i don't want to lose my money, identity, or anything else! how trustworthy is mint.com?
July 5, 2011 12:47 PM   Subscribe

I currently use an OLD version of quicken for mac and keep hearing how much improved and simplified managing my finances would be if i migrated over to mint.com. Although I pay all my bills online, do my banking online, etc. the thought of putting all of that info together in one place is a little scary. Can anyone explain the pros/cons to mint.com. Right now it takes forever to download transactions and pay bills via my bank's website, reconcile these with my quicken accounts, not to mention the bills I pay directly on particular websites (earn miles via credit card), so I thought consolidating might be the way to go.
posted by dublin to Work & Money (7 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Here's a previously for you...
posted by BobbyVan at 12:49 PM on July 5, 2011

Response by poster: oops, sorry, I should have looked before posting. shame on me. thanks, mefites!
posted by dublin at 1:42 PM on July 5, 2011

I also use an old version of Quicken on my mac. Downloading, matching and categorizing transactions never worked very well for me and I have gone from balancing my checkbook to the penny to having no idea because I'm not taking the time to keep things up to date. I recently started using Mint for bank accounts and credit cards because it is relatively effortless. (Just have to enter info on deposits and the few checks that are not for standard amounts.) I haven't figured out the budgeting part and I don't know if it working quite right in terms of the budget effects of transferring money to and from accounts which are not known to Mint. Meanwhile I still use Quicken for all of my other assets, retirement funds, stocks etc since I already have it set up in way that works and it is easy enough to keep it up to date.
posted by metahawk at 1:51 PM on July 5, 2011

I use both Quicken and Mint although I am a more serious Quicken user. Fundamentally they are built on two different models: Quicken is based on the idea of manually entering transactions and then reconciling them by downloading the data from your bank or using your monthly statement. Every transaction is provably checked by having a little R (for reconciled) next to it. This is the old model of "balancing your checkbook". Mint is based on the idea that reconciling is a pain and no one does it, so just use the downloaded data as the truth but .

Beyond that...

mint Pros:

Transaction updates are much faster.
Web app so you can get to it from anywhere.
Has an iPhone app, although it doesn't let you enter manual transactions.
You don't have to buy a new version every couple of years, and there is no upsell to fancier versions.

mint Cons:

Charting/reporting isn't as sophisticated.
Doesn't export to tax programs. (I don't think.)
Stock portfolio support is not a focus of the product.
posted by smackfu at 1:53 PM on July 5, 2011

In case it isn't clear, you can't use Mint to pay bills or transfer money -- it's strictly a reporting tool.

I've never used a desktop budgeting software, but Mint is excellent for categorizing transactions and looking at trends over time. You can set up budgets for different categories and even have them roll over month to month (in case, say I want to allot $1,500 for gift-giving over the course of a year, but it'll be spent unevenly month to month because of the distribution of birthdays, holidays, etc.; also good for entertainment, gas/travel, basically anything you want to budget for but don't spend the same amount regularly).

I don't think it exports directly to tax programs, but you can get a csv out of it.
posted by brentajones at 2:32 PM on July 5, 2011

I love mint.

I can speak to the pain of setting it up: NOT A PAIN. It's actually very easy. We set up our banking, credit cards, auto loan and retirement in less than an hour. Actually around 30 min.

Lovely/highly recommend.
posted by Murray M at 3:07 PM on July 5, 2011

I love Mint. Made the jump when I couldn't get Quicken to work when I switched from PC to Mac. Now can't imagine going back. It's smooth and I've had no issues with any ID things in ~3+ yrs I've been using it. As mentioned above, I love the app and I love it's learning ability. That said, it still gets confused on subway (transportation vs. restaurant) but nothing that can't be fixed manually.

Only hiccup has been inconsistent syncing with a US Bank account but given how often I have issues accessing that account via web, I'm eager to blame US Bank vs. Mint.
posted by TravellingCari at 8:28 PM on July 5, 2011

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