Usage tips

We have MS Money Plus and have just begun using it. My wife and I input our 
information and uploaded our bank account info and credit card info.  So now 
I'm wondering where to go from here. We only have one months worth of info in 
Money thus far. How do others use Money?

Should we continue to bring in monthly bank and CC info to create a budget? 
Or, s we purchase something on a CC (for example) do we manually enter this 
and somehow balance it with the CC statement we import later?

Looking for tips on most effective way to get the most out of Money.
0
thaKing (5)
6/1/2009 1:28:01 PM
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Suggest that you go and have a look at the two unofficial FAQs in my 
signature.

-- 
Regards
Bob Peel,
Microsoft MVP - Money

For unofficial FAQs see
http://money.mvps.org/
or
http://umpmfaq.info/

I do not respond to any emails that I have not specifically asked for.


"thaKing" <thaKing@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message 
news:C950BA6B-3FE7-44E4-B315-E97EAEB4FCFA@microsoft.com...
> We have MS Money Plus and have just begun using it. My wife and I input 
> our
> information and uploaded our bank account info and credit card info.  So 
> now
> I'm wondering where to go from here. We only have one months worth of info 
> in
> Money thus far. How do others use Money?
>
> Should we continue to bring in monthly bank and CC info to create a 
> budget?
> Or, s we purchase something on a CC (for example) do we manually enter 
> this
> and somehow balance it with the CC statement we import later?
>
> Looking for tips on most effective way to get the most out of Money. 

0
Bob_Peel (292)
6/1/2009 2:35:11 PM
I'll look those over, but at first glance it tells you how to actually use 
Money. and what i mean is, i'm looking for practical uses. "How do you use 
it?" Do people generally use it to get accounts automatically updated just to 
run reports to see where their money is going? Or, is it a better tool to use 
it for a purchase log where you then reconcile transactions? Or is there an 
even better way to utilize Money?

"Bob Peel,MVP" wrote:

> Suggest that you go and have a look at the two unofficial FAQs in my 
> signature.
> 
> -- 
> Regards
> Bob Peel,
> Microsoft MVP - Money
> 
> For unofficial FAQs see
> http://money.mvps.org/
> or
> http://umpmfaq.info/
> 
> I do not respond to any emails that I have not specifically asked for.
> 
> 
> "thaKing" <thaKing@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message 
> news:C950BA6B-3FE7-44E4-B315-E97EAEB4FCFA@microsoft.com...
> > We have MS Money Plus and have just begun using it. My wife and I input 
> > our
> > information and uploaded our bank account info and credit card info.  So 
> > now
> > I'm wondering where to go from here. We only have one months worth of info 
> > in
> > Money thus far. How do others use Money?
> >
> > Should we continue to bring in monthly bank and CC info to create a 
> > budget?
> > Or, s we purchase something on a CC (for example) do we manually enter 
> > this
> > and somehow balance it with the CC statement we import later?
> >
> > Looking for tips on most effective way to get the most out of Money. 
> 
0
thaKing (5)
6/1/2009 6:51:01 PM
thaKing wrote:
> I'll look those over, but at first glance it tells you how to actually use 
> Money. and what i mean is, i'm looking for practical uses. "How do you use 
> it?" Do people generally use it to get accounts automatically updated just to 
> run reports to see where their money is going? Or, is it a better tool to use 
> it for a purchase log where you then reconcile transactions? Or is there an 
> even better way to utilize Money?
> 

I've been using Money since the late 90s (97 or 98). That means I'm somewhat 
of a 'new user' compared to a few others on here. Started with just one bank 
checking account, and gradually added bank savings accounts, investment 
accounts, 401Ks, all credit cards and finally assets (house, vehicles, etc.).

Across all those years of cumulative usage, without question the #1 
utilization for me is the ability to initiate electronic bill payments.

In case you're not familiar with this, I mean the ability of Money to sent a 
bill payment instruction to my bank, and my bank sends the payment 
electronically to the payee.  No stamps, no check writing, and no fees (for 
the bank I use), the transaction is entered into the Money register.

Some payees acknowledge the payment the next business day.  The slow pokes 
acknowledge it up to two or thee business days later.  In Money this is called 
"online services" and your bank has to both participate, and have the bill 
payment feature as part of their online services offerings.

