Split Transaction

Kurt Tidmore's Avatar

Kurt Tidmore

05 Jun, 2009 07:27 AM

I am coming to MoneyDance from Quicken for Mac. I have a fully licensed copy of MD but for the life of me I can't seem to figure out how to enter splits in a transaction. Specifically I'm trying to enter my paycheck with the various deductions. I can't figure out how to get a little SPLITS screen to pop up, and when it does pop up (which seems to happen randomly) there is no AMOUNT column. As a guess, I would say that I am supposed to enter my amounts under RATE (although a rate should mean a percentage), but I can't seem to navigate to that space. What am I doing wrong?

On a slightly different matter, a real HELP menu with a genuine INDEX to detailed instructions would help enormously. The application is pretty nearly useless without this.

  1. 1 Posted by John on 05 Jun, 2009 11:35 AM

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    I was a Quicken user for almost 20 years and just moved to MD. In quicken you could do a Ctrl S and get the split window. In MD you navigate to the category column, you need to open the pop up window. To do so you can either use the keyboard up arrow key or click your mouse cursor on the little up down arrows located in the category frame on the right. At the top of the pop up window you will see another box that says split, you must use you mouse to open the split box.

    Hopefully 2009 will streamline the process. As a Quicken user you'll realize it is more involved to do a split.

    On the good part of the split is MD will auto fill the frames in the splits. I was thinking Quicken didn't auto fill but I was just on Q and it does auto fill in the splits.

  2. Support Staff 2 Posted by Ben Spencer on 05 Jun, 2009 02:15 PM

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    You can also press command-L (on mac) and ctrl-L (windows and linux) once a transaction is selected to bring up the edit splits window.


  3. 3 Posted by John on 05 Jun, 2009 03:47 PM

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    Thank you. That is a great help!

    Where do I find such information?

  4. 4 Posted by kurt tidmore on 05 Jun, 2009 03:49 PM

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    Nice idea, and it's the one I found after trolling around your website, but
    I haven't been able to make it work. At what point do I press command-L.
    Maybe that's the problem. If I click on the splits screen and then try
    pressing command-L nothing happens. And where do I enter AMOUNT anyway? What
    word are you using instead?

    On Fri, Jun 5, 2009 at 3:16 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  5. Support Staff 5 Posted by Ben Spencer on 05 Jun, 2009 03:54 PM

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    Hi John

    I am afraid one of the big weaknesses of Moneydance is the documentation. We reiently took on a couple of new support staff and now that the forum response are almost under control we are turning our attention to writing a more complete set of documentation. In the mean time please post any questions you have in the forum.


    Ben Spencer.

  6. 6 Posted by John on 05 Jun, 2009 05:00 PM

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    Kurt, Try a dummy input.
    Start a new input (Ctrl N) Type test into the description Do the Ctrl L and you should see a pop up that will allow you to enter splits

  7. 7 Posted by kurt tidmore on 08 Jun, 2009 10:08 AM

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    I've tried it and get the same result: When I'm shown the splits screen
    (picture attached) there are at least two problems. The first and most
    obvious problem is that there is no column for amount. The second problem is
    that the only two columns I can get to are the Description column and the
    Category column. I can't seem to get a 'live' cursor in any of the others.

    For what it's worth, I had a similar problem when trying to set up an
    investment account. I was shown a screen for that but nowhere on it was
    there a place for me to enter the number of shares or the price per share.
    I'm sure both of these problems come from your lack of documentation and
    lack of any useful Help menu. Although I do appreciate your email support,
    it should never have been necessary for me to avail of it.

    Kurt Tidmore

    On Fri, Jun 5, 2009 at 6:00 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  8. 8 Posted by john on 08 Jun, 2009 12:00 PM

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    "no column for amount'"

    The column is available. I have found the MD does not do a good job of adjusting frames.

    You'll need to go to those column frames and manually adjust them. Make the column for the description a bit bigger or smaller. You may even need to grab the entire split window and make it bigger before adjusting the columns.

