If you’re like me then you already know about the monthly money curse. There’s always too much month left at the end of my money.
Can’t there be a better way to manage my money than with a checkbook? Yes, and no. Put your checkbook into your Mac.
Computers are good at remembering things and calculating things. What else do you do with your personal checkbook? You enter checks, names of the check recipient, the amounts of the checks, deposits, dates, and a description.
All the time you’re dinking around in your checkbook you’re wishing there was an easier way to manage your money without spending a fortune on the latest version of Quicken and then buying a book to figure out how to use it.
That’s what CheckBook is all about. Managing your money. You already know how to use it.
CheckBook is one of the delightfully simple, elegantly designed, ready-to-use now Mac applications. It’s billed as a powerfully simple personal finance manager, but that’s not really accurate unless you consider your checkbook as a personal finance manager.
See the problem? It’s semantics. What CheckBook really is is a checkbook embedded in your Mac.
CheckBook won’t bore you and it won’t make you fearful. At least, it won’t if you’ve already managed your money using a checkbook. The single window has all the basic money managing features you want.
I like simple. CheckBook starts with a simple Mac window with a toolbar at the top. Click Deposit to enter a deposit amount. The date is already there. Click Debit to enter a check amount. Click Change to change an entry, click Remove to delete an entry.
See? I said it was simple. But simple is so easy you may want a little more. OK, this is the little CheckBook that can deliver a little more. You can set up Scheduled Entries in CheckBook which makes it easier to manage monthly bills.
Bills? Monthly? Sure. Car payment. Rent. Insurance. Alimony. Whatever has to be spent each month can be set up in the Scheduled Entries section and it shows up on time so you can write the check according to what your Mac tells you.
Two other features take CheckBook beyond simple and into useful territory for the financially averse among us.
The first is Account Categories. This setting lets you group your check writing transactions to you can see where they money went before the month ended.
The second is Account Summaries. These are customized reports so you can see exactly what happened to the money that came in.
CheckBook also has other features which won’t give you an Excedrin headache or require a tutor, or a check to Intuit, but will help you figure out why there’s always month left over when there’s no money left over.
Accounts. Did I mention accounts. It’s another way to segregate where your money goes. CheckBook even lets you transfer money between accounts. Savings to checking is the one I use the most.
Print reports, even handle multiple currencies in case you’re tired of being poor using dollars. You can be poor in other currencies, too.
CheckBook also imports standard OFX, QIF, and CSV files so you can import data from your monthly bank statements, even migrate data from Quicken.
Not bad for less than $15, right?
CheckBook features a full test drive capability, too. Create up to 50 transactions per account, with no set time limit. With just two transactions per month in the trial you could use CheckBook for free for a couple of years, then switch to another account and repeat the process.
Or, you could simply try CheckBook for a few weeks to see if it works as well as your real checkbook and if you like it, cough up the nominal fee. CheckBook doesn’t try to be more than it is. It’s a checkbook in your Mac, except it’s a better checkbook than the one you use to buy things or pay things or curse when the monthly reconciliation doesn’t balance.
Trust me. It happens. Got a favorite personal financial planner that you use on your Mac? Share your pain and experience in the Comments section below.