Add ability to enter negative amounts in Advanced Budgeting.

In earlier versions I was able to enter negative amounts in budgeted expense accounts. This was helpful when budgeting for refunds or discounts against budgeted expense amounts. Please consider including the ability to enter negative budgeted amounts.
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  • I’m hoping Intuit is watching!
    I'm using release R7. There have been and still are a lot of quirks in the Advanced Budget Setup but here's what I've discovered by trial and error:

    1. Putting in negative numbers works in either the specific or average functions.
    2. An entry to an expense category must be made as a negative number in order for it to recognized as an expense. Income entries are entered as positive numbers.
    3. Both positive and negative numbers entered are displayed as positive - obvious for income entries, not obvious for expense.
    4. To avoid changing an entry (e.g., losing the cents) already in the budget, enter new budget items by using the Tab key, not the Enter key.
    5. When a category is changed from income to expense or vice versa, the entries already made retain their original effect on the budget. For example, expense entries become negative income and income entries become negative expense.
    6. Since the Advanced Budget Setup doesn't display the budget properly, go to the Reports and Graphs Center and create a budget vs. actual report for the full year. Make sure you customize it to include all transfers. This will show every line item, including dollars and cents, with correct totals for Income, Expense and Overall Total.
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  • Thanks for your quick response with details. I will have to go back and experiment again. Looks like you have accomplished what many are trying to do, namely enter negative numbers into the budget.
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  • Thank you Frank that is very helpful information. Has anyone tested or come up with a reliable way to update prior month budget amounts in R7? I had tried changing the system date using R5 but wasn't successful.
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  • Even though the Advanced Budget Setup headings show the year 2013 for Jan, Feb, and Mar., when you enter data into these months it will update your prior months 2012 budget.
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    • I just wanted to let you know I tried to update a prior month budget (Jan) by updating the Jan 2013 number as suggested, and sadly it didn't work with my budget (I'm on R7). There may be something specific to my data that is not allowing that to work. After that I then tried to delete the budget category altogether, and noticed this message "Remove this category from current and future months". My first thought was "surely not..." but I went ahead and deleted the category from my budget. Sure enough - the January budget amount still shows up on my YTD budget report! This is even though the budget category is not selected as a category to budget, and there are no actuals entered against the category! Since I have no way to fix that prior month number (to my satisfaction), I've now taken my budget / actual reporting offline using excel, and will check back at the end of the year to see if this has been fixed (along with the other issues). I'm documenting this with the hope that Quicken will notice, and will correct this defect along with the others mentioned. Best of luck to all, see you at the end of the year.
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  • That will work as I have done it that way.
    And again Frank thanks. I tried several things you mentioned and most important for me was changing the expense categories back to income. It looks likes it will work for my needs, that is getting the income deductions for tax, benefits etc. captured correctly on the income side. A round about way but it seems to work. Also at a quick glance it seems to handle historical data consistently which was not the case before, so I can compare prior years correctly.

    However I was unable to duplicate some other of your results. Perhaps I did not follow the same steps. I am only referring to entry of the budget figures.
    1& 2. For expense, I found the number was positive whether I entered it as negative or positive. Didn't seem to matter, like it ignores the sign. Shows as positive and ends up in the report as positive from what I tried.
    3. Yes
    4. Have not encountered this yet, but thanks.
    5. This is what is important to me.
    6. I use the reports have saved, including many from prior versions.

    Thanks again for your detailed comments.
    Your guidance solved my most serious complaint.
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  • Correction to my earlier points #1 and #2. All budget numbers can be entered as positive numbers and the budget will handle them correctly based on whether it is an income category or.an expense category.
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  • Thanks for the clarification and the guidance. I am now moving the categories back and forth to get negative figures in the line items I wanted. It is working as you described. Thanks,
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  • Thanks Frank. I hope Intuit doesn't see this as a resolution to the issue. That's a very cumbersome process to fix something that wasn't broken in previous Quicken versions.
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  • Glad to hear that this work-around is helpful. I've got my budget exactly the way I want it after spending a lot of time doing it. "Cumbersome" is an understatement!
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  • Ken (Official Rep) April 26, 2012 01:49
    I wanted let everyone know that we hear the feedback about negative numbers and are working to support the ability to enter negative budget numbers. Unfortunately, this will not be available in the 2012 release.

    As some have said in this thread, you can solve some use cases by creating a new category and specify its type as income. This is not ideal, but some have found it a useful workaround.
    • Thanks for confirming Ken. I would like a refund please, since budgeting is the primary reason I use Quicken, and there are too many flaws in the product to be consider a quality product worth paying for.
    • Thanks for the response. I buy a new version of Quicken every 3 years since they eventually stop being supported. This was meant to replace my 2009 version, but is entirely inadequate for one of the main purposes for which I use the software. I am clearly not the only one in this boat. I see two basic solutions to this that could potentially please customers:

      1. Provide those with this issue a free copy of Quicken 2011, along with a partial refund of this product (which we paid more for and which we will have to replace in 2014 instead of 2015). Also provide a way to convert the data back to the 2011 version.

      2. Provide those with this issue a voucher for Quicken 2013 which I imagine will come out in a few months. And of course, have this budgeting problem fixed.

