I have switched my personal finance software from Quicken 2007 to SEE Finance. For twelve years, I used the venerable Quicken 2007 to manage my personal finances; a lifetime for software these days. Later Quicken versions never matched the functionality of the 2007 version, which has consequently remained extremely popular.
But software platforms constantly change, and Intuit recently announced the functional death of Quicken 2007 in two ways: one that can be worked around, and one that really can’t. First, Intuit pointed out that the 32-bit software will not run on future 64-bit versions of macOS. If you don’t upgrade macOS (or keep a machine to run Mohave or an older version) Quicken 2007 can still be used. But the game changer for me is Intuit’s announcement that “Due to a security and reliability update from the service provider, the ability to download transactions will no longer work in Quicken 2007, regardless of your macOS version”.
It’s unclear exactly what “update” Intuit is referring to. Regardless, there was no way I was going back to the days when I had to manually enter security prices, and bank and credit card transactions.
So I needed new personal finance software.
My search for personal finance software
I spent a few days reading reviews and comparing features of current personal finance software. My must-have features included:
- Runs on an Apple Macintosh and looks like a Mac app
- Can import my historic Quicken 2007 data (~50,000 transactions!)
- Downloads bank and credit card transactions from the financial institutions I use
- Updates security prices
- Allows customization of the information shown in account registers
- Includes memorized repeated transactions
- Provides adequate financial reports
- Allows me to choose where I store my data, so I can access it anywhere from my desktop or laptop Macs
- Rock solid reliability
- As responsive as Quicken 2007
One feature I didn’t need is built-in online bill paying. I use my bank’s service, or the online payment scheduling that most businesses offer today.
Hello SEE Finance!
SEE Finance 2 imported all my Quicken 2007 transactions flawlessly, even highlighting a few discrepancies I’d overlooked over the years. The OFX (think Microsoft Money) one-step update of prices and account transactions works better for me, and for more accounts than Quicken 2007 ever did. Online account updating is outstanding: one-click updates all security prices and brings in new transactions from all linked brokerage, bank, and credit card accounts.
I have bank accounts, credit cards, investment accounts, mutual funds, individual investments, and some assets — all handled without problems. It took me a little while to understand how SEE Finance reconciles accounts, but I now find the process intuitive. The program is very fast and has been rock solid. And I am rapidly adjusting to the new interface after all these years of muscle memory Quicken 2007 data entry.
The program handles multiple currencies and budgeting, which might be great features for some, but I don’t need them. The developer also offers an IOS version for $4.99 (!), but it only works if your data is stored in iCloud. My free iCloud storage is fairly full, so I prefer to use my paid Dropbox account to store my 200MB data file plus the backups SEE Finance makes.
I think the only thing I will probably miss is Quicken 2007’s extensive reporting capabilities. I haven’t fully explored the reporting in SEE Finance yet, but it looks adequate for my needs, though there may be some minor gaps.
Currently, you can buy SEE Finance 2 for $39.99 US “for a limited time”. Unlike the current Quicken for Mac, no subscription is needed.
I have no connection with the developer, Scimonoce Software; I’m just, so far, a happy customer!