This list tells if your bank offers online services, and sometimes lists if 
Bill pay is available: http://www.microsoft.com/money/onlinebanks.

If it says "* This service is provided by a third party provider, not your 
financial institution." then search on here for Yodlee, it's a variation on 
what I'm talking about, and probably doesn't include the bill payment 
initiation I'm talking about.

BTW, I like this feature so much that if my bank stopped offering it, I 
wouldn't hesitate to take my banking business elsewhere.
0
Retired
6/1/2009 9:52:06 PM
thaKing | 2009-06-01 | 8:28:01 AM wrote:

>We have MS Money Plus and have just begun using it. My wife and I
>input our information and uploaded our bank account info and credit
>card info.  So now I'm wondering where to go from here. We only have
>one months worth of info in Money thus far. How do others use Money?
>
>Should we continue to bring in monthly bank and CC info to create a
>budget?  Or, s we purchase something on a CC (for example) do we
>manually enter this and somehow balance it with the CC statement we
>import later?
>
>Looking for tips on most effective way to get the most out of Money.

Reasons to use Money
--------------------
 * I can quickly search old transactions to find the date I bought
something.
 * At the end of the year, I just run three reports and send the data
to my CPA. He does my taxes from there with no more input from me.
 * I have the Small Business version of Money, and I use it to generate
invoices and keep track of payments.
 * If I had a rental property, I could track that easily.
 * You can pay bills automatically if your bank supports it, or you
sign up with a bill pay service.

Ways to use Money
-----------------
 * Many (most?) people just download their transactions from the bank
and stop there. That makes Money just an electronic checkbook register.
I find that limiting.
 * I enter transactions as I make them, then download the bank's
records and match them. This way I catch errors in a day or two, not
after a month goes by.
 * Some people track investments carefully. Money helps with this.

-- 
Steve Bell
New Life Home Improvement
Arlington, TX USA
0
6/2/2009 3:04:10 AM
Thanks Retired Coal Miner and SteveBell...

I've really thought about entering purchases as they occur, but just haven't 
done that yet...Maybe we should just to catch errors more easily...

I will check to see if our bank allows online bill pay via Money...but two 
things: 1) we have been for years paying our bills online. We pay the cable 
company online through their website, electric, phones, etc...I guess by 
doing it through Money keeps a more accurate log of transactions..2) We have 
a couple accounts with the same bank...we downloaded our info through Money, 
no problems...then we found a charge on our accounts for $5 each for 
electronic transactions w/ Money!! I wasn't happy about that at all...so I 
don't know if our bank will allow the bill pay feature free of charge or 
not...

Thanks for the feedback guys!

"SteveBell" wrote:
> 
> Reasons to use Money
> --------------------
>  * I can quickly search old transactions to find the date I bought
> something.
>  * At the end of the year, I just run three reports and send the data
> to my CPA. He does my taxes from there with no more input from me.
>  * I have the Small Business version of Money, and I use it to generate
> invoices and keep track of payments.
>  * If I had a rental property, I could track that easily.
>  * You can pay bills automatically if your bank supports it, or you
> sign up with a bill pay service.
> 
> Ways to use Money
> -----------------
>  * Many (most?) people just download their transactions from the bank
> and stop there. That makes Money just an electronic checkbook register.
> I find that limiting.
>  * I enter transactions as I make them, then download the bank's
> records and match them. This way I catch errors in a day or two, not
> after a month goes by.
>  * Some people track investments carefully. Money helps with this.
> 
> -- 
> Steve Bell
> New Life Home Improvement
> Arlington, TX USA
> 
0
thaKing (5)
6/2/2009 12:07:01 PM
thaKing | 2009-06-02 | 7:07:01 AM wrote:

