Quicken/QuickBooks Alternative

Every few years I revisit this subject. What alternatives have you found? I’m primarily looking for a Mac app. iOS might be nice, but Mac for sure. I’m currently using MoneyDance. It’s okay, but I’m curious about other options you’re using.

Banktivity. Longtime happy customer.


I outsource my book keeping.

I have also been using MoneyDance for a lot of years.

I just went through major hassles with this. I’ve used Quicken, gave it up as it was a PITA on the Mac. I’ve been using Banktivity but it NEVER gets investment accounts transactions processed accurately. it always messes up share balances for mandatory minimum required distributions on IRA and 401K accounts. I’ve had bugs reported to them for over 2 years now that are still not fixed.

I just gave Quicken another try and the Mac version is so crippled that it’s not even worth it. This is the subscription version. On a whim I even tried the Windows version of Quicken but it’s a real PITA to keep it off the cloud and is both more than I need and not enough. Also has problems with lots of multiple investment accounts. It’s a hassle to use and a minor point but really irritating is that I can’t get enough of the font sizes changed so I can read the screen even with my extra computer glasses on. So I crane my head forward to see and that was painful within a few hours of working with it. I can increase the size of the register display but not the toolbar and sidebar.

I’ve looked at Moneydance, YNAB, GnuCash, another Linux open source one I can’t remember the name of, standard spreadsheets, iFinance.

With multiple investments at 3 major investment firms (never put all the nest eggs in a single basket) and 4 different businesses to keep track of I’ve yet to find ANYTHING that really works consistently.

There is IMO a market for a REALLY GOOD, COMPREHENSIVE financial management package for the Mac.

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I’ve been using Moneydance for 20 years. It’s impressively cross platform (I used it on Linux for a decade before switching to macOS), the developer has been very responsive when I’ve had issues (more common in the early years), upgrades are reasonably priced, it doesn’t try to push me to the cloud, and it lets me adjust the font size.

On the down side it’s a Java application that doesn’t feel very well integrated with macOS, it looks kind of dated, and the analysis tools aren’t what I’d hoped. Most of our investments are managed elsewhere so I can’t speak to that part of it.

I regularly look around for alternatives too but haven’t yet found anything that’s better than annoying. The font size thing is usually the killer for me.

Quickbooks for Mac is a PITA, too. I am a Quickbooks Online user and I often have trouble. Sometimes only deleting and reinstalling solves problems. Trouble here is that I have to use QB as it’s required by my CPA. I probably could get away with something simpler for my business, but my accountant has access to my data and runs reports for taxes, payroll, advice, etc.

Using QBO via Safari is even worse. Slow like molasses in January.

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Run QuickBooks/Windows in emulation. Much better than the Mac app.

GAWD, One. One thing to run in Parallels? Soon I may as well get a Dell.

But seriously, I may try that. I actually thought of it as I was typing my response to @OogieM. I already have several work related apps that require Windoze, so what’s one more…

This make me realize how much I love Coherence mode in Parallels!

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Quickbooks does not handle investment accounts at all. Non-starter for our personal situation.

My own experience with QBO was wonderful when I was managing a company that used it. I never had problems with it on the Mac or via Safari but that was 2 years ago. The times I had issues I had tech support stay with me for however long it took to fix the problem completely, even when it went over hours.

Sure. Buy a Dell, or buy Parallels for $70. Potato, potahto. :wink:

I actually don’t mind running parallels. Really, Coherence makes it a dream. Being able to use Mac commands to operate Windoze makes it easy and sharing files with Parallels is a lot easier than having both computers on my desk.

BTW, I don’t mind running Parallels -now-… it didn’t run well at all on my ‘15 MacBook Adorable. But given lots of memory and a faster CPU, it runs great on my iMac.

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This is what our local Apple retail store does. They’re all Mac everywhere, except for their book-keeping. Why oh why can’t a developer make a full featured Mac financial app? I keep thinking it will happen someday, but alas I’m guessing we will be having this same conversation 5-10 years from now. :face_with_raised_eyebrow::face_with_monocle:

5-10 years from now the migration to server-client service will be bigger than ever. Online versions of software like TurboTax are 6x bigger in sales for online than for boxed versions, and online offers cleaner implementation and other advantages (updates, piracy etc) for developers, and often businesses.

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I stopped looking for a software for personal finances. Each one is terrible. So I just look at my monthly bank statement and don’t worry too much if I spent +50 or -50 on whatever.

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Online also requires a persistent high bandwidth internet connection available all the time. Yes, I now have superior internet with fibre optic to the house and barn but neighbors don’t There are vast swaths of the US where there isn’t any data connectivity of any sort at all, not cell phone not internet nothing. And yes, some of the are places that have to run and document financial data. I can specifically think of one hunting lodge, off-grid, no cell service and they run a full lodge, restaurant etc. They need to have bookkeeping and financial data available to them.

I don’t mind if on-line is an option, but I cannot depend on on-line. The more critical or sensitive the data is the less I am willing to depend on a cloud service of any sort.

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We’re talking about personal finance apps here. We’re not taking video editing!

And even for apps that might require it the market where it would be used would have it (or it wouldn’t be rolled out, or successful). Cross-platform service-based apps for these types of apps is the irreversible trend

I run Quicken for Windows on a Parallels VM. No issues, works great, reliable. Most full-featured personal finance software available, and they’ve made many performance and reliability improvements in the last 2-3 years since splitting from Intuit.

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