Strange that it is seen as an actual expenditure before it is actually entered. In my world it's not actual until it is actually committed. A reminder is more like a budget amount until it is committed. Regardless, I can deal with it, if consistent. logic should be consistent...or it's not logical ;-)
To help me get out of the same box, I decided that I would first get my Reminders reasonably correct. Then I used this projection to populate the budget. Once the minor adjustments are made, it is a simple matter to add the additional income into the budget from your investments to balance the budget. Four vs. five week months (they only occur once per qtr,) are of minor concern with a little working reserve in the checkbook. Philosophically, the Budget then becomes merely a guide to make sure that the cash projection, plus the transfers, come true. (I suppose that you could add a Reminder for an average transfer. Once made, correct the Reminder to the actual amount.)
How to make a Reminder for unscheduled Expenses:
Once the Reminders are defined for all of the known items, the question then became one of how to deal with the messy stuff...gas for the car, food, entertainment, etc. To get a REASONABLE number for that Reminder, I did a 6-month historical report of all my messy expenses, divided by 26, and created an artificial weekly reminder. The reminder is merely deleted once it reaches the checkbook; it was only a place-holder to generate a reasonably correct graph. The end result will generate a projected cash-balance.
I set up both loan payments in the budget, knowing what it is and that it's due each month. I like to budget when something big changes. In this case, my wife died and I wanted to make sure that the amount in my checking would always be enough to comfortably cover expected expenses. Being overdrawn would add to my already considerable distress. So I budget to see what can and should be reduced or eliminated. It's my future planning tool. when you budget items with a predictable amount that occurs only once or twice per year. Reminders showing up as actuals for the month it is paid, allows accumulating an 1/12 of the amount each month. That's what the rollover is for. I rollover positive amounts each month to have the category zero out when the payment is due.
I agree. What used to be called a super category, any sub categories and "anything else" is a handy way to quickly budget. For example, I can either eat at restaurants or buy groceries to cook. I can set up a super category of meals and have 3 subcategories, eating out, groceries, and everything else. I can budget a monthly amount and Quicken will add the subcategories to come up with a single Meals spending. If I'm constantly over budget, I can get a report showing the amount spent for each sub category. That could inform me that Eating out is too expensive and I could cut that back and enjoy cooking more. but there is no point having a category if you aren't willing to change your spending habits. I have seen the "paralysis of analysis". Too much information is worse than not enough!
Now, I am using the Cash Flow in the Home tab/ cash flow. I can toggle to any future month and Loan Payment accurately reflects future mortgage and car loan amounts.
I guess budgets are for planning the future, Cash flow is a different animal. I can adjust to most anything when I know what I'm adjusting to!
You can mark this question as solved.
"super category" => category group
"class" => tag
And on the subject of planning vs cash flow.
It is certainly the case that the budget was designed to be a budget, as in "planning".
A lot of people don't get the distinction between that and cash flow.
To that end they have graphed on some cash flow kind of features, but there are certainly gaps and bugs in that. Yeah there is bugs in all of it! :-)
I use to think that the reports were a lot clearer until some people pointed out bugs in them.
And one thing that pops up is the fact that for somethings like the Everything Else its "meaning" changes depending on it the view is in Graph or Annual view, and is missing in the reports.
Reminders aren't an option in the reports. So all of this isn't consistent.
Budget for Business and Personal items should be handled the same way and they are not. In practice Personal and Business are simply super categories, should just be be handled as such in all reports, all displays, all totals. If there is a bug or feature for Personal budget I would expect the exact same behavior for a Business budget item.
DonH I agree that the cash flow reports are flawed. The budget is a planning tool that shows your income vs expenses. The budget does not know if there is enough "cash" to cover the budget. A cash flow report will start with an amount of cash that you have one hand and then run your budget with that in mind. You will then see if your budget is valid or if you need to change spending patterns.
I have had issues with the budget for several years now. First it can't add properly, second if you have parent categories (a category with subcategories) Quicken will allow you to code a transaction to that parent category a serious flaw accounting wise and also because it will create bad data in reports. I was "suggested" to me that my take on this was stupid because what happens if there is a transaction that does not fit any of the subcategories. The solution is simple either create a subcategory that fits the need OR create a subcategory called Misc-Auto Expenses for example.
The rollover function is poorly implemented. In the annual view lets say you have a category Food, you budget it for say $200 per month. If you rollover that category the annual review will change and for February it will be $400, March $600 and so on. Very unrealistic. The rollover should only apply to the month following the current month. So February would be still be $400 but the remaining months of the year will be $200. Because of this I will "rollover" amounts from the previous month manually for the categories that I want to do this with.
It sounds like your needs are simple so I would suggest creating a simple Excel spreadsheet that will give you the information that you require. This can also serve as a check on Quickens math which is how I found out that it couldn't add properly.