>"SteveBell" wrote:
>> 
>> Reasons to use Money
>> --------------------
>>  * I can quickly search old transactions to find the date I bought
>> something.
>>  * At the end of the year, I just run three reports and send the
>>data  to my CPA. He does my taxes from there with no more input
>>from me.    * I have the Small Business version of Money, and I use
>>it to generate  invoices and keep track of payments.
>>  * If I had a rental property, I could track that easily.
>>  * You can pay bills automatically if your bank supports it, or you
>> sign up with a bill pay service.
>> 
>> Ways to use Money
>> -----------------
>>  * Many (most?) people just download their transactions from the
>>bank  and stop there. That makes Money just an electronic checkbook
>>register.   I find that limiting.
>>  * I enter transactions as I make them, then download the bank's
>> records and match them. This way I catch errors in a day or two,
>>not  after a month goes by.
>>  * Some people track investments carefully. Money helps with this.
>Thanks Retired Coal Miner and SteveBell...
>
>I've really thought about entering purchases as they occur, but just
>haven't done that yet...Maybe we should just to catch errors more
>easily...
>
>I will check to see if our bank allows online bill pay via
>Money...but two things: 1) we have been for years paying our bills
>online. We pay the cable company online through their website,
>electric, phones, etc...I guess by doing it through Money keeps a
>more accurate log of transactions..

You can record regular payments in the BillPay section of Money, then
run reports to see your projected cash flow and account balances. You
can also do budgeting, if you don't mind some oddities.

>2) We have a couple accounts with
>the same bank...we downloaded our info through Money, no
>problems...then we found a charge on our accounts for $5 each for
>electronic transactions w/ Money!! I wasn't happy about that at
>all...so I don't know if our bank will allow the bill pay feature
>free of charge or not...

If they charge for Money access, count on a charge for billpay.

See if they have a place to download statements (which you then
manually import to Money). Lots of banks offer that for free even if
they charge for automated access.

-- 
Steve Bell
New Life Home Improvement
Arlington, TX USA
0
6/2/2009 1:11:21 PM
I'll take a look at the BillPay section - thanks...I figured if they charged 
for one they'd charge for others...I'll probably stick with our current 
payment structure then...we do have one account we have combined since we've 
gotten married and they only way to get the data into Money is downloading 
and importing...hopefully the other institution (the one that charges) has a 
similar feature...

"SteveBell" wrote:
> 
> You can record regular payments in the BillPay section of Money, then
> run reports to see your projected cash flow and account balances. You
> can also do budgeting, if you don't mind some oddities.
> 
> 
> If they charge for Money access, count on a charge for billpay.
> 
> See if they have a place to download statements (which you then
> manually import to Money). Lots of banks offer that for free even if
> they charge for automated access.
> 
> -- 
> Steve Bell
> New Life Home Improvement
> Arlington, TX USA
> 
0
thaKing (5)
6/2/2009 2:17:01 PM
thaKing wrote:
> Thanks Retired Coal Miner and SteveBell...
> 
> I've really thought about entering purchases as they occur, but just haven't 
> done that yet...Maybe we should just to catch errors more easily...
> 
> I will check to see if our bank allows online bill pay via Money...but two 
> things: 1) we have been for years paying our bills online. We pay the cable 
> company online through their website, electric, phones, etc...I guess by 
> doing it through Money keeps a more accurate log of transactions..2) We have 
> a couple accounts with the same bank...we downloaded our info through Money, 
> no problems...then we found a charge on our accounts for $5 each for 
> electronic transactions w/ Money!! I wasn't happy about that at all...so I 
> don't know if our bank will allow the bill pay feature free of charge or 
> not...
> 
> Thanks for the feedback guys!
> 
For your point #1, it sounds like you are having the cable company withdraw 
their payment from your bank.  That is a 'pull', you are authorizing the payee 
to pull the payment from your bank account.  The payments you initiate in 
Money are pushes, your are giving the bank instructions to 'push' the payment 
to the payee, just like you writing a check, (only you tell the bank the name 
of the payee, his address, the amount, and the date to send the payment).  I 
used to do the pulls years ago, until I say how Money works with a bank to do 
a push.

If you already download your account transactions from your bank into Money, 
then the bill payment, combined with setting up Scheduled Deposits & Bills is 
a very nice feature.  Money reminds you when a bill or deposit is due, and 
when you sent the bill payment to the bank, you are also entering a 
transaction in Money into the account where the payment is taken from. When 
the payment clears the bank, the bank downloads a transaction for that payment 
(this is the part you said you're already doing) and Money matches it up with 
the one entered when you send the bill payment a few days earlier.

For your point #2, as I said above, if my bank charged me for this service I'd 
move at least one checking account to another bank that does not see this as a 
source of income generated via fees.

Banks are essentially places where you park your money. In return they offer 
you an array of services in different categories, high interest paid out, long 
evening and weekend hours, many convenient locations, no cost for safe deposit 
boxes, no fees for using MS Money or Quicken access, etc.  Not all banks offer 
the best of every category, and in my case location and no fees for MS Money 
access are the two top items on my list.

