Simple Excel – Learning the Excel List

photo credit: terry

We all know Excel has tricks.

(don’t forgot the usual guide and homework!)

Sometimes we forget just how useful they are. Today we’re focusing on the Excel list function, a relatively simple tool with database-saving application. It’s part of Excel’s data validation functions, and here’s how it works:

The Excel list function creates a drop-down list of predetermined terms and restricts a cell’s input to only terms on that list. For example, a list can be as simple as ‘apartment’ or ‘commercial’. If you click the drop down list, you can select either of the commercial real estate class types.

Here are the practical applications:

1. congruence: If you’re thinking, wait a minute, it’s easy enough to just type either term, apartment or commercial, then you’ve overlooked the fact that excel will never let you type other than the term, for example ‘appartment’ or ‘comercial’ or any typos associated with the term once the list has been set. This removes the adverse effects of typos on database summarization. For example, if your excel database is searching for every time ‘Alan’ listed a property, you’ll never overlook the time ‘Alen’ listed the property.

2. limits: A list limits undesired options. For example, if you want a cell only to contain U.S. States, creating the initial list of States removes the possibility of entering anything but a State.

3. ease: A list quickly displays all possible options.

4. advanced application: Did you know Excel can base a list’s output on the selection of a prior list?

It sure can. Mastering the technique of the list function in Excel is appropriate for every level of Excel user. It’s especially important for the application of Commercial Real Estate in Excel.

This is our free Excel List Function Guide, it’s a short, excel based application that will make you the master of the Excel list in no time. Enjoy, and once you’ve finished, make sure to drop us in a list of your own, preferably the preferred go-to Excel guys kind of list.

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