YNAB Or Quicken: Which Is Better?

home budget softwareAlong with other major players in financial planning, Quicken and YNAB both offer software packages that will help users in budgeting. Which one just depends on what you are trying to accomplish. Let’s take a gander at these two giants.


There are several different versions of Quicken which offer a similar core capability, but may have specialized additions. If you don’t have specialized business or rental property needs, you should be fine with a copy of Quicken or Quicken Premier.

Quicken is a robust money management tool. Quicken is designed to track income, expenses, net worth, taxes, investments, business transactions, rental property information, and even pay bills. It can be more complicated for the average user to begin with but has help and support options.


YNAB is a zero based budgeting system, which means every dollar is given a job. As you go through your monthly expenses, any funds that are left over will be assigned a job based on the priorities you assigned it when you set up your profile. The goal is to help you reach your financial goals more quickly and use a budget to your advantage. The system uses four rules that are designed to not only help you stay on budget but also successfully get out of debts and start living on last month’s income. This last part does take time to achieve but eventually, you can reach this point.

Which is Better?

This question is best answered by looking at how you expect to benefit from the software. If you are simply looking for a budget or money management tool (as in cash flow and expenses), then I would recommend YNAB. If you need a tool for tracking investments, net worth, assets, business income/expenses, rental properties, or other more advanced features, Quicken is a better option. With that is mind, here are some advantages of one over the other.

  • Advantages of Quicken over YNAB
    • Tracks investments
    • Some versions of Quicken allow you to manage specific financial situations, such as rental properties, medical expenses, small businesses, etc.
    • Tracks net worth including all assets, including liquid assets, real estate, cars, and other property.
    • Advantages of YNAB over Quicken
      • Is Simple and easy to set up, navigate, and use.
      • Gives every dollar a job.
      • Gives recommendations for how to spend and manage your money, and get ahead.

Which one of the best for you? Here is an easy way to decide. Quicken does a better job at tracking the past with all your assets; YNAB does a better job of helping you create a path forward. You choose!

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