Money Management Needs a Mac Miracle

What troubling circumstances. I’m in dire need to get my finances in order and as a result have been scouring the web for all the personal financial management software I can find. I’m a Mac aficionado and use OS X as my primary computing platform. Microsoft’s Money line of products have a rich feature set, good compatibility, and seem to get largely positive reviews, but they’re only available for Windows-based computers and have a host of annoying requirements such as obtaining an MSN passport.

The only major player in this field for the Mac is Intuit‘s Quicken for Mac, but reviews are so mixed I can’t make heads or tails of it. Some say it’s hands-down the worst program for Macs out there sporting a horrible UI and troublesome bugs, while others say it works all right by them. I don’t want to have to switch to Windows or get the $130 Virtual PC just to keep track of my finances. That’s utterly ridiculous.

So in the meantime, I’ve gone in search of other Mac OS X financial management programs. A short while exploring Moneydance‘s free trial left me decidedly disappointed. It felt slow and clunky, its interface was decidedly non-Mac like (though I suspect Linux geeks familiar with KDE and GNOME would feel at home), and every time I wanted to do a simple task I had to click through countless set-up screens.

The only Mac OS X finance management software I liked the looks of was iBank, but as far as I can tell, it does not yet support online banking through OFX, OFC, or QIF and friends. iBank feels like a true Mac application, gave me everything I wanted to see in one window, and provided one-click access to additional information about my accounts, transactions, and reports. Plus it ran fast and felt smooth, and matched Moneydance’s price tag at $39.99. If only it wouldn’t force me to enter all my transactions manually….

Finally, since I’d ideally like to use whatever program I buy for my business as well as my personal finances, I looked at QuickBooks Pro for Mac. Unfortuantely, it comes with an exorbitant price tag (nearly $200), and its reviews aren’t exactly glowing either.

So maybe I’ll end up using the familiar old Microsoft Money Deluxe that my mother uses after all. Sigh! Apple, where are you?

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