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Quicken® 2010 For Dummies®

Book Description

This classic bestseller has been thoroughly updated for the newest version of Quicken

Who doesn't have questions about managing finances these days? Stephen Nelson translates his years of expertise as a CPA and tax expert into this plain-English guide that shows you how to manage your finances with the nation's leading personal finance software, Quicken. Trying to keep track of your credit card expenditures? Starting to save money for a college fund? Managing your household expensess? Steve's straightforward advice shows you how to take control of your money, without being an accounting wizard. Discover how to

  • Get started with Quicken and maintain your checkbook on your computer

  • Access your account information and pay bills online

  • Manage your 401(k), IRA, stocks, and bonds

  • Get up to speed on the new enhancements and changes in Quicken "X"

  • Track your deductions and plan for tax time

  • Capture your small business and personal expenses in one place

  • Spend less time crunching numbers and more time making the most of your money with this perennial For Dummies bestseller on Quicken.

    Table of Contents

    1. Copyright
    2. About the Authors
    3. Author's Acknowledgments
    4. Introduction
      1. About This Book
      2. How to Use This Book
      3. What You Can Safely Ignore
      4. What You Should Not Ignore (Unless You're a Masochist)
      5. Three Foolish Assumptions
      6. The Flavors of Quicken
      7. How This Book Is Organized
        1. Part I: Zen, Quicken, and the Big Picture
        2. Part II: The Absolute Basics
        3. Part III: Home Finances
        4. Part IV: Very Serious Business
        5. Part V: The Part of Tens
        6. Part VI: Appendixes
      8. Conventions Used in This Book
      9. Special Icons
      10. Where to Next?
    5. I. Zen, Quicken, and the Big Picture
      1. 1. Setting Up Shop
        1. 1.1. Installing and Starting Quicken
        2. 1.2. Finishing Setup If You've Used Quicken Before
        3. 1.3. Finishing the Setup
        4. 1.4. Describing Your Banking
        5. 1.5. Slogging Through More Setup Stuff
        6. 1.6. Steve's Overview
          1. 1.6.1. Starting Quicken for the second time
          2. 1.6.2. Using Quicken document windows
          3. 1.6.3. Navigating with QuickTabs
        7. 1.7. Solving Tricky Setup Problems
          1. 1.7.1. Did somebody say Macintosh?
          2. 1.7.2. The mysterious case of the missing Quicken data files
          3. 1.7.3. Migrating from Microsoft Money
      2. 2. Introduction to the Big Picture
        1. 2.1. Boiling Quicken Down to Its Essence
          1. 2.1.1. Tracking tax deductions
          2. 2.1.2. Monitoring spending
          3. 2.1.3. Printing checks (and other forms)
          4. 2.1.4. Tracking bank accounts, credit cards, and other stuff
          5. 2.1.5. Planning your personal finances
          6. 2.1.6. Banking online
        2. 2.2. Setting Up Additional Accounts
          1. 2.2.1. Setting up another banking account
          2. 2.2.2. Hey, Quicken, I want to use that account!
        3. 2.3. Whipping Your Category Lists into Shape
          1. 2.3.1. Subcategories... yikes, what are they?
          2. 2.3.2. Category groups... double yikes!
          3. 2.3.3. Four tips on categorization
          4. 2.3.4. Ch-ch-changing a category list
            1. 2.3.4.1. Adding individual categories you'd love to use
            2. 2.3.4.2. Adding categories from a situational list
            3. 2.3.4.3. Removing categories you loathe
            4. 2.3.4.4. Changing category names and descriptions
            5. 2.3.4.5. Merging categories
        4. 2.4. Want to Play Tag?
      3. 3. Maximum Fun, Maximum Profits
        1. 3.1. Should You Even Bother with a Budget?
        2. 3.2. Serious Advice about Your Secret Plan
          1. 3.2.1. Your personal Secret Plan
          2. 3.2.2. Two things that really goof up Secret Plans
            1. 3.2.2.1. The problem with windfalls
            2. 3.2.2.2. The problem with monster income changes
        3. 3.3. Setting Up a Secret Plan
          1. 3.3.1. Introducing the Budget window
          2. 3.3.2. Entering budgeted amounts
          3. 3.3.3. Reviewing the options
          4. 3.3.4. Reviewing your budget
