How to Enter a Check in the Quicken 2013 or 2014 Register - dummies

How to Enter a Check in the Quicken 2013 or 2014 Register

By Stephen L. Nelson

Entering a check in the Quicken 2013 or 2014 register is a simple matter of describing to whom you wrote the check and how much you paid. Suppose, for example, that you paid $45.95 to the cable television company for your monthly cable service. Here’s how you enter this check:

  1. Enter the check date.

    Move the cursor to the Date field in the next empty row of the register (if it isn’t already there) and type the date by using the MM/DD format. To enter August 31, 2013, for example, type 8/31. You usually don’t have to type the year because Quicken retrieves the current year number from the little clock inside your computer.

    You can adjust the date in a Date field by using the + and – keys on your keyboard. The + key adds one day to the current date; the – key subtracts one day from the current date.

  2. Enter the check number.

    Move the cursor (or tab) to the Check Number field and type the check number. Alternatively, move the cursor to the Check Number field and then, when Quicken displays a list box of entries (such as ATM, Deposit, EFT, Next Check Number, Print Check, Send Online Payment, and Transfer Funds), select Next Check Number if you want.

    Quicken then fills in the number with its guess as to the new check number — one more than the preceding check number you entered. If this guess is right, you can just leave it in place. If it isn’t right, type over what Quicken guessed with the correct number or use the + or – key to increase or decrease the check number.

  3. Enter the payee.

    Move the cursor to the Payee field. Type the name of the person or business you’re paying. If the cable company’s name is Movies Galore, for example, type Movies Galore. (In the future, you can probably select payee names in the Payee list box.)

  4. Enter the check amount.

    Move the cursor to the Payment field and type the check amount — 45.95 in this example. You don’t have to type the dollar sign, but you do need to type the period to indicate the decimal place and cents.

  5. Enter the category.

    Move the cursor to the Category field. Quicken displays a drop-down list box of category names from your category list. You can select one of these categories by using the arrow keys or the mouse. Or, if you’re the independent type, just type the name yourself.

    For example, if you use the standard Quicken categories list, you may categorize a payment to your cable company as Bills & Utilities:Television. The first part of this entry, Bills & Utilities, is the category. The second part, Television, is the subcategory.

    If you go with the typing approach and you’re not a superfast typist, Quicken can probably guess which category you’re entering before you enter it. When you start typing Bi, for example, Quicken fills in the rest of the category name — lls & Utilities for you (Bi + lls & Utilities = Bills & Utilities). This feature is called QuickFill.

  6. (Optional) Tag that transaction.

    If you decided to use tags, you can also enter a tag in the Tag field. Just to make this a bit clearer, suppose that you’re using tags to segregate expenses by house because you actually own two homes: your principal residence and a cabin in the mountains.

    If you’ve set up two tags — principal and cabin — you record utilities expenses for your principal residence by entering utilities into the Category field and principal into the Tag field. You record utilities expenses for your cabin by entering utilities into the Category field and cabin into the Tag field.

  7. (Optional) Enter a memo description.

    If you’re using the Two-Line Display mode, move the cursor to the Memo field and describe the specific reason that you’re paying the check. You may identify the cable payment as the June payment, for example.

    If you’re using Quicken for a business, use this field to identify the paid invoice — usually by entering the invoice number you’re paying. You don’t have to enter anything in this field, by the way.

  8. Click the Enter button.

    Click the Enter button that appears in the transaction’s row of the register. This option tells Quicken that you want to record the transaction into your register. Quicken beeps in acknowledgment, calculates the new account balance, and moves the cursor to the next slot, or row, in the register.


The $41.79 in the Balance field is in red after the $45.95 check is recorded. This red number indicates that you’ve overdrawn your account.