There's no need to be married to a bank for the long term these days, go with 
the one that offers you the best deal for your specific needs.
0
Retired
6/3/2009 2:06:51 AM
thaKing wrote:
> Thanks Retired Coal Miner and SteveBell...
> 
> I've really thought about entering purchases as they occur, but just haven't 
> done that yet...Maybe we should just to catch errors more easily...
> 
> I will check to see if our bank allows online bill pay via Money...but two 
> things: 1) we have been for years paying our bills online. We pay the cable 
> company online through their website, electric, phones, etc...I guess by 
> doing it through Money keeps a more accurate log of transactions..2) We have 
> a couple accounts with the same bank...we downloaded our info through Money, 
> no problems...then we found a charge on our accounts for $5 each for 
> electronic transactions w/ Money!! I wasn't happy about that at all...so I 
> don't know if our bank will allow the bill pay feature free of charge or 
> not...
> 
> Thanks for the feedback guys!
> 
>
Forgot to mention this insight. In my experience, asking a bank if they offer 
bill pay via Money, or even online access using Money, is a hit or miss 
proposition. The people you talk to give you the wrong answer about half the time.

The right way to do this is go to 'Manage Online Services' in Money, and Money 
  will look up what services your bank offers.  There will be a 'Check for 
online services', or 'setup online services' button.  If your bank does bill 
pay, it will have 'online bill payment' listed under the services listing, 
usually in addition to 'Online Updates'. The other possibilities in the 
Services list is None, File Imports, and Online Updates.

The only real question you should ask bank is do they charge for the any of 
the online features. And maybe ask a second time the next day to see if you 
get the same answer.
0
Retired
6/3/2009 2:19:58 AM
"thaKing" <thaKing@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:E8592F63-CF1A-4235-9D46-ED9C236D279F@microsoft.com...
> I'll look those over, but at first glance it tells you how to actually use
> Money. and what i mean is, i'm looking for practical uses. "How do you use
> it?" Do people generally use it to get accounts automatically updated just
> to
> run reports to see where their money is going? Or, is it a better tool to
> use
> it for a purchase log where you then reconcile transactions? Or is there
> an
> even better way to utilize Money?

Yes, even better way.

Started using Quicken early 1980s, switched to Money when it first came out.
Our data goes back to 1/1/1980.  Like RCMiner our use of Money expanded over
the years from a simple electronic check register to include all of Money's
significant features.  Every penny of our finances has been tracked since
the mid 1980s.

Main reason, in my opinion, only reason to use Money or any personal
accounting software is to educate yourself completely regarding your
finances.  Stuff like Bill Pay or easy reconcilliation of accts is nice but
far more importantly Money allows you to know everything about your
financial status if used effectively.

The most important features of Money are 1) Bills/Deposits, 2) Budget, 3)
Cash Flow and 4) Reports.  Lifetime Planner may work, don't know.  I don't
need LP since I already know exactly where we stand based on the 4 items I
listed.  To get a complete picture of your finances you must track
everything - all income, all expense, all assets, all liabilities.  I have
well over 100 separate Money accounts, about half are banks/brokers, the
rest are asset accounts that track stuff - cars, guns, telescopes, tools,
house, appliances, furniture, cameras, etc.  Many of the bank/broker
accounts are now closed.  I switch banks/brokers frequently to get the best
deals.

Money taught me quickly never to borrow money.  We have no debts, paid off
house long ago and never borrow to buy anything.  Save then buy, not buy
then pay.  Another lesson is to continually confront yourself with your bad
money habits.  Do this by creating a very comprehensive list of categories
and categorize every single penny you spend (and make).  Delete all of
Money's built in categories - they are totally useless.  You must create
categories that fit your current financial behavior and life situation.  Our
category list is very long.  Most of those categories are no longer used, we
are retired now, the kids are on their own so life is simpler financially.
You can always rearrange, rename and add new categories to make your list
better.  The idea is to expose imprudent, excessive expense and detail all
necessary expense so you know how much descretionary income is available and
where you can exercise some control.  For example if you smoke, make a
cigarette category and meticulously record all cig expenses.  Prepare and
run an income/expense report frequently and keep looking at the Cig category
as it grows ominously.  :)

Once your categories are set up, the main function of Money is budgeting,
planning, reporting.  A comprehensive income/expense report will show you
where your money comes from and where it goes.  You need a current year
report to watch your current situation and a multi-year report to plan and
budget.  I use a 5 year income/expense report to budget from.  You can
quickly run down the report and very accurately predict what most of your
income and expenses will look like in the coming year based on this history.

