Financial Bookkeeping – Products (Part 1)

By | January 7, 2008

We use financial software to track our financial accounts and transactions. There are many programs created to serve this purpose. The two most popular ones are Microsoft Money and Intuit’s Quicken. I use Microsoft Money. It came with my computer a long time ago and I have been using it since.

There are also alternatives to these two commercial products if you need something more simple or if don’t want to pay for them. Someone asked me earlier if there was any good free product out there to keep track of financial accounts. I have recently found Finance Explorer from Metalogic Software. I read up on their features and description and the product looks good at a glance. Best of all, it’s free. Below is a screen shot. If I weren’t already using Money, I would give this software a try. Finance Explorer looks simple to use and can do the job of keeping track of my accounts.

Before Microsoft Money, I used Excel to keep track of my financial accounts and transactions. Excel is a great tool if you already have it. The great thing about Excel is that you can customize your spreadsheets. I have always liked to make my own templates to suit my needs. However, if you want to have something to use immediately, there are many templates available on the web.

Personal budget

Personal monthly budget

Monthly and Annual Expenses Planner

Expense reports

Back in the days, I kept a financial diary on paper. I have found old records of my financial bookkeeping. I wrote down the dates of each month and next to each day, the daily expenses. I see dates going back to my childhood, but of course, there are many gaps. I am surprised I have started tracking expenses so young. I guess it’s in me, even as a kid to be organized and keeping track of my financial records.

There are many ways to help you keep track of your financial accounts – pen and paper, Excel, Microsoft Money, Quicken, and Finance Explorer. You can decde on the software or method, but the point is to keep track.

Related Posts:

Financial Bookkeeping – Advantages (Part 2)

Financial Bookkeeping – Disadvantages (Part 3)

8 thoughts on “Financial Bookkeeping – Products (Part 1)

  1. pfstock

    I assume that you are using the 2007 version of MS Money. I just bought MS Money Plus (2008); free after rebate at Staples when you also buy TaxCut. I haven’t installed the new version yet, but I noticed that this is the first version of Money that requires you to “activate” the product. There is an activation key included with the CD-ROM.

    From what I have read on the Internet, one can install this software on two machines using the same key. Also, I read that Microsoft will discontinue support of Money 2007 in September 2009. Earlier this year, I was still using Money 2004 on one computer, so it is very possible we’ll still be using Money 2007 in 2009. For Money Plus, they discontinue online services 2 years after your activation date. That is another reason I will probably postpone activating the new product.

  2. Smarty

    I am currently using MS Money 2008. The previous version I used was 2004. The 2008 version certainly looks aesthetically better, but it also consumes more system resources and responds slower than the 2004 version. I do not know that they will be discontinuing online service after two years, but if so, then you should probably postpone activating the new product. Perhaps, you would get another free after rebate Money version next year when you buy TaxCut again.

  3. pfstock

    Is it 2008 already? My comment should have read “Until last year, I was still using Money 2004 on one computer.” Sorry about the confusion.

  4. Smarty

    I just checked my version, it is 2007. I thought it was 2008, but it’s not. I was using Money 2004 for a few years as well, and it had been running well.

  5. TheWalrus

    I use Quicken 2007 and I’m very happy with it. I just think it could do much better with investment properties. I track my property and all expenses in an offline excel spreadsheet because Quicken doesn’t suffice. Is Money good with real estate?

  6. Smarty


    I have been using Money to track my investment property for over two years and Money has fulfilled my needs so far. I record my rental income and expenses in assigned categories and run reports against these categories during tax time.

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