Most of the information you need to enter into the software is available on the statements sent to you by your lender. While statements vary slightly from lender to lender, they generally contain the following information:
The rest of this help topic will show you how to add this sample statement to the software.
The first step to entering your loan details is to (1) set up your own workbook to hold your information. You can then (2) add your first loan, which will hold each of your (3) statements. (4) Add transactions to each statement - by importing them from your Internet banking site or by typing them in manually, and then (5) assign categories to your transactions - using the Auto-Matching tool or by selecting them manually. The final step is to (6) set up the interest rate changes for the account.
Before you can start entering your loan details into the software you need to set up your own workbook to store them in. From the file menu select the New Workbook option.
Tip - The user option "Open Last Workbook At Start Up" allows you to automatically open you workbook each time you start the software, and by default this option is enabled.
Once you have set up your workbook, you can add your first loan. Click on the Add button under the ACCOUNTS heading to open the account details screen.
To set up an account you need to enter information into the three sections on the screen:
If you need more information on what to enter into each field, (4) click on the Help button. Once you have finished (5) click on the Ok button to create the account.
Tip - "Days in Year" is normally set 365 (sometimes 366), and "Interest Calculated Up to" is normally set to 1 (sometimes 0). Refer to the Interest Calculations help topic for more information on what each field does.
For each statement you receive from your lender, you need to set up a statement in the software. To add the statement (1) switch to the statements view for the account, and then (2) click on the Add button to open the statement details screen.
To create the statement you need to (3) enter the statement start date, end date, reporting year and the opening balance.
Tip - If you type in 337906.55 the software will automatically add the negative sign and change the format to -337,906.55.
Using the information from our sample statement above, you can find (4) the start date, end date and opening balance. The reporting year is used by the reports to determine which yearly totals the statement should be included in, and you can set it to any value you want. As the start and end date for this statement are both in 2010, we have set the reporting year to 2010.
Once you have entered your statement details click on the Ok button to add the statement to the account. (5) It will now appear in the statements view. NOTE: As we are working with the existing "HOME LOAN - Mrs A Citizen" account from the sample workbook there are already 7 statements in the account. When you set up your first statement, there will only be one in the statement view.
When entering statements you are not required to enter the Closing Balance, as it is automatically calculated by adding the transaction Withdrawal and Deposit amounts to the Opening Balance. As we have not yet added any transactions to our new statement, (6) the Withdrawal and Deposit amounts are both 0.00, and the closing balance is the same as the opening balance.
Now that the statement has been set up we can enter the transactions. (1) Switch to the transaction view and (2) check that you are working with the correct statement. The (3) transaction view will show you the transactions you have entered for a statement, including the default opening and closing balance entries.
There are two ways you can add your transactions to the statement, you can type them in, or you can import them from a file. If you wish to manually type in your transactions (4) click on the Add button and use the information from your printed statements. In this example we are going to import the transactions from a file, therefore we'll (5) click on the Import Transactions button. Full instructions on how to use the import wizard, including step-by-step instructions on how to load the statement for this example, can be found in the importing transactions help topic.
After starting the import wizard and working through the required steps, the transactions are automatically loaded into the statement. (6) They are now visible in the transactions view screen, (7) the statement description has been updated to include the number of transactions loaded, "(18 transactions)", and (8) the software is waiting for you to select a category for each of your transactions.
By assigning categories to your transactions, the reports can group and total the costs on your loans. You can instantly find out the total you are paying in fees, how much interest you paid, how much you repaid this period, and so on.
To manually select a category for a transaction, (1) click on the transaction category you wish to change and (2) choose a category from the list.
Tip - You can modify the existing categories, and add your own, by selecting the Maintain Categories option from the Category menu.
The INTEREST category is a special category that is used by the reports to check your lender's interest calculations. All (1) interest transactions in your statements should be (2) assigned the "INTEREST - Periodic Interest" category.
IMPORTANT - If you assign the INTEREST category to transactions that are not interest charges, the reports will not produce the correct results.
One of the unique features of this software is the "Auto-Matching" tool, which will save you having to manually select categories for every transaction. It is designed to detect patterns in the categories you are manually selecting, and then automatically match categories for you.
For example, when (1) a category is assigned to the first "INTEREST CHARGED" transaction in the statement, the software detects that there are another five interest transactions in the statement that it can automatically match. If you choose to run the tool, it will (2) update the categories on the other interest transactions. Full details on the category auto matching process can be found in the category auto matching help topic.
After you have added the transactions to the statement, you can return to the statement view screen and review the Withdrawal and Deposit amounts, and check that the closing balance matches the balance on the printed statement.
The last step to entering your statement information is to enter any interest rate changes for the period. If there have been no rate changes then you can skip this step. To add the interest rate changes, (1) switch to the interest rates view for the account, and then (2) click on the Add button to open the interest rates details screen.
Using the example statement from above, (3) there is one interest rate change to add to the account.
Enter (4) the date the interest rate changed, along with the new rate. If you have a loan that is allowed to go positive (where the lender pays you interest), enter (5) the rate they pay you (if unsure leave as zero percent). If you have a line of credit loan that charges penalty rates, (6) enter the penalty rate and the agreed amount at which the rate starts being charged. (7) Click on the Ok button to add the interest rate change to the account.
Tip - The discount field allows you to capture any special discounts you have negotiated with your lender.
Once you have finished entering your first statement return to the account summary view. You can see that the Latest Information section of the screen has automatically been updated to reflect the statement that has just been added.
Continue adding your statements from oldest to newest, entering the transactions and interest rate changes for each. You can start running the reports after you have added your first statement.
For instructions on loading your transactions from your Internet banking site, refer to the importing transactions help topic.
When you first run the audit reports, if things don't look quite right, refer to interest errors help topic to find out how to fine-tune your account settings.