      I'm still amazed that this common feature was removed from the software, but providing customers with at least one of these options would probably help.
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  • Ken,

    Please let everyone on this thread know how to pursue a refund for this clearly inferior 2012 edition now that you confirm it will not be repaired to a usable program.
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  • But don't forget, your data in 2012 version can not be converted back to the 2011 version. I converted back to 2011 early in the year and fortunately I backed up my 2011 data just before converting to 2012 so i didn't have too much 2012 data to re-enter. Good luck. Wilbur
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  • While it is good to finally know that Q is addressing this issue it is distressing that it will not be fixed without paying more money. In fact it is not acceptable. I can't imagine why. Why would I upgrade knowing this? I can't go back to 2011 without reentering all of 2012 data so far and I have to use a difficult and problematic work around until 2013 and then cross my fingers and hope that it is fixed and something else is not broken. I suggest that Quicken either release a patch or create a way to convert us back to 2011 for free including a free copy of the 2011 program. That would be the honest and decent thing to do for YOUR CUSTOMERS. PLEASE.
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  • Quicken, thanks for a response. I agree with the other suggestions to provide a refund or voucher as a show of good faith to your customers. My other impassioned request is to please listen to all of your customer requirements. The ability to enter (and see) negative numbers is not the only issue with budgeting. There are other problems (such as eliminating the rolling budget) that are documented in this topic thread alone. If negative numbers is the only issue addressed in the 2013 release, it will not be adequate - a fundamental return of all previous functionality is really what's needed. If some new incremental features are added, that's ok, but don't take away what we had previously. Thank you for your consideration.
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  • Ken, thanks for finally responding, though not with what we expected. I will add my voice to the reasonable request to either offer refunds or free upgrades to 2013 when it is available with these important functionalities restored.

    A clarification:
    I think it's also good to note that your comments about the "solution" is incomplete or incorrect so needs clarification. You do point out that it will only solve part of the issue, and I add in a very cumbersome fashion. To clarify: You do not need to add a new category and it is not sufficient to classify it as an income category if you want negative figures. You must have the category set up as expense, enter the figures and then move it to income category to get negative budget figures. I actually used existing payroll deduction categories, moved them to expense, entered the figures, and moved the categories back to income, to get the desired result. I presume it works the other way around, but did not try it. Credit to Frank for pointing this method out to us. It will not be a solution for those who need some positive and some negative figures in different months.

    Other comments:
    Rolling Budget: Not too clear that inserting future months for 2013 actually changes prior months in 2012. Probably would be preferable to have a selection to use calendar year or rolling 12 month period which seems to have confused a lot of folks. I noted that some were changing clocks back and forth to get in prior months budgets. Did not find the help menu helpful on this point.

    Budget Reports:
    I may be wrong,but thought in prior versions, previous years budgets were saved with the correct previous years budget. Now you first have to select the budget year you before reviewing prior years budgets.

    Support Site.
    It was not easy to find 2012 Release Notes I went to Quicken for Windows, Using Quicken, Release Notes, and only up through 2011 are there. Eventually found 2012 but strange they are not in the group with the other years under the menu tab for Release Notes.

    Customer Service Support:
    You might note the terrible ratings Quicken receives on rating sites. I have found support in India generally lacking in terms of capability and depth of knowledge.

    Overall, my satisfaction with Quicken is waning and I had hoped you would have restored these features/functions sooner. Please keep us up to date on when to expect them, and whether you will make some reasonable adjustment/accommodation when the new version is ready.
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  • There is always recourse through credit card companies if Quicken is unwilling to provide either a solution or a refund. Part of the credit agreement is that the consumer gets what they paid for. Clearly that didn't happen in this case.
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  • 1
    Ok, so Quicken is financial software capable of keeping track of you various checking, savings and credit card accounts. Without the ability to do a budget properly and the way you have been able to for the previous years it is no better than Quicken basic. Further without being able to test drive so to say any new version of Quicken without losing data going from one version to another would you really trust they have fixed their problems in this version. Even other software companies release a beta before rolling out a new operating system to get rid of problems and bugs. It’s not always a matter of a new interface or nice to look at graphs, if it doesn’t work the way it should then it’s a piece of. I have read many articles concerning this problem on the web and the more I read the more people are getting frustrated with software. They are losing their followers; and as far as I’m concerned if they can’t fix it the way it was in previous versions now. Why would I believe they could fix it in the next version? I am joining the other an am in the market for a new financial software, any suggestions.
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  • I’m frustrated
    I hate to say it but luckily I was one of those who had both the 2011 and 2012 running in parallel. It got fed up on Sunday and removed 2012 and reinstalled 2011 and the data file. Redid my budget for the last 4 months and feel a lot more comfortable.

    Being one who used Managing You Money and loved it for years I was up set when they pulled the plug. The next problem was what to use, I picked Quicken instead of Microsoft Money. The biggest problem was converting data going back on securities to 1966. I chose Quicken and bought the program to convert all that data and sat back and had another Vodka and it worked and I was happy again.

    All I can say we don't have any other choice. Quicken is it and unless somebody comes up with a new program, which I will doubt will happen, WE ARE STUCK. I have some good friends in Quicken and will stick by them despite all the problems.
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  • I’m frustrated
    1
    This should be considered a horrible BUG. Not an idea. ARRG.
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  • I’m frustrated
    After the bad upgrades in 2011 and 12 I am afraid to another one. I do not need the apps and access for all places. Where's the security in that???
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