          5. 3.3.5. What to do after you enter your budget
    6. II. The Absolute Basics
      1. 4. Checkbook on a Computer
        1. 4.1. Getting Started
        2. 4.2. Finding Your Checkbook
        3. 4.3. Recording Checks
          1. 4.3.1. Entering a check in the register
          2. 4.3.2. Changing a check you've entered
          3. 4.3.3. Packing more checks into the register
          4. 4.3.4. Sorting transactions
          5. 4.3.5. Working with a kooky (and clever) little thing named QuickFill
        4. 4.4. Recording Deposits
          1. 4.4.1. Entering a deposit into the register
          2. 4.4.2. Changing a deposit you've already entered
        5. 4.5. Recording Account Transfers
          1. 4.5.1. Entering an account transfer
          2. 4.5.2. Working with the other half of the transfer
          3. 4.5.3. Changing a transfer you've already entered
        6. 4.6. Splitting Transactions
          1. 4.6.1. Steps for splitting a check
          2. 4.6.2. Editing and deleting split categories
          3. 4.6.3. Steps for splitting deposits and transfers
        7. 4.7. Deleting and Voiding Transactions
        8. 4.8. The Big Register Phenomenon
          1. 4.8.1. Moving through a big register
          2. 4.8.2. Finding that darn transaction
        9. 4.9. Pop-Up Calendars and Calculators
        10. 4.10. Attaching Flags, Notes, and Images
      2. 5. Printing 101
        1. 5.1. Printing Checks
          1. 5.1.1. What if you make a mistake entering a check?
          2. 5.1.2. Printing a check you've entered
          3. 5.1.3. What if you discover a mistake after you print the check?
          4. 5.1.4. A few words about check printing
        2. 5.2. Printing a Check Register
      3. 6. Online and In Charge
        1. 6.1. What Are Online Account Access and Online Bill Payment?
        2. 6.2. Wise Whys and Wherefores
        3. 6.3. Banking with Online Account Access and Online Bill Payment
          1. 6.3.1. Finding an online bank — online
          2. 6.3.2. Paying bills
          3. 6.3.3. Transferring money between accounts
          4. 6.3.4. Updating your Quicken accounts
      4. 7. Reports, Charts, and Other Cool Tools
        1. 7.1. Creating and Printing Reports
          1. 7.1.1. Printing the facts, and nothing but the facts
          2. 7.1.2. Reviewing standard reports
          3. 7.1.3. Finding the report you want
          4. 7.1.4. Going to the printing dog-and-pony show
            1. 7.1.4.1. Got a question about a number? Just zoom it
            2. 7.1.4.2. See a problem? Fix it
            3. 7.1.4.3. Got a question about register transactions? Use a mini-report
            4. 7.1.4.4. Sharing report data with spreadsheets
            5. 7.1.4.5. Sharing report data in PDF files
          5. 7.1.5. Editing and rearranging reports
            1. 7.1.5.1. Back, Forward, and History
            2. 7.1.5.2. Delete
            3. 7.1.5.3. Export Data
            4. 7.1.5.4. Sort
            5. 7.1.5.5. Save Report
            6. 7.1.5.6. What's the Preferences button for?
            7. 7.1.5.7. Date Range
            8. 7.1.5.8. Column subtotaling
            9. 7.1.5.9. Customizing
        2. 7.2. Charts Only Look Tricky
        3. 7.3. QuickReports: Last But Not Least
      5. 8. A Matter of Balance
        1. 8.1. Selecting the Account You Want to Balance
        2. 8.2. Balancing a Bank Account
          1. 8.2.1. Telling Quicken, "Hey, man, I want to balance this account"
          2. 8.2.2. Giving Quicken the bank's information
          3. 8.2.3. Explaining the difference between your records and the bank's records
            1. 8.2.3.1. Marking cleared checks and deposits
            2. 8.2.3.2. Making sure that the difference equals zero
        3. 8.3. Ten Things You Should Do If Your Account Doesn't Balance
          1. 8.3.1. Make sure that you're working with the right account
          2. 8.3.2. Look for transactions that the bank has recorded but you haven't
          3. 8.3.3. Look for reversed transactions
          4. 8.3.4. Look for a transaction that's equal to half the difference
          5. 8.3.5. Look for a transaction that's equal to the difference
          6. 8.3.6. Check for transposed numbers
          7. 8.3.7. Have someone else look over your work
          8. 8.3.8. Look out for multiple errors
