# Dealing with Long Formulas

Anyone who has been using Excel for any length of time knows that some formulas can get quite long. Excel handles them-as long as they are constructed correctly-but they can be a bear for humans to understand. Even after you develop your own formulas, you may have trouble understanding them weeks or months later.

One way to make formulas a bit easier to understand is to use Alt+Enter in the middle of the formula to “format” how it appears on the screen. Consider, for instance, the following long formula:

=+IF(\$A2=0,0,IF(\$B2=4264,\$B2=4895,\$B232760,(\$B2*0.128-1623.49)*\$C2/365)))))

This formula could also be written in the following manner, with Alt+Enter being pressed at the end of each line in the formula:

=+IF(\$A1=0,0,
IF(\$B1=4264,\$B1=4895,\$B132760,(\$B1*0.128-1623.49)*\$C1/365)))))

Now, the broken-up formula appears on five lines, even though it all appears in a single cell. The broken-up formula works just as if it were all on one line.

In addition, if you copy the complete broken-up formula from the Formula bar and paste it into a worksheet, each line in the formula is pasted into a different cell, making it easy to test each part. This is much quicker than copying and pasting parts of the original formula.