Monday, March 9, 2009

Quicken Easy!

Do you ever wonder where your money goes? Each month I am sure that someone has accessed our accounts and is stealing our money- how else do you explain the fact that no matter how much money you have, you always seem to be able to spend it? But then each month as I go through our account and pay our bills, there are no odd charges, we made all the purchases, i.e. we spent all our money. I never thought I would be so sad to discover I hadn’t been robbed!

Another thing that has plagued me lately is the fact that it is getting harder to keep track of our purchases. Ken and I have a system that we like, but it just hasn’t been working for me lately. We use our Discover Card for everything possible, and then we pay it off every month. We get wonderful rewards this way- if my sisters have ever wondered why we are so willing to give gift cards at Christmas time- its because we get them through Discover Card Rewards! It is truly a win win situation. Each month, I go through the check register, compare it to the discover card bill, and when I get the two totals to match, I pay the bill. But lately, Ken and I have become a bit lax at writing things in the check register, and so this process has gotten harder and harder until I just gave up. The past two months I have not double checked to make sure every discover card charge was in the check register, I just paid the card. Bad Kate, Bad!

So, I read the Readers Digest, I really do, not just the jokes, I read about 80-90% of the articles. In January they had a little note about keeping track of finances and how Quicken had recently offered a free online service ( ), I felt very proud when I was able to tell Ken about it when he said he thought we needed a new way of tracking our spending. That was as far as we got in January, saying out loud that we probably should figure out a better way to handle our finances. Then February came and went in a Tornado of Fun and we found ourselves in March, it was time to pay the Discover card, and I didn’t want to do the work. “Quickenonline” a little voice in my head said. “What?” I said. “Ken is gone to meetings, the baby is asleep, you could play Burger Shop, or you could check out Quickenonline and see if it would work for you”

So I did, and Wow! I love it. First of all, It is free. And within minutes I was able to set it up so that I could see both my Checking and my Discover card account detail in the same place! The program will automatically categorize each credit or debit into my accounts, I can change any categories that are not right and even create new categories and it will show me charts so that I can see where I am spending my money. It has a section that shows me upcoming bills, which is nice because I often forget those when I am thinking about how much money I have. (Not that I sit around thinking about all the money I have….which actually might be part of the problem, I should think about that more) Even better than that, it has a budget area, and as long as I categorize my purchases correctly it will show me how much money I have left in each area and even warn me if I am going to go over budget in an area. From what I have seen in the first couple of days- it is exactly what I have dreamed of having. I am going to log on right now and look at my “Pie Charts”!

1 comment:

Christy said...

Be careful, those pie charts could show you how much pie you truly buy. :)