Which calculator should I use?

If you don't see an answer, please feel free to ask.

The Most Frequently Asked Questions

Q. I want to provide seller financing. What calculator should I use for tracking payments and calculating a mortgage or loan payoff amount?

A. You can use the Seller Financing. It will allow you to enter individual payments as they occur. It also supports missed, skipped, and extra payments and interest rate changes.

Q. I've lent some money, and now the borrower is paying me back irregularly. Do you have a calculator that will allow me to record the payments as I receive them and show the balance due?

A. You can use the Loan Payoff Calculator. It will allow you to enter individual payments as they occur. It also supports missed, skipped, and extra payments and interest rate changes.

Q. I've borrowed money, and now the lender and I disagree on the amount I owe. Do you have a calculator that will calculate the loan balance?

A. You can use the Loan Payoff Calculator. It will allow you to enter individual payments as they occur. It also supports missed, skipped, and extra payments and interest rate changes.

Q. How do I calculate my annualized rate of return (or the gross return, for that matter) on my stock, option, bond, or mutual fund investments?

A. Use the Internal Rate of Return (IRR) Calculator. Click on the calculator's Help button for a specific discussion on how to set up this calculation.

Q. How do I plan financially for my retirement, a college education, or any other large expense?

A. Three answers. Depending on your exact needs you can try the Accurate Investment Calculator (it optionally allows for taxes, inflation and fees), the Ultimate Financial Calculator (supports irregular investing) and the Retirement Calculator.

General Financial Planning

Q. I just received a $100.00 a week raise. How much will it be worth if I save $60 of it each week after 10 years at a 6% return?

A. It will be worth $42,717. Use the Future Value Schedule Calculator.

Q. My child will attend college in 12 years. What calculator can I use to understand how much I need to save quarterly so that I have the tuition money when I need it?

A. Use this Savings Calculator for some quick analysis. However, if you want a more robust calculator, try this Investment Calculator. It supports adjustments for inflation and taxes.

Q. I invested $10,000 in the stock market. I sold the stocks in one transaction for $14,687 after 27 months. What was my rate-of-return?

A. Your gross return was 46.9% and your annualized rate of return was 18.5%. Either Return on Investment (ROI) or Internal Rate of Return (IRR) if you want to save your work and come back later to enter additional transactions.

Q. I lent my neighbor $45,000 so that he could start a small business. After a year, he will start paying me back $1,067.17 for 48 months. (I'll forgo any interest on the money during the first year.) What is my rate of return?

A. Your gross return is 13.8% and your annualized rate-of-return is 4.5%. Use the Internal Rate of Return Calculator.

Further explanation: In this case, the rate of return is not equal to the interest rate charged on the loan. The lender calculated the monthly payment based upon a $45,000 loan at 6.5% paid in 48 periods. However, he was willing to wait one year for the first payment. Therefore, there is a year when the lender is not earning interest on the loan.

Q. I need a 9% investment return to meet my financial goals. I can buy a single-family home for cash at $200,000. I plan to rent it for ten years at $6,000 annually (what a bargain!) and then sell it for $220,000. Will I be earning 9% on my investment?

A. No. Your return will be about $58,565 short of what you need to earn 9%. Raise the rent! Use the Net Present Value Calculator.

Note that this investment does not meet the investor's requirements as the NPV is negative.

Q. A settlement has been offered in a civil court case. The plaintiff can receive either $150,000 as a lump sum or $20,000 for 8 years, followed by $10,000 for another five years. Which offer should be accepted based on the total return?

A. Assuming you can earn 4.5% on your investments, take the extended payout. Its present value is $170,112. Use the Ultimate Financial Calculator. When the cash flow amount does not changed, you can use the Present Value of an Annuity Calculator.

Q. I'm going to be retiring in 20 years. I can save $1,000 every other month now and, in 5 years, increase that to $2,200 every other month. Then, finally, in 10 years, I will be able to save $3,000 every other month. What will this series of deposits be worth after five, ten, and at the end of the 20 years? What will happen to my savings if interest rates change during the next 20 years?

Q. Once I retire, how long will the savings from the above last me if I want to withdraw $2,500 a month and earn 8% on the money? How much will I have after ten years?

A. Use the Annuity Schedule calculator.

Q. I run a small retail business and need to borrow $50,000 for 70 days to finance my extra inventory for the end-of-year shopping season. What will the interest charge be, assuming I can borrow at 11.5%?

A. You will pay $1,102 in interest charges assuming simple interest. Use the Interest Calculator.

Q. In today's dollars, I estimate I will need $6,000 a month to meet expenses once I retire in 20 years. Assuming that there is 3% inflation for the next five years and then it increases slightly to 4% for the next 15 years, what amount will I need to have equal purchasing power when I retire?

A. You'll need $12,525, inflation adjust to equal $6,000 in today's dollars. Use the Inflation Calculator and do the calculation in two steps.

