The VBA SLN function is a financial function used to calculate the straightline depreciation of an asset over a specific period. It is primarily used in accounting and finance to determine the value of an asset over time. This function allows for the easy calculation of depreciation amounts and can be used to determine the actual cost of an asset.
VBA SLN Function – Purpose, Syntax and Arguments
Purpose:
The main purpose of the SLN function is to calculate the depreciation of an asset on a straightline basis. This means that it assumes an equal amount of depreciation for each period, which makes it a popular method for calculating depreciation for accounting purposes.
Syntax:
SLN(cost, salvage, life)
Arguments:
 cost: the initial cost of the asset
 salvage: the estimated value of the asset at the end of its useful life
 life: the total number of periods over which the asset will be depreciated
Example:
Let’s say we have a piece of equipment that costs $10,000 and has a salvage value of $2,000 after 5 years. We can use the SLN function to calculate the annual depreciation of the equipment as follows:
SLN(10000, 2000, 5)
The result of this function would be $1,600, meaning that the equipment depreciates by $1,600 per year over the fiveyear period.
Remarks:
 The SLN function assumes that the asset depreciates evenly over its useful life. This means that the depreciation amount will be the same for each period.
 This function also assumes that the cost of the asset and its salvage value are known and does not take into account any changes or fluctuations in these values.
Important Notes:
 The SLN function is only available in VBA and is not supported in other Office applications such as Excel.
 When using this function, it is crucial to ensure that the units for the cost, salvage, and life arguments are consistent (i.e., all in the same currency or time frame).
The VBA SLN function is a useful tool for calculating the straightline depreciation of assets for accounting purposes. It makes the process more efficient and straightforward, allowing for accurate calculations and financial reporting. With the correct inputs and understanding of its purpose and arguments, this function can be a valuable asset for financial analysis and decision making.
Understanding VBA SLN Function with Examples
The SLN function, which is used to calculate the straightline depreciation of an asset over a specified period of time. This function takes into account the initial cost, salvage value, and useful life of the asset to determine its depreciation expense.
In this blog post, we will dive deeper into the SLN function and understand its usage with the help of examples.
Example 1: Basic Usage of the SLN Function
The basic syntax for the SLN function is:
=SLN(cost, salvage, life)
Where:

 cost: The initial cost of the asset
 salvage: The salvage value of the asset at the end of its useful life
 life: The useful life of the asset, in number of periods
To better understand this, let’s say we have a company that purchased a new machine for $10,000 with a salvage value of $1,000 and a useful life of 5 years. We want to calculate the annual depreciation expense for this machine using the SLN function. The formula would be:
=SLN(10000, 1000, 5)
This will give us the annual depreciation expense of $1800 for the machine. The SLN function uses a straightline depreciation method, which means that the depreciation amount remains constant each year. In this case, the machine will depreciate by $1800 each year until its useful life ends.
Example 2: Using the SLN Function for Multiple Assets
One of the advantages of using the SLN function is that it can be used to calculate the depreciation for multiple assets at once. Let’s say our company has purchased three machines this year, each with different costs, salvage values, and useful lives. We want to calculate the annual depreciation expense for all three machines in one go.
To do this, we can use the SLN function as an array formula. The formula would be:
=SLN({10000, 15000, 20000}, {1000, 2000, 3000}, {5, 8, 10})
Note that we have entered the values for cost, salvage, and life as arrays, enclosed in curly brackets {}. This will give us an array of three values, representing the annual depreciation expense for each machine. So, the result would be $1800 for the first machine, $1675 for the second machine, and $1700 for the third machine.
Example 3: Handling Negative Salvage Value in the SLN Function
There may be cases where the salvage value of an asset is greater than its initial cost, resulting in a negative depreciation amount. In such cases, the SLN function will return a #NUM error. To handle this, we can use an IF statement within the SLN function.
For example, let’s say we have a computer with an initial cost of $2000, but its salvage value is estimated to be $3500 after 3 years. The formula would be:
=IF(3500<2000, 0, SLN(2000, 3500, 3))
This will check if the salvage value is less than the initial cost. If it is, it will return a depreciation amount of 0. Otherwise, it will use the SLN function to calculate the depreciation amount. In this case, the result would be $500, which is the maximum depreciation amount that we can claim.
Example 4: Dynamic Calculations using the SLN Function
Another useful feature of the SLN function is that it can be used with dynamic inputs, allowing us to make changes to the cost, salvage, or life of an asset and get the updated depreciation amount automatically.
To demonstrate this, let’s say our company has purchased a new office building for $1,000,000 with a salvage value of $250,000 and a useful life of 40 years. We have created a spreadsheet to track the annual depreciation expense using the SLN function. However, if we decide to sell the building after 25 years, we can simply change the useful life in the spreadsheet, and the depreciation amount will automatically update.
This not only saves time but also reduces the chances of errors in calculations.
Example 5: Using the SLN Function with Conditional Formatting
Conditional formatting is a useful tool in Excel that allows us to highlight certain cells based on a set of criteria. We can use the SLN function along with conditional formatting to identify when an asset reaches its salvage value.
Let’s say we have a machine with an initial cost of $15,000, a salvage value of $2000, and a useful life of 8 years. We can format the cell containing the calculated depreciation amount using conditional formatting to turn red when it reaches $2000, indicating that the asset has fully depreciated.
To do this, we can use the SLN function within the conditional formatting rule as follows:
=A1=SLN(15000,2000,8)
Where A1 is the cell containing the calculated depreciation amount. This will highlight the cell when its value matches the calculated depreciation amount, i.e., when the asset has been fully depreciated.
In conclusion, the SLN function in VBA is a powerful tool for calculating the straightline depreciation of assets. It allows for dynamic calculations, handling of negative salvage values, and can be used with conditional formatting to enhance its functionality. By understanding its usage and examples, users can leverage the SLN function to streamline their financial calculations in Excel.