Adding a Community-shared Template to Your Personal Spreadsheet

Tiller’s 2019 Builders Challenge created many interesting customer-created spreadsheet solutions.

You might be wondering… “how can I get those solutions— or any other solutions published in the Tiller Community— working with my own financial data?”

Shared links to community members’ Google Sheets install differently than templates integrated into the Tiller Labs add-on’s library.

The recommended approach is first take the community spreadsheet for a spin using its spreadsheet’s included sample data. The user’s test data is likely the easiest way to see what the solution does and what is required to get it working in your own sheet.

If you decide to proceed, it’s shouldn’t be too hard to integrate with your data whether you are a Tiller customer or haven’t used Tiller before…

Sampling a Solution

There are several ways to get your own copy of a spreadsheet. When you click on a link to open a spreadsheet, you might see a preview of the spreadsheet with a blue Use Template button in the upper right.


To get your own copy, just click Use Template.

You will see this button if the spreadsheet URL ends with /template/preview

Other times, you might not see the Use Template button. In that case, click on File, then Make a copy to get your own version.

Importing a Solution for Existing Tiller Customers

There are a few ways to import a solution so it works with your own Tiller data:

  1. You can either copy the solution’s unique sheets into an existing Tiller spreadsheet that you own
  2. You can add a Tiller Money feed with your data to your copy of the solution

Copying a Solution to your Tiller Spreadsheet

Use this approach if you want to integrate a solution into your existing sheet where you’ve already customized data.

  1. Open your personal spreadsheet in a new browser tab
  2. Copy the URL in the address bar
  3. Open the community spreadsheet
  4. Right click on the the tab you would like to copy into your spreadsheet and choose Copy to / Existing spreadsheet
  5. Paste in your spreadsheet’s URL at the bottom of the pane where it says “Or paste web address here:”

Be aware that community solutions with multiple sheets may break if the sheets are not added in the correct order. For example if there is a budget configuration sheet that feeds a budget dashboard, the links in the new sheet will break if the dashboard is added before the configuration sheet that feeds it (Hopefully the author provides instructions… :wink:)

Also, be aware that some authors may not create dynamic links to find where key columns are in your core sheets (i.e. column locations may be hardcoded to specific columns in the author’s sheet that reference the wrong data in your sheet). You may need to make some adjustments to column references if the template isn’t rendering properly in your personal sheet.

Adding Tiller Money Feed to a Spreadsheet

Use this approach if you want to start fresh in the new solution or if you’re unable to successfully migrate key sheets into your personal spreadsheet.

  1. Open a copy of the community spreadsheet
  2. Launch the Tiller Money Feeds add-on from the Add-ons menu at the top of the Google Sheet
  3. Sign into your Tiller account using your Tiller-subscribed gmail account
  4. Choose “Link sheet” to link the spreadsheet to your Tiller account
  5. Place a checkmark next to the accounts you want to link
  6. Click the “Confirm” button
  7. Optionally, use the Tiller Labs Migration Helper to move data from your personal spreadsheet into the new solution

If you have any trouble getting a solution copied into your sheet, reach out directly to author via the original community topic where you found the solution.

Reviewing Community Solutions for Compatibility and Security Risks

We recommend you pay attention to:

  • How many sheets/tabs are required to make the solution functional?
  • Do the new sheets seem to play well with Tiller’s spreadsheet conventions (e.g. Transactions, Balance History, Accounts, and Categories sheets)?
  • Are the solution’s formulas built to adapt to my personal sheet’s column order (which may be different)?
  • Are custom columns required (to be added) in Tiller core sheets?
  • Does the solution rely on “bound scripts” that require me to grant permissions? Be aware that bound scripts present security risks with your account and data. Tiller cannot review sheets shared by users in the community so reviewing code and permissions is your responsibility.

Good luck and please post any questions you have in this thread.