Right now it is telling me I am going to have all of this "extra money" at the end of the month BUT in reality I will not. It is only considering income and expenses that have actually occurred and is not taking in the fact that maybe the budget is showing more income and expenses for the rest of the month.
If it did this it would be a GREAT tool. Adding a summary section that gives the YTD income and expenses VS what you have budgeted for the rest of the year, what is left for the year, how much you are over or under the budget as far as income and expenses, and what you cash balance would be at that time would be a great addition.
As it is now the tool is worthless unless you set up a Billing for EACH AND EVERY expenditure you want to plan for ahead of time which is pointless because if your budget is properly conceived and planned out all the needed information for this is right there! Why set up a Billing for a planned ONE TIME expenditures or incomes when it is already in the budget?
I am using Quicken 2017 R4, on Windows 10 Pro desktop and an Alienware 17 R2 Laptop running Windows 10 Pro.
The user can select which accounts to include - suggest you look under the Options tab.
The tool uses actual recorded transactions and projected transactions based on scheduled reminders - so yes, scheduled reminders must be updated when actual values are known in order to accurately project cash flow.
Bottom line, The In/Out/Whats Left tool is very useful - when used in the manner intended - and that is to monitor cash flow, not budget performance. Look at it as a useful adjunct to monitoring ones budget performance - is my cash flow timing projection satisfactory?
In my personal use of this feature, I closely monitor cash flow in/out of just my checking account. The associated 30 day chart is my Home page on start-up; i.e., my first glance at QWin is how am I doing on cash flow?
It would be nice to have an accurate CASH FLOW tool.
I have a page that I set up in my Quicken that has the In/Out/What's left and the Projected Balances graph and the Bill and Income reminders. I can't get all three to match each other.
I had to enter a BILL REMINDER for CASH to try and more accurately forecast my CASH FLOW.
Why does the program use the GROSS PAY and not the NET PAY when I use two checking accounts.
If it put the TAXES in the OUT column that would be ok but it doesn't.
Is this a BUG in the program or am I doing something wrong?
Maybe I'm missing something...but I find the In/Out/What's Left to be extremely useful. I have it set to MONTHLY (NOT the past 30 days) and it gives me a nice overview of what's been paid and what's been scheduled. And as I'm retired, I know exactly if I am within my monthly retirement withdrawal.
Now, if you're talking Cash Flow, I added that view as well to my Home Page of In/Out/What's Left. That gives me the actual cash flow of my money...so basically it does NOT take into consideration any charges to my credit card account I've made up to the closing date. It just takes into consideration the actual credit card payment for the current month...just the way it's supposed to.
But what I don't understand is why you are trying to manipulate the In/Out/What's Left chart and make it a Budget chart. That's what the Budget tool is for. I'm pretty sure those two charts are different for a reason.
In/Out/What's Left ISN'T a budgeting tool. It is an informational tool on what you've spent using your bank and credit card accounts. It isn't used to determine whether you are over or under you budget for a particular category. Once again, that's what the budget tool is for and budget reports.
And to say YOU don't like In/Out/What's Left and it's useless and how YOU want it to be doesn't work for me at all. Therefore, you can't speak for every Quicken user...and I like it EXACTLY the way it is.
And I also think your disparaging attitude to the other superusers who were just trying to help you is absolutely reprehensible.
There have been certain key things that Quicken and MS Money have always done differently, and this is one of them. (How the running balance should work was another).
Pretty much everything you have asked for is already in the budget system. The main difference being that in Quicken predictions are made with reminders, and the MS crowd wants the budget numbers to be used for predicting future expenses. Also the budget system is category based, not account based, which is the more likely case for a cash flow system.
In fact a lot of that went into the rewrite of the budget had to do with trying to please these different groups. The result is a complicated budget system (one with more than its share of bugs).
the MS crowd wants the budget numbers to be used for predicting future expenses.Well, budget numbers and scheduled transactions. Either/or isn't as useful for cash flow forecasting, in my opinion.
I've hesitated to post the following in part because this is a Quicken forum, not a Money forum. However, it seems as though folks are talking past one another on this issue, so at the risk of being lumped in with the MS crowd, here's a representative use case in which Money's approach to cash flow forecasting is invaluable, at least to me.
The use case also illustrates, I think, the differences between how Money and Quicken handle near to long-term cash flow forecasting. (And yes, for the record, I'd love it if Quicken would allow Projected Balances to be Money-like).
