Do your accounts stay connected?

Do your accounts stay connected?
When you get your “Daily Tiller Support” update - is the report current and accurate?

The answer for me for these questions is a whopping “No!” and I’m really questioning the value of paying a subscription fee to a service which fundamentally - Does. Not. Work.

How about you? and by the way - I’m pretty sure Microsoft’s Excel Money isn’t any better.
I think what we have here is an industry which is trying to make something work which every financial institution in the world is doing it’s best to subvert. Presumably because it is fundamentally not secure.

It’s so frustrating because about the only way you can seem to be able get reliable data out of a financial institution is to login regularly and dump a csv file.

Heather said: “most likely you just need to launch the Tiller Money Feeds add-on and click the “Fill sheets” button in your Google Sheet.” This is unreliable at best.

I was one of the original customers of Tiller because I believed in the basic concept. Every since
that very first day - I’ve struggled with trying to maintain account connections. For the longest time I gave up on everything except my primary checking account. and now - even that won’t stay connected.

It would be wonderful if it worked.

Jeff

Jeff, I am with you. I am currently in a trial period with Tiller. I like a lot of the capabilities, and the whole Tiller Community concept and templates (although this can also be a bit overwhelming and cumbersome for a newbie). At this point, though, it is debatable to me whether the Tilller “juice is worth the squeeze”, for the main point you bring up.

Of my 5 main online accounts, 3 are not currently usable. Specifically:

  • US-Bank Mastercard - Errors out / will not connect
  • Venmo - Errors out / will not connect
  • Amazon - No capability to link directly. Must use CSV import - inconvenient.

I use US-Bank Mastercard for about 90% of my CC transactions. However, this is currently listed as a site with an “outage” – one of hundreds – according to the Tiller support article below. And many of these sites show as down for weeks or months. However, ironically, I am able to connect and sync US-Bank data on Mint.com and PersonalCapital.com with no issue. Mint.com has been working reliably for over 2 years. Perhaps this is a result of the third-party account linking service (Yodle?) used by Tiller vs. Intuit and others?

[Known Data Feed Issues & Workarounds - Tiller Community]
https://community.tillerhq.com/t/known-data-feed-issues-workarounds/3169

With that said, I know any online account which requires multi-factor authentication (MFA) or verification questions is periodically going to be a problem. It’s the “security over convenience” world we live in.

i.e. With Betterment.com, my connection is frequently broken, and forces me to re-authenticate. However, that is an investing platform, so I don’t mind if it’s unavailable every now and then. But when it comes to bank and CC transactions, I need to check and reconcile these daily or at least weekly, so having a reliable connection and data-sync from all my online accounts is absolutely critical. In fact, without this, there is no value in Tiller (at least for me.)

That’s just my experience. I’m sure this varies based on which bank and CC accounts you use, so I’m curious what others have to say.

I think this really depends on your expectations. If you’re expecting automatically all the time with absolutely no intervention required at all, you’re not going to find that with any tool. It is a completely unrealistic expectation.

We have a pretty thorough guide that tries to help set expectations for automatic vs manual refreshes here.

All of this is also a three step process…and building a scalable, sustainable architecture to do what we’re doing in spreadsheets requires you to manually click a button to fill the data into the sheet. (Yodlee is our data provider)

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Hi @jeffrey.k.chapman and @KirkO:

Great questions, especially as you’re getting acquainted with Tiller. As @heather mentions, there are many layers to this tool that make it highly valuable and customizable. In the beginning, I had to limit my experience to only what I needed: transactions, categories, balance, and a few reports. Over time, my questions about my financial activity led me to consider other templates, and so I used these on a “need to use” basis. This helped me keep a focus among the many, many options available to all users. Its the curse of abundance!

My accounts, all 18 of them across eight vendors, refresh without fail. Some require my manually refreshing after say 3 or 4 days of inactivity, but the manual refresh for these has been flawless. After a few moments, my spreadsheet has the very latest data available in transactions and balances across my entire portfolio…whenever I want it.

I think that’s a pretty good value, and none of the other tools out there offer this plus the scale and scope of the Tiller templates. (I have checked them.) They, too, have limitations in connectivity. (For example, one of the tools will not connect to my primary investment fund …ever…not in their plan: that’s a non-starter.)

This is starting to sound like a commercial, but it isn’t…I’m just sharing my experience and hoping its helpful.

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@jeffrey.k.chapman thanks for your feedback. I’m glad your accounts work. I believe everyone’s account/data sync experience largely depends on the bank or institution they use.

I have 8 different accounts, and 4 of them currently do not work – I cannot get an initial connection at all. I get the standard error:

Technical Error… Uh oh, we’re having trouble connecting… we don’t know when this will be resolved.

This includes my Visa and Mastercard accounts, where 95% of my transactions occur. It has been this way for weeks. I followed the Tiller support articles, and nothing works. Yet, these same accounts work and sync on Mint.com with no issue. So this tells me it’s not my institution, rather how Tiller is connecting – specifically this appears to be a failure of their third-party service, Yodlee.

I really like the Tiller concept and Tiller Community, but this is a deal breaker for me. If I can’t automatically pull my data into Tiller, consistently and reliably, what’s the point?

@KirkO, have you reached out to our support team via the chat tool on the Console at https://sheets.tillerhq.com/auth/login for help with these technical errors?

We’re always happy to contact our data provider about issues like this. Generally they resolve on their own within a week so our first recommendation is to keep trying, but if it’s already been more than a week, you should reach out and we’ll contact them and extend your free trial while we work on it.

We do use a different provider than Mint so it working there doesn’t not mean anything on whether it will work for our service.

Thanks @heather. I will reach out to support via chat.

3 of my institutions have been down / unable to connect for 2 weeks. So, yes, I believe this would need to be escalated to your data provider.

I understand about Mint vs. Tiller. That was my point. As much as I like Tiller and want to switch, Mint (and whatever data provider they use) has proven to be much more reliable for my specific institutions when it comes to account/data sync’ing. If others have a similar poor experience, Tiller may have a hard time gaining market traction. Perhaps Jeffrey’s and my experience is unique.

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Heather,

Valid points. I think my problem lies in receiving a daily update and knowing that it’s not accurate. Can I turn off the daily update?

I’m fine with having to push an update button. Considering that I login to every account every week, it’s a minimal requirement.

My frustrations come mostly from access. My primary bank has connected fine since the beginning. Suddenly, I can’t reestablish
my connection through the Refresh panel. Since I posted this, I’ve heard from my bank. They are in the process of merging
and they’ve been making ‘behind the scenes’ changes to the web site. I should be able to fix this by re-authenticating the
application on the bank end.

Jeff