The single most important feature in Money is Bills/Deposits.  This list
should include every material item of income and expense.  Items that cannot
be known exactly should be estimated as best you can - you can update the
estimates over time as more accurate info becomes available.  Bills/Deposits
forms the basis of your Budget and CashFlow reports.  The Budget and
CashFlow features in Money are invaluable - they give you the core info you
need to manage your day to day finances with absolute confidence.

I highly recommend using Asset accounts.  Your net worth and income/expense
reports will be wrong if you don't.  When you buy a couch for your living
room that is not Furniture expense.  You have converted cash into an asset -
a couch - that is worth exactly what you paid for it.  The correct way to
record the transaction is to enter a transfer from a cash account (checking
account or credit card account) to an asset account (I call ours, Home
Contents).  Eventually I write off the asset account and charge it to
Depreciation Expense - usually when we buy a new couch but you can write off
the depreciation any way you like, say equally over a 10 year expected life.
By using Asset accounts you have a list of all your assets which is very
helpful for many reasons and your Net Worth is easy to see just by looking
at your list of Accounts in Money.  My Account List is my startup page.
Just another example.  I have a lot of money in guns (main hobby is
competitive target shooting).  All of my gun stuff is recorded in asset
accounts.  When I croak, my wife/kids can easily see what I have (record
good descriptions in memo space including serial numbers, what it cost, when
I bought it, whether I have recorded appreciation or depreciation, etc.
These asset accounts make it much easier to do income tax returns,
inheritance tax returns, deal with insurance issues, etc etc.

Use Money's Budget and Cashflow features.  Every January my wife and I
update our budget for the coming year.  The Cash Flow report will show you
exactly, to the penny, how much money you will have available in any given
account during the coming weeks and months assuming your Bills/Deposits list
is complete.  I use the CashFlow feature almost every day to make sure our
checking account will have enough money to cover upcoming bills and that the
balance will stay above the minimum to avoid service charges.  We transfer
money from savings accts to the checking acct as needed to cover expenses.
You can view cash flow from 2 or more accounts at the same time.  This lets
me know if we have or will have the cash available to buy something.  Say we
want to buy a car sometime this year.  The CashFlow report will show me
whether we already have or will have the money.

As to paying bills, I recommend the pull method, not push.  BillPay at banks
is neat but near useless to me because it requires work on my part and some
banks charge for it.  I make my creditors debit my credit card or checking
acct to pay themselves.  This is always free and requres zero work on my
part and, most importantly, transfers the risk of late payment or missed
payment to the creditor.  If they screw up, its their problem, not mine and
I never have to worry about remembering to initiate a BillPay or checking to
make sure it happened on time.  I have heard some folks say don't want to
authorize auto debits to checking or credit cards but that is nuts.  You are
never responsible for unauthorized or mistaken charges and you can cancel
auto debits instantly with a telephone call to your creditor.  I have never
had a single problem with this arrangement in well over 20 years and the
vast majority of our bills are paid this way.  You can also pay creditors
for free using their own websites but this requires work on your part.  Make
them auto debit your credit card (preferrable) or checking account and let
them do the work.  All you have to do is download the transactions.

I also agree with RTMiner about bank fees.  I never pay any fees and would
instantly switch banks if any bank ever charged me anything whatsoever.  I
now use Everbank.  Free checking but you must maintain a minium balance of
5000 to get free online bill pay (5,000 is too much money to keep in
checking for me so I would not use online bill pay just for that reason).

Regards


Bill Wood



0
w.wood (230)
6/3/2009 10:34:41 AM
I really appreciate the follow-ups. RCMiner - I use the pull because I 
actually have all my bills (cable, electric, etc) pull from my AMEX. I get 
free airline tix because of this. Then I pay off the AMEX every single month. 
I prefer it that way and is easier for me, but I like the insight you've 
provided. Plus, if I have Money pay my bills, wouldn't the computer need to 
be ON for Money to pay the bills? The computer that has Money installed is 
not on all the time, so what if I miss a deadline for a bill cause the 
computer is off?

