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Feeling trasher's remorse? On Snow Leopard, you can open the Trash (click the Trash icon in the Dock) and "untrash" individual items there. Select one or more trashed items (files and folders) and choose File > Put Back. This returns the items to where they were when you originally put them in the trash. The keyboard shortcut is Command-Delete - the same as the shortcut for trashing an item in the first place, since in deleting something from the trash you are untrashing it.

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Follow-up to Finding a Replacement for Quicken

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In “Finding a Replacement for Quicken” (5 August 2011), we presented some of the questions that you should ask yourself about the features and capabilities that you need in a personal finance package to replace Quicken 2007 (and earlier) now that Mac OS X 10.7 Lion has made that software obsolete. In addition, we asked you to add to our list of questions in the comment section for that article. Many of you did just that, and we bundled your questions and ours into an email message that we sent to the 17 developers of the possible Quicken replacement packages that we listed in the article.

Nine of the developers have responded, and we have collated their responses, which we present below. Although we have tried to be as accurate as possible, we have to admit that sometimes it was not entirely clear which of the answers went with which of our questions in the responses we received. We think we got them all right, but we apologize if we have misrepresented any of the developers who were kind enough to take time to respond to the many questions with which we bombarded them. If there are any mistakes, just let us know and we’ll fix them.

In what follows, we have organized the questions into topics of interest, and presented the responses in the order in which they landed in our inbox. No ranking or other evaluation is implied nor should be inferred.

The following developers responded to our questions:

Statements and reconciliation

  • Can your package download bank statements and use them to reconcile accounts?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: There is no direct download feature, but you can import files you download from your bank(s) website(s) and do reconciliation. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes; iOS: statements can be downloaded through Safari on iOS and imported directly on device; Android: Yes, from SD card. iFinance: Yes (in Germany only). Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • If so, what formats does your package support?

    MoneyWorks: QIF, OFX, QFX. Text files (CSV and tab delimited) can also be imported (via copy-paste in Cashbook), but these lack the automatic allocations of the bank imports. MoneyWell: If the financial institution supports OFX direct connect banking, MoneyWell downloads with one click. It also supports importing OFX/QFX, QIF and delimited formats. moneyGuru: OFX, QIF and CSV files. SEE Finance: You can create statements in the program by downloading the statement information directly from the institution, by importing QFX, OFX, QIF or CSV files, or by manually creating a replica of the institution’s statement. iBank 4: OFX, QFX, QIF, CSV. PocketMoney: Desktop: QIF files, and Quicken Essentials CSV formatted files; iOS: OFX/QFX/QIF; Android: QIF. iFinance: Retrieves account information via HBCI (Home Banking Computer Interface, which is only a standard in Germany). Quicken Essentials: Quicken Essentials for Mac imports data from more than 12,000 financial institutions. Moneydance: Moneydance supports direct download from banks that support the OFX protocol as well as the following file formats: OFX, QFX, OFC, QIF, CSV and using a plugin/extension just about any line-delimited text file format.

  • Can it handle transfers among accounts when the transfer is within a split transaction?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: Absolutely. moneyGuru does proper double-entry accounting. SEE Finance: Yes. You can create transfers in split transactions. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes; iOS: Yes; Android: No. iFinance: No, split transactions can be created, but it is only possible to transfer the whole transaction. Quicken Essentials: The program recognizes transfers and does not double count them. Moneydance: Yes.

Receipts

  • Does your package provide a way to scan or photograph receipts and associate them with transactions?

    MoneyWorks: You can drag an image (scanned or photographed) of the receipt onto the transaction, and MoneyWorks will save a copy of that image with the transaction. MoneyWell: One attachment per transaction using existing files or emails. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: Yes. You can attach images and PDFs to individual transactions. Currently this is limited to one image for each transaction, but there’s plans to expand this in the future. You can also attach images to statements in the program such as a PDF of your statement from the institution. iBank 4: Yes. Any file or image may be attached to a transaction. PocketMoney: N/A (?). iFinance: The mobile companion application iFinance Mobile 2.1 provides a QR-Code scanner, which can can convert a QR Payment Code image into a transaction. It requires the payment code to be available as a QR Code. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: No, not yet.

