Switch from Quicken to Moneydance

Billy Schultz's Avatar

Billy Schultz

29 Jan, 2020 05:51 PM

I have been using Quicken since 1998. I'm currently using Quicken 2007. I bought Quicken 2015 but do not like it at all. Quicken 2007 produces QIF files.

  1. 1 Posted by William Schultz on 29 Jan, 2020 06:03 PM

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    I found this in your discussions group. It looks like a good guide to switching to Moneydance.

  2. Support Staff 2 Posted by Maddy on 29 Jan, 2020 06:14 PM

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    Hi Billy,
    Thank you for contacting Moneydance support.

    • If you are importing from Quicken please note, QDF and QXF files use a proprietary file format that can only be read by Quicken and Intuit programs. You need to open Quicken to export your data into one or more QIF files.

    Ideally you'll export one QIF file that contains all of your account data. Use the option to export 'all accounts' within one QIF file if this is available within the software you're using.
    If not, you should export one QIF file for each account in your file.

    Make sure you export any closed or inactive accounts containing transfers to your open accounts. You may need to re-open these accounts before exporting.

    If you're using Moneydance for the first time, when you open the program, you'll see the Welcome window. Choose “Create a new account set” and setup a new data file.
    If you have opened Moneydance previously, you can create a new data file by choosing File --> New --> Create a New File. Then follow the prompts to enter a name and currency for your new file.

    When viewing your new data file, choose File --> Import. Then navigate to and select the QIF file.

    You'll be asked which account you want to import your data into. If you have data for multiple accounts within one QIF file, you can pick any account.

    Below this, Moneydance will automatically try to determine the date format and decimal character used within the QIF file.
    If you want to check this, open the QIF file with a text based program like NotePad or TextEdit. This will allow you to check which date format and decimal character are being used.

    Choose 'Import' and wait a moment while your accounts and data are imported into Moneydance.

    If it appears some of your accounts are missing from the left side bar, press the '+' button at the bottom of the side bar. Choose 'Advanced'. You should see the missing accounts in the panel on the left - highlight the account name and press 'Add' to move the accounts into the panel on the right. When you're done press OK and these accounts should then be available for selection from within the side bar.

    Some QIF files don’t include an 'Initial Balance' for your accounts (sometimes referred to as a beginning balance or a starting balance). If this is the case, you'll see all transactions have imported but the account balance will show a discrepancy.
    To fix this, select the account and choose Account --> Edit Account. In this window, you can enter an amount into the 'Initial Balance' field.

    For investment accounts, QIF file don’t always carry security prices other than buy/sell prices, so investment account balances may be wrong until you update with the current security prices.

    Reminders are not included in QIF files as the QIF file format has no ability to include reminder data.

    I hope this information is helpful. Please let me know if you have further questions or need any assistance.

    Maddy, Infinite Kind Support

  3. 3 Posted by jkosa on 29 Jan, 2020 09:10 PM

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    I am also hoping to switch to MoneyDance from Quicken 2017. I've been using Quicken for 20+yrs and have data in my exported QIF file that goes back to 2005. I was able to choose "all accounts" and imported that qif when i opened MoneyDance for the 1st time.
    My balances do not match even though I've gone into the Initial Balance field to verify that they are at 0.00. I'm pretty sure the balances are off because for some deposit transactions, I see an equal xan in the register that seems to "cancel out" the deposit with a [cash] xan. In my recently opened checking account there were 2 of these, so I manually changed the extra xan to $0 and now my balance matches. But for my 20yr old checking account with 1000s of xans, I can't go thru and find all of these extra negating xans. Can you offer any suggestions?

  4. 4 Posted by dtd on 29 Jan, 2020 09:45 PM

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    To jkosa: Just a user here who went through this a couple of months ago.

    Sounds like you are on your way, (as you fixed one of the QIF import glitches on your own) and are aware of initial balance issues, but basically the quickest "fix" that I know of is the following:

    1) If you have any ACCOUNTX accounts that were created during the import, hide them and make sure they no longer impact your total net worth.
    2) Compare your quicken account final balances to your MD balances. Most are probably fine. For those that are not, artificially change the initial MD balance to make the MD and Q final account balances match. As you will quickly surmise, this is just a quick "fix" to the QIF import issues you've already noted.

    Those two should be able to be done fairly quickly. I won't bother to go through the math to make this happen as you are obviously far along, given your actions already.

    The biggest caveat is that your historical balances for the non-matching accounts will be totally meaningless, but going forward from the conversion date, they should be fine.

    Hopefully, this will at least show that MD is a valid possibility. Many will probably take this as an "ok" solution, given history is history. For me, this was just a first step as funky historical balances bothered me.

    Still - this is what I suggest as a quick step toward seeing this conversion can work.
    If you want more details, you can find my very long thread in this forum area where I go into super detail on my conversion experience.