  9. 9 Posted by kurt tidmore on 08 Jun, 2009 01:19 PM

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    Manually adjust them exactly how? I tried using the cursor arrow to 'grab'
    the side of a column and move it, but this had no effect. So I tried making
    the whole split window bigger, but this did not reveal any other columns.
    I'll take a look at the link you sent, but at this point Quicken is looking
    better and better.
    Kurt Tidmore

    On Mon, Jun 8, 2009 at 1:00 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  10. 10 Posted by John on 08 Jun, 2009 03:24 PM

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    Hm? If you have your cursor on the very, very top row, you widen and narrow the columns using standard windows techniques. You must be on teh top row, placing your cursor near a column separator line show show the left right arrow. Using that left right arrow is how you widen / narrow columns.

    MD doesn't seem to be as robust or intuitive as Quicken. After 20 years with Quicken, I moved from Quicken last week. My move was entirely, 100 percent based on what I call the unethical updating behavior inherent in Quickens business model.

    What I am hoping is that MD is on a growth curve and will keep enhancing the needed changes.

  11. Support Staff 11 Posted by Ben Spencer on 08 Jun, 2009 03:31 PM

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    Hi Kirt

    I think I see what is going on here. The amount for a split should be placed in either the "Payment" or "Deposit" columns. It is not clear to me why the splits screen has been rendered two small in your case, however from your screen shoot I believe that the two columns directly to the right of the "Tags" column are the payment and deposit columns with the column titles obsucred because of te column width. You can stretch the width of these columns with your mouse.

    If you have not already done so I recomend upgrading to the latest veriosn of Moneydance and the latest version of Java.


    Ben Spencer

  12. 12 Posted by kurt tidmore on 08 Jun, 2009 05:22 PM

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    Thanks John -
    Using your instructions I've finally been able to make the window look the
    way it should, and after some experimentation I've been able to enter
    figures. However this has brought me to yet another problem. Now I need to
    add some categories. I see that there's supposed to be a way to do this, but
    apparently this leads to setting up new accounts, which either means it's
    just plain wrong or MD has more than one definition for an account. In
    either case this app is looking more and more like Amateur Nite. I agree
    with you about Quicken. I was pushed to look for alternatives because I
    switch platforms now and then. But really, without decent documentation and
    a real Help menu, Moneydance is DancingInTheDark and life's too short for
    that. In the best of all possible worlds the way to write an application is
    to sit down and write the instructions first, and then make the code fit it.
    That way you start with how the application actually needs to work, from a
    customer's point of view, rather than starting with some engineer's idea of
    how he'd like to make it work. Oh well. The search goes on....

    Thanks for your help.


    On Mon, Jun 8, 2009 at 4:24 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  13. Support Staff 13 Posted by Ben Spencer on 08 Jun, 2009 05:45 PM

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    Hi Kurt

    Under the hood Moneydance is a double entry book keeping system so in fact a category is an account of type expense or income. To add new categories such as expense or income categories. Click Tools->"Edit Categories". Then click New.

    While I recognise that the documentation is in need of considerable improvement You might find "Chapter 4: Getting Started with Accounts" and "Chapter 5: Entering Transactions" helpful. Additionally I would be happy to answer any questions you have here.

    If you have purchased a licence key and are wanting a refund let me know and I will authorise one for you.


    Ben Spencer (Moneydance Support) "

  14. 14 Posted by kurt tidmore on 08 Jun, 2009 05:51 PM

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    I'll try your suggestion and fight on. Yes, I have bought a licence. Thanks
    for the offer.

    On Mon, Jun 8, 2009 at 6:46 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  15. 15 Posted by J S on 08 Jun, 2009 08:32 PM

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    You can't create new categories on the fly, at least I don't think you
    can. You need to go up to the menu bar and use the edit accounts/new
    categories to do it. This development version seems to point that the
    code person doesn't like pop up frames very much.

    I am like you and wish I would have tried the trial a lot longer
    before buying a license. I saw a site that compared a bunch of
    different apps and MD had good reviews. Whoever did the reviewing
    must have been a basic user type. There is a lot of room (I'm trying
    to be kind) for improvement with MD. Currently I am entering things
    in Quicken and MD. IF I get frustrated enough, MD will become one of
    those mistaken purchases. I will toss by ethical considerations aside
    and accept Quickens bad business model.

