Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Excel versions: 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. If you are using a later version (Excel 2007 or later), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for later versions of Excel, click here: Relative VBA Selections.

Relative VBA Selections

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated April 17, 2021)
This tip applies to Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003


It is a common thing to need to select cells in a macro. What if you want to select a range of cells relative to your current location, however? It so happens that there are several ways you can accomplish this task. For instance, if you want to select a single cell, relative to your current location, you can use the Offset method. As an example, if you want to select the cell that is two rows down and one column to the right of your current location, you could use the following:

ActiveCell.Offset(2, 1).Select

If you want to select a larger range than just a single cell, you can combine the Offset method with the Address Method to find actual cell addresses, and then use your findings to actually select the range itself. For instance, you might want to select the range that begins two rows down and one column to the right, but then extends for four rows and three columns. You can accomplish this in the following manner:

StartCell = ActiveCell.Offset(2, 1).Address
EndCell = ActiveCell.Offset(5, 3).Address
Range(StartCell, EndCell).Select

An alternative method of accomplishing the same task is to use the Resize method. In this technique, you would first select the upper-right cell of the desired range (as was done in the first use of Offset, above), and then use Resize to change the size of the selection. This is how it is done:

ActiveCell.Offset(2, 1).Select
Selection.Resize(4, 3).Select

Note:

If you would like to know how to use the macros described on this page (or on any other page on the ExcelTips sites), I've prepared a special page that includes helpful information. Click here to open that special page in a new browser tab.

ExcelTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Excel training. This tip (2298) applies to Microsoft Excel 97, 2000, 2002, and 2003. You can find a version of this tip for the ribbon interface of Excel (Excel 2007 and later) here: Relative VBA Selections.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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