  • Does it provide a mobile component (e.g., iOS or Android app) that syncs with the desktop version?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: Yes. Our iOS app supports Dropbox sync for multiple devices or Macs. moneyGuru: No, but many mobile app provide export files (QIF, CSV) which can, of course be imported into moneyGuru. SEE Finance: There are not currently mobile companion applications for SEE Finance. All our current focus is on the desktop version’s official 1.0 release which is expected within a few months. Then our focus will shift to the mobile iPhone/iPad companion apps (no current ETA). iBank 4: Yes. iOS app only. PocketMoney: Supports syncing of multiple devices so multiple users can sync to the same desktop database. iFinance: Yes, the mobile companion application is called iFinance Mobile 2.1. (for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch) iFinance Mobile can be synced with iFinance 3.3, but it can be also used as a stand-alone application to keep track of your finances while you are on the go. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes, there is a universal iOS app that syncs via Bonjour+Wi-Fi (with additional point to point encryption). There is also a third-party app for Android called HandyBank (just linked from our blog).

  • Does your package provide any other special features to facilitate entering receipts?

    MoneyWorks: Yes: drop-down lists, choices lists, validations, reminder notes. MoneyWell: Yes. Favorites allow for quick transaction entry and categorization of imports. moneyGuru: Other than the general data entry efficiency, which is one of moneyGuru’s strong points, no. SEE Finance: You can download transactions directly from over 1000 different institutions (referred to as Direct Connect) plus you can import QFX, OFX, QIF and CSV files from institutions (referred to as Web Connect). The Web Connect process can be further simplified by using the built-in browsers for accounts where the program will recognize when financial files are downloaded and prompt you with options to save and/or import them. iBank 4: Yes. Drag and drop a NeatReceipts PDF file onto an account icon in the iBank source list to automatically create a new transaction for that item. PocketMoney: iOS: ”Keep the Change” that rounds up the transaction amount and transfers the change to a specified account/posting of transaction from their party apps (CheckPlease for tips, MPG for vehicle transactions, BillMinder for bill management…)/add “Fee” posts a transaction for the amount of a fee set in the account info. Useful for ATM fees or wire transfer fees/Address book support/auto-complete transactions based on payee; Android: ”Keep the Change” rounds up the transaction amount and transfers the change to a specified account/add “Fee” posts a transaction for the amount of a fee set in the account info. Useful for ATM fees or wire transfer fees. iFinance: No. Quicken Essentials: You can attach receipts and other files to transactions. Moneydance: Moneydance (as well as the iOS+Android app) is optimized for quick transaction entry with auto-completion and fully keyboard accessible.

Tags and categories

  • Can your package apply categories or tags to individual transactions?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: It depends what you mean by “applying categories.” Categories don’t exist in moneyGuru and I consider them to be an oversimplification of proper accounting concepts. A transaction is a movement of money from one or more account to one or more other account. Of course, it’s possible to assign any account to any transaction in moneyGuru. SEE Finance: There currently is not a Classes/Tags feature available in the program. We do have plans for adding a Tags (aka Classes) feature, but there is not a current ETA. iBank 4: Yes. Categories but no tags. PocketMoney: Yes. Categories, multiple subcategories, Classes, multiple subclasses, Memo. iFinance: Yes, iFinance 3.3 and iFinance Mobile 2.1 can apply tags, as well as categories. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes, Moneydance supports both categories and tags.

  • Can these tags be flagged as tax-related?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: You can designate categories as tax related and associate them with US tax codes. You can create Category reports based on different options for “Tax Related” categories. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Not explicitly. Could name the class/category as “Tax*.” iFinance: No, tags can’t be flagged. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: No, but you can generate and memorize settings for custom reports that apply to those tags.

  • Can your package produce reports for individual categories or sets of categories?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: No categories, but it’s possible to select specific accounts in Net Worth and Profit & Loss reports. SEE Finance: You can create Category reports on any desired categories. You can also export tax information into TXF files for use with programs such as TurboTax for transactions with categories that are tax related and associated with US tax codes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Yes, for individual categories. iFinance: Yes, iFinance 3.3 can produce reports and charts of selected categories and tags. Filters can be applied for categories, tags and accounts, as well as for certain time periods. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

Checks, bill paying, and reminders

  • Can your package print checks?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: There currently is not a check printing feature available in the program. We cannot provide a specific ETA for the check printing feature addition, but it is expected within a few months. iBank 4: Yes. Standard, wallet, voucher style; custom; or to plain paper. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: Yes. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does your package support online bill-paying?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: There is not online bill pay in the program. There are also not any immediate plans to add online bill pay to the program. However, most institutions allow you to setup recurring bill payments easily through their websites. iBank 4: No. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: No. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • If so, what protocols (e.g. OFX or HBCI/FinTS/EBICS) does it support?

