The Best Excel Tips For Commercial Real Estate Professionals

Excel Tips For Commercial Real Estate

The Best Excel Tips For Commercial Real Estate Professionals

As a commercial real estate professional, Microsoft Excel is an important part of your workday. Despite its frequent use, it’s crazy all the tricks and shortcuts you probably don’t know exist. A common response after showing people some of them are “no way, I never knew I could do that” or “that’s awesome, I could have saved so much time if I knew I could do that”.

Below I describe a few of my favorite and most useful Excel tricks and shortcuts. Keep in mind this is not a comprehensive list, just a few of the ones I find extremely easy and useful that I think commercial real estate professionals can benefit from using. Plus, these are great tips to utilize if you are cleaning up your data prior to importing into our commercial real estate CRM software.

NOTE: The examples shown contain sample screen shots from Microsoft Excel for Office 365. If you have a different version of Excel, then there could be some slight differences however, the same basic shortcuts should apply.

How To Freeze The Top Row

The ability to freeze the top row so that the headings always stay in view, no matter how you scroll through the worksheet can be extremely useful.

On the main menu click ‘View’

Excel Tips For CRE_7

Click ‘Freeze Top Row’

Excel Tips For CRE_8

Scroll down to the rest of the worksheet. The result is, Excel automatically adds a dark grey horizontal line to indicate that the top row is frozen.

Excel Tips For CRE_9

How To Create A Basic Excel Drop Down Filter

Adding a drop-down filter to your spreadsheet is an easy way to see the values in a specific column. When an Excel filter is added to the header row of a spreadsheet, a drop-down menu appears in each cell of the header row. They can be applied in different ways to improve the performance of your worksheet. You can filter text, dates, and numbers. You can even use more than one filter to further narrow your results.

Begin with a worksheet that identifies each column using a header row

Excel Tips For CRE_10

Highlight the columns you would like to filter

Excel Tips For CRE_11

Select the Data tab and press Filter (it is the icon that looks like a funnel)

Excel Tips For CRE_12

There will now be a filter on each highlighted cell

Excel Tips For CRE_13

Tip: Using a filter is a great way to review and clean-up data prior to importing it into a commercial real estate CRM software, like ClientLook.

How To Split A Column of Data

Excel has developed a mind of its own. If you need to separate first and last names (or part names and numbers, or any other data) into separate columns, Flash Fill makes it easy.

Enter the first name or other value in the column next to your data and press Enter to advance to the below cell.

Excel Tips For CRE_1

Now start typing the next name. Flash Fill will show a list of suggested names.

Excel Tips For CRE_2

If it looks good, just press Enter to accept the list.

Tip: To continue typing without using suggested names, press Escape.

Excel Tips For CRE_3

Now enter a last name in the next column, and press Enter.

Excel Tips For CRE_4

Start typing the next name, press Enter, and you’re done.

Excel Tips For CRE_5


Flash Fill is case sensitive which means if you enter a lower-case last name, for example, all the last names follow suit.

Excel Tips For CRE_6

Tip: If you don’t like a result, just press Escape, and continue typing without using suggestions. You can also use Flash Fill to change the case of text.

More about Flash Fill

Your data doesn’t have to be names. Flash Fill works with any data you need to split into more than one column, or you can simply use it to fill out data based on an example. Flash Fill typically starts working when it recognizes a pattern in your data. However, Flash Fill may not always start filling out your data. It works best when your data has some consistency. The more consistency the better it will work.

About the Author

Keith Rudnick

Keith Rudnick - Professional Services Manager, ClientLook, Ltd.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.