Bill Wood - Wow! What a reply, very insightful...I really like your Asset 
option, makes perfect sense. I've got a lot to do within Money then to get it 
where I need it to be.

Thanks again for taking the time to post your replies, much appreciated.

"Retired Coal Miner" wrote:
> For your point #1, it sounds like you are having the cable company withdraw 
> their payment from your bank.  That is a 'pull', you are authorizing the payee 
> to pull the payment from your bank account.  The payments you initiate in 
> Money are pushes, your are giving the bank instructions to 'push' the payment 
> to the payee, just like you writing a check, (only you tell the bank the name 
> of the payee, his address, the amount, and the date to send the payment).  I 
> used to do the pulls years ago, until I say how Money works with a bank to do 
> a push.
> 
> If you already download your account transactions from your bank into Money, 
> then the bill payment, combined with setting up Scheduled Deposits & Bills is 
> a very nice feature.  Money reminds you when a bill or deposit is due, and 
> when you sent the bill payment to the bank, you are also entering a 
> transaction in Money into the account where the payment is taken from. When 
> the payment clears the bank, the bank downloads a transaction for that payment 
> (this is the part you said you're already doing) and Money matches it up with 
> the one entered when you send the bill payment a few days earlier.
> 
> For your point #2, as I said above, if my bank charged me for this service I'd 
> move at least one checking account to another bank that does not see this as a 
> source of income generated via fees.
> 
> Banks are essentially places where you park your money. In return they offer 
> you an array of services in different categories, high interest paid out, long 
> evening and weekend hours, many convenient locations, no cost for safe deposit 
> boxes, no fees for using MS Money or Quicken access, etc.  Not all banks offer 
> the best of every category, and in my case location and no fees for MS Money 
> access are the two top items on my list.
> 
> There's no need to be married to a bank for the long term these days, go with 
> the one that offers you the best deal for your specific needs.
> 
0
thaKing (5)
6/4/2009 5:13:03 PM
ThaKing,

Yes, indeed....Pull to a credit card is the only way to go.  I use cash back
cards.  We have collected well over $7,000 of cash back rewards over the
years using our credit cards to auto pay bills.  Like you, we always pay the
cards off in full every month - also by pull, the credit card company auto 
debits our checking account, on the due date.  This is very good since I 
never pay the credit card early and can keep my money in an interest bearing 
money market account until the last day.  I simply schedule a transfer of 
money from my money mkt acct to the checking acct the day the credit card is 
due thereby maximizing our interest collection.

And yes, the computer must be on for Money to push bills.  But having the
computer off is only one of many ways your Bill Pay could fail.  Having the
creditor bear this sort of risk and bother instead of me is nice and having
the credit card company pay us a fee to pay bills is even nicer.  :)

Bill Wood


"thaKing" <thaKing@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:7A8C7028-7B7F-4518-92F2-F6BA712F61A8@microsoft.com...
>I really appreciate the follow-ups. RCMiner - I use the pull because I
> actually have all my bills (cable, electric, etc) pull from my AMEX. I get
> free airline tix because of this. Then I pay off the AMEX every single
> month.
> I prefer it that way and is easier for me, but I like the insight you've
> provided. Plus, if I have Money pay my bills, wouldn't the computer need
> to
> be ON for Money to pay the bills? The computer that has Money installed is
> not on all the time, so what if I miss a deadline for a bill cause the
> computer is off?
>
> Bill Wood - Wow! What a reply, very insightful...I really like your Asset
> option, makes perfect sense. I've got a lot to do within Money then to get
> it
> where I need it to be.
>
> Thanks again for taking the time to post your replies, much appreciated.
>
> "Retired Coal Miner" wrote:
>> For your point #1, it sounds like you are having the cable company
>> withdraw
>> their payment from your bank.  That is a 'pull', you are authorizing the
>> payee
>> to pull the payment from your bank account.  The payments you initiate in
>> Money are pushes, your are giving the bank instructions to 'push' the
>> payment
>> to the payee, just like you writing a check, (only you tell the bank the
>> name
>> of the payee, his address, the amount, and the date to send the payment).
>> I
>> used to do the pulls years ago, until I say how Money works with a bank
>> to do
>> a push.
>>
>> If you already download your account transactions from your bank into
>> Money,
>> then the bill payment, combined with setting up Scheduled Deposits &
>> Bills is
>> a very nice feature.  Money reminds you when a bill or deposit is due,
>> and
>> when you sent the bill payment to the bank, you are also entering a
>> transaction in Money into the account where the payment is taken from.
>> When
>> the payment clears the bank, the bank downloads a transaction for that
>> payment
>> (this is the part you said you're already doing) and Money matches it up
>> with
>> the one entered when you send the bill payment a few days earlier.
>>
>> For your point #2, as I said above, if my bank charged me for this
>> service I'd
>> move at least one checking account to another bank that does not see this
>> as a
>> source of income generated via fees.
>>
>> Banks are essentially places where you park your money. In return they
>> offer
>> you an array of services in different categories, high interest paid out,
>> long
>> evening and weekend hours, many convenient locations, no cost for safe
>> deposit
>> boxes, no fees for using MS Money or Quicken access, etc.  Not all banks
>> offer
>> the best of every category, and in my case location and no fees for MS
>> Money
>> access are the two top items on my list.
>>
>> There's no need to be married to a bank for the long term these days, go
>> with
>> the one that offers you the best deal for your specific needs.
>>



