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Accounting

Should You Use Quicken For Your Rental Properties?

What is Quicken Rental Property Manager?

Quicken is a personal finance software which has a tailored subscription package for rental property management – this rental management package is called Quicken Rental Property Manager. A quick rundown of what Quicken allows you to do:

Setting up Quicken Rental Property Manager

The first thing that you’ll need to do is purchase your subscription. Then you can go about the process of adding your rental units to the software.
Quicken home dashboard
If you want Quicken to display the income, expenses, and tax deductions by rental property, you must add a separate rental property in Quicken for each real-world rental property. The process is fairly straight forward following the below steps:
  1. Click on the Rental Property tab.
  2. Then select the Properties & Tenants button and choose Add Property.
  3. Enter the properties name and address for the property.
  4. Select whether it is a Single Family Home (SFH), Multi-Unit (HMO).
  5. Click OK.
One of the good things about Quicken for rental properties is that, like Landlord Studio, it allows you to manage income and expenses at a property or unit level. Their product Quicken Rental Property Manager is designed with rental property accounting in mind and this does show. However, perhaps because of this simplicity in set up it does lack some of the functionality that you would expect from a modern rental management solution. Instead, it occupies a sort of middle ground somewhere between rental management and personal finance management rather than specifically or fully servicing either. For individuals who only have a few rental units and want to manage all their finances easily in one place, this does offer a solution, meaning you don’t have to learn multiple accounting software. For those with multiple units and more advanced needs though, a rental specific solution might be more suitable.

The Limitations of Quicken Rental Property Manager

Dated user experience

Quicken was set up in 1983. Over its decades-long life it’s existed in various forms. It was only in 2018, though that it was revitalised as a software and turned into a subscription service. The problem with this is that while, yes it has had updates since it’s inception. It still looks and operates like something originally built in 1983. There are better, more modern systems that operate with modern design functionality which makes them a pleasure rather than a chore.
This is also part of the reason why Intuit (who developed Quicken) sold the company in 2016 to H.I.G Capital and developed Mint, their new personal finance software.

No trial

The right software solution for managing your rental property income and expenses is vital if you want to maximize your potential deductions, optimize your cashflow, gain a clear financial overview and ultimately scale your business. This is why we offer a 30 day free trial for our users so that they can determine if this really is the right software for them. Quicken doesn’t currently offer a trial period of any sort. Meaning you have to simply take the plunge and hope for the best.

Not designed for Scale

It’s lack of automation features could inhibit a real estate investors portfolio growth rather than assist. This is a good software ideal for landlords with just a few properties, but, it’s not well suited for those who are juggling multiple multi-unit properties or have more complex rental management needs.

Limited accounting functionality.

Fundamentally, this software was originally designed to be used in a goal-oriented personal finance fashion. It allows you to set budgets and manage cashflow, not just for your rental properties. This system though, as we mentioned already suits smaller portfolios better. A key financial weakness is that while you can keep financial records on a cash basis, you can’t an accrual basis. This means you can track when the money exchanges hands, not when expenses are billed or when revenue is earned. Additionally, you can’t track the cost basis of your property, depreciation, inventory, digitize receipts, or create invoices for tenants with Quicken Rental Property Manager. If your accounting needs are more advanced you’ll have to do this in another program such as Landlord Studio.

Using Property Management Software Instead of Quicken

Landlord Studio is a property management software and landlord app designed by landlords for landlords. It allows you to track your income and expenses efficiently and easily and gain a clear financial overview of your portfolio. Manage your rental property accounting on the go with our app and never miss an expense deduction again. Many of the problems experienced by landlords can be made easier (if not solved) with the improved organization and better use of available tools. This helps landlords streamline the management of their rentals.
We are working hard to bring new and upgraded features to our users continuously. Some of our key features include:
Customise your reports using filters and categories and print or email straight from the app.
It takes less than 5 minutes to setup your property on our software. 
Scan receipts using your phone to automatically enter expense details and store as a document.
Connect your bank accounts to quickly and easily reconcile income and expenses. 
Keep all your important documents organized and stored safely in one place.
Screen tenants, set rent reminders, and easily manage communications.
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Landlord Studio’s Reports

All of our reports are customizable with your own logo and business name. Additionally, you can adjust every report using our filters. You can filter reports by date range, expense category, income category, property/ unit and owner.
(Available on all devices)
  • Income Expense Statement (Profit and loss)
  • Income Expense by category
  • Overdue Rent Payments
  • Reminders Report
  • Mileage Report
  • Net Worth Report
(Available on mobile devices)
  • Schedule E Report
  • Occupancy Report
  • Overdue and Upcoming Expenses
  • Payments Made (Filtered by Lease)
  • Payments Made (Filtered by Category)
  • Rent Ledger (Shows all rent expected and collected for a selected date range)
  • Rent Overdue Report
  • Rent Roll (History of rental Leases)

Learn more about IRS Schedule E form 1040

You can export all your reports as .csv files or pdfs. Download them to your device or share them from the software with your accountant.

Final Notes

Quicken Property Manager is a personal finance tool rather than a rental business accounting tool. It doesn’t have the adaptability of Quickbooks, or the focus of a designated property management software. However, it entirely depends on your needs whether or not this is the right solution for you. If you only have a few properties this could be a good solution. If, on the other hand you have more, and/ or intentions to continue growing your property portfolio then you may want to look for a solution that will help your scale rather than hinder you. Exploring options such as Landlord Studio rental property software could be your next step on your real estate journey.
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Ben Luxon

"Ben is an author and real estate enthusiast. His interest in all things entrepreneurial has led him to work with real estate professionals all over the world, distilling their knowledge into articles and Ebooks. His love of travelling has taken him to over 10 countries in the last year, where he has sampled the craft beer of them all."

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