How well do your bank feeds work?

As you know, better bank feeds are a top priority this year. We are eager to crowdsource your wisdom and experience with Tiller but also with bank feeds beyond Tiller. This is a quick three question survey. We’d love to hear from you! Thanks, -Peter

Quick survey link: What is your bank connection experience?

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They dont work at all. Some of the lesser important feeds, like a small account I have at a credit union, and even my larger Capital One feed work well. But the one feed i have which I really need, my fidelity investments feed, which is my main banking feed as well, does not work and has not been working for over 3 months. This makes Tiller essentially useless to me. Further i have done my part to troubleshoot including turning off symantec authentication (which worked fine for a while anyway) and removing any browser based potential things like pop up blockers. But nothing works and I was told that there are 3pct of Fidelity users who are having ongoing feed issues. That info is useless to me unless i know that someone is making it a priority to fix the issue. At this point I want to know the exact details because i dont trust that Tillers troubleshooting team knows how to eliminate non-causes and get to the root of the problem. Tiller is nothing without bank feeds and so I would think you would have relationships with multiple aggregators not just Yodlee. I know for a fact that MX aggregation works with Fidelity even with 2FA turned on. So no, my feeds dont work well and i dont feel like Tiller is helping me resolve this. I would appreciate some transparency. Tiller is the only financial manager that works with spreadsheets which is what i want/need but now its been over 3 months of down time. Please dont tell me to import manually - i dont need Tiller for that

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Thanks @joek for the reply (and thanks everyone for filling out the survey - it’s been very helpful, and if you haven’t yet please do!).

I totally understand your frustration.

We rely on our aggregator partners for the bank connections. The specific issue with Fidelity has to do with our aggregator’s ability to pull the data from Fidelity. When it doesn’t work, we can file a service request, and as you know that requires time and patience.

To better serve more banks, we are currently adding an additional aggregator, and one of the core selection criteria is ensuring that we can connect with more banks. This survey is one of many data points that will inform that work. We are also testing aggregators currently and internally have another aggregator running to get real world experience. This is a top priority for all the reasons you’ve stated: you want Tiller to work well with all of your banks. We agree!

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Thanks for the reply. I am very vested in using tiller and I appreciate that you are looking for other solutions to feed issues.

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I’m new as of a couple of weeks ago to Tiller coming from a combination of Mint and my own involved Excel worksheets for more detailed tracking and reporting. While I’m thrilled with the flexibility and power of Tiller, the bank data feed is potentially a deal breaker for me.

One example of a basic issue I am having is that my Fidelity Cash Management account data is not reliably updating in a timely manner. The discrepancy is not a delay of an hour or two, or due to transactions that have yet to fully clear. I’m experiencing delays in updates of cleared transactions not showing up for two days in my Tiller bank feed.

Currently, the data in my Tiller worksheet is 2+ days behind what is actually visible and displayed as cleared transactions on Fidelity. This results in my balance info for my Cash Management Account being wrong by as much as 45%-60% … not for an hour or two, but for multiple days.

A primary benefit for a system like Tiller for me is to be able to see up-to-date balance information across multiple accounts (e.g. Fidelity Cash Management and other similar cash/checking accounts).

I’ve tried going to Tiller.com and doing a manual refresh for each account. That does not work. Even though transactions have cleared on Fidelity and account balances are, as a result, quite different; my Tiller Bank Feed does not show the cleared transactions yet and shows a cash balance that is two days old.

Thoughts? Is there a likely near-term resolution to the bank feed issues? If not, I need to move on to a different approach.

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@msmiller the first step is initiated a refresh of your accounts at my.tillerhq.com which it sounds like you’re doing. Once that is done, you will see on the console that the last refresh time stamp is minutes ago. The next step is then opening up your spreadsheet, then opening the Tiller Money Feeds add-on (Google Sheets) or add-in (Excel), and initiating a fill. That will fill your spreadsheet with your latest data. If you do both the refresh then the fill, you should see updated data in your spreadsheet. Hope that helps, and thanks for chiming into the Community.

@Peter thank you for the timely reply. Yes, I’m following the steps of:

  1. Refresh accounts at my.tillerhq.com
  2. Opening my Tiller Excel worksheet
  3. Opening the Tiller add-in, and finally
  4. Initiating a fill

It finally did update this afternoon. Are there known issues with the Fidelity feed with the feed not working reliably? The involved 4 steps, while not that time consuming, are a bit more cumbersome than even the Mint and CSV export from Mint to Excel that I have been doing. I’m thrilled with the idea of eliminating that step to get my data to Excel, but given the number of accounts I can’t be in a situation where I have to double-check all accounts to see which bank feeds are accurate and which have not correctly updated.

I love the Tiller approach and I"m convinced it will work great for me; other than the – at least for me – unreliable data feed.