  5. 5 Posted by jkosa on 29 Jan, 2020 11:57 PM

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    Thank you to:dantdavis for your reply and encouragement. I found your long post and others you've started/replied so I will read those in detail. It seems we have a bit in common with our migration and long time use of Quicken.

    Since you are 2 + months into MoneyDance, would you say it was worth it? Since I'm only 2hrs into it, I'd appreciate your input. FWIW - I primarily use quicken for reconciling bank/credit card accounts, but in recent years have also added my investment accounts (stock, 401k, HSA with investment options). I don't do billpay from quicken, and I download xans into each account as I see necessary - rarely use One Step Update.

    Apologies if you've already posted somewhere else with thoughts on "was it worth it" - if so, just give me an idea of the thread title and I'll find it : )

  6. 6 Posted by dtd on 30 Jan, 2020 07:19 AM

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    Was it worth it? An interesting question with tangential threads.

    Overall, I'd say yes, but this is complicated by the fact that I'm actually still in Quicken until April and running Moneydance in tandem, so I haven't totally cut the cord yet.

    Let's address my take on YOUR issues:
    1) primarily use quicken to reconcile bank/credit card accounts.
        As long as the bank/credit card supports direct connect, you are cool I LIKE the privacy features of Moneydance, but many are disconcerted that their bank only "supports" the insecure webconnect, which really means quicken goes into the account, pretends to be you, and grabs the data. Convenient, but not very privacy friendly.
    2) Investment accounts - Moneydance did a great job with my securities. It was the cash balances that were very uncool. I mentioned a quick fix. You are reading about the slow fix I ended up doing - because I wanted to.
    3) No billpay. Good for you. Me neither.
    4) download xans into each account as necessary - you will find the lack of webconnect not a problem then - MD supports downloading files on a oneoff, and is looking to make that easier.

    Now, as to the CONVERSION - time and effort - I feel that MD is on the 5 yard line of the conversion goal, and could make a touchdown (and acquire tons of new customers vs a constant "my account balances are crazy - this doesn't work!"), but hey, I'm just a customer.

    Still, the quick fix I propose may be enough for many customers, and shouldn't take long. It's the "it must be totally right part" that confronted me.

    So, I just waded in, and spent way too much time, but then again, as a career I/T guy with financial background, this was also a game to me. So, I actually found it frustratingly fun. My first xan in Quicken is in 1988.

    My primary bit? Quicken has always made their software useless after 3 years, is really not very private and has gotten less so, wants to make you pay a subscription fee, and has begun to "lock you in" to their product on something so very specific as your financial history. Sorry, don't want that anymore.

  7. 7 Posted by jkosa on 30 Jan, 2020 09:59 PM

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    Appreciate the input dantdavis. I really want Moneydance to work for me, but even with all of your knowledge in other threads, I'm struggling with the investment accounts. The quick fix (by which I think you mean adjusting the initial account balance so it works) doesn't seem to be working for me, yet. Hope I'll get there.

    Re importing checking, savings, credit cards, I think I've got the hang of it with Moneydance to do it MANUALLY. Disappointed that so far only 1 of the 7 accounts will do direct connect. I think starting in April 2020 I would still be able to use Quicken and do manual downloads in the same way. Not 100% sure about that, so I'm continuing to work with Moneydance.

    Now I'm looking at Reminders - I have many in Quicken. Maddy wrote: Reminders are not included in QIF files as the QIF file format has no ability to include reminder data. Quicken does have a way to export reminders to a tab delimiited file. Anyone know if there is a way to import this into Moneydance? Or am I going to have to manually create these?

  8. 8 Posted by dtd on 31 Jan, 2020 01:47 AM

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    Re adjusting initial balances of non matching accounts - I'm basically saying to place the result of the equation below into the initial balance for that account: (excuse me if I get pluses or minuses wrong as I'm making this up as I go)

    (Q Current Balance) - (MD Current Balance) + (MD Initial Balance)

    Example: (1000) - (-70000) + 0 --- replace the 0 with 71000... should make MD Current balance be 1000.

    So, given you are doing the above - what isn't working for you? [And yes, again, all past balances will be crazy crazy)

    For me, out of about 27 accounts I have, about 21 have direct connect - some I had to talk to the bank and set them up as Quicken preferred web connect. Two wanted money, so they count as part of the 6. Two of the six were paypal. That left two more that simply didn't support direct connect at all. Then again, I use things like Chase, Schwab, Citi, Barclay, so that helps me on direct connect coverage.

    As for Reminders - please tell me what you find out, as I'm still using both products in Tandem, and haven't tried Reminders in MD. Maybe someone else can help you there.

  9. System closed this discussion on 01 May, 2020 01:50 AM.

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