    MoneyWorks: N/A MoneyWell: N/A moneyGuru: N/A SEE Finance: N/A iBank 4: N/A PocketMoney: N/A iFinance: N/A Quicken Essentials: N/A Moneydance: Moneydance supports online bill payment via the OFX protocol.

  • Does your package offer reminders of upcoming regular transactions?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes, as scheduled transactions. moneyGuru: Yes, the scheduled transactions system. SEE Finance: You can setup recurring transactions in the program and have them be set to notify you when they are scheduled to post. There is not currently customizable reminders or iCal integration. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: No; iOS: Yes; Android: No. iFinance: Yes, payment reminders can be added to all types of transactions. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Can it use a payment reminder to make a bill-pay transaction?

    MoneyWorks: No, but you can set up transactions as automatically recurring. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: N/A iBank 4: No. PocketMoney: N/A iFinance: No. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Not yet.

Investments and investment tracking

  • Does your package track individual investments?

    MoneyWorks: No. ([Although] it does not have specific provision for tracking of investment portfolios and the like, we’ve answered No to those questions. However people do seem to use it to do this quite successfully.) MoneyWell: No. (2.0 will offer investment tracking) moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes PocketMoney: No. iFinance: No, but stock prices can be retrieved automatically. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Can it track profit/loss on individual investments over time?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: (2.0 will offer investment profit/loss). moneyGuru: Depending on what you mean by “investment,” yes. moneyGuru doesn’t support stocks yet, but there’s a full fledged profit & loss report. SEE Finance: Yes. Gains/losses are currently only FIFO based. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: N/A iFinance: Not on individual investments, but different charts and summaries of a stock’s performance are available. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does it handle stock splits?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. (2.0 will offer stock splits and importing of other details) moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: N/A iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Dividend reinvestments?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No (2.0 Yes) moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: N/A. iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Track capital gains?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: N/A SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: N/A. iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does it treat brokerage accounts differently from checking accounts?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. (Only as transactional accounts) moneyGuru: N/A SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: N/A (?) iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

Loan tracking

  • Does the package track loans?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: “Liability” is one of the 4 possible types of accounts in moneyGuru, yes. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. Including mortgages, auto loans, student loans, etc. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does it track principal and interest?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: N/A. moneyGuru: Not yet. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does it allow one to specify what part of a payment is applied to principal and what part to interest?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes, as a split transaction. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: No, you cannot specify which amounts are applied to interest and which amounts is applied to principal as it is based on the designated interest rate. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does it handle variable interest rate loans?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: You can adjust loan schedules to have varying interest rates. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: Can be entered manually within the available range of functions. An automatic calculation feature for it is not available. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: No.

Budgets

  • Can your package create a budget?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes, using proactive envelope budgeting. moneyGuru: Yes. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes; iOS: Yes; Android: No. iFinance: Yes it can create various budgets. Budgets can be also limited to certain categories, accounts, or tags. Rules for warning messages can be created. For example “Expenses must no exceed x” or “Profit must amount to.” Budgets can also be printed. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Can it track income and expenditures against the budget?

    MoneyWorks: Yes MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: No, budgets in moneyGuru are for forecasting upcoming financial situations. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes (in next release); iOS: Yes; Android: No. iFinance: Yes (see answer to previous question). Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Can it handle multiple budgets?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. (Two) MoneyWell: No. (2.0 Yes) moneyGuru: Yes. SEE Finance: Yes. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: Yes, you can create as many budgets as you want. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does it provide budget reports and graphs?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: Other than budget data being included in forecasting reports, no. SEE Finance: Yes, it provides budgeted vs actual performance information/report. There are not graphs, but there is progress indication bars that indicate budget performance and these progress indication bars can have the level in which their colors change customized in the program’s Colors->Budgets preferences. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: No; iOS: Yes; Android: No. iFinance: Yes, iFinance 3.3 provides a graph chart of all budgets within a budget folder. Further graphs display income and expenses. The charts can be displayed in 2D and 3D. Filters can also be applied for certain categories, subcategories and accounts. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes, both a quick-view budget graph on the “home page” as well as detailed reports and graphs.

  • Can it handle category budgets that vary month by month (for example, quarterly property taxes, utility bill variations)?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: It’s not convenient to set up, but it’s possible, yes. SEE Finance: You cannot currently have varying amounts in such a case as a yearly budget with varying monthly values. You can create and duplicate individual monthly budgets and have an overall yearly budget. We are also revising the budgets to add varying monthly values for an upcoming update. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes (in next release); iOS: Yes (in next release); Android: No. iFinance: Partially yes, budgets can be created for selected categories. The budget compares the budget to the actual expenses for specified time periods (Day, Week, Month, Year). You can create multiple budgets, but each budget has a fixed amount which can be changed only for the whole budget (not for certain time periods of the budget). Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes. Budget items can be set as pro-rated monthly/weekly/yearly, lump sum monthly/weekly/yearly, or one-off amounts.

