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VINE VOICEon November 17, 2012
I've been a Quicken user for a long time and one thing I always do is obtain the official guide to see what the new Quicken edition offers and whether it is actually worth upgrading. I've put off updating since prior years didn't seem to offer that many changes (2009 edition). I am upgrading for the new edition thanks to the excellent information in this book. Bobbi Sandberg has taken over from Maria Langer as the author for the last several years. As a computer geek, I have read some of Bobbi's books before. She is a very thorough author who explains things in plain English and offers many tips, tricks and suggestions for how you can adapt the software to your needs. I have often seen many complaints about software from people who don't take the time to learn how to use it. I know people are in a time crunch and a book like this may seem overwhelming. This book is over 600 pages, don't let this put you off or scare you away. It is organized into easy to read sections that start with the basics and gradually move to more advanced topics. You can simply read what interests you and skip what doesn't. There is excellent information for everyone from beginners to advanced users. A lot of problems some may have with the software could be avoided with a quick reference from this book. While Ms. Langer used a bit more formality on the sidebars, Ms. Sandberg uses the excellent "In My Experience" to share her insight (she has used and taught Quicken since the beginning) the tips are worth the time taken to read them. What can you expect to learn? The difference between a Data File and an account (a common mistake for some Quicken users), the difference between an automatic backup and a manual one (besides the obvious, if you have saved attachments in Data file they ARE NOT SAVED in an automatic backup!), complete coverage of preferences, toolbars, menus, options and how to customize to your liking and customize to earlier editions, exploration of the new Quicken Mobile app, and solid advice for taking control of your finances. This book covers the Deluxe and Premiere editions of Quicken.

Part One covers Learning Quicken Basics (installing the software, setting up your first accounts and getting up and running including Quicken Mobile)

Part Two covers Banking (recording bank and credit card transactions, using online banking features, automating tasks, reconciling accounts)

Part Three covers Managing your Investment Accounts (including stocks, bonds, 401k, research tools, etc)

Part Four covers Tracking Your Financial Position (monitoring assets, loans and tracking net worth)

Part Five covers Forecasting Your Financial Future (financial calculators, reducing debt and saving money and planning for tax time)

Part Six covers the Appendixes (managing the Quicken files and customizing Quicken)