EDIT – sorry, I should have been clearer in my first post. The balance data on my.tillerhq.com right after refreshing the data remained incorrect. While I did go through the above steps in trying to refresh the data in my Tiller worksheet, from the balance data on the my.tillerhq.com site it was clear that the balance information for my Fidelity Cash Management account was not being updated correctly. That’s why I was convinced it was a bank feed issue to Tiller, not an issue with Excel add-in or the steps I was taking. Hope that is clearer and helps.

I also have Fidelity accounts and a Cash Management Account there.

Fidelity on Tiller has just started using Open Banking in the last 2-3 weeks. As part of the change to Open Banking, account balances are only updating once a day at approximately 8am Eastern. Balances used to update whenever the console refreshed, and transactions would download the next day (today’s transactions would download tomorrow).

I always Refresh at the console before using the Fill button, hoping to capture as much up to date activity as possible.

Currently, I have some days (not a lot and never consecutive days) where the balances have not not updated and I have not been able to find a pattern to the days when I do not get new balances. Transactions are downloading as expected with the exception of the first couple of Saturdays after Open Banking started. This last Saturday worked perfectly.

I would encourage you to give Tiller and Fidelity continued time to work out the Open Banking changes. I’ve been using Tiller for 4 years now and have found it to be very reliable with Fidelity.

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@martha.rudkin thank you for the helpful information.

If I was just trying to use Tiller for tracking and budgeting then a day or two delay here or there would not be material. I rely on timely info from a system like Tiller to give me a clear, consolidated view of cash across multiple accounts. If I can’t rely on the info to be at least same day accurate, then I end up checking directly elsewhere. While I like the flexibility and power of Tiller, timely and reliable bank/data feeds are a foundational priority for me in whatever system I decide to use. I’ll continue to use Tiller in parallel with the other trials I’m running to see if things improve.

My approach with Mint, which I’m following with some other trials right now, was to use Mint info for a clear, accurate and timely consolidated view. Then I periodically (sometimes daily, more typically weekly) did a CSV export to feed data to the equivalent of the Tiller Transaction sheet in my own MS-Excel worksheet for more involved tracking and analysis.

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I’ve been using Tiller for a little over 2 years. My bank feed from Wells Fargo works reliably. Vanguard transactions also work reliably. I update my Tiller sheet every morning.

This. A thousand times this. Any system that purports to do what Tiller is supposed to do has to be reliable, and that reliability has to be better than “it’s almost correct every 3 days”.

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I’m new to Tiller, fresh from Mint. My main bank is Centra Credit Union. While Mint was slow in updating this bank, Tiller gets the balance fairly quickly, but the transactions don’t update for several hours. I keep getting this:
image

Some clarity about how the feed from Fidelity actually works would be helpful. What time are the updates to the Fidelity balances and transactions actually made available or is this entirely in the control of Fidelity?

Two points from my experience:

  • Tiller data feed updates from Fidelity are highly unpredictable. At least in my case, they are not coming every day at a consistent time (e.g. 8am ET). I have new transactions and different balances that hit my various Fidelity accounts including Cash Management yesterday afternoon, which are still not reflected in whatever the data feed is for Tiller. My guess is that similar to my experience when I tracked this carefully just a week or so ago, I’ll see the updates in my Tiller data feed sometime tomorrow or perhaps the next day.
  • Other system data feeds including Mint, Empower and Monarch seem to just update without material delay.

As the Fidelity updates – at least in my case – do not seem to be at all predictable in terms of time of day, I suspect that this has to do with Fidelity and the open banking standard used for the Tiller feeds.

My feedback as a combination Mint and my own involved Excel worksheet user:

  • Relatively speaking Tiller is fairly expensive. As I’m more than capable of doing my own complex worksheets, what I’m paying Tiller for annually is the bank data feed. I’m more than fine paying for that, but I need the data feed to be, at minimum, predictable and reliable. It currently does not seem to be. I appreciate the quality and breadth of the Tiller and Tiller community worksheets. In my limited experience, however, there seem to be some significant performance hits in the creation of worksheets intended for generic use. The work is impressive, but performance is far worse than a tailored worksheet. My main point here is that for me what I’d be paying Tiller for annually is the bank data feed; not the worksheet models. As much as I want Tiller to be the winner here, unreliable bank data feeds are forcing me to draw a different conclusion.
  • Other systems I’m trialing together with Mint seem to be quite reliable and near real-time in the bank data feed updates. I prefer moving away from the CVS exports that I do to get data into my own worksheet models, but a manual CVS approach is preferable to an unreliable automated approach. With the separate account refreshing that is required in the Tiller Console, the manual CSV export is not that much more time consuming. I can automate the data manipulation and load into my worksheets, so it is just a matter of doing the CSV export.