0
w.wood (230)
6/4/2009 7:27:32 PM
thaKing wrote:
> I really appreciate the follow-ups. RCMiner - I use the pull because I 
> actually have all my bills (cable, electric, etc) pull from my AMEX. I get 
> free airline tix because of this. Then I pay off the AMEX every single month. 
> I prefer it that way and is easier for me, but I like the insight you've 
> provided. Plus, if I have Money pay my bills, wouldn't the computer need to 
> be ON for Money to pay the bills? The computer that has Money installed is 
> not on all the time, so what if I miss a deadline for a bill cause the 
> computer is off?
> 
> Bill Wood - Wow! What a reply, very insightful...I really like your Asset 
> option, makes perfect sense. I've got a lot to do within Money then to get it 
> where I need it to be.
> 
> Thanks again for taking the time to post your replies, much appreciated.
> 

tK,
 > if I have Money pay my bills, wouldn't the computer need to
 > be ON for Money to pay the bills?
No. Bills are not paid the instant you send the paymnt instruction,  the bank 
queues them up. Money sends the bill payment instructions to the bank today, 
and in those payment instructions is a 'pay on date'. If the transaction goes 
out today, and in it you said for example you want the bill paid three days 
from today. A banks payment system knows how many days ahead of time to send a 
payment so it reaches the payee 'three days from today'.

 > The computer that has Money installed is not on all the time,
 > so what if I miss a deadline for a bill cause the computer is off?
You have to factor in some common sense, as you would if you mailed a paper 
check to pay a bill. When Money establishes that your bank is a valid bill 
payment provider, the bank tells Money how far ahead of time it requires bill 
payment instructions. Example, my bank used to allow payments to go out the 
same day I submitted them (and some payees would acknowledge the payment the 
next day, next morning even), but the bank changed that to +1 day, I can only 
submit payments that are paid tomorrow, or beyond, but never today.  Some 
banks require three days, some two, etc.

When you setup the recurring bills in Bills and Deposits, if the bill is setup 
as an electronic payment, Money takes into account the lead time for the 
bank's electronic payment when Money warns you a bill is due. And of course 
you don't want to pay a bill until you know the exact amount due this month, 
so by the time the money reminder comes up, you should have received your 
monthly bill. I setup the due dates on monthly bills before the due date, in 
fact I use the date I expect the paper bill to arrive in the mail each month, 
not the date the payment is due. If a reminder ever comes up, it's a flag to 
find out why I didn't get the bill yet.

Money also does recurring bill payments (banks have to support this feature). 
You send one transaction to a bank, and it tells the bank to send the same 
amount every month for the next 12 (or whatever) months on a chosen day of the 
month. Money makes the entries in the register when you reach the payment date 
for the next 12 payments. It's all pretty smooth when setup this way.

You can start with your AMEX bill for payment this way. In fact, AMEX supports 
account syncing for their charge cards. So you can get a register transaction 
from AMEX whenever any of the pull payees charge your account for one of your 
monthly bills.
0
Retired
6/4/2009 7:53:25 PM
Reply:

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