Anyway, here's the real-life scenario:
We're currently house-hunting. My wife has champagne taste (except in husbands), so I want to know what effect a one-time cash-to-close expenditure and a certain monthly PITI payment will have on our cash flow by the end of 2022.
The date range is significant because I've also implemented an aggressive debt reduction plan (which I formulated in Quicken, by the way, in case Management is lurking), which pays off the loan in question by 3/2022. The question I
Using identical numbers and dates and including the two relevant accounts, checking and savings, I modeled the same scenario in Money's cash flow forecaster and Quicken's Projected Balances. The payee for the proposed one-time CTC expenditure is Title Company; the payee for the proposed mortgage payment is HomeBridge.
Here's what it looks like in Money's cash flow forecaster (the orange graph represents the combined balances):
Here's what it looks like in Quicken's Projected Balances:
You could just look at the respective graphs and see the difference: because it incorporates our budget numbers as well as our scheduled transactions, Money projects our cash flow dipping steadily and then slowly climbing again after the debt reduction plan ends (I've actually modeled this out a lot farther, but clipped it here for simplicity).
Quicken, on the other hand, which only incorporates scheduled transactions in its projections, correctly models the dip in savings after the CTC payment but has our checking account balance going to Pluto.
Projected ending balances on 12/31/2022: Money, $123,718.66; Quicken: $246,180.02. Although I much prefer Quicken's number, I'm obviously not going to pay it much heed.
Finally, I should note that being able to incorporate budget items as well as scheduled transactions isn't only useful when modeling a large expense or an aggressive debt reduction plan. The above is a fairly untypical example of how I use Money's cash flow forecasting tool; more commonly, I use it for ho-hum monthly review.
It's flexibility and power come from allowing you to create a model based on your intended spending and income combined with your actual spending and income. I think this capability would be an invaluable addition to Quicken's already unparalleled cash flow reporting capabilities.
Anyway, that's my opinion. Worth the price paid for it, as they say ... Thanks for listening.
When I look at your projected balances plot from Quicken and see the checking account balance increase straight up it is clear to me what a long time Quicken user would tell you about that, if you want to make that kind of prediction you should have put in a scheduled reminder(s).
And on that score I think that a lot of the differences between the two could be "corrected" by just a few more options in the scheduled reminders. Like for instance an automatic skip. So that if a person is putting in a scheduled reminder for no other reason than to predict this kind of flow it will just skip when it gets hit. Or maybe even better, just create a new class of reminders that are "predictions". And allowing paycheck reminders to stop after a certain period of time like bill reminders will do. And a more flexible setting of future reminder "overrides". As in be able to not just change the next reminder value, but basically anyone of them in the future.
In fact looking at your MS Money "budget" numbers, they have basically nothing to do with Quicken's budget numbers. No where in Quicken's budget do you specify an account for a "transaction". Even in the budget reports, the accounts are only used as a filter.
The MS Money "budget" numbers much more resemble scheduled reminders.
Quicken's budget numbers are all based on categories, not accounts, and they are all for a month. Basically useless in this discussion.
It would be a big mistake to try to incorporate any of this with the Quicken budget.
Drop the term "budget" and change it to "XXXX type of reminder", and make them more flexible, and the graph a bit nicer, like including a "net calculation" plot, and then I think you would find a lot more "common ground".
BTW, I do wonder if people have thought about the Quicken developers track record for such requests?
In a budget I don't want to pin my spending on clothing to a given account.
I could careless which account pays for it.
In a cash flow system, I could careless about what categories it paid for, I want to know if if I have the right amount of money in each account at a given time.
First thing is that the Money cash flow forecaster can draw its numbers from your advanced budget, but it doesn't have to. You can also set it to draw a categorical average from your historical income and expenses -- pretty much like the auto budgeting functions in both Quicken and Money can do. In the Money cash flow forecaster, you can change those numbers if you want.
Second thing is that within Money the assigning of accounts to categories is strictly a cash flow forecasting function, not a budgeting function. In fact, if you never used the cash flow tools you'd likely have little idea this account association was even happening.
In the Categories window, you can change the account associated with a certain category from the default (which is "last used" or "most used", I forget) to a specific account. But the tooltip makes it clear that the purpose of account association is for cash flow forecasting.