I have sometime left on my Tiller trial, so I’ll continue to give it a go. As I mentioned, clarity on the specifics of how the Fidelity data feed works specifically will be helpful. With some predictability, I can adapt. If not, then Tiller is sadly just not a good fit.

I’m just doing the trial right now and want to make sure I’m happy with this service. Is there a problem with importing bank information? I can’t figure out how to import more than the past 3 months of data. I’d like to get all of 2023 into the spreadsheet so I can see my full year for tax purposes. Is this even possible because there is no where to click to figure out how to do this. thanks!

Tiller is pretty transparent in their documentation that you should generally only expect to get three months of history automatically downloaded when you start. I suspect that’s a limitation of the data aggregator that Tiller uses. If you want more than three months, you have to import additional history using the csv import workflow referenced in the other thread.

What is the best way to get authoritative, accurate answers about the Tiller bank data feeds?

I’m continuing to evaluate three different options to replace my previous workflow of using Mint with exports from Mint feeding data to my own more involved MS-Excel worksheets. My trial period for Tiller ended a month or so ago, but I decided to just go ahead and pay for the year to see how things improve with the bank data feeds. I think a Tiller based approach with reliable data feeds is the ideal option for me. I am, however, starting to lose confidence. For my use, I need accurate and timely data that I can rely on.

Unfortunately, the challenge I’m continuing to have with Tiller is bank data feeds that don’t update reliably. In looking at the details with the bank feeds, I’ve also discovered that the data is at times reverted to old out of date info (previous balances that are a day old) with time stamps indicating that these day old balances are for a future date. Here’s an example of a recent data feed that was imported through the Tiller bank feed at 4:15 PM Pacific on January 26:
image

You can see the date is one day ahead (Jan 27) with a time that also does not make sense. Making this even more puzzling is that the bank data for these entries are balances from 1/24/2024. These day old balances are time stamped for the future, yet in the Tiller bank data feed the correct balances as of the morning on 1/25 are listed correctly in the Balance History. Since the day old balance data coming in from the data feed is time stamped for the future, it shows as the current / latest balance. I’m confident that the bank data is accurate as it is feeding accurately into the other two services I’m using in parallel with Tiller.

I’d really like to use Tiller, but I’m seeing significant issues with the reliability and timeliness of the bank data feeds that I am not experiencing with the other two services I’m using in parallel.

I’m in the “some feeds don’t work” camp. Two of our three cards are LL Bean cards through Citi, and they dont import. I’ve contacted support, but the answers have been a less than encouraging “we’re looking into it” and “it may take several weeks”. This has been ongoing since Dec 23 when we first started evaluating. They have kindly extended our free access for a few more weeks, but unless we can import all our data, we wont become a paying customer.

I’d appreciate more transparency on Tiller’s plans to address bank data feed issues.

The issues I’m experiencing are significant and frequent. The data feeds seem to have information that flows distinctly for 1) balances and for 2) transactions.

#1 – For balances, I’ve shared with Tiller examples with screenshots of how the bank data feed will have two balance values with the exact same timestamp with the correct, most recent balance being listed followed by an out of date (often by multiple days out of date) balance. As the out of date balance is listed later (but with the exact same time stamp as the correct balance), Tiller is picking up the incorrect, out of date balance. This is a frequent issue and not one that is limited to just one of my accounts.

#2 – For transactions, I’m often going multiple days and even 7+ days without a successful bank data feed for transactions. The Tiller worksheet (“Institution Alerts”) while helpful in providing a listing of known issues, is exceptionally misleading in what it indicates as the “date started” value as it appears to consistently to default to the current date. In my case, Fidelity has not updated for transaction values in over a week; yet the Institution Alerts worksheet indicates that the issue started as of the current date. I’ve been checking this Institution Alerts worksheet now every day for the last week+. Here’s the listing for today:

Not only is this under reporting by a lot the duration of outages, but the estimate for when the issue will be resolved is pushed out consistently ever day. Today, it indicates that the issue is expected to be resolved by 3/10/2024. I get that the ETA for resolution is tentative, but this just appears to be an auto-generated value. It’s like the old Tom Hank’s movie Money Pit with the ETA always being the same timeframe no matter how much time has passed. :wink:

I’m fine paying the $79 per year for Tiller with an occasional outage here and there. I’m growing increasingly concerned though as a new user of Tiller, as accurate and timely updates to my bank data is more the exception rather than the rule. In more than a week, I’ve yet to have a single day of accurate balance and transaction data in my Tiller. This has been an ongoing challenge for me now since I started using Tiller late last year.

*Can we have more transparency on timing for additional bank feed options? *

Expected or targeted timeframe for stabilization of the existing bank data feed option?

Accurate information for when issues started, rather than just having the current date listed?

