idea to upgrade them the Direct Connect also.  It seems to be a more stable transmission method.  Also, if you never used DC with WF before, you might need to go through the "FMSSETUP" setup.  When you create your new WF Advisors accounts, you should get instructions for this, if it is needed.  If you have an existing WF Checking or Savings account, and want to upgrade to DC, the easiest way is to go into Account Details  - Online Setup tab, and upgrade from Express Web Connect.
    (Quicken Premier Subscription R40.21 on Windows 11 Pro)
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    @Damian Thanks it is always great to have information from people that are actually using a given financial institution.  BTW on the changing from Express Web Connect to Direct Connect by using the upgrade link on the Online Setup tab, I have seen where it isn't reliable for all financial institutions, so that it the reason that without direct knowledge of this financial institution, I didn't recommend it. But if one knows that it does work properly, it is definitely the easiest way to go.
    Signature:
    (I'm always using the latest Quicken Windows Premier subscription version)
    This is my website: http://www.quicknperlwiz.com/