Personal Finance Software Slides

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					                                Personal Finance
                                        Software

                      Basic Software Features:
       Accounts and Bills:
           Tracking account balances
           Paying bills
           Creating budget
           Managing cash flow
       Investing
           tools and resources to help consumers research, monitor and optimize their investments
           Examples: integrated web sites (e.g. MSN Money) or partnerships (with brokers)
       Financial Planning resources
           Debt reduction planners
           Short-term plans
           Long-term plans
           Specific big purchase plans
       Taxes
           Help with tracking deductions
           Help with filing (e.g. can prepare w/software and file online)
       Reports and Charts
           Personalized charts (e.g. monthly expenses, net worth)



Software Packages Used by Class Members:

  Software Package                Rating                 Pros                       Cons
                                   Review by Zdnet.com and Cnet.com

                                                     Microsoft Money 2003              Intuit Quicken
A.   Service and Support                                       8                              6
B.   Interface and Ease of Use                                 9                              9
C.   Installation and Setup                                    8                              8
D.   Performance                                               8                              8
E.   Features                                                  8                              8

        A. Service and support
            Quicken has no evening or weekend support and phone support is $1.95/minute
            Money:
                     M-F, 5am-9pm PT
                     Sat, 5am-3pm, PT
                     Sun, 9am-3pm, PT

        B. Interface and ease of use
            Quicken interface changed substantially this year; better for new users
            Money’s suffers from information overload

        C. Installation and setup
            High marks for both BUT installation can always be an adventure.

        E. Features
            Money uploads bank data automatically, Quicken doesn’t
            Money’s investment tools are superior

     Comparison Conclusions
          New buyers: Buy Money because of better service unless you own a Mac, then Quicken is your
          only option.
          Upgrading: If you own Quicken, you may want to upgrade because of better interface and
          investment improvements. If you own Money, realize there have been no substantial changes
          since last year.

Pros of Using Software                                   Cons of Using Software
Easier 'Smart Reconcile'                                Nagged by ads for unwanted financial services
Proactive bill reminders                                Conflicts downloading with banks accounts
More powerful portfolio analysis                        Too many add-ons, don't need reading material
Track and optimize your 401k better                     on my screen
Avoidance of Mental Accounting                          Great amount of time spent inputting all the data
Allows Users to hotsync into various PDAS               and learning about the features
Software is more integrated with the web and            Cost
allows you to have easy access to financial              complicated for the basic home finance of
planning tips. Eg, equifax, autodealers, etc.            most users.
                                                         Incompatibility with Previous versions.
                                                         (money 2003 not compatible with money 99.)

				
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posted:8/9/2011
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