          9. 8.3.9. Try again next month (and maybe the month after that)
          10. 8.3.10. Get in your car, drive to the bank, and beg for help
      6. 9. Housekeeping for Quicken
        1. 9.1. Backing Up Is Hard to Do
          1. 9.1.1. Backing up the quick-and-dirty way
          2. 9.1.2. Deciding when to back up
          3. 9.1.3. Losing your Quicken data after you've backed up
          4. 9.1.4. Losing your Quicken data when you haven't backed up
        2. 9.2. Working with Files, Files, and More Files
          1. 9.2.1. Setting up a new file
          2. 9.2.2. Flip-flopping between files
          3. 9.2.3. When files get too big for their own good
        3. 9.3. Using and Abusing Passwords
          1. 9.3.1. Setting up a file password
          2. 9.3.2. Changing a file password
      7. 10. Compound Interest Magic and Other Mysteries
        1. 10.1. Noodling Around with Your Investments
          1. 10.1.1. Using the Investment Savings Calculator
          2. 10.1.2. Trying to become a millionaire
        2. 10.2. The Often Unbearable Burden of Debt
          1. 10.2.1. Using the Loan Calculator to figure payments
          2. 10.2.2. Calculating loan balances
        3. 10.3. The Refinance Calculator
        4. 10.4. The Retirement Calculator
          1. 10.4.1. The dilemma in a nutshell
          2. 10.4.2. Retirement planning calculations
          3. 10.4.3. If you're now bummed out about retirement
          4. 10.4.4. Retirement roulette
        5. 10.5. Cost of College
          1. 10.5.1. The College Calculator
          2. 10.5.2. If you're now bummed out about college costs
        6. 10.6. Planning for Taxes
        7. 10.7. The Other Planning Tools
    7. III. Home Finances
      1. 11. Credit Cards, Petty Cash, and PayPal
        1. 11.1. Tracking a Credit Card
        2. 11.2. How to Set Up a Credit Card Account
          1. 11.2.1. Adding a credit card account
          2. 11.2.2. Selecting a credit card account so that you can use it
        3. 11.3. How to Enter Credit Card Transactions
          1. 11.3.1. Touring the credit card register
          2. 11.3.2. Recording a credit card charge
          3. 11.3.3. Changing charges you've already entered
          4. 11.3.4. Paying credit card bills
            1. 11.3.4.1. A most bodacious way to pay a credit card bill
            2. 11.3.4.2. A less bodacious way to pay a credit card bill
        4. 11.4. Reconciling That Crazy Account
          1. 11.4.1. What the nasty credit card company says
          2. 11.4.2. Ouch! Did I really spend that much?
          3. 11.4.3. If you record a transaction wrong, do this
          4. 11.4.4. Oh, that explains the difference
          5. 11.4.5. If you're ready to finish
          6. 11.4.6. If you want to postpone the inevitable
          7. 11.4.7. Paying the bill as part of the reconciliation
        5. 11.5. The Online Banking Hoopla
          1. 11.5.1. Should you even bother?
          2. 11.5.2. How to use Online Account Access with your credit card
        6. 11.6. Petty Cash and Mad Money
          1. 11.6.1. Adding a cash account
          2. 11.6.2. Tracking cash inflows and outflows
          3. 11.6.3. Recording checks you cash instead of deposit
          4. 11.6.4. Updating cash balances
        7. 11.7. PayPal Can Be Quicken's Friend
      2. 12. Other People's Money
        1. 12.1. Should You Bother to Track Your Debts?
        2. 12.2. How Do You Get Started?
          1. 12.2.1. Setting up a liability account for an amortized loan
          2. 12.2.2. Fixing loan stuff
            1. 12.2.2.1. Changing loan or loan payment information
            2. 12.2.2.2. Working with adjustable rate loans
            3. 12.2.2.3. Removing and adding loans
        3. 12.3. Delivering a Pound of Flesh (Also Known as Making a Payment)
          1. 12.3.1. Recording the payment
          2. 12.3.2. Handling mortgage escrow accounts
            1. 12.3.2.1. The rough, dirty, and unshaven method
            2. 12.3.2.2. The precise, sophisticated, and cumbersome approach
        4. 12.4. Your Principal-Interest Breakdown Won't Be Right
          1. 12.4.1. So you can't change the world
          2. 12.4.2. Think this adjustment business is kooky?
        5. 12.5. Automatic Payments
          1. 12.5.1. Scheduling a payment or a reminder