Q. How much am I worth today?

General Business Questions

Q. Our small business is considering launching a new product. How many items do we have to sell to recover our costs?

Q. Should we lease our office furniture or finance it? How will depreciation impact this analysis?

Loan Planning

Q. One mortgage company is offering me a loan for $150,000 at 8.5% with 0 points. Another mortgage company is offering me a loan for the same amount at 8%, but it has 3 points payable upfront. Which is the most advantageous loan? Is the answer to this question impacted if I only live in the home for five years (thus possibly not recouping the cost of the points)?

A. The Accurate Amortization Schedule calculator supports points. Do two calculations, one with and one without points.

Q. If I wanted to see how much interest I can save on a loan if I make an extra $100 a month principal payment, what calculator should I use?

A. Use the Extra Payment Calculator. But you should also consider investing the money rather than making extra payments. This calculator will tell you which is a better strategy.

Q. What if I want to make an occasional (random) extra payment toward a loan? How much will I save?

Q. I must give my clients a Regulation Z APR Disclosure Statement. What calculator should I use?

A. Use the APR Calculator. It is fully compliant with the Truth-in-Lending Act.

Q. How much money can I borrow if I can pay $1,250 a month and the rate is 6.5%?

A. Loan Calculator or some folks prefer the layout of this Amortization Schedule.

Q. My husband and I have had our eyes on a home. The owner just dropped the price to $375,000. Can we afford this?

If we didn't answer your question, feel free to ask it below.

30 Comments on “What Calculator”

Join the conversation. Tell me what you think.
  • Tima Ebell Anderson says:


    We like your web site and the ease of using the calculator and its completeness in the output it produces, especially for your loan amoritization calculator. My question is if I began my payment schedule in 2019 and run it for say 60 months does the calculations for payments take into account that 2020 is a leap year with 29 days in February rather than 28?

    • Thank you. The answer to your question is, it depends. It depends on the compounding method selected. If you select a compounding frequency based on either weeks or months, then the answer is now. That’s because all months are assumed to be the same length. However, if you select either daily or exact date / simple compound (or continuous) then the answer is yes. These frequencies use exact day counts.

  • Norman Rabek says:

    Do C-Value and SolveIT have automatic updates and bug repairs? Do they require an annual payment or are they a one time purchase?

    • I’m not sure by what you mean by "automatic" exactly. If either is upgraded, a user would have to download and install the update. So I guess you would not call that automatic.

      The price you see $49 / $69 respectively, is a one time charge for the current major version 2.x / 6.x. Updates within the major version are free. When I make a major release, 3.0 / 7.0, those upgrades will most certainly not be free. What will they cost? I have no idea. Prices are set until an update is completed.

  • I m thinking of investing Rs.2.5 million for the next 6 years . and concerned company will pay me back around 23 million. which calculator ishould use calculate my annual return.

    • Is this one investment, and then you wait 6 years, or are their additional investments? If there are additional investments and you want to know your rate-of-return, use this IRR calculator. If there is a single investment, you use the IRR calculator for a single investment too, but the ROI calculator is a bit less involved and it is designed explicitly for one-time-investments.

  • Patrick Allossery says:

    Hi, below is a list of calculators that I require for a financial services website (WordPress) in Canada. You already offer a few calculators that match my list, but I’m looking to acquire/have made a full set. Do you take custom orders? If so, can you contact me to discuss?

    Looking forward to hearing back from you,

    Life Insurance
    •Life Insurance Calculator

    Retirement Planning Tools
    •RRSP Calculator
    •RRSP Illustrator
    •RRSP Loan Planner
    •RIF/LIF/LRIF Calculator

    •RESP Calculator

    Investment Planning
    •Investment & Regular Deposits
    •Investment & Regular Withdrawal
    •Advantage of Early Investing
    •Registered VS Non-Registered Investing

    •Mortgage Qualifier

    • Thank you for contacting me. I replied to your email address.

      • Robin Rickerson says:

        The balloon calculator won’t let me set up a monthly schedule that shows $0 amount paid for the first 23 months but adding interest accrued onto the principal amount with month 24 starting a payment that would amortize $63,750 over 120 months and simple interest. With a balloon payment due month 60. Please help….again these are the terms of the loan:
        $63,750 loan amount
        Starts 2/26/2021
        Simple interest at 6%
        10 year amortization
        1st payment not due until month 24
        Balloon payment due month 60

        • Thank you for clarifying. I assume that you are setting the "First Payment Due" date to the date it’s due in month 24?

          The terms of your loan has what we call an "initial long period," that is, it’s longer than the month which is normally between payments.

          The issue you have is how to account for the interest that is accruing. This calculator has 4 options to give users full control. Please see this setting below the dates:

          "Long Period Options?:"

          You can even have it so there is no interest accrued. But I doubt if the lender would like that.

          If you don’t see how the setting work, you can go to this page. Scroll down and the setting are explained.

