stan1 wrote: ↑
Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:15 pm
I took a break from Quicken in 2017 after 22 years of use. I updated my records once in Feb and again in July otherwise ignored it other than updating some cost basis information. Decided a few weeks ago I needed to invest time in data cleansing or stop all together. Decided to do the data cleansing. First I reviewed my custom categories that had evolved over 20+ years of use. There were too many, some overlapped, and sometimes I wasn't consistent in how they were used (such as Dining at home and Dining on vacation). I recategorized my database. I normalized vendor names. I cleaned up two decades of memorized transactions to get them set up with the right categories and vendor names. It took a long time but got me back on track to keep using Quicken without some of the annoyances. As I was doing this work I did realize that Quicken has made many changes over the years to make data entry easier than when I started. I didn't notice them or use them until I put a lot of time into the software, noticed new ways of using it, and adapting some of my methods to the tool. It may be a dying platform because most people aren't going to want to put the time into it like I just did. I don't mind a reasonable subscription fee (say $30-50/year) but I know I'm in a minority with that especially when Mint is no cost.
I just went thru something similar last week. Decided to dramatically simplify my Quicken life. Also had well over twenty years of very detailed Quicken data, and honestly, it was getting to be a PITA to keep up with all the statements and data (we have a *lot* of transactions, and credit cards).
Many of my categories went back to when we had small kids, and I tracked everything. Now it's just two of us, and I really don't care if it was Auto:Gas:Me or Auto:Gas:Spouse or Auto:Fees or... you get the idea. Now it's just Auto Expenses.
I took 87 different expense categories (and sub-cats) and merged/redefined them into 11. Yes, eleven! Very broad groupings--Medical is just that. Before I had 7 sub-cats under it. Before I had Meals, Travel, Movies, yada yada, now one called Lifestyle. And all the various stuff we buy is simply "Stores & Purchases".
Why do I mention this? Because if you were like me, using Quicken had become a chore. Drastically simplifying data entry has reduced the time needed to enter data, and made it as close to enjoyable as it will ever be.
Shoulda done this years ago.
[PS: stan1 I also wiped out all the stored & memorized transaction, and started fresh. Much easier that way.]