          2. 12.5.2. Another way to schedule transactions
          3. 12.5.3. Checking out the Calendar
      3. 13. Tracking Tax-Deferred Investments
        1. 13.1. Deciding to Use Investment Features
          1. 13.1.1. Are your investments tax-deferred?
          2. 13.1.2. Are you a mutual fund fanatic?
          3. 13.1.3. Some investors don't need Quicken
          4. 13.1.4. Many investors do want Quicken
        2. 13.2. Tracking a Tax-Deferred Investment
          1. 13.2.1. Setting up a tax-deferred investment account
          2. 13.2.2. Recording your initial investment
          3. 13.2.3. Buying investments
            1. 13.2.3.1. By writing a check
            2. 13.2.3.2. By reinvesting dividends, interest, or capital gains
          4. 13.2.4. Recording your profits
          5. 13.2.5. Selling investments
          6. 13.2.6. Correcting a mistake
          7. 13.2.7. Working with slightly tricky investment transactions
            1. 13.2.7.1. How do I remove shares from an account?
            2. 13.2.7.2. What? The stock split and then doubled?
            3. 13.2.7.3. Quicken, will you remind me of something?
          8. 13.2.8. Reconciling an account
          9. 13.2.9. Trying reports
          10. 13.2.10. Using menu commands and other stuff
        3. 13.3. Updating Securities Prices
      4. 14. Stocks and Bonds
        1. 14.1. Setting Up a Brokerage Account
          1. 14.1.1. Recording your initial share balances
          2. 14.1.2. Working with brokerage accounts
          3. 14.1.3. Setting up security lists
          4. 14.1.4. Working with cash
            1. 14.1.4.1. Transferring cash to and from an account
            2. 14.1.4.2. Buying near and selling dear
            3. 14.1.4.3. Recording dividends, capital gains, and other goodies
          5. 14.1.5. Recording other not-so-tricky transactions
            1. 14.1.5.1. Bonds . . . James Bonds . . .
            2. 14.1.5.2. Going for the gold
            3. 14.1.5.3. Recording margin interest expenses
            4. 14.1.5.4. Paying a miscellaneous expense
            5. 14.1.5.5. Recording a return of capital
            6. 14.1.5.6. Special investment transactions
        2. 14.2. More Quick Stuff about Brokerage Accounts
          1. 14.2.1. Monitoring and updating securities values
          2. 14.2.2. Researching investments
          3. 14.2.3. Adjusting errors
            1. 14.2.3.1. Oops, my brokerage cash balance is wrong
            2. 14.2.3.2. Oops, my brokerage account shares balance is wrong
          4. 14.2.4. A few words on the Investing tab's views and tools
    8. IV. Very Serious Business
      1. 15. Mind Your Business
        1. 15.1. Setting Up a Business the Quicken Way
          1. 15.1.1. Describing your business(es)
          2. 15.1.2. Designing business invoices
          3. 15.1.3. Identifying invoice items
        2. 15.2. Working with Customers
          1. 15.2.1. Setting up a Customer Invoices account
          2. 15.2.2. Invoicing your customers
          3. 15.2.3. Printing invoices
          4. 15.2.4. Recording customer payments
          5. 15.2.5. Issuing credits and making refunds
        3. 15.3. Business Bookkeeping Whistles and Bells
          1. 15.3.1. Jobs and projects
          2. 15.3.2. Using finance charges, estimates, and statements
          3. 15.3.3. Managing vendor bills
          4. 15.3.4. Vehicle Mileage Tracker
        4. 15.4. Quicken Dirty Payroll
          1. 15.4.1. Getting ready for payroll
          2. 15.4.2. Setting up the wages expense category
          3. 15.4.3. Setting up the payroll tax expense category
          4. 15.4.4. Getting the taxes stuff right
            1. 15.4.4.1. Requesting (or demanding) an employer ID number
            2. 15.4.4.2. So what about Social Security, Medicare, and withholding taxes?
            3. 15.4.4.3. Paying someone for a job well done
            4. 15.4.4.4. Figuring out the gross wages figure
            5. 15.4.4.5. Calculating that deductions stuff
            6. 15.4.4.6. Figuring out someone's net wages
            7. 15.4.4.7. Working with other taxes and deductions
            8. 15.4.4.8. Recording a payroll check
          5. 15.4.5. Depositing taxes
            1. 15.4.5.1. Depositing the employee withholding
            2. 15.4.5.2. Paying employer payroll taxes
          6. 15.4.6. Tax deposit tips