Taxes and net worth

  • Can your package calculate and report on net worth?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes, in a limited format. moneyGuru: Yes, absolutely. SEE Finance: Yes, you can create Balances reports in the program which if all accounts are included then this is a net worth report. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Yes. iFinance: No, there are no presets to exclude taxes or similar costs from the gross amount. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes.

  • Does your package support exchanging information with consumer tax preparation packages?

    MoneyWorks: No. MoneyWell: No. moneyGuru: Other than standard QIF/CSV exports, no. SEE Finance: Yes iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: No. iFinance: No. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: We have a (currently beta) extension/plugin that can export to a TXF file which I believe can be imported by TurboTax.

  • If so, which ones?

    MoneyWorks: N/A MoneyWell: N/A moneyGuru: N/A SEE Finance: If categories are set up as tax related and associated with US tax codes you can export a TXF file for use with programs such as TurboTax. iBank 4: TXF export for TurboTax, Tax Cut. PocketMoney: N/A iFinance: N/A Quicken Essentials: TurboTax. Moneydance: Those that can handle the TXF file produced by our (currently beta) extension/plugin.

Multiple users and security

  • Can your package support multiple users, each with their own sets of accounts?

    MoneyWorks: You can create multiple entities (companies, accounts, etc.) on the one computer; MoneyWorks is licensed by computer, so a separate license is required for each computer; MoneyWorks Cashbook is not multi-user (higher-end MoneyWorks products are). MoneyWell: Yes, as multiple documents. moneyGuru: Yes, moneyGuru can manage multiple documents. SEE Finance: Yes, the program is document based similar to spreadsheet and word processing programs so you can have any number of different files for any reason. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes, as separate database files; iOS: No; Android: No. iFinance: You can create multiple databases for multiple users. Quicken Essentials: No. Moneydance: No.

  • Does it provide password-protected access to user information?

    MoneyWorks: Yes MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: No. SEE Finance: Yes, you can password protect the program’s files. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Yes. iFinance: Yes, databases can be protected by password and encryption. Quicken Essentials: Yes. Moneydance: Yes. Not only password protected, but encrypted.

Exports

  • In what forms can your package export information (e.g., QIF, CSV, tab-delimited, Excel)?

    MoneyWorks: tab-delimited, HTML, Excel, Word, Numbers. MoneyWell: QIF or tab-delimited formats. moneyGuru: QIF and CSV. SEE Finance: Yes, you can export QIF and CSV files from the program. iBank 4: QIF, TXF, drag-and-drop to CSV (Excel/Numbers). PocketMoney: Desktop: QIF, CSV, Tab-delimited; iOS: OFX/QFX, QIF, CSV, Tab-delimited; Android: QIF, CSV, Tab-delimited. iFinance: CSV and iFinance 3 Archive. Quicken Essentials: Excel. Moneydance: QIF, CSV, tab-delimited, (lossless) XML. The moneydance file format is also a text-based format that can be easily imported by other applications.

  • Can it export subsets (e.g., a date range of transactions) in these forms?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: Yes. moneyGuru: You can export your whole document or selected accounts. You cannot choose a date range to export. SEE Finance: This can be done for any date range and for all accounts or individual accounts. You can also export any report, investment holdings list, investment security list, or security historical prices as a CSV file. There’s also the ability to create PDFs from account’s transactions, account transaction search, and almost any other list in the program. The generated PDFs and most CSV files are either customizable for what information is listed in the PDF or CSV file or just WYSIWYG based on the user’s custom table column selections. iBank 4: Yes. PocketMoney: Desktop: Yes (in next release); iOS: Yes; Android: Yes. iFinance: Time periods can be applied as filter rule for the CSV export. Furthermore users can specify which data fields should be exported and how the CSV code is created. Quicken Essentials: N/A Moneydance: Yes, when exporting to tab-delimited or QIF. Otherwise, transaction reports can be set for any date range or set of categories and can be exported to text (tab-delimited or CSV) files.

Support from vendor

  • Do you offer online chat or telephone support?

