A Beginners Guide To Using Quicken Budgeting Software

Quicken is a fantastic budget application that has been around for many years. It’s predominantly used by those in the USA and includes synchronized transactions with major banks.

However, like all budgeting applications it does take some getting used to and there are many tools and features that even veteran users of the software are unaware of.

I’ve put together this guide as a quick walkthrough to answer some of the most common Quicken questions. If you still have a question that has been unanswered in this post then be sure to leave a comment below.

How To Install Quicken On A New Computer

You can add Quicken to a new or additional computer quickly and easily provided you already have an active Quicken account.

To begin, navigate to the Quicken website and login to your account. Once you have logged in, hover over your name on the right-hand side and click the ‘My Account’ button.

This will redirect you to the ‘My Account’ page which includes essential information such as your name, subscription details, payment method and address.

If you scroll to the bottom of the page you should see the Download Quicken area. Here there are two options; download Quicken for Windows and download Quicken for Mac.

Proceed to download the application for the operating system you are using. Once the download has completed you’ll be prompted to install the software.

Once the software is installed you’ll need to log in using your Quicken username and password.

How To Use Quicken On The Web

If you have an internet connection then you’ll also be able to use Quicken on the web. This is ideal for computers that struggle to download or are not supported by Quicken software.

To begin, navigate to the Quicken website and log in using your credentials. Once you are logged in, hover over your name on the right hand side and click the ‘Quicken on the web’ option – currently the second option down.

You will then be redirected to another page and asked to re-log in.

If it’s your first time logging in you’ll be prompted to sync your Quicken account if you haven’t already. This will then provide you with access to the same budgets on the web and inside the software applications across multiple devices.

Follow the steps on the screen based on the software you currently have installed (if applicable). Then click the refresh button next to accounts on the left hand side.

At this point, your budget should reload to reflect the budget information stored within the Quicken software.

How To Rename A Budget In Quicken

The name of your budget will be shown at the top of the document. As you can see mine is currently labeled ‘Cora’s Finances’.

As your budget changes and adapts over time you may want to rename it. Changing the name of your budget is quick and easy to do.

Simply head to the ‘file’ tab at the top of the page, and go down to the ‘rename’ button.

This will then trigger a pop-up box which should contain the current name and storage location of your current budget.

Simply highlight the name of the budget. Delete it, and replace it with what you would like to call the budget moving forward. Once you’re happy click ‘rename’.

The budget will then reload. As you can see I renamed mine to ‘My Personal Finances’.

How To Print On Quicken

In some cases, you may want to print your Quicken budget. You can do so by navigating to ‘file’ at the top left-hand side of the screen and then clicking the print button. If the print button is faded out and you are unable to click on it simply navigate to a different section of your budget and try again.

You’ll be prompted to print either a transaction view or a category view. You can also opt for this to include or exclude scheduled transactions.

Once you click the ‘ok’ button you’ll be asked to select your printer. At this point you can make some final adjustments to the style of your printing (such as margins and colour).

Once you click to print the budget will begin printing from the printer you selected using the specific preferences.

How To Use Quicken On Two Computers

Quicken recommends against using two computers to access and update the same budget. However, it is possible. Before making any changes it’s recommended that you create a backup of the file and proceed with caution.

To begin, install Quicken on both computers you would like to use to access your budget (details on how to do so are listed above). Then install Dropbox on both computers. Dropbox is a free piece of software that uses the cloud to store and synchronize files.

Then, go to the computer that is currently storing your budget. Click to rename the file and instead of renaming change the storage location to dropbox.

You’ll then be asked to confirm this option and upon doing so your budget will reload. Then you can head over to your other computer and open the budget from Dropbox (if it’s a large budget with a lot of historic data you may find that the process takes an hour – it will also depend on your internet speed)

The budget will then open with the latest information you have. Be sure when the budget saves it does so to Dropbox. Again, I’d advise you also back-up the file to a local drive (your hard drive) on a regular basis.

How To Use Tags In Quicken

Tags used to be incredibly popular in Quicken however, in recent software updates I’ve found that the options have been hidden and less commonly promoted and used.

However, in some cases, you still may want to use tags when entering transactions into Quicken. This is especially useful for those who are looking for a secondary field to sort and group transactions during the reporting stage.

To show tags on the transaction view you’ll want to right-click on the header fields and check the box that says tags.

Once you turn tags on in this way you’ll be able to add tag information to new and past transactions.

Tags are pre-created and you can add multiple tags to one transaction. It’s easy to add and delete tags to personalise the experience.

If you want to easily view the transactions by tag you can do so in the reporting section. Simply select create new report.

And select to either show the tags in the column or row fields and then proceed to create the new report.

The report will then show how much you have spent on each tag over the specific time period. You can adjust the columns and rows using the dropdown field and see the changes between intervals using the interval dropdown box.