Quicken is assigning old categories. How do I make a default?

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I have been using Quicken for nearly 20 years and just updated to 2019 but noticed this problem in the last version as well.  For the most part, it gets categories correct. However, for some payees, I have used multiple categories in the past.  For example, I have Fred Meyer and most of the time I use the grocery category for this.  In the past, I have bought specific things there and may have changed the category (for example about a year ago I bought some things for work and assigned a job reimbursement category).  I only used that a couple times but now every time I have a Fred Meyer transaction, it defaults to the job reimbursement category.  How can I make it default to either the last category I used or the one I use the most (which is almost always groceries)?
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Dan

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Posted 2 weeks ago

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mshiggins, SuperUser

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QWin or QMac?
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Dan

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Win
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mshiggins, SuperUser

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Thanks. Discussion category updated.
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UKR, SuperUser

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Dan,
check your Memorized Payee List.
Delete any duplicate Fred Meyer entries that point to categories other than Groceries.
Edit the Fred Meyer - Groceries entry and mark it as "Locked". That will prevent future unplanned changes to the entry.
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Dan

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Great, I will give that a try.  So I notice you can lock more than one category per payee. What would that do?  

So besides groceries, I have used a couple of other categories and will occasionally use them in the future.  If I just leave those and lock groceries, will it always default to groceries but leave the others under the recently used list so I can easily pick them if I want them?
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UKR, SuperUser

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If you want to do this, you need to change to manually reviewing and accepting downloaded transactions. There's no default you can set that I'm aware of. But, locked or not, when you manually review and accept a downloaded transaction, you can select from the list of MPL entries and pick the one you need.

Another method would be to use distinct Payee Names for each situation, e.g.
Fred Meyer {Groceries}
Fred Meyer {Pharmacy}
etc.
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Dan

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I do manually review and accept everything.  I checked the lock for Groceries, deleted a couple of the other categories under Fred Meyer, and left a few others that I still occasionally use.  I will see if it defaults to Groceries next time it downloads.  Thanks.
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QPW

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Locking doesn't prevent you or Quicken from selecting a given payee (or if you have more than one entry per payee, selecting that one).

Locking is about not changing the existing one.

There are settings in Quicken that allow for the changing of information to write back to the memorized payee.

For instance you have a payee Safeway with an amount of $11.00 and a category of Groceries.

If you select that payee the $11 and Groceries gets selected.
Now you change the amount to $14.  If it isn't locked the amount in the memorized payee will change to $14.  If it is locked it will not change.

Also if you change the category and the memorized payee isn't locked I believe that is when you will get another payee entry.

Now talking about downloading.  If you have multiple payee entries for a given memorize payee Quicken has to guess at which one you want by default.

Over the years which it has picked has changed back and forth.

I believe currently it is at "pick the last one used".

Personally what I do is not have more than one memorized entry per payee.  So there isn't any chance that Quicken picks "the wrong one".  I also lock all of my payees.

As for you having to manually review (as in not using automatic transaction entry mode) that isn't correct.

If you think about the flow with automatic transaction entry off, you get your transactions in the Downloaded Transactions tab.

You select one and it shows you that transaction in the register, with the category that it picks by default (based on which memorized payee entry it picked).

If you don't like that selection you go select a different one either by selecting the category field of maybe by using the payee field to select a different memorized payee entry.

And then you accept that transaction into your register.

With automatic entry mode all the transactions go into the register with the "default/picked" category.

At this point there is a status column that has a blue circle icon and the word New on every transaction that was downloaded.

It is your job to look at the transaction and see that it got the category you like, and if so you click on that status icon and a menu lets you selected "Reviewed" and the icon clears.  If you were reviewing and didn't like the default/picked category you would do the exact same thing you did in the other flow, either just change the category or use the payee/memorized payee entry field to change it and then save it.

There is virtually no difference in those actions.

There is one difference though.  In automatic transaction entry mode I can scan all of the transactions and categories all at once.  In non automatic transaction entry mode I have click on each transaction in the register to see which one Quicken is going to give it.

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