            1. 15.4.6.1. Tax deposit tip #1: Combine checks
            2. 15.4.6.2. Tax deposit tip #2: Combine employees
            3. 15.4.6.3. Tax deposit tip #3: Don't delay your deposit
            4. 15.4.6.4. Tax deposit tip #4: Consider using EFTPS
            5. 15.4.6.5. Tax deposit tip #5: Know the De Minimis rule
          7. 15.4.7. Filing quarterly payroll tax returns
          8. 15.4.8. Computing annual returns and wage statements
          9. 15.4.9. Doing the state payroll taxes thing
      2. 16. Managing Rentals
        1. 16.1. Describing a Rental Property
        2. 16.2. Describing Tenants
        3. 16.3. Recording Tenant Rent Payments
        4. 16.4. Recording Rental Expenses
        5. 16.5. Tracking Rental Property Profits
    9. V. The Part of Tens
      1. 17. (Slightly More Than) Ten Questions I'm Frequently Asked about Quicken
        1. 17.1. What Are Quicken's Best Features?
        2. 17.2. Does Quicken Work for a Corporation?
        3. 17.3. What Happens to Stockholders' Equity in Quicken?
        4. 17.4. Does Quicken Work for a Partnership?
        5. 17.5. Can I Use Quicken for More Than One Business?
        6. 17.6. What Kinds of Businesses Shouldn't Use Quicken?
        7. 17.7. Can I Use Quicken for Real Estate Investing?
        8. 17.8. Can I Use Quicken Retroactively?
        9. 17.9. Can I Do Payroll with Quicken?
        10. 17.10. Can I Prepare Invoices?
        11. 17.11. Can I Import Data from an Old Accounting System?
        12. 17.12. What Do You Think about Quicken?
      2. 18. (Almost) Ten Tips on How Not to Become a Millionaire
        1. 18.1. Ignore the Fact That You Can Build Wealth by Investing in Ownership Investments and Earning Average Returns
        2. 18.2. Ignore the Fact That You Can Get Much, and Maybe Most, of the Money from Tax Savings and Employer Matching
        3. 18.3. Don't Tap Your Computer's Power to Develop Wealth-Building Insights
        4. 18.4. Give Up, Because It's Too Late to Start Anyway
        5. 18.5. Get Entangled in at Least One "Get-Rich-Quick" Scheme
        6. 18.6. Fake It with False Affluence
        7. 18.7. Give In to the First Big Temptation of Wealth Building
        8. 18.8. Give In to the Second Big Temptation of Wealth Building
      3. 19. (Almost) Ten Troubleshooting Tips
        1. 19.1. Tactics #1 and #2: Use the Quicken Help File and This Book
        2. 19.2. Tactic #3: Visit the Quicken Product Support Web Site
        3. 19.3. Tactics #4 and #5: Check the Microsoft or the Hardware Vendor Product Support Web Site
        4. 19.4. Tactic #6: Contact Intuit Directly
        5. 19.5. Tactic #7: Try a Quicken Newsgroup
        6. 19.6. Tactic #8: Install and Use Antivirus Software
        7. 19.7. Tactic #9: When All Else Fails ...
    10. VI. Appendixes
      1. A. Quick-and-Dirty Windows Vista
        1. A.1. What Is Windows Vista?
        2. A.2. Starting Windows Vista
        3. A.3. Starting Programs
        4. A.4. Choosing Commands from Menus
          1. A.4.1. Choosing commands with the furry little rodent
          2. A.4.2. Choosing commands by using the Alt+key combinations
          3. A.4.3. Using shortcut-key combinations
          4. A.4.4. Disabled commands
          5. A.4.5. Using command icons
        5. A.5. Working with Dialog Boxes
          1. A.5.1. Text boxes
          2. A.5.2. Check boxes
          3. A.5.3. Tabs
          4. A.5.4. Option buttons
          5. A.5.5. Command buttons
          6. A.5.6. List boxes
        6. A.6. Stopping Quicken in Vista
        7. A.7. A Yelp for Help
          1. A.7.1. The Learn About Next Steps After Setup command
          2. A.7.2. The Quicken Help command
          3. A.7.3. The Current Window command
          4. A.7.4. The Product And Customer Support command
          5. A.7.5. The Quicken Live Community command
          6. A.7.6. The Quicken Support command
          7. A.7.7. The Submit Feedback On Quicken command
          8. A.7.8. The Join The Quicken Inner Circle command
          9. A.7.9. The About Quicken command
          10. A.7.10. The Privacy Statement command
          11. A.7.11. The Register Quicken command
          12. A.7.12. The Unlock Again command
          13. A.7.13. The Add Rental Property Tools command
        8. A.8. Quitting Vista
      2. B. Glossary of Business, Financial, and Computer Terms