Moneydance – A Cross-Platform Personal Finance Manager

I should admit, I am a software program junkie. I like the right software that works as it ought to and does its process with a minimum of an attempt on my part. When I first started using a laptop at domestic, one of the first matters I commenced searching out turned into a software program that might manage my budget and permit me to keep up with what I spend. It is essential for me because although I do now not have a variety of distinct finances to keep up with, I need all the help I can get. I began using Microsoft Money, and even as I honestly just like the way it operated, it did have it is drawbacks. Chief amongst them is the very obtrusive advertisements and the truth that Microsoft Money (you pick out the year) would not open a superbly precise cash document that has been opened even once inside the next yr’s Money model. I can see that being the case every from time to time when the record format has to trade for something purpose but to do it every yr is a piece of the pinnacle. The subsequent program I used become AceMoney, and I used it until I converted from Windows XP to Linux nearly years in the past.

Personal Finance Manager

When I commenced the use of Linux, I knew I could use AceMoney on my Linux system, as long as I hooked up Wine, which lets in Windows packages to run on Linux; however, I chose now not to do so. I preferred to use software that turned into designed to run on Linux itself. After performing some research online, I determined to take advantage of a loose trial presented using Moneydance, an open-source, move-platform personal finance manager for Windows, Linux, and Mac OS. It took a chunk of gambling around with the software program before I was used to how it does things; however, when I did, I had no hassle shopping the full version for $29.99. In my opinion, it’s miles nicely well worth the charge.

As with any software program, there are professionals and cons to the use it. Everyone likes to do matters otherwise, and every private finance manager does things in his own manner, at least a little. One of the primary things I do now not like approximately Moneydance is how it installs on my Mepis gadget. Actually, I assume that has greater to do with me being used to doing things in the Linux manner, so that certainly isn’t always a complaint. Once established, Moneydance is extraordinarily smooth to use. It opens up to the home page, and there are various items you can have displayed up there. You can see from the screenshot underneath that mine is quite easy. I do now not have stocks or bonds, but you could display inventory quotes if you need them. Just add an investment account, after which, add the shares from your portfolio into that account.

One of the matters I virtually like about the way the house page is installation is the transaction reminders, each the listing and the calendar. It could be very smooth to inform what gadgets I actually have due, developing, or maybe late. It is likewise effortless to feature new reminders via clicking on the hyperlink at the top. The fantastic component approximately the reminders is that you could use them for transactions or just a preferred reminder. The transactions may be set up to be entered mechanically or to remind the person to enter them manually. Overall, the home web page of Moneydance could be very usable, and it can be edited to feature or put off items that you do or do not want or need. As you may see, I display my checking account and each of my credit score card money owed on the left side. That allows me to look at a short look at what I have in my bills.

As with any personal finance manager, the program’s primary coronary heart lies in its sign-in or ledger. That’s where the bulk of the work is executed within the application, and that is wherein I spend a maximum of my time coming into transactions and reconciling with my bank account. It is inside the register that I had to learn to do matters a little differently than I turned into used to doing. For instance, there may be no keyboard shortcut to mark a transaction cleared or reconciled. You can do so by way of right-clicking on the transaction and selecting it from the context menu, and even as it gets the process finished, I find it a piece bulky to do. However, there’s every other way to accomplish this that works thoroughly. Upon getting used to it, I locate it much easier to reconcile the sign-in with my online bank declaration.

You can see in the screenshot to the right that there’s an Actions hyperlink at the top left of the sign-up display. Clicking on it drops down a menu with a reconciling movement. Choosing that brings up a dialog that lists the beginning statement balance and asks me to enter the ending statement balance, which is basically the goal stability that I want to complete up with. Before I get to the date, I have already checked out my online financial institution declaration and feature that the parent noted. Once this is entered, Moneydance brings up a small window that lists all of my not cleared or reconciled transactions. That window may be placed at once over the Firefox tab containing my financial institution statement. From there, I can use the mouse to mark the transactions cleared and spot how my sign-up stability fits up with the bank statement. I can see in no time if there may be a mistake on the sign-up without ever opening the bank assertion I receive inside the mail.

Personal Finance

I have located that this small window’s usage absolutely speeds up my paintings in ensuring the transactions are correct, and the web financial institution statement and my check-in balance are correct. It saves me quite a little time and effort with the aid of not having to alt+tab to and fro between windows. As I said, it took me some time to get used to doing things in that manner; however, as soon as I did, it makes clear a variety of transactions plenty less difficult and faster. I am quite set in my methods, but that is one aspect I actually have found out to do differently, and I am satisfied I did.

Another feature I discover very beneficial is how Moneydance can backup my money file without action from me after the initial setup is carried out. I make each day backups in a folder on a very separate partition, and Moneydance looks after the relaxation. Trust me; the backups have stored my bacon greater than once, or even if I do not have a hardware problem, it without a doubt came in reachable when I set up SimplyMepis eight. It becomes a snap to load my backup record and feature all of my data handy. I have observed its miles important to hold backups, and Moneydance offers you an expansion of options to choose from.

There is an extra aspect that I determined to be a piece unique from the maximum different private finance packages I even have used, and that is the manner Moneydance treats bills and classes identical. I am no accountant. However, this is certainly the way maximum real accounting software. It’s referred to as the double-entry technique, and at the same time, as I do not apprehend it completely, it essentially links the one-of-a-kind bills to every different. In KMyMoney and other private finance managers, you may set up a switch from one account to any other using calling it a transfer. In Moneydance, I had to choose the account within the category phase of the transaction to get the adjustments to register for both debts. Once I was given past the difference, it’s a piece of cake.

As with maximum private finance managers, Moneydance recalls the transactions and could complete them mechanically for you. If I input a transaction to Aldi’s to buy groceries, it remembers that and until I inform differently, all transactions to Aldi’s could be entered into the “Food: Groceries” class. That is available in very available, and I can install a reoccurring transaction by using right-clicking on the transaction line and telling Moneydance to “Memorize” the transaction. Very short and really smooth to do. I should say that Moneydance is brilliant inside the check-in and how it handles the transactions.

Personal Finance

I should move on and on about this system’s functions, but this text is already longer than I had predicted. Suffice it to say that I am quite pleased with Moneydance. Yes, there are matters that I would like to see changed. For instance, the simplest way to cover past transactions inside the register is to archive them. However, I actually have determined that the range of transactions in the check-in would not seem to slow this system down, so I am residing with that. It’s just a depend on personal choice in that regard. The documentation may also be a little more thorough. However, I even have labored beyond that as well. If you are searching out an easy-to-apply non-public finance supervisor, I might urge you to provide Moneydance a strive. I do not assume you may be dissatisfied.

Helen K. Black

Zombie guru. Freelance travel fanatic. Pop culture fan. Entrepreneur. Certified music evangelist. In 2009 I was short selling walnuts for farmers. Practiced in the art of managing wooden horses in the financial sector. Have a strong interest in managing dandruff in Minneapolis, MN. Have some experience getting to know dogmas in Prescott, AZ. Spent 2001-2008 building banjos with no outside help. Was quite successful at marketing karma for farmers.

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