Getting Started with Moneydance

If you're new to Moneydance, you can view our 'Getting Started' Knowledge Base Articles which detail how to setup your accounts and use the main Moneydance features.

You can also find the full Moneydance user guide here

Getting started with Moneydance can be easy. While everyone manages their finances differently, there are some steps which are fairly universal. It's not necessary to do these steps in order, or even to do them all, but they're a good starting point.

Remember, you can try Moneydance completely free to see if you like it. All of Moneydance's tools are available in the trial of the program, which can be downloaded from here.

  1. Decide when you want to start the records you're keeping in Moneydance. Some people will choose the date they begin using Moneydance, some people will choose the first date of that month, some may choose the first day of the year.

  2. Set up your Accounts. To create, edit, or delete accounts, go to the Tools->Accounts menu. When you create your accounts you should enter the Initial Balance (or Debt) for each account. This number should be the balance of each account immediately before the date you chose in step 1. It's also VERY important to choose the currency associated with each account (if different from the currency of your data file). This value cannot be changed once you've entered a transaction in the account.

  3. Set up your Categories. To create, edit, or delete accounts go to the Tools->Categories menu. It's generally easier to delete categories you won't be using. You can always add categories at a later point. It's important not to delete categories which have transactions associated with them, as this will delete those transactions.

  4. Set up your Online Banking connections. For detailed instructions please refer to the Moneydance user guide here, or our Knowledge Base Article If your bank is not currently supported, contact us to see if we can begin doing so.

  5. Build a budget. Use the categories you created in step 3 to set your income and expense items. You can track your budget performance in a number of ways- through the Budget Bars on the Moneydance home page, through the Budget sidebar report, through reports, or using the Budget Status graph visible at the top of the of your Moneydance window.

  6. Install the extensions you'll need. Some commonly used extensions are the Quotes and Exchange Rates extension which downloads stock prices and currency exchange rates and the Moneydance Updater extension which notifies you when a newer version of Moneydance is available. You can find the full list of Moneydance extensions here.

  7. Get started entering your transactions- Entering your Paycheck, Learn to use Keyboard Shortcuts, Create Reminders for your frequent transactions.