More descriptive information on what the outage is rather than just “technical issue”? For example, with Fidelity and Netbenefits right now the bank balance updates are actually working fine (for the last couple of days), but no transaction data is included at all in the bank feed data. That’s helpful to know, rather than having to figure it out on my own.

The list of major banks/institutions that have ongoing issues listed in the Institution Alerts worksheet is not small. I suspect it also under represents the issues as I know that I’m experiencing balance update issues with some institutions that are not currently listed.

Perhaps I’m in the minority with wanting to have more frequent, timely updates on balances and transaction data. The need and value for me is in having accurate and timely consolidations of balance and transaction details across multiple institutions. If I had just one bank/institution, I could easily just rely on their site.

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A few replies:

-Mileage varies widely on this issue. I’ve been lucky with my connections. The vast majority of them work the vast majority of the time. My balances and transactions sync on a daily basis. Others are less lucky. I’m not sure there’s any reliable way to know who is going to be more or less lucky as data aggregator connections to different institutions can be as much art as science. (I am curious about your difficulties with Fidelity. It’s had a few hiccups for me, but by and large, it has been one of my most reliable connections and very quick with their adoption of Open Banking standards.)

-Tiller has made it clear repeatedly that their top priority at the moment is introducing an additional data aggregator to supplement Yodlee. They haven’t said when that new aggregator will be rolling out, but we all should be hopeful that that will help with these issues when they occur.

-As for the Institutional Alerts sheet, it’s a double-edged sword for Tiller. I applaud their transparency. I don’t know of any similar service that provides a spreadsheet like that. But the other edge of the sword is that it sets expectations for users. I suspect the resolution dates are simple passed along from Yodlee, who may or may not care how accurate they are. Maybe Tiller would be better off just providing a list of the outages of which they are aware (so that we know that it is an institutional issue, not an individual issue) but stop providing resolution ETAs that may not be all that reliable.

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I confirmed with Tiller support that the Fidelity outage while widespread, does not affect all Fidelity accounts. For those using Fidelity just as a brokerage account and not also for cash management, then the missing transaction data is not likely to be meaningful or even noticeable.

Although all of my accounts (checking, cash management, brokerage, etc) are with major institutions like Fidelity, Vanguard, Chase, Wells Fargo, Schwab, etc the frequency and persistence of data feed issues with Tiller has been the worst I’ve ever experienced. This is surprising to me given Yodlee’s market position. I’ve been using personal financial management software since the old manual entry days of Dollars & Sense through to the early days of Quicken. I moved to Mint when it was still in beta (well before the acquisition by Intuit). With Mint, I basically just used it as a data feed using exports to populate my own worksheets. For a free service, Mint was – at least for me – exceptionally reliable with the bank feed data.

I’m continuing to pilot a number of options for the replacement of Mint including Tiller, Empower, etc. For Tiller, I paid the annual fee, which I’m fine with as just a 30 day trial is not a sufficient amount of time for me. I am primarily using my own MS-Excel worksheets, but with Tiller I’m using the foundation template to feed my worksheets, and with others I’m using exports. My point with all of that background is that the other services I’m using have been, as Mint was, flawlessly reliable with the bank data feed. One of these other services uses Yodlee as the data feed provider.

You’re applauding Tiller’s “transparency” while perhaps misunderstanding my main point. My issue with the Institutional Alerts worksheet is, as I mentioned, that it is exceptionally misleading in what it indicates as the “date started” value as it, at least for the issues I’ve been tracking, consistently defaults to new “date started” date with no resolution of the issue having happened. In other words, it grossly misrepresents the actual outage time. The Fidelity outage for me is 10+ days old now. This Fidelity issue was listed in the Tiller worksheet when I initially checked it. I’ve watched over the last week+ as the “date started” value consistently resets to a new date. Under reporting or mischaracterizing outages like this is, in my view, a bad business practice. It has certainly given me less confidence in Tiller as a company.

How much of the bank data feed issues are Yodlee related vs. Tiller related? Why are my bank data feeds for other services (some of which also use Yodlee) so much more reliable than Tiller?

I’m taking the time to post and to work with Tiller support as my strong preference is to use Tiller as the direct to worksheet data feed is ideal for me. I’ve happily paid Tiller $80 for a year of service, which has unfortunately proven to be far less reliable than other free services. Given my experience with Yodlee based data feeds with other services, I’m skeptical that it is just a matter of Tiller adding a different bank data feed option. Thus, again, my ask for more transparency. In my view and based on my own experience, Tiller is characterizing the bank data feed issues as being due to Yodlee, yet other services I’m using that rely on Yodlee are working just fine. Perhaps it is just randomness of how various accounts are effected, but there is a stark contrast in reliability.

I want the paid Tiller service to be successful. I prefer the business model where I pay for the service and can rely on it being there for years to come. I am, however, growing concerned about the situation for the reasons I’ve mentioned above.

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