    MoneyWorks: Yes. MoneyWell: No, but we have email support along with public and private discussion. moneyGuru: Support is available through email or the online forum. SEE Finance: Currently we only provide email support. iBank 4: Email only. PocketMoney: Very limited phone-call and online chat support; email and forums are main line of support. iFinance: We offer support via email. iFinance 3.3 includes an extensive user guide. A vast number of FAQs and tutorials on our Web site are updated regularly. Quicken Essentials: (Did not specify type of support) Moneydance: We offer free email- and Web-based customer support for all customers — whether paid or using the trial version.

  • If so, what is the cost to the user?

    MoneyWorks: Telephone support is available at $2.00 per minute. MoneyWell: N/A moneyGuru: Free. SEE Finance: For no cost for any customer or potential customer. iBank 4: Free and unlimited. PocketMoney: Free. iFinance: Free. Quicken Essentials: Free support. Moneydance: Free.

 

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Comments about Follow-up to Finding a Replacement for Quicken
(Comments are closed.)

Moeskido  2011-09-20 21:43
Thank you for doing this follow-up.
Scott Rose  2011-09-20 22:38
I'm currently using iBank as I think it's the best of the bunch, but iBank still has MANY problems:

iBank has never been able to handle my auto loan properly. iBank gives you one setup wizard for your loan, and then it tries to "automagically" figure out your monthly payments on its own. Unfortunately, it doesn't always figure them out correctly, as evidenced by the fact that iBank has NEVER been able to match my monthly auto loan statements from Bank of America.

Furthermore, iBank doesn't let you go go back and manually edit any details about your loan. You are stuck using either their numbers, or you can't do a loan at all. So I am currently unable to track any of my loans in iBank. iBank technical support was unable to help me solve my problem, pointing the finger at Bank of America instead.

iBank also has several different types of problems with regularly-scheduled transactions.

I discuss other major bugs that I have encountered in iBank here:
http://tinyurl.com/3ezb4cx
Greg Smith  2011-09-20 22:54
Not a single one has bill pay. WHY? WHY? WHY?
SSteve  2011-09-20 23:19
I'm with you. Until someone offers online bill pay, I'm sticking with Quicken on Snow Leopard. It seems crazy that it's universally unavailable. I wonder if the barrier is on the banks' side.

My other big requirement is investment features. It looks like iBank 4 is the best contender there.
Scott Rose  2011-09-20 23:21
Actually, See Finance is the best program when it comes to investment features. However, it is currently lacking many other features that iBank currently has. But it looks like See Finance is coming out with a big upgrade within a few months.
SSteve  2011-09-26 22:29
I'll keep an eye on it, but since they came right out and said there are no plans to support online billpay, they're kind of a non-starter for me. Plus not being able to specify how much of a loan payment is principal and how much is interest would be a big problem.
Dan Goldblatt  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-27 11:15
Yeah, it's danged frustrating. But don't forget Moneydance. It does online billpay just fine.
Geoffrey Wiedeman  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-20 23:26
Running Lion on 2011 17" Mac Book Pro with effortless installations of both Parallels 7 and Fusion 4. Installed Snow Leopard Server easily on both as guest OS in which Quicken 2007 runs perfectly just as before on Snow Leopard. This will be my solution until (if ever) Intuit gets it act together!
Greg Smith  2011-09-26 21:38
I wonder if this is possible with Virtual Box. I would hate to have to buy Parallels just to run an outdated Quicken.
Dana Schwartz  2011-09-27 03:11
Yes. I have a Virtual Box Snow Leopard running Quicken for testing. (Though I'm still running Snow Leopard as my OS). Only annoyance so far is that it takes a while to boot, so you don't have instant access to Quicken like now. Also the big VB disk image (23 GB) changes each time you use Quicken, so the whole thing has to be copied in my daily incremental backups.
Not one of the eight supports online bill pay. That is the main reason I decided to use Quicken for PC. I don't like it as well as Quicken for Mac. I still maintain Q2007 on an older Mac running Snow Leopard in hopes that someday Quicken will run on Lion.
Sean Reilly  2011-09-27 12:26
Moneydance does online bill payment
JCBurns  2011-09-21 06:04
I'm using iBank which, because it has a Sqlite database under the hood, makes up (sorta) for a distinct lack of flexibility in queries. Of course you need to speak SQL to do that.

