Getting started as a traditional online-only user

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Comments

  • Connie BrownConnie Brown Member
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    Ok. Hadn't thought of it as advertising since I have criticisms....
  • mshigginsmshiggins SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    Your link to the site touting personal capital is what I would consider advertising.
    Quicken user since Q1999. Currently using QW2017.
    Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • Connie BrownConnie Brown Member
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    Ok. At this point I don't see a way to edit or delete it. Sorry.
  • mshigginsmshiggins SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    Once someone has responded - either with a follow up comment or even a "like" - the post becomes non editable, except by a moderator.
    Quicken user since Q1999. Currently using QW2017.
    Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • Connie BrownConnie Brown Member
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    I just thought it was sad that Ryan states up front he is "getting started as a traditional online-only user" and advice here is to disconnect from the online features for now. This will be a make or break issue if it is ongoing for too long. 
  • mshigginsmshiggins SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018

    I have a question for all of us:

    There are a number of books on Amazon and elsewhere in the $20 range aimed at new users of Quicken.  Would one of these be useful to someone in Ryan's position?  I haven't used one of these books, so I think we need feedback from others before recommending that to Ryan.

    We have been giving Ryan a lot of experience-based advice like "don't use the web version" which I suspect he won't find in a book.

    I would recommend the Quicken Official Guide. It's a good comprehensive how to book and would be useful to both beginners and more experienced users. And the Guide does have a lot of experience-based advice.
    Quicken user since Q1999. Currently using QW2017.
    Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • mshigginsmshiggins SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    The advice was to avoid Q mobile and cloud sync. Those are not the only online features.
    Quicken user since Q1999. Currently using QW2017.
    Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • mshigginsmshiggins SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018

    I have a question for all of us:

    There are a number of books on Amazon and elsewhere in the $20 range aimed at new users of Quicken.  Would one of these be useful to someone in Ryan's position?  I haven't used one of these books, so I think we need feedback from others before recommending that to Ryan.

    We have been giving Ryan a lot of experience-based advice like "don't use the web version" which I suspect he won't find in a book.

    Sadly, the Q2018 (aka 8th edition) is likely the last edition of the Guide. No update was done for Q2019. The end of an era :-(
    Quicken user since Q1999. Currently using QW2017.
    Questions? Check out the  Quicken Windows FAQ list
  • RyanRyan Member
    edited December 2018

    I have a question for all of us:

    There are a number of books on Amazon and elsewhere in the $20 range aimed at new users of Quicken.  Would one of these be useful to someone in Ryan's position?  I haven't used one of these books, so I think we need feedback from others before recommending that to Ryan.

    We have been giving Ryan a lot of experience-based advice like "don't use the web version" which I suspect he won't find in a book.

    To be honest, I probably won't read much in a book. I'm probably one of the 4 people on the planet that doesn't buy, open or read books. Although I appreciate the thought as I'm sure it's probably extremely helpful - it's just one of those things that I know I'll never get to ...
  • RyanRyan Member
    edited December 2018

    The title of your post indicates one potential issue.  Quicken is still fundamentally a stand-alone desktop program, with both the software and all your data residing on your computer.  A key feature is the ability to download from your bank, broker, etc. new data on your transactions.  But the software and your data including downloads reside on your computer.

    Quicken does have both a mobile app and a browser-based cloud program, both tie to your own data but with reduced functions compared with the desktop program.  I only use the desktop version, and I suspect that's true of the majority of users.

    The mobile and browser versions are getting a lot of bad reviews in this forum (usability issues) and the consensus advice seems to be not to use them until the kinks are worked out.

    I think I was misleading in my comment, by "online-only", I actually meant the online part of bank websites. Sorry.

    Regarding other software - I tried Mint as it was from Intuit after the move on Quicken. I figured that since I've been an avid TurboTax user for years, I could stick with them once and for all.

    Intuit still brought me here anyway, even though they aren't the controlling party anymore. However, I've definitely decided that I'm a much bigger fan of Quicken in general. It's one of those deep-down core value type things that just seems to keep bringing me back....

    Anyway - regarding the online stuff. I tried to disable the "cloud sync" stuff. It worked for most accounts, but not all. It seems like I'm disabling it wrong. I'll focus on that separately, since now I'm still in the process of doing account reconciliations.
  • RyanRyan Member
    edited December 2018
    Just a brief update:

    I've been spending the past few days going through and doing "real" account reconciliations. i.e., pulling bank statements and validating every single transaction. I'm seeing some patterns emerge out of the issues.

    In most cases, there is still only 1 or 2 transactions that are missing from the downloaded month, to which I simply enter manually. However, the transfers are really strange. It *seems* like since the transfers are named with similar names, they erroneously get put into the wrong account and possibly duplicated.

