Personal Finance sofware on the Mac: Quicken, Mondeydance, Mint
This is really a time to rejoice!! Whether or not you have used Quicken in the past on Windows or on the Mac, this is a time to celebrate because enough Mac users spoke up and a big software company actually listened. Well aside from the victory in knowing that it isn’t only a Windows world out there, let me tell you specifically what I am referring to.
Everyone has heard of Quicken. It is the number one, at least by # of users, computer program of its kind for managing your personal finances on your desktop or laptop. Think of keeping track of all your bank balances and then some in one handy program. Everyone checks online banking these days and Quicken can do that too, but its advantage was bringing everything together. Maximum organization.
They’ve made Quicken for Windows for years and also for Mac. However, while the Windows version has been updated every year, the Mac version was stuck at 2007 and still used faithfully by hundreds of thousands (probably millions) of Mac users. Version 2007 for Mac was released in mid 2006. Of course you all know that Apple upgraded its operating system to 10.7 last July. Most of you have that. However, compatibility for Quicken 2007 was broken. So Mac users who relied on Quicken have had to stick with OS 10.6 (or earlier) or switch to a completely different program. Quicken is not expensive software, but people who use it swear by it religiously.
Mac users spoke up and Quicken (Intuit Software) listened. On Thursday Quicken 2007 Lion edition was released. Not sure why they didn’t just call it Quicken 2012 but none the less it works. And the price is right. While Quicken for Windows normally sells for about $50, Quicken is throwing an olive branch to Mac users and charging only $15 — by your choice of download or CD sent in the mail. http://quicken.intuit.com/personal-finance-software/quicken-2007-osx-lion.jsp
I was not a previous user of Quicken for Mac 2005 – 2007, however I bought the program and installed it. I wanted to learn it because I know that I may have the chance to help some of you, so I bought it. If you have used Quicken for Windows before, you can prepare your data file for use on the Mac using these steps. http://quicken.intuit.com/support/help/convert-quicken-for-windows-files-to-quicken-for-mac/GEN82890.html
The Quicken 2007 Lion edition for Mac is only $15, so if it ends up being a dud for you it isn’t a big loss.
1) I did not start managing my finances in a computer program until 2009. At that time I knew Quicken for Mac was out of date (though still functional). I chose to go with Moneydance. Moneydance is kept up to date with regular improvements and has been around since the late 1990’s. Its software is the same on Mac, Windows, and Linux. Pardon the expression, but there is no “bastardization” of their software for the various computers. I’ve used it for about 2.5 years now and love it. They do offer a free trial at Moneydance.com and it may be worth trying. I believe the full cost of the software is $40. I will run on the latest Mac and Windows software. If you use a Mac now, but also need to manage your finances on a Windows computer with perfect synchronization this would be a very good bet.
2) Mint.com was started by a few entrepreneurs several years ago and it has taken off like a rocket ship. They thought — who cares what computer you are using? The internet is the universal platform. With that said, on Mint.com you manage your bank accounts and categorization of expenses and income right on the web browser. Mint connects to your existing bank accounts and imports data. I understand this might seem a little insecure, however I have never heard of anyone getting robbed or harmed from using Mint.com. This concept was so good the people over at Quicken actually bought them and some of the founders of Mint are actually senior level executives at Intuit — the company behind Quicken. I’ll admit, I don’t use Mint often, but I do have an account. Mint is easy to access on your iPhone, iPad, Android phone or a computer away from home. It’s totally free. How so? Mint.com supports itself with advertisements. You are never forced to buy or sign up for anything.