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Old 01-21-2017, 10:09 AM   #21
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Nice feature is that you can download Moneydance and try it out to your heart's content. The only limitation is just 100 manually-entered transactions (no limit on downloaded transactions). When you pay for it, the limitation is removed.
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Old 01-21-2017, 12:38 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by ejman View Post
That's exactly how I do it. My kids use the electronic statement download feature. I've watched them do it. They glance at it for a few seconds, say something like "it looks about right" and move on. When I explained my reconcile method (same as yours) of entering everything manually and reconciling item by item against the bank (or credit card) statement they told me they would never ever do that. I guess manual entry/reconciling is going the way of the dodo.

I guess I have a hybrid system. For credit cards, I download transactions and make sure they look right. If they don't or there's a questionable charge, I don't reconcile it until I've figured it out.

For our primary banking account (the one where all the bills are paid from) I manually enter everything and then reconcile against downloaded transactions. By manually entering each item I can track cash flow for that account to make sure there's always enough cash to pay the bills.

One of my gripes about Moneydance is that their account cash flow forecaster reporting isn't that great. I used this feature a lot in Quicken to make sure that the account balance would never go negative. I should look at this again in Moneydance. Maybe there have been improvements since I last looked. Plus, it'd let me ditch the spreadsheet that I use to track cash flow.
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Old 01-21-2017, 12:40 PM   #23
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One of my gripes about Moneydance is that their account cash flow forecaster reporting isn't that great. I used this feature a lot in Quicken to make sure that the account balance would never go negative.
I used to worry about that, but switched the view on the summary page to show Balance instead of Current Balance. That seemed to take care of it.
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Old 01-21-2017, 03:28 PM   #24
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I used to worry about that, but switched the view on the summary page to show Balance instead of Current Balance. That seemed to take care of it.
That doesn't work for me. I need something that also takes into consideration reminders and transactions to get a full picture of cash flow in the account.

I tried the Balance Predictor plugin and I haven't been able to make sense of the graph (yet). There's also another plugin available, Money Foresight, but it costs $10. It's also a 3rd party plugin, which I try to avoid for security reasons.

If I get the time, I might try writing a quick and dirty plugin that calculates the balance based on transactions/reminders for n months in the future. I only want a number, so I can avoid creating graphs, etc. That should make it easier.
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Old 01-21-2017, 03:31 PM   #25
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I might try writing a quick and dirty plugin that calculates
Another nice feature of Moneydance. It now incorporates the ability to write your own plugins in Python.
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Old 01-21-2017, 03:49 PM   #26
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I like Moneydance. Reporting is a weakness, and exporting to create reporting sometimes doesn't have all the element I'd like, but it is easily remedied. There is no issue with downloading being restricted by version, so as long as you have paid for a version you should not lose download capability and support.

The online community has some users with a lot of knowledge. You can try the product and ask questions about its use before actually buying. Just be aware, that as they introduce a new product you need to watch the community board for user reported errors/issues. Sometimes the new release really needs to age for 6 months before it is fully functional. Or in another words, they rush out the new version, and make updates through user reported issues.

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Old 01-21-2017, 08:51 PM   #27
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The input here has been really helpful. Very soon I'm going to download the trial version and start kicking the tires. I bought Quicken Essentials a few years ago and it was very underwhelming. Now it's not even functional because it is "out of date" or some thing as I had been notified.
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Old 01-21-2017, 09:23 PM   #28
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Another nice feature of Moneydance. It now incorporates the ability to write your own plugins in Python.

This is pretty cool. I've been playing around with it for the last hour or so and I should be able to use this forecasting cash flows. Thanks!
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Old 01-22-2017, 05:48 AM   #29
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Does Mineydance handle scheduled transactions? This is a major feature of Quicken for me and every monthly, quarterly and annual bill is in there as soon as I get it. Recurring items are entered automatically.
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Old 01-22-2017, 07:50 AM   #30
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Yes, easily.
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Old 01-22-2017, 09:17 AM   #31
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What does this or other similar paid apps do that Mint doesn't do, or I'm I comparing apple to oranges?
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Old 01-22-2017, 10:22 AM   #32
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Well, I may have to check this out. I rely heavily on Quicken 2007 for Mac which Intuit had maintained with the occasional annual bug fix, so it is fully functional.

