How to Use the Recurring Expenses Template

Overview

The Recurring Expenses Template helps you see where your money is going regularly on a consistent basis. It will pull in your transactions and score the transactions that appear to be recurring as well as allow you to easily pull up all the transactions for a given description.

Screenshare Video

Watch the screenshare demonstration to see how this template works.

Installation

  1. Open your Tiller Money template
  2. Install or launch the Tiller Community Solutions add-on
  3. Open the add-on and choose "Builder Contest” from the tags dropdown on the Explore tab
  4. Click on “Recurring Expenses”
  5. Choose “Add to Spreadsheet”

How to Use the Template

The template should automatically populate with transactions that it believes to be recurring. If this is not the case, don’t worry we’ll cover how to fix that in the Advanced options section.

Recurring Transaction View (columns A thru I)

This view shows you the grouped up version of your transactions, with some high level data points that you will want to know. While most of the columns are pretty self explanatory, here are some more details for the more interesting ones.

  • Score: This is the score we use to surface the more likely recurring items to the top of the list. To compile this score we look at the frequency of transactions and standard deviation of the expensed amount.
  • Description: This is the transaction description. All expenses are grouped by this name.
  • Frequency: This is on average how many days we go between seeing the transaction again. Most of the items in this list will be on a monthly frequency (30-31 days), but we’ll also try to identify other common frequencies too.

With this data you can now review these recurring expenses and do what you will with that knowledge.

Transaction view (columns K thru M)

This view simply allows you to see the date and transaction amounts for a particular transaction description. This is just an easier way to see what transactions are being used to calculate each line item in the recurring transaction view. Select the description you are interested in within the M6 cell.

Advanced Options

If you expand columns N thru AF you will see the guts behind this recurring tab. Here is what each area does:

  • Settings: In columns O and P you will see two different settings: Days to include and Blacklist.
    • Days to include: This defaults to 1,000 days, but you can change this to whatever you wish. If any transaction is more than X days to include from today’s date, it will not be considered in this tab’s calculations.
    • Blacklist: If you have some transactions that are being pulled in that you would like this tab to ignore, simply add the items one cell at a time in cells O9 and below. You can add one description per cell and remember that the description has to match the description you want to not include exactly.
  • Data tables: In columns R thru AA, you have the underlying data tables that powers the recurring view. Nothing here should be changed.
  • Sheet references: In the event that your data is not loading into this tab correctly you will want to update your sheet and column references in cells AC:6 thru AD:8.

Final notes

Thank you for taking the time to check out my template and I hope this is able to help you identify recurring expenses so you can make the best financial decisions in the future!

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