BuildWorks Basic is built around a Quicken Premier Home & Business accounting file that is fully configured for the small contractor, with customized reports, memorized transactions, and a complete chart of accounts.
BuildWorks Basic is built around a Quicken Premier Home & Business accounting file that is fully configured for the small contractor, with customized reports, memorized transactions, and a complete chart of accounts.

Compared with Timberline or Great Plains, Intuit's QuickBooks Pro is a simple entry-level accounting system. But "simple" is a relative term. For a small contractor who just needs a way to replace the checkbook in his back pocket, even QuickBooks can be overwhelming. For such a builder, Synapse Software (www.synapsesoftware.com) has gone back to the future and released a new member of its BuildWorks product line that might be exactly what the doctor ordered: BuildWorks Basic ($395) uses Intuit's Quicken Premier Home & Business instead of QuickBooks Pro for accounting and includes several other critical management tools in a value-priced package. And for all of you who are sick and tired of wasting time "estimating" jobs for tire-kickers, Synapse also has released its unique BuildWorks Quick Quote estimator as a stand-alone product ($229). Add them together and you have a solid financial management system that will grow with you.

BuildWorks is not a single piece of software. Instead, it is a suite of tools, built with Microsoft Office and Intuit's accounting products, that work together to create a complete construction management system, and it has evolved over the years into several editions with varying capabilities. The Pro editions of BuildWorks take QuickBooks and...

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