I use reporting very heavily.

I also use categories very heavily and Quicken's auto fill feature based on transaction history makes it so fast. It's super easy to track our spending versus budget.

I figured if I ended up having to hand enter transactions to keep going I would do that, in which case it would probably be a Mac OS upgrade that would render Quicken obsolete for me, and that wouldn't happen to me until the purchase of a new laptop meant a new OS.

So, I haven't developed an exit strategy.

In the meantime we have a huge number of accounts spread over many financial institutions, and our securities "quotes" has increased to 62. Maybe half of that is historical (securities no longer owned - but they never go away in Quicken).

I expect any transition is going to be very painful for me. Right now my system runs very well, especially as I am able to cut and paste some Quicken reports directly into my key spreadsheets.
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Old 01-22-2017, 10:48 AM   #33
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Regarding Quicken, it's very instructive that the Quicken website itself has a comparison page where they list Quicken 2007 features vs Quicken 2017. Scrolling down that page, there is a section where you can actually vote (3 votes only) what particular missing features you'd like to see restored for future updates of Q2017. https://www.quicken.com/mac/compare
In other words, at some point in the future, we may be back to what we had with Q2007...
Nevertheless, it's worth looking at the comparison - for me, the only thing still missing that is relevant to my use are some reporting features. Once thos are restored, I'm guessing I could easily upgrade from Q2007 to Q2017 (or will it be Q2018 by then...?).
Of course, this begs the question as to why I don't just stay with Q2007, but as audreyh1 points out, Q2007 won;t run on the more updated operating systems and eventually, I will be forced to upgrade the OS, either because I buy a new laptop, or because the old OS no longer works with other applications that I had to upgrade for one reason or another.
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Old 01-22-2017, 11:12 AM   #34
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Well, maybe this new owner will get Quicken 2017+ up to par. Even close would be great. I don't really mind "starting over", as I have a lot of historical deadwood in my current version and I don't really run multi-year reports very often.
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Old 01-22-2017, 02:18 PM   #35
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Well, maybe this new owner will get Quicken 2017+ up to par. Even close would be great. I don't really mind "starting over", as I have a lot of historical deadwood in my current version and I don't really run multi-year reports very often.
You should be able to archive in Quicken to remove the 'deadwood' from the current database. Same is true for MoneyDance, I generally don't do that, and should.

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Old 01-22-2017, 03:13 PM   #36
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Arghhh.

I go through this every year with MD. Budgeting and Reporting.

Budgeting: I cannot figure out what they do with their current budget module, but it is data-entry intensive. Unlike Quicken which presents you with a table where you can enter a budget amount for each month, MD requires more keystrokes to do the same thing. Once you have a budget it is easy to copy to a new year, and adjust the start and entry dates, ON EVERY ITEM IN EVERY CATEGORY.

Reporting: there is no tax-year reporting. That means you cannot run a report of expenses that are applicable to income tax reporting, even though when you add a category you indicate if it is tax-related. You can export a grand detailed transaction list (that doesn't include the taxable indicator), and dump it into Excel or a database for further queries.

New: 2017 Version is out - it's Beta, it's all that's offered. There is no user documentation, yet. But, you can use the documentation from 2015, as long as you aren't interest in using a new function, like Python script language.

Recommendation: play with the new version all you want, but wait 6 months to make a buying decision. I need to add, that generally that is the best approach with MD, they provide the software before it is totally tested and documented. After it's been out 6 months or more, it works flawlessly. I skipped the 2015 version as there was significant change in it. Was thinking about 2017, but it still has the same quirks - budgeting and reporting.

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Old 01-22-2017, 03:22 PM   #37
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2017 Version is out - it's Beta, it's all that's offered. There is no user documentation, yet. But, you can use the documentation from 2015, as long as you aren't interest in using a new function, like Python script language.
FWIW, the real (non-beta) version of Moneydance 2017 was released in October and is already up to version 2017.2.

Although the new user guide isn't out yet, there is a section on their website that has most of the info about the new features.

