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How to Use Quicken 2010 for Online Bank Account Access

To begin using either Quicken 2010's Online Account Access or the Online Bill Payment service, you have to sign up. If you want to use Online Account Access, you sign up with your bank. Just visit your bank’s Web site or call your local branch and ask someone whether the bank supports Online Account Access with Quicken.

You can also determine whether your bank supports Online Account Access on the Web. Just go to the Quicken Find Your Financial Institution page. If your bank doesn’t support Online Account Access, you can still sign up with Intuit for Online Bill Payment — check the Quicken Web site for details.

Do whatever the folks at the bank tell you to do to sign up. You’ll probably have to fill out an application, agree to pay some extra fees, and then wait a few days for a customer identification number and a PIN (personal identification number).

After the bank does its preparation and sends you its welcome letter, you can set up Quicken for Online Account Access. Set up Quicken to use Online Account Access or Online Bill Payment services:

  1. Click the account’s hyperlink on the Accounts bar.

  2. Click the Account Actions button and select Setup Online from the pop-up menu.

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    Quicken may display an Account Setup dialog box that asks which version of your bank’s online banking service you’re already set up to use. If you see this question, select the online banking service that corresponds with what you’ve set up. Then click Next.

  3. When Quicken displays the Quicken Account Setup dialog box that asks for your login information, supply your customer identification number and PIN.

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Paying bills with Quicken

You have a couple of ways to record online payments:

  • The Write Checks window: Write a check in the usual way. You enter the payee name, an amount, probably a category, and so on. Just make sure that you select the Online Payment check box. The Online Payment check box appears in the lower-right corner of the on-screen check form.

  • The register: If you’re more comfortable using the register to record payments, you can make online payments with that, too. In the Num column, just specify the payment number as Send.

After you record a payment, you send it to the bank:

  1. Choose Online→One Step Update.

    Quicken connects, through the Internet, to your bank’s computer.

  2. Enter the PIN when Quicken asks for it.

    As part of making this connection, you need to provide a PIN. When Quicken finishes sending your payment instructions to your bank, it displays a summary that basically says you’ve connected to the bank’s computer and sent it some payment instructions. At this point, you’re done.

You must send your payment instructions to the bank several days in advance of the time the bill needs to be paid because the bank needs a day or two to process the bill. And then the check probably has to go through the U.S. Postal Service.

Using Quicken to transfer money between accounts

As you may expect, you record Online Account Access transfers the same way that you record regular transfers — or, at least, in almost the same way. For online transfers, you can use the register in the normal way, but you need to specify that the transaction is an online transfer by selecting Online Transfer from the Num drop-down list.

If you have a credit card with a bank that supports Online Account Access, and if you also set up the credit card for Online Account Access, you can pay your credit card bill by transferring money from a bank account to your credit card account.

Updating your Quicken accounts

One major advantage of Online Account Access is that you can get the most up-to-date information regarding your accounts. When you use the Online menu’s One Step Update or Schedule Updates command, your bank automatically sends current transactions to your computer. If Quicken can match the bank’s records with your records, no problem. Everything is fine.

If Quicken can’t match the bank records with your records, however, it lists the mystery transactions on the Downloaded Transactions tab of the account register window. You then examine them before they go into your records. You can add downloaded transactions from the bank’s list to your register by clicking.

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