Ms Sandberg is a welcome change bringing her vast experience and knowledge to Quicken users. Everything is explained in plain English and there are many screen shots of graphs, charts and program shots. You will not go wrong taking some time to familiarize yourself with the program, new features and changes. While Quicken does have an extensive Help system, I still prefer a good computer book by a great author that really helps me not just use the program, but make it really work for me.
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on February 19, 2013
I am new to Quicken so felt I needed some guidance to help me get it properly set up. This is a book of over 660 pages, possibly containing everything you might ever want to know about Quicken. The challenge is finding what you want without having to wade through multiple sections, each containing snipets of information on the topic you are researching. So many times a topic would be covered in some detail followed by a comment that it would be covered in more detail in a later chapter. Very frustrating and annoying.
A number of topics were never covered in the detail I needed to make it work for me. It seemed that the author was assuming that the user already had some knowledge of Quicken or was able to bridge a knowledge gap in some other way.
If you are a beginner, I would suggest you look for a more concise and condensed resource.
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on February 13, 2013
I have used Quicken for years, typically upgrading every two years, not for new features as much as to stay current with support, especially online banking, etc. Frankly, each upgrade offered little extra in the feature department, but with each new version came a bit of a learning curve, looking for 'buttons' that had been moved, etc.
When Q2013 was announced, I was fascinated with the idea that I could use my tablet to access Quicken data, but realistically, this idea was more of a conceptual one than a real need. But after reading initial reviews telling of the problems, I held back a bit. Finally I read of releases and fixes that gave me enough assurance that it would not corrupt my data, that I bought the new version. Even then, I was reluctant to install it, waiting a month or so, and then installing it only after careful backup of my Quicken data. Ironically, I STILL have not attempted to install the software to my tablet...
The new features (tablet access and big changes to budgeting) were a bit intimidating, so I went looking for a book, finally buying this one. Keep in mind that I have owned Quicken, and used it extensively for years, using online updates for bank accounts, credit cards, investment accounts, and the lifetime planner, so although there were some changes, for the most part, I could figure it out with little difficulty.
The book seems to cover Quicken 2013 pretty well, but lacked in depth coverage in the areas of my primary interest (budgeting and tablet access), leaving me to discover the intracacies of the budget module 'on my own', and as earlier mentioned, still have dared not try the tablet access. Maybe some day...
This is probably a decent book for someone relatively new to Quicken, but if you are looking for in depth coverage of things like budgeting, you'll likely be disappointed.
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on August 13, 2014
I've used Quicken for years but when I installed Q2013 I decided to maintain fine detail in my investment
Transaction Register. So, when a half hour had passed trying to find a way to Enter Cost Basis detail for my stocks
I gave up and bought this book. BIG MISTAKE. Fourteen bucks and treatment to the most infuriating and unhelpful instruction
In simply entering the cost basis of a stock to replace the placeholder inserted by Q2013 I've encountered yet. Specifically, these
Particular instructions OMIT the one piece of vital information I'd been unable to find on my own: Where (if anywhere) is the Enter Cost
Link located !!! There is no link I could find to actually enter the cost basis in place of the placeholder. The author of this "guide" simply
Waves her hand and advises the reader to click on this link! Nice work if you can get it but a failure to do what this "guide" is supposed
To do. If this abject failure to deliver -- admittedly only one card in this fat deck is an indication -- I wish I had saved my money.
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on March 11, 2013
I have used Quicken for many years and never needed a book. Since "Mint" has become involved with them, there have been numerious problems with the software. The problems are especially evident in the bill paying portion of the software. At one point they did numerious updates within a couple weeks. When you call support for help, you sometimes get someone who is helpful. If you can understand their broken English. Sometimes not. One "expert" was so bad that she gave up and hung up on me. Also, when you call back they start from scratch again like they are reading the instructions from a piece of paper starting with A-Z. Probably, this Book. LOL This book is very helpful and saves you lots of time getting a complete understanding of problems that you encounter. If you are having problems, get this book that covers everything in detail and save your self a lot of time and aggrivation.
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on March 4, 2013
I bought this on a whim (price was right) but wondered whether, after using Quicken for years, it would really be useful... IT WAS AND IS! I am learning about handy features I never thought existed! Browsed the book with a pad of small"stickies" to mark places to return to and was amazed how many things I have marked! And I am generally a go-to person for Quicken questions!

It's really easy to skim through. If you hit a feature you were not aware of just mark it and move on. Then go back when you are in front of the computer with Quicken running and check out the tabs. I try to get to one every day.

I definitely recommend this, even for experienced users.
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on June 26, 2013
I was doing fine with my copy of Quicken 2010 but in order to keep the ability to update online things like stock values, the publishers of Quicken have set the program so that feature will only work for three years. Every three years I have to buy a updated version of the program. After using the old one for three years I was getting really comfortable with it and then had to start over. Some kind of a book is needed to help get up to speed with the changes in the program and I've found that these "Official Guide" books tend to be the best.

The book is fine, I just don't like being almost forced into buying a new version of a program I had been using and doing fine for me.
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on May 22, 2013
I bought this Guide as the CD came without any but bare-bones operation instructions. As a long-time user of several issues of this fine progam, I thought I could get along without a more in-depth instructions book. I was wrong. There were a number of changes to my most recent version, that I was lost. Between the Table of Contents and the Index, it gave me all I needed to quickly come to speed in its revised procedures. Big and exhaustive, it really covers the subject.
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on January 4, 2014
The guide is helpful in finding answers to my many questions in transferring from Quicken '97 (can you believe that) to Quicken '13 by way of Quicken 2004. The old version was the mainstay in accounting for my small rental property. Simple, but adequate for my needs. When I saw ads for Quicken 13 Rental Property Manager, I decided to leave my old Q 97 for the 2013 Rent. Prop Mgr version. I find the Quicken 2013 The Official Guide does not have a section(s) dealing with Rental properties, at least I have not found any. I was disappointed with that but I anticipate that I will find my own way following any tips and tutorials found in the software program.
While struggling somewhat in the move to a much newer version, I am certain I will be able to discover the advantages in up dating my system using the 2013 guide. I highly value Quicken!!
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on March 5, 2013
This is a common book that Intuit prints with each release of Quicken. I just bought it on a whim, (for the parts about the mobile feature). Save your money and just fumble through. Basically that's what I did.
There is a lot of information on features that I don't use. If you have investments and rental property, this may be a good buy.
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