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Old 06-04-2023, 09:31 AM   #21
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Not necessarily, at least not in our case. Older, legal versions of Excel are available for a song. I purchased MS Office 2007 ~10-yrs ago from eBay for less than $100. Outlook, Word and Exel still working fine. Data resides on the hard drive backed up locally and in the cloud.
If you don't care about updates, tech support, bug fixes or security fixes. I'd use Sheets or Numbers for free, current and supported - before I'd rely on a 16 year old MS product. YMMV
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Any one try YNAB (You Need A Budget)?
Old 06-04-2023, 11:25 AM   #22
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Any one try YNAB (You Need A Budget)?

It's based on the principle that every dollar has a purpose. I've used in in the past and liked it. Thinking of trying it again.
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Old 06-04-2023, 11:26 AM   #23
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I don't think you are going to find a better spreadsheet than Excel. It's what I use.
Except Excel is far more than the vast majority of users need. I've been using totally free LibreOffice (and OpenOffice before that) for more years than I can remember and it does more than even I need and you can use it on Excel spreadsheets as well.
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Old 06-04-2023, 11:28 AM   #24
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That's what I did. For years we 'contributed' $ to a dozen or more virtual sinking funds within a bank account.
Iíve been doing that in a spreadsheet since 1991.
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Old 06-04-2023, 12:00 PM   #25
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I keep track of of my assets every two weeks and me and my wife have always been savers. I’ve never needed to track expenses and will not start - why torture yourself?
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Old 06-04-2023, 12:07 PM   #26
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I keep track of of my assets every two weeks and me and my wife have always been savers. I’ve never needed to track expenses and will not start - why torture yourself?
One person's torture is another person's pleasure. I enjoy tracking our spend. Not tracking it feels like torture to me.
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Old 06-04-2023, 12:58 PM   #27
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I keep track of of my assets every two weeks and me and my wife have always been savers. I’ve never needed to track expenses and will not start - why torture yourself?
Under spending and regretting it when it’s too late? It’s not torture for most of us anyway…feel better knowing.
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Old 06-04-2023, 01:13 PM   #28
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You seem to be missing the point - I am tracking my budget by tracking assets only. I do it quicker by only tracking assets.
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Old 06-16-2023, 05:47 PM   #29
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Since you mentioned a ledger, you might look at the free GnuCash (double entry bookkeeping)
It runs on Windows, Apple, Linux.
I switched from Quicken for DOS to GnuCash.
It can import data from other finance programs.
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Old 06-16-2023, 06:05 PM   #30
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It's based on the principle that every dollar has a purpose. I've used in in the past and liked it. Thinking of trying it again.
Iíve been a YNAB user since the early days (before it went online) and I donít think I could have retired at 55 without it. After many years of using Excel spreadsheets and Quicken, it was the first program that helped me really ďseeĒ my spending habits. It took many iterations to realize I was tracking way too many unnecessary categories and once I simplified, budgeting was actually enjoyable! I canít imagine using anything else now.
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Old 06-16-2023, 08:02 PM   #31
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Sounds like you don't want to give an online site access to your accounts, but I like Mint. As a retired accountant, I don't mind classifying transactions periodically. I think its quicker than manually populating a spreadsheet. We smoke a couple credit cards monthly as well as still write a few checks. I like that Mint downloads all the transactions. I maintain it periodically, but once a year I do a deep dive in the expenses to summarize the spend that I trend annually. Admittedly, it doesn't affect what I spend. I try to have moments of accountability using the 'visual guilt' as an attempt to moderate the blow-the-dough.

More usefully, its the easiest way to see my cash and investments in over a dozen accounts updated real time. I check these on good market days multiple times and sometimes ignore it on bad market days.
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Try Tiller Money
Old 06-16-2023, 08:04 PM   #32
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Try Tiller Money

I know you did not want an automatic download of financial information, but I have to say I LOVE Tiller Money. Best $70 a year I have spent. Transactions download to a spreadsheet. From there I can manipulate the data any way I want. Tiller has great templates for budgeting, cash flow, net worth, etc. You set the categories that you want and are not constrained by limited categories in Quicken or Mint. You can either use Excel or Google Sheets.
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Old 06-16-2023, 08:30 PM   #33
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I have long used spreadsheets to track both monthly expenses and investments. I started on a desktop using Excel, migrated to a laptop but for the last decade it has been my iPad.

I have used both the free Numbers app and Google Sheets. Both can access stock and fund values.
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Old 06-16-2023, 08:32 PM   #34
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If you just want to track your investments in real time, you can create one or more portfolios on Yahoo Finance.
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Old 06-17-2023, 01:30 PM   #35
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Originally Posted by tydeman View Post
Since you mentioned a ledger, you might look at the free GnuCash (double entry bookkeeping)
It runs on Windows, Apple, Linux.
I switched from Quicken for DOS to GnuCash.
It can import data from other finance programs.
+1 for GnuCash. Very stable, very powerful, and very free.

I've used it for several years managing my parents' finances and keeping the books for a trust. It's an overlooked gem.
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Old 06-17-2023, 03:09 PM   #36
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If you just want to track your investments in real time, you can create one or more portfolios on Yahoo Finance.
Yeah, it's just possible that Yahoo doesn't already know all about your finances. That makes it hard for them to send you the proper ads.
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Old 06-17-2023, 03:53 PM   #37
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What is so hard about ignoring ads? I've been doing it my entire life. It's even easier now if you use ad blocking software.
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Old 06-17-2023, 06:04 PM   #38
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What is so hard about ignoring ads? I've been doing it my entire life. It's even easier now if you use ad blocking software.
Okay, the ads were not my actual point. I've got ad blocker too.
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Old 06-19-2023, 11:51 AM   #39
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As with others, I have used spreadsheets for decades and understand them very well, so rather than using someone else's I created my own. I have two. One is my zero based budget which is super easy, super simple using a 4-4-5 quarter for my weekly budgets. The other spreadsheet tracks my investment dollars, yearly spend, return rate, taxes, SS at 62,65,67, or 70, and RMD withdrawals. When I get bored I make improvements to some of the details and see what else I can automate.
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