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How to Calculate Due Dates in an Excel Spreadsheet

Updated April 17, 2017

Whether you are working on a project with numerous tasks or want to keep track of when your bills are due each month, you can set up Excel to calculate due dates for you. Excel is known for its ability to create complex formulas and equations, but you can use the same capability to calculate dates as well. To calculate due dates, you will need to know starting dates.

Open an Excel spreadsheet you will be using to calculate due dates.

Create a column for current dates or starting dates. For example, if you have a number of tasks for which you want to find due dates, enter a heading such as "Start Date" in cell "A1."

Enter your start dates in the rows below your heading. For example, if your first task starts on June 1, 2011, you would enter "6/1/2011" into cell "A2."

Create a second column heading called "Due Date" in column B or next to the first column.

Enter your due date formula in the first empty cell under the "Due Date" heading. Enter an equal sign, then click the cell that has the start date, enter a plus sign and finally, the number of days you want to add. Press "Enter." For example:

\=A2+30

In this example, you are adding 30 days to the date in cell "A2." Excel displays "7/1/2011" as the due date.

Copy the due date formula to the other cells in the "Due Date" column to have Excel calculate due dates for all your starting dates using the same number of days.

Tip

If your dates are not showing up as dates, select your columns, then click the "Home" tab on the ribbon, then click the down arrow next to "General" in the format number window in the "Number" group. Select "Short Date" or "Long Date" to have Excel display the cell as a date.

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About the Author

Danielle Cort has been a freelance writer since 2008, specializing in psychology, health, education and parenting. She has published articles in "Family" magazine. Before becoming a freelance writer, Cort worked in the public policy research sector, conducting research, creating surveys and budgets. She holds a Doctor of Philosophy in social psychology from the University of Massachusetts.