    Anyway, that's a technical issue. This thread pointed out some very fundamental behavioral things that I didn't fully understand up front, to which I'm forever grateful. i.e., :

    1) You need to review your account - weekly, if needed; Review what the bank says vs. what was downloaded. Don't assume that everything is going to be downloaded and magically managed
    2) Automatic entry is the devil - it's easier to edit things in the "downloaded" state, rather than after the fact. Validate your transactions per #1 and then enter them into the register.
    3) Transaction matching is really cool - When your register has something entered (i.e., a bill) and then you have a downloaded transaction to match it - things line up, and it's really cool to see it happen
    4) Life works in an opposite manner - it's not "download all of the bank transactions and see where you stand", but instead "enter your transactions into your register and check that the bank agrees" - eye opener here. I guess learning how to balance the checkbook at the end of the month came in handy, and I should probably start doing this all over again....


    I think I've achieved all of the answers necessary in this one particular post - there's a lot learned, and a lot of fundamental life stuff that I need to do differently - so before I start going crazy on features, I definitely need to hone in on some of how these things work and move from there.

    Thank you so much to everyone who has provided advise thus far, it's extremely appreciated!


    Merry Christmas - and if you don't celebrate Christmas, I hope you enjoy our holiday in addition to whatever it is you celebrate.

  • Jeffrey WilensJeffrey Wilens Member ✭✭
    edited December 2018

    Please consider editing this post down to a much shorter one that gets right to the questions you want to have answers for.  Very few people are going to wade through three screens of rambling thoughts.  You can get good help here, if you can focus.

    It would be wise to purchase a handbook on using Quicken.  In general, there are simple answers.  For example, when you pay your credit card bill from your bank account, Quicken will properly show a payment from your bank account to the credit card account (which will reduce the balance owed there).  Such transfers will show [credit card 1] or whatever the name of the card is with brackets.  Categories must be assigned to the things you bought with the credit card, such as groceries, auto:fuel etc.
  • Jeffrey WilensJeffrey Wilens Member ✭✭
    edited December 2018

    Please consider editing this post down to a much shorter one that gets right to the questions you want to have answers for.  Very few people are going to wade through three screens of rambling thoughts.  You can get good help here, if you can focus.

    Also, you should probably run Quicken once/week not once/month unless you have few transactions (maybe less than 10) each week.
  • Jeffrey WilensJeffrey Wilens Member ✭✭
    edited December 2018
    " Life works in an opposite manner - it's not "download all of the bank
    transactions and see where you stand", but instead "enter your
    transactions into your register and check that the bank agrees" - eye
    opener here."    Absolutely not.  I have used Quicken since 1992 and I always download the transactions into my bank account and then either accept them in the download window or edit if necessary.  The biggest problem is knowing what a check was for which requires going to the bank's website and viewing the cancelled check (since no one uses check registers anymore in my household).  Except for this issue, you should not have to use a check register anymore.  If you need to check your balance  in the bank account while at the store or somewhere away from your computer, then pull up the bank's app and do it that way.
  • smayer97smayer97 SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2018

    " Life works in an opposite manner - it's not "download all of the bank
    transactions and see where you stand", but instead "enter your
    transactions into your register and check that the bank agrees" - eye
    opener here."    Absolutely not.  I have used Quicken since 1992 and I always download the transactions into my bank account and then either accept them in the download window or edit if necessary.  The biggest problem is knowing what a check was for which requires going to the bank's website and viewing the cancelled check (since no one uses check registers anymore in my household).  Except for this issue, you should not have to use a check register anymore.  If you need to check your balance  in the bank account while at the store or somewhere away from your computer, then pull up the bank's app and do it that way.

    In practice, not all banks have 100% accurate downloads of data. In fact just today, again, a transaction was missing. If I relied on that, I would be off thinking I had more $ than there actually is. Cheque #s are also not always accurate (though that does not impact balance). 

    I automate as much as I can via recurring scheduled transactions (I have over 150 entries). I reconcile to paper always, as for me it is far clearer to see where discrepancies are. 

    Regardless how, reconciliation is absolutely necessary on a regular basis (at least once/month), and at least on key accounts (for me that is my chequing account, which is our lifeline, and main credit cards-at least the balances), to make sure labelling, payees, categorization, etc are accurate for reporting, searching, tax purposes.

    Even if you fall behind (I have many, many times, over the decades, even several years at a time), if you do reconciliation properly, it does not matter, as you should always be able to catch up and reconcile balances... the other data will rely more on other documentation or good memory. ;-)

    (If you find this reply helpful, please be sure to click "Like", so others will know, thanks.)

    If you find this reply helpful, please be sure to click "Like", so others will know, thanks.

    (Canadian  user since '92, STILL using QM2007)

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