Getting Started with Excel 2022

There is a lot of good advice here, but I wanted to focus on those who are new to Excel and saw this totally amazing workbook that can do just about anything you need with your finances, and it is extendable.

So, by now you have probably signed up for the free trial, maybe linked a few accounts, and downloaded your Excel workbook, and saved it to your favorite location. If you are staying with Microsoft then you probably have a free OneDrive that you can save the workbook to and share or access your workbook from different devices, not your only choice but it is included with Office. (Note: You must enable editing to continue)


Highly recommend following the Get Started sheet to:

  1. Add the Tiller Money Feeds add-in.
  2. Select the accounts that you want to link to this workbook.
  3. Use the Fill Sheets button to download your transactions to the Transactions Sheet.
  4. Install AutoCat with the Install AutoCat button, (currently new to Excel but an amazing tool).
  5. This is important so take your time. Choose the categories you want to track in your budget. Personalize it to you, add or subtract (Alternatively instead of removing the line, just select Hide from the Hide From Reports Column, and you can always use it later.)

The minimal you need to do is add the category that is important to you, pick a group it belongs to (you will see these on you Monthly Budget Sheet), pick if it is an expense, income, or transfer, and finally put the amount you want to budget for the category in the Jan column. (It will autofill the rest of the months.)

If you are the type of person that wants to see progress (I know I am), you can now click on the Monthly Budget sheet and you will see your Planned Budget. (There is a drop down in the upper right so you can choose which month to view).

  1. This is where the magic happens. You need to fill the categories of the transactions in the Transactions sheet. (Enter AutoCat – probably needs its own discussion)
    (HUGE HINT, especially if you have a large enough monitor and bad or old eyes)
    Here is a link ( ) Cybersecurity Alert: Never blindly click on links. Make sure you know where the link is taking you. Google (excel-view-sheets-side-by-side) if you want to choose your own link.
    Here is the gist if you just want to try it:
  2. Select the sheet you want to view (pick Transactions)
  3. Go to the view menu in Excel and choose New Window. (You will now have a new window of the same workbook)
  4. Arrange the two windows however you like. (I like to use the Windows button + the left or right arrow to quickly arrange mine side by side)
  5. On the second window select the AutoCat sheet.
  6. Now you can copy the description of the transaction or enough of it to make it unique for AutoCat to work correctly.
  7. The minimum you need is the Category, which you can use the dropdown to choose one of the categories you entered on the Categories sheet and put something in the Description Contains column.


  1. You can do this a couple ways. You can choose the full description (but some banks may change the end or part of the description for every transaction.), You can pick part of the description, and if you don’t want a lot of things in your AutoCat (Call it OCD), you can pick the category and then in the description put different items in quotes separated by a comma.
  2. For those that want instant satisfaction (Me), you can run AutoCat from the Tiller Add-In to the right (assuming you have not closed it) If you did, go to data menu in Excel and reopen.
  3. You should see the categories fill in on the Transaction sheet after you run AutoCat. Also, you can peek at the Monthly budget sheet to see the transactions populated in the Actual Column. (Don’t forget to choose the month in the dropdown)
  4. If you are in a hurry, just categorize (with AutoCat) the current month, although it will also categorize transactions other months as well that match.

Congratulations you now have the start of a functional budget (for accounts that are linked to your Tiller account). Continue to Fill transactions through the month and categorize them and at the end of the month you should know where your money went and how much you spent per category.


Thanks for sharing this @mr_signal ! It’s a great and concise guide to getting started with the Tiller Foundation Template for Microsoft Excel :slight_smile:

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