As I was reading a recent review of Quicken 2007 for Mac I was asking myself whether or not I should upgrade from my measly 2005 version. However, after a bit of thought I realized that an easy way to save yourself $50 or $60 each year is NOT to upgrade your financial software. Why?
In the case of the Mac version of Quicken 2007, the new version is almost identical to the previous 2006 version with the exception of a handy dashboard widget. Although I’m sure the widget is very cool (I love my dashboard widgets), it’s certainly not worth the money. But this most recent version of Quicken is not the only software package that you shouldn’t necessarily upgrade – my advice applies to all of them.
Why, you ask? Well, chances are you are never going to use the new bells and whistles that software developers add each year to try and get you to upgrade. In most cases the software developer spent a significant amount of time and money to get the product right… the first time. That means that your Quicken 2004 is a very solid piece of software capable of handling 100% of everything you need. Sure, the developers might have added a fancy “stock quote” section to the front page, but if you haven’t been using Quicken to check stock prices before, you probably won’t start simply because of a new version.
My advice is to save yourself $50 or $60 each year by not upgrading your financial software. But when should you upgrade? At the very most, every other year. But in reality you could keep the same software package for as long as the software works. In my case I was forced to upgrade a few years ago because an older version of Quicken no longer downloaded my bank data for me. However, my Quicken 2005 has served me well for two years, and probably will for another two (at least). And by not upgrading each year I’m saving myself about $200 over four years. And as always, those pennies add up…