If you didn't already know, welcome to the club. Quicken calls this its Discontinuation Policy. Angry users have called it plenty of other things that are unprintable here. To upgrade or not to upgrade Why wouldn't you upgrade Quicken every year? As a longtime Quicken user, I used to do that.
But a few years ago, I began to question whether each new version's bells and whistles, many of which I didn't need, were worth the price. Then there were the changes Intuit had made to the program's user interface over the years that forced me to change my habits every 12 months. I hate changing my habits. Not to mention the possibility -- often a reality -- of bugs cropping up in each new version.
Considering all that, a few years ago I started upgrading every other year. Last year, after checking out the new features and the user reviews for Quicken on Amazon users gave it roughly three stars out of five , I decided to hold out for a third and final year. When Quicken was introduced last fall, there were the usual improvements to the Windows version, while the user reviews on Amazon seemed, on the whole, similar to the previous year's.
Had it not been for the Discontinuation Policy, I would have passed on this version and waited for Quicken Since I rarely buy a new version of any software until it has been on the market for a few months enough time for the most serious bugs to have been fixed , I bided my time by checking into the remaining alternatives to Quicken.
The product's biggest competitor, Microsoft Money, had been discontinued in My interest was mainly in paying bills, budgeting, and preparing for tax time.
No product that I found on my own seemed to suit my needs. You may find one you like, though: For detailed reviews of some major alternatives to Quicken, see TopTenReviews Meanwhile, the clock had continued ticking. Soon I began receiving emails like this one from Quicken's maker, Intuit, warning me of the impending doom awaiting the online capability of my copy of Quicken To be fair, Quicken does not totally disable old versions.
Even if I didn't upgrade, I would still be able to continue using Quicken indefinitely to balance my checkbook, budget, etc. However, my version would be cut off from all online services and support. I didn't bite. Quicken yields Despite all my reservations, I was planning to upgrade to Quicken before April But I had decided to hold out until late March, so that I could first finish preparing my taxes using Quicken It's never a good idea to upgrade a piece of software just before using it for an important job.
But then a funny thing happened. Quicken blinked. Intuit's new offer made perfect sense: The company so dreaded losing my business as a Bill Pay customer -- which would happen if it cut off my online services -- that it was willing to offer the upgrade free. This answered a question about Intuit's business practices that had bugged me: Why would any company bite the hand that feeds it by cutting off a customer from a lucrative online service?
Now I had my answer: They wouldn't. If you'd like to avoid losing your online services without having to pony up for a Quicken upgrade after three years, you should try playing it, too. As with the classic game of chicken , in Quicken Chicken both contestants must be at risk. You're already at risk. The trick is to put Intuit at enough risk that it will fold before you do.
First, you need to be, or become, a Quicken Bill Pay customer. Then hold off on buying a third-year upgrade for as long as you can, certainly long enough to have prepared your taxes for the new year. This also gives Intuit time to fix bugs in the new version.
In my case, I believe, Intuit was itself holding out so as to get as many paid upgrades as possible before it caved by offering the freebie.
Apparently the company had figured that by late February, the risk of losing Bill Pay income finally outweighed any benefit from further pressuring the remaining holdouts to pay. Challenging Intuit to a game of Quicken Chicken may not work for you. But it's worth a try.
Once this report is published and the word is out, Intuit may change its strategy. But I still think that the longer you hold out -- even until early April if you can -- the better your chances of being offered a free upgrade. If Intuit wants to spare its Bill Pay customers this triennial headache, it ought to eliminate the annual upgrade fee altogether for them. Quicken's Discontinuation Policy is just one more example of the tech industry's disrespect for consumers that I cover regularly on my blog.
If you've been offered the same free upgrade that I was, or even if you haven't, let other users know by posting a comment below.
The more that consumers know about the tech industry's practices, the better. Help us tell more of the stories that matter from voices that too often remain unheard.
Additionally, note that if you are currently subscribed to Quicken Deluxe, Quicken Premier or Quicken Home & Business, by redeeming the free Quicken Starter product, you will lose some of the features that are associated with your current higher-tiered product. Buy online Intuit Quicken Home & /10(). Additionally, note that if you are currently subscribed to Quicken Deluxe, Quicken Premier or Quicken Home & Business, by redeeming the free Quicken Starter product, you will lose some of the features that are associated with your current higher-tiered product. I need to upgrade to Windows But before I do that I need to know if I can still use my Quicken Home & Business. I have the original CD, so if it is compatible I can install it that way.
View details Yes. You can install Quicken on as many computers as needed in the same household. Each installation will be registered to your Quicken ID. What is the Quicken ID? You can still use Quicken manually if you prefer, however, you will need to go online to register your Quicken ID at least once. New enhancements to this version are the ability to create Rent Receipts for tenants, a revamped Invoice Designer that enables you to customize and email invoices with web links, like your business website, Yelp, or PayPal. You can also manage all of your business and rental documents, like receipts or leases, from inside of Quicken. Which products include free features like Bill Pay and Dropbox Backup? View details To see our entire product lineup, including features and cost, please see our comparison chart.