Oh, and if you try to access the program file over wired or wifi networking in the house (we used to do this with Quicken over wifi zippily), prepare to wait minutes for every action or keystroke, with abundant beachballing. Something is very very broken in net access of iBank files. And so far, fairly resounding silence about it on their support forums.
John G Fallon  2011-09-22 04:19
I use Quicken 2007, Moneydance, Quicken Essentials. I've bought and tried iBank, but found it buggy. Windows 7 in a Parallels VM running Quicken 2011 is what I'm relying on now. Maybe the Mac market just isn't profitable enough for a big developer to make a serious effort. If Microsoft couldn't make it with Money -
skapa flow  2011-09-22 07:36
None of them do the protocols HBHC/FinTS? Hm....
There is a well established software called BankX, that can do that. I'm not sure if they have an English version available.
Curtis Ewing  2011-09-23 00:09
We appreciate your effort in doing this. Even if it were the better of the bunch, I wouldn't use QE. In a year or so it may be no longer useable and without update. Thus, the search begins anew Once burned, twice shy.
I fired up an iMac which I run on the side under SL and use Quicken 7. A pain, but it serves my needs. After a decade and a half, it is too ingrained in me.
Mac Bakewell  2011-09-23 19:10
I was never that fond of Quicken, and for years preferred my own Excel and/or FileMaker solutions. Toward the end of 2010, I scoured a number of reviews and forum posts, and then took a pretty close look at three oft-recommended options: iBank, MoneyDance, and SEE Finance.

I wanted something that would further simplify the maintenance and interrelationships of two-dozen accounts (checking, savings, credit card, and investments), half of which are in US dollars and half in Thai baht.

My tests took very little time. iBank and MoneyDance were both quickly dismissed, and when I tried SEE Finance I knew I'd come home. I bought it that day and, during the past 9 months, have been repeatedly impressed by its capabilities, interface, and support.

Bottom line: this choice is ultimately subjective, but SEE Finance works brilliantly for me and is so customizable that I would encourage anyone on the fence to give it a whirl.
David G. Kanter  2011-09-26 22:18
Thanks for providing that additional comparative data. I'm a Quicken 2007 for Mac user who is ready to jump to an OS X-native personal financial program that will, besides many of the functionality addressed in your report, (1) accurately import a Quicken-exported QIF file with 20+ years of Quicken data, and (2) provide a robust report capability.

Please follow-up with those developers with regard to (1) and be far more explicit about (2). Neither the "Can your package produce reports for individual categories or sets of categories?" or the indirect answers to other questions about investments, loans, etc., are adequately illuminating about reporting. Ask about whether it has something akin to Quicken's "Quick Report". (The "template approach" by some is not a substitute.) Ask about how easy it is to limit the scope of reports. Ask about what sorting, subtotaling, column-width, and column selection options are provided. (I'm sure you can think of other important report capabilities.)
William Seligman  2011-09-26 22:45
I tried some of these programs. I even went so far as to purchase both Quicken Essentials and iBank. In the end, my verdict was: Quicken Essentials sucks rubber donkey lungs... but it's still better for my needs than iBank or SEE Finance.


What QE does best is import data from banks. iBank couldn't access data from one of my financial institutions; for another of them, it cheerfully concluded that my accounts had a zero balance. SEE Finance would ask me for the cost basis for my accounts; I had no idea what that was.


Only Quicken Essentials could import all my financial institutions' information correctly.
Mac Carter  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-28 06:00
As far as I can tell, iBank seems to accept virtually all institutional downloads as long as they follow normal protocols - QFX, etc.
sb4thpwr  2011-09-26 23:07
Recently loaded and converted to Quicken Essentials. Agreed some features from 2007 are missing, this version has new, easier (far more intuitive) user interfaces that allow faster views, tracking and is way easier to tag transactions correctly. Much more control with (limited) variety of views.

Intuit must have tried really hard to be compatible with latest Macs, and for one, I wish Intuit continues to develop Mac versions along these lines.

Unfortunately, development cycle is long overdue for more advanced financials, creating a seemingly mass exodus.

Timing is everything! - what a shame.
I tried Quicken Essentials for one day, then asked for a refund - it's a Mickey Mouse program. I got a special on MoneyWell. I haven't switched over fully yet from Quicken. MoneyWell takes a different approach with the buckets, but very Mac interface, good support via email. The iOS app syncs well. It doesn't have year to year comparison reports though, which I need. I hope their version 2.0 does.
Ed Siebel  2011-09-26 23:53
Quicken Essentials answers "NO" to the question: Does your package offer reminders of upcoming regular transactions? under Checking, etc.

That's not entirely correct. It is easy to schedule payments, even irregular ones, for a future date or dates. Two weeks before they are due, the scheduled transactions appear on the register, greyed out, to alert you that the payment will be due or the deposit expected. When the payment or deposit is made, the transaction becomes black.