  • I want a tool that will help me allocate money. I want to find cases where it really does make sense to pay off a mortgage rather than invest in stocks. For the NASDAQ, I want a 10% chance that it will go down and stay below 70% of its current values for 5 years or more, a 40% chance of it treading water, and 50% chance of it going up 10-20% a year, which it seems to have done forever. So, if someone has $100K and they don’t pay of a $50K mortgage, but instead put $100K in a wide variety of stocks, bonds, and real estate, they may be taking a great risk. I want to quantify that in a way I can explain.

    • Sounds like an interesting model. Unfortunately, I don’t have anything that will do what you want.

      • My friend has $500K and a $100K mortgage at 4.5% (ideas are accurate, details are changed for privacy). With closing costs of $2K to get a mortgage loan at 3%, my suggestion is that he pay off the mortgage clear and then invest the rest in dividend and value stocks split with S&P 500 and technology, in other words, a diversified portfolio. I am making this suggestion because my friend is not financially literate and a dive of 20-50% in tech stocks would ruin him without these two hedges (paying off the mortgage and diversified investing. If I run your investment tool twice, I can generate scenarios for a rising and fall market. I can run it two more times (total of 4) to account for closing or not of the mortgage. I realize that people think of the money freed up by a mortgage as nearly free money, but that is not necessarily so.

  • Need an amortization schedule that I can calculate number of months to pay off balance. I know loan amount, interest rate, and payment amount. I’d like to compare how many months it take to payoff if I should make a lump sum.

  • Gerald GIOVANELLI says:

    I need a calculator to calculate the rate of return on an investment which pays monthly dividends (DRIP) which are not fixed amounts and also to which I periodocally add additionall cash sums at any time.
    I am thinking of the IRR calculator.
    Will that do the job or can you make a suggestion?

    • The IRR calculator is a good choice.

      You can also use the Ultimate Financial Calculator on this site. You can set the UFC for an investment cash flow, and under Settings, select Analytics and turn on IRR. The calculated IRR will appear in the report header. You might like the UFC because of its reports and it is easier, in my opinion, to add and repeat cash flows. It will take more time to learn, however.

      • Gerald GIOVANELLI says:

        Thank you for your prompt reply.
        I think I would like to have the IRR calculator.
        What is the cost and is there a monthly or annual fee?
        How do I purchase it?

        • You’re welcome. Even better, there’s nothing to buy, and there’s no fee for the IRR calculator. Please use it as much as you like.

          • Gerald GIOVANELLI says:

            Hi Karl,

            Thanks again
            I am embarrassed to ask this but I don’t seem to see where the present market value can be entered other than the lower section where the calculations have been made and it does not allow any entrees.
            Can you please help me?

          • No problem. The "Initial Investment" is the present value. You’ll enter the amount and all other additional investments as a negative number, and then all paybacks, dividends, etc. as a positive value. Enter the final value (perhaps current value) on a date you pick for ending value or sale as a positive number. Click on the calculator’s help button for some more details.

  • Winggirl Media says:

    Hi. I have implemented your Savings Calculator on a website. Please can you assist by letting me know if you can “lock” the interest rate so that users can not change them? Thank you!

    • I have not tested this, but the way I would approach it is to have a developer add "disabled" to the HTML element. That should turn the input to gray and prevent users from changing the value you set.

      • Winggirl Media says:

        Hi Karl. Thanks for replying. Please can you help to identify where the element is in the CSS? My developer is struggling to find it. Thanks so much!

        • Elements are not in the CSS. Classes and IDs are.

          Elements are in the PHP file, specifically "calculator.gui.php," located in the "en" folder or directory.

          The developer should look for a line similar to this:

          <input type=”tel” class=”calc-control num” id=”edRate-sv” maxlength=”8″ size=”16″ value=<?php echo $rate ?>>

          I think, but I’m not sure, as I said I’ve not tested it, they will want to add "DISABLED" after the "size" attribute.

        • There are four or five places in the code where this line is located. The one that needs to be edited depends on the size option you have selected for the calculator. (small, medium etc.)

  • I need an amortization that has “Late Fees”.

  • Loring Tocchini says:

    I am searching for a calculator that:
    1) Tabulates multiple financing events over the course of a year(s) with changing interest rates for each event. The events could be monthly, daily etc each with the potential for a different rate of interest for each individual event with the same entity. Must allow for compounding daily, Quarterly, Semiannually, Annually and allow for payments being made over time; regularly or irregularly and apply late fees.
    2) Based on inputs, it must summarize each year’s accumulated interest rate data, and accumulated principal borrowing data (by month if possible) for each financing event individually and in summary in one table. The ability to produce amortization payment schedules with regular payments regular or irregular is needed as well.

    Do you have a calculator that accomplishes the above that can be purchased and used by multiple users?

    • I’m not sure what you mean by "multiple financing events." Are these multiple loans? Or multiple loan advances within the terms of a single credit line?

      The UFC will handle the latter. That is, a credit line loan where there are multiple borrows. The payments and interest rate changes can occur on any day. The calculator will allow you to track as many different credit lines as you need as individual calculations stored in different files. It will NOT aggregate across credit lines however.

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