Are you referring to the fact that a reminder can be set to an estimate? (If not what exact in Quicken are your referring to?)
Is it the fact that categories are associated with an account, and as such you can say use XXX category in the advance budget for this month, and it will use that account for the predictions?
On the categories and connecting them to accounts.
@Snowman is this how you are doing the "one offs"?
I see this as censorship of the highest order. There were some good honest questions and answers exchanged but if you delete those opinions you have now made users afraid to speak their minds because there comments many be removed and that stifles the debate. Now maybe if I had been contacted about this before it was done we could talk about it but I guess not. I guess Quicken is truly afraid of a good healthy debate on the merit or demerits of Quicken. I guess we can have any opinion that we want as LONG AS IT IS QUICKEN's. How sad is that. :=(
Well here is my best stab at getting a decent cash balance report within what Quicken provides. Let’s assume the date is March 15, 2017. Current Cash is the cash amount as of the origin of the report in the Banking Accounts that you want to be considered as a part of the Current Cash balance. Let’s say that figure is $25,000.
Now we subtract the balance due on all credit cards as of March 15, 2017. The balance due on all credit cards is $5,000. That gives us a Current Cash Balance figure of $20,000. This assumes that all credit cards are paid off every month in full. What about those who do not pay off their cards every month? They need to then look at those overdue balances as a loan and figure in payments and interest in their budget. Yes, I know that is a bit of work but to get a true idea of where you really are financially you need to do this.
Now to get a projected Ending Cash Balance you need to consider 4 things for both income and expenses. First, the current month’s budget. Second, actual transactions to date. Third, the amount over or under budget you are. Finally, amounts in the budget not yet received or spent.
For income items the current budget for March is $40,000. Actual income transactions to date are $10,000 which leaves you -$30,000 under budget. You then have $30,000 yet to be received.
For expense items the current budget is $25,000. Actual expenses to date are $30,000 putting you $10,000 over budget. However, you have $10,000 in expenses not yet spent.
For an Ending Cash Balance for March you take $20,000 + $30,000-$10,000=$40,000 as you ending cash balance. That $40,000 becomes the starting cash balance for April. Budgeted income for April is $20,000 and budgeted expenses are $35,000 the estimated cash balance at the end of April would be $25,000. ($40,000+20,000-$35,000). You can repeat this for all months remaining in the year and go forward as many years as you have put into the budget module of Quicken.
This is how you get a true cash balance forecast. In Reports, you currently can get a report that will give the current balance of all the accounts (that you select to be a part of this) and a total owed on all of your credit cards (again that you select to be included. Quicken can already provide the answer for what is your current cash balance.
The budget can be extended years into the future so that is already in Quicken also. The only part missing is figuring out the current month. You can already create a report that shows income, expenses and how much over under budget you are and it should not be two hard to put it all together to get the Ending Cash Balance for the month.
The data for this can be presented numerically in a table and in graph format. You can add color so that deficit figures are in red and the rest in black.
None of this requires taking into account "scheduled transactions" or billings or any of that. Financial considerations for future events should come from the budget, that is what it is there for and nobody really needs to know or understand how all of this works. They just create a budget and this report can be done for them. The information will be far better than that from In/Out/What's left or Projected balances because they do not work with all of the information.
No I know many do not bother with the budget. Fine for you but there are many of us who take the time to plan out a well thought out budget and if it is not used to its fullest it is really just a waste of space. What is the first thing any financial planner, or loan officer will ask you when you come to them. They will ask you "What is your anticipated budget for....", not what are your scheduled transactions or billings.
I came across this thread because I am very frustrated with the lack of ability to customize In/Out/What's Left. It could be really useful, but I agree with you 100% about needing to select the accounts.
Case-in-point: my tax-deferred investment accounts (i.e.- 401-K, IRA, pension, HSA) have very large balances, and I will receive distributions (dividends, cap gains) that are hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars. Why, oh why, would this untouchable cash ever be included in a cash flow analysis?? I CANNOT touch it until I friggin' retire in 15 years, so I want to completely EXCLUDE it from the In/Out/What's Left. Hence, Quicken should let us customize the accounts that contribute to In/Out/What's Left.
In Dec-2017, when all the end of year distributions occurred in my tax-deferred retirement accounts, I had $7,000 (wow/heck yeah!) in dividends/capital gains. This was included as "Income" by In/Out/What's Left. How STUPID...
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