If the payment or deposit is late, the transaction continues to move up the register, remains grey and is not added into the balance shown at the top of the account. Very cool and much better than message pop-ups.
Fritz Lang  2011-09-27 00:10
amazing to me in this day that software is still so weak on so many fronts. So many incomplete of development.
IBank is good, but not complete and not logical in its' interface in many places.
ICal, Address Book, gMail for Android. So many missing simple things that would make them infinitely better.
Boy do I miss DayMaker. Hank was way ahead of the curve.
I have been testing a switch over to iBank from Quicken. Looks like IBank will do it for me. The email tech support from iBank is wonderful. I have been a Quicken user since day 1 , and a Mac user for for 4 years. Yes, I have Parellels but it is cumbersome and it eats up my hard drive. I'll keep running both for another couple of months.
Charles Kuttner  2011-09-27 03:09
I glaze over when trying to work on finance things, so really haven't put the time in. But I have been working some with iFinance. I'm very impressed with the developers; for example, when I found they didn't have a standard Quicken check in their templates, they had me scan images and email them to them (account numbers hidden), and that template is now standard. I need to motivate to really put it through its paces. All I currently use Q for is for personal and office check register and printing checks.
Dana Schwartz  2011-09-27 03:49
I thought Quicken Essentials couldn't download daily stock quotes? That's what I would call "tracking individual investments".
Mac Carter  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-28 05:50
Correct. Essentials downloads the account balance only for investment accounts.
Betty Fellows  2011-09-27 03:33
I'm currently testing Money Dance. It has a strange bug when I do a manual reconcile. It will bring up all transactions except deposits. The work around is to say "finish later" then go to each deposit, mark them as reconciling and then go back and complete the full reconcile.

I like the way Money Dance handles splits. I've played a little with reports today and have more research to do there before I decide to go with then and stop running Quicken.

I called Quicken's Mac support today to see if they have any ETA on a Lion update and they would not comment.
Gib Henry  2011-09-27 06:18
With Quicken, I reconcile every time I download transactions, not just once a month. That’s a Quicken feature no one seems to have mentioned, and it’s crucial to me because I spend lots of time far from home and need to be sure that my accounts are accurate. Downloading transactions without reconciling is taking a shot-in-the-dark approach--it probably works 99% of the time, but could cause major problems that other 1%. Does no other software have this capability?
William Seligman  2011-09-27 16:10
I don't know the answer to your question (I reconcile when I receive a bank statement), but I can tell you: The Quicken Essentials reconcile interface is far worse than Quicken's. If you have to reconcile accounts that frequently, I suggest you avoid QE.
Mac Carter  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-28 05:56
Most of the finance programs have some method for reconciliation. However, some of them are really convoluted and difficult. iBank's approach, for example, is at first very difficult to understand, but once you get how they do it, it works. And, it is somewhat of a pain to do especially for reconciling credit cards... iBank reverses the normal approach and makes charges a positive number and credits a negative number. Strange logic, but once you understand it, you can make it work.
Gerald de Haan  2011-09-27 12:14
What about smartphone support for mobile expense entry and sync back at base (whilst on some wifi network for example)?
iBank does that via it's iBank Mobile app ($4.99) - syncs wirelessly over wi-fi, MobileMe, or WebDav servers.
Dennis B. Swaney  2011-09-27 15:35
PocketMoney for iOS does take photos of receipts. I don't use the feature however. I THINK they can be synced with PocketMoney Desktop (PMD); again I haven't tried. I don't know about Android.

PMD is only a year old so a lot of features will be added eventually.

Catamount Software has a long relationship with Apple products - you can still get the Newton versions of PocketMoney, MPG, etc.
Mac Carter  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-27 17:25
This topic is a source of great frustration for many Mac users, including me.

I was a long time Quicken user and member of the beta test group for Quicken Essentials. I was so disappointed with Essentials and so disenchanted with Intuit that I decided to move on last Fall. I tested: iBank, See Finance, MoneyDance, Fortora, iFinance, MyMoney, Money, MoneyWell and Money Minder. My conclusion was and still is that iBank is the best of the bunch, but certainly not yet best of class.

