How to use excel EDATE function


EDATE function in Excel is a type of DATE/TIME function. It used to obtain a date in future and past on the exact same day of a specified date. It returns a serial number which provides a date which is after or before the specified date. It is used to find expiry dates and due dates which fall on the exact same day in the month, similar to the date on which it is issued. For a date in the future a positive value of months is used and for past negative value is used. Its main purpose is to change in terms of months into future and past. 


=EDATE( start_date, months )


start_date:-A starting date in a valid excel format, can also be entered using DATE function.                                                                              

Months:-Number of months , positive or negative depending upon whether it is in future or past of the start date.


  • In General formatting of Excel, Dates are in form of serial numbers. Serial number 1 is for 1 JAN, 1900 and the number increases from thereon. For getting it in readable form use the formatting function.
  • Use a positive value of months for a date in future and a negative value for a date in past.
  • If starting date is not in valid format, excel returns #VALUE! Error.
  • If month is not in integer form, it is reduced.


In this example we increase and decrease number of months to get the desired dates. EDATE function gives value in form of a serial date as shown in column C. 
It is then formatted in column D in form of mmm  d,  yyyy  .


In this example we find the same date next year from a specified date. Here we enter 12 in place of months argument.

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