I'm currently using a 2009 version of QuickBooks Pro for my S-Corp accounting needs. They recently sent me a letter "suggesting" I upgrade to the 2012 version ($200+) as many of the features of the 2009 version will no longer work, such as downloading statements from my bank.
Are there any cheap/free alternatives out there? I've always had the opinion that QuickBooks is completely over the top for a small consulting business like mine. I will say that I do like these features of QuickBooks and would hope to find them in another package:
There's tons of features in Quickbooks I don't use (payroll, generating invoices, check generation, etc.) I don't even do the double-entry bookkeeping. As far as I'm concerned, it's income, or it's an expense I pay right away (no liabilities). Even for payroll, I enter it as an expense, and have been told this is fine. I realize that bigger businesses need all of this but I don't.
I did see some info about GNUCash. Anyone have experience with this or something else? Or, if you have an urge to sream out, "Stick with QuickBooks dummy! $250.00 is nothing! All the free stuff is crap" feel free to do that too. I can take it :)
Try GnuCash. www.gnucash.org - Free!
GnuCash is personal and small-business financial-accounting software, freely licensed under the GNU GPL and available for GNU/Linux, BSD, Solaris, Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows.
I use QuickBooks online and use all the same basic features you mentioned. It costs $40/month so not cheap, but no issues with versions/upgrades either. You can also setup multiple accounts with varied permissions which comes in handy when you want your accountant to access just what he/she needs.
I would suggest QuickBooks Online SimpleStart. It doesn't include Payroll and since you don't need that feature, it doesn't make sense to pay for it. Also, it is only $12.95/mth with a free 30-day trial.