While iBank works pretty well on many dimensions, it has a lot of quirky, time wasting design limitations and real bugs that irritate a lot of users. And IGG is very slow at responding to these issues with updates. But, for now, I'm sticking with iBank.
Libby Bideau  2011-09-27 17:49
Is Quicken Essentials similar to QuickBooks? I am being advised to step up to QuickBooks from Quicken to solve the Mac operating system dilema. I'm a tiny business and I track my personal finances too. Quicken seems okay, but I've been told Quickbooks is easier to use. Thoughts or advice for me?
Mac Carter  An apple icon for a TidBITS Supporter 2011-09-28 05:47
No. Essentials is more like a checkbook on steroids. Quickbooks is more like a real system for tracking business income, expenses and doing invoicing.
M A NELSON  2011-09-27 18:32
I gave up trying to use Quicken Essentials because I could not get my BofA checking account added to download like my Vangard or CitiCard Accounts, n
o matter how many times I followed the directions. There was no problem with the other two. I went back to using Quicken with my Windows XP through Parallels. I would like to get rid of using Windows and Parallels and use only Mac Applications. An very interested in following this article.
I've actually started using mint.com. Its pretty basic but its not bad.
Wilbur Vantine  2011-09-29 05:45
I have extensive Quicken Files dating back to 1992 and have been delaying updating to Lion. I first tried iBank but found several errors and skips in downloading the Quicken Files. I next tried SEE Financial and have been pleased with the results. The program is still in development and will be adding more features over time.
andrew503  2011-09-29 15:51
This answer is wrong(or misleading).

* Statements and reconciliation

- Can your package download bank statements and use them to reconcile accounts?

- iFinance: Yes (in Germany only).

I use iFinance to do this in the UK using OFX format statements. It is true that you cannot download them from within the application, I have to use my bank's web interface and then the downloaded files open directly into iFinance.

Problem is the question is in two parts, iFinance can reconcile but not download outside Germany.
Paul Hernandez  2011-09-29 16:31
Also a long time Quicken user, then had to switch to Quickbooks when Intuit halted Quicken support. Then Quickbooks on the mac went away. Quicken 2007 is dead and Essentials is skeletal feature-wise.
I run a small business and find Moneydance very capable: downloads efffortlessly from my credit card accounts, imports from the BofA (will also download BUT BofA will charge you ! $10.95 / mo.). It's easy to reconcile after each download. Haven't tried bill pay-I do that on the bank's secure website. Straight forward check printing setup. Still haven't explored report creation and drill down or tax preparation data.
I was a happy Quicken user till Intuit again showed they don't care to support mac users. Moneydance is a very good alternative; Thanks Intuit.
From what I have heard, for many years, up until Lion Apple was paying 'extortion' money to Intuit to keep Quicken for Mac alive. So I guess with Lion, Apple finally told them no more. I fine this especially interesting since Bill Campbell, who I believe is the CEO of Intuit, once ran Claris, the application software arm of Apple (now Filemaker). It just so happens he is currently on Apple's Board of Directors.

As such I would like to strongly encourage any Quicken users that are also Apple Stockholders, to use their proxy at the next shareholders meeting to vote Bill Campbell off of Apple's Board. If Bill Campbell doesn't care about Mac users then he should not be on their Board of Directors.
Really liking moneydance so far. Syncs great with the iPhone. Former user of pocket quicken on palm.
Tad Crawford  2011-10-17 01:29
I too struggled to find a replacement for the Windows version of Quicken, having decided to replace our PCs with Macs [Aside: What a great decision that was.] I finally settled on Moneydance. It performs all of the core functions I need to track multiple accounts, split transactions, download credit card statements and generate all of the tax-related reports I have ever needed. That said, I am frustrated by its very limited budgeting functionality and by it's inability to generate Net Worth balances for multiple dates in a given report, something I use to track our overall financial outlook over time.

I am going to monitor SEE Finance and iBank and really appreciate the quality of this blog for doing so.

Has anyone done a rigorous side-by-side qualitative review of all of programs cited?
jbeall  2011-10-17 20:54
I just discovered this thread after reading the previous article on this topic from last August... In that thread, I was given the idea that importing my quicken data into quickbooks could be the answer for me (since i have also been using qbooks, tho' not for my personal accounts).

i dutifully created a quicken data export to be imported by quickbooks, only to find that, upon doing so, none of my categories or chart of accounts were imported... every expense item and every income item is defined as 'uncategorized.'

very disappointing.

perhaps there is a way to re-import the data so that it will retain the categories, but if so, i don't know how to do it...

any ideas?

thanks.
Tried iBank for a few months. Terrible UI. Terrible reports. The speed was very nice.
Trying MD now. Did a more than lackluster job on the QIF import which is making everything else about it terrible. Double entries, can't reconcile.
Feh!