    I haven't really had to run the reports that I need from time to time.
     That is when the rubber will hit the run. From what I understand MD
    doesn't do subtotal & total reports by Payee very well....if at all.

  16. Support Staff 16 Posted by Ben Spencer on 08 Jun, 2009 08:52 PM

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    Hi J S

    If you run a transactions report you can "subtotal by payee" and set the totalling period in the date field. Please see the attached screen shot.


    Ben Spencer

  17. 17 Posted by J S on 09 Jun, 2009 02:00 PM

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    Yes I know about that reporting but you aren't understanding the issue.

    Ok....I'll explain using dummy names. There are times I need to send a
    report showing how much I received from Ajax company and then a report to
    see how much I paid Acme company. Each company can not see the reporting on
    each other. When I do a report as you suggest, it shows everything. I can
    filter by tag but that does not give an option to filter by categories.

    I can put the payee name in the search page (main input page) and see the
    results for Ajax company. But I can not make a report that can be saved or
    printed. It shows me the total (called balance).

    How I've always done this is how my bookeeper, CPA friends set up accounts.
    They are committed to following GAAP in their reporting.

    Here is an example of the hierarchy I've always used, it is category -
    subcategory and class. Commission is the category and reports can be done
    for all commissions. ajax is a subcategory of commissions and a report can
    be produced for just ajax. Scooter inc is the class that receives all
    commissions and takes care of all accounts payable.

    Commission:ajax/Scooter inc.

    Scooter inc does business with a lot of companies. When doing a commission
    report for Ajax, I don't want to see commission for Acme. Having Scooter
    as the parent allows IE/cash flow, etx. reports to be done for Scooter
    inc. I don't want to see what another corp. is doing on the IE, cash flow,
    etc., only Scooter Inc.

    On Mon, Jun 8, 2009 at 4:53 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  18. 18 Posted by kurt tidmore on 10 Jun, 2009 10:30 AM

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    After considerable experimentation, here is what I've found about SPLIT
    TRANSACTIONS. Just so you know, the transaction I was trying to enter was my
    monthly paycheck and its associated deductions.

    1. MD will not allow you to set up categories on the fly. You have to set
    them all up before you begin your transaction. And when you start setting
    them up with Edit Categories under the TOOLS menu you will see that they are
    now mysteriously called Accounts, not Categories. Nevertheless, if you say
    you want to set up a new 'account' it will allow you to set up a new
    category. If you want to set up a subcategory you can do this by
    highlighting the main category in which you want the subcategory to fall and
    then say you want to set up a new 'account'.

    2. When you open the SPLITS screen you should be able to see columns headed
    (from left to right) Description, Category, Tags, Payment, Deposit, and
    Rate. If you can't see all of these you may need to adjust both the size of
    the SPLITS screen and the width of whatever columns you can see. You resize
    the screen in the usual way. To resize the columns use your cursor to grab
    the divider between the column headings and drag it to an appropriate width.

    3. On the SPLITS screen the figure you enter under Deposit *isn't* the
    deposit that will appear in your account ledger. In my case it was the *gross
    salary*, the amount from which all my deductions were taken. The basic
    principle of the SPLITS screen is that the numbers entered in the Payment
    column are subtracted from the number(s) entered in the Deposit column and
    the resulting figure will appear on your account ledger.

    4. For those of you, like me, coming from Quicken (my version is Quicken
    2006), be aware that MD does not require you to enter the deductions with a
    minus sign (-) in front of them. Since you will have (hopefully) set up the
    categories for your deductions as expenses rather than as income this will
    already be taken care of.

    I hope this helps someone avoid the confusion I went through.

    Kurt Tidmore

    On Mon, Jun 8, 2009 at 6:46 PM, Infinite Kind Support <
    [email blocked]> wrote:

  19. Angie Rauscher closed this discussion on 24 Jul, 2011 06:48 PM.

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