I haven't run into any bugs in this version, but maybe I've just been lucky.
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Old 01-22-2017, 09:37 PM   #38
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This is pretty cool. I've been playing around with it for the last hour or so and I should be able to use this forecasting cash flows. Thanks!
I'm able to forecast cashflows for my checking account. Comparing it the spreadsheet I've been using, the numbers look the same, but there might be some lingering bugs. I'll run them side-by-side for a little bit before I ditch the spreadsheet.

All in all, this makes me more impressed with Moneydance. It is somewhat primitive, but the fact that you can access all of your data in Python (or Java) makes it incredibly powerful. I know this isn't for everyone, but now that I've gone through writing my first script, subsequent scripts should be much easier to create.

Here's the output I have for a test account:

Moneydance 2017 (1584)
Checking
20170122 9000.09
20170127 500.00 8500.09 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170201 2000.00 6500.09 Cash
20170201 100.00 6400.09 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170203 500.00 5900.09 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170205 3500.00 9400.09 Monthly Income Reminder (5th & 20th)
20170210 500.00 8900.09 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170210 4000.00 4900.09 Monthly Reminder (every 10th)
20170213 100.00 4800.09 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170217 500.00 4300.09 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170220 3000.00 1300.09 Stuff
20170220 3500.00 4800.09 Monthly Income Reminder (5th & 20th)
20170224 500.00 4300.09 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170226 100.00 4200.09 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170301 0.04 4200.05 Stuff
20170303 0.02 4200.03 Stuff
20170303 500.00 3700.03 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170305 3500.00 7200.03 Monthly Income Reminder (5th & 20th)
20170310 500.00 6700.03 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170310 4000.00 2700.03 Monthly Reminder (every 10th)
20170311 100.00 2600.03 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170315 5000.00 -2399.97 Annual Reminder
20170317 500.00 -2899.97 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170320 3500.00 600.03 Monthly Income Reminder (5th & 20th)
20170324 100.00 500.03 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170324 500.00 0.03 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170331 500.00 -499.97 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170405 3500.00 3000.03 Monthly Income Reminder (5th & 20th)
20170406 100.00 2900.03 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170407 500.00 2400.03 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170410 4000.00 -1599.97 Monthly Reminder (every 10th)
20170414 500.00 -2099.97 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)
20170419 100.00 -2199.97 Daily Reminder (every 13 days)
20170420 3500.00 1300.03 Monthly Income Reminder (5th & 20th)
20170421 500.00 800.03 Weekly Reminder (every Friday)

The formatting here is messed up, but it gives you the general idea. There should be three columns after the date: debit, credit, balance, followed by the description. In this data set, all the 3500 are credits. As for the output, there are two transactions: ones that are entered in the checking account and reminders with an associated transaction. The balance is forecasted for the next three months.

Within the Python console, it looks better, but this is one of the areas that could be better. I wished the console used a monospaced font so there's proper alignment of columns. Oh well. I might play around with this some more to see if I can make it better, but for now it works good enough for me.
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Old 01-22-2017, 09:53 PM   #39
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I switched from Quicken Windows to Quicken Mac 2016 last year and have been very happy with it. It's been very stable and easy to use, but I'm probably not a power user like many on this forum.
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Old 01-24-2017, 11:14 AM   #40
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I loved MS Money, and reluctantly moved to Quicken when they discontinued Money (2009? 2010?). Actually got to like Quicken pretty well, although it was going downhill.

Then a year ago, I bought a new laptop with Windows 10. I could not for the life of me get Quicken to work right. The fonts were all wonky. It would open in a tiny tiny window with tiny tiny font. And if I tried to change resolution, it would show a humongous font, but still in a tiny window. I couldn't use the software because I couldn't read what was on the screen.

So I tried MoneyDance. I've been using it for just about a year now. I like a lot of it. Downloading from my checking account and credit cards works reasonably well. The biggest issue for me is that, in my experience, the reminders part isn't nearly as good as Quicken. So I don't have a good outlook on where my account balances will be in the future, which leads me to leave way too much money in my checking account to avoid potential problems. And as others have mentioned, the reporting is definitely lacking.

I've actually been thinking of trying Quicken 2017 to see if the font issue has been fixed. It's only $35 to download on Amazon.
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