As I mentioned yesterday, I upgraded to the new Quicken 2007.
I went for the $30 basic version instead of the $60 “Deluxe” version. Why? After all these years of using Quicken to manage our household finances, I find I only use it for cashflow management to 1. keep our checkbook balanced to the penny (which I do every single day, obsessively) and linked to our bank online, 2. keep track of credit card spending and 3. budget. That’s it. I don’t use any of the investing or property features.
This is the first upgrade in a while that makes an interface overhaul. The upgrade from 2005 to 2006 was a much smaller step, visually. The renaming rules are a bit more intuitive. It’s easier to find things. It supposedly has more banks it links to, but that doesn’t matter to me since my accounts were already online.
The installer still throws a bunch of useless icons on the desktop, and the program still throws its for-fee services in your face every chance it gets. “Do not show this window again” becomes a friend quickly in the first few days of using a new upgrade.
For me, here’s the best new feature and the main reason I forked over the 30 bucks…this is on the new home screen:
A simple view of income vs. expenses for the month and an overview of whether you are going to run out of money or month first. I am continually playing a balancing act between our savings and checking accounts, trying to sock away as much as I can get away with and leave only the funds I need to spend in the checking account (our savings account earns higher interest). This varies month to month depending on how much has been reimbursed from our employers, what taxes, memberships or tuitions are due, etc. This view is extremely helpful.
I still find it amazing that Intuit offers a Mac version for $60 that appears to be so far behind the PC options. For example, it touts:
New! More detailed paycheck tracking. Now you can enter all of the deductions from your gross paycheck to more closely follow where this key piece of income is going. Plan ahead for tax time by entering the amount you’ve paid in state and federal taxes, medical benefits, FICA, and personal spending accounts or retirement plans.
I can’t even remember how many versions ago the PC version had this…at least 2004/2005.