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Goal Seek

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Using Excel Goal Seek to Vary Results

Goal Seek can be used when you know the result of a formula, but not the input value required by the formula to decide the result, reverse calculation.  You can change the value of a specified cell until the formula that is dependent on the changed cell returns the result you want.  Goal Seek is found under the Tools menu, and is perfect for mortgage or loan queries. See Also: Multi-Cell Goal Seek and Excel Multiple Target Seek

Download a workbook example to see an example of how Goal Seek can be used to vary the term of at loan repayment.

For Goal Seek to work effectively, a base model must to be set up in your Worksheet with the data and formulas already in place and working.

The cell that contains the formula that you want to settle is called the Set cell. The value you want the formula to change to is called To value and the part of the formula that you wish to change is called By Changing Cell.

The Set cell MUST always contain a formula or a function, whereas the Changing Cell must contain a value only. Not a formula or function.

Goal Seek must always be activated when you are clicked on the Set cell as the Set cell will always be the formula that you wish to settle.

Once clicked on your Set cell, select Tools>Goal Seek to see the Goal Seek dialog box. You will see a marquee around your Set cell.

As you have already selected your Set cell, you need make no changes in the first box. Click or tab to the To value: box  and type in a value. Click or tab to the final box By changing cell: and select the collapse dialog button to the right of the box to collapse the dialog box. Select cell that you wish to change. Collapse back through to your dialog box and click OK (Note your cell reference is now absolute).

As soon as you select OK you will see that Goal Seek re-calculates your formula. You then have two options, OK or Cancel. If we select OK the new term will be inserted into our Worksheet. If you select Cancel, the Goal Seek box will disappear, and your Worksheet will be in its original state.

Download a workbook example to see an example of how Goal Seek can be used to vary the term of at loan repayment.

See Also: Multi-Cell Goal Seek and Excel Multiple Target Seek

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