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Present Value Calculator Help

Present value is the opposite of future value (FV). Given $1,000 today, it will be worth $1,000 plus the return on investment a year from today. That's future value.

If you are schedule to receive $10,0000 a year from today, what is its value today, assuming a 5.5% annual discount rate? The "annual discount rate" is the rate of return that you expect to receive on your investments. This is a personal number. There is no "right" answer, though you want to use a realistic number based on your investment history. The discount rate will vary from individual to individual.

Enter $10,000 as the future value (never type the currency symbol or commas), set the start date and end date for one year's duration and set the discount rate to 5.5%. Assume monthly compounding and a 365 day year.

The PV is $9,466.04. You could accept $9,466.04 today in lieu of $10,000 in a year. The two amounts are equal.

Date Math: If you change either date, the number of days between the two dates will be calculated. If you enter a positive number of days, the future value date will be updated. If you enter a negative number of days the present value date will be updated.

23 thoughts on “present-value-calculator

  1. This format is a little hard to use.

    • Care to elaborate? What do you mean by format exactly? The layout? More importantly, what do you think would make it betters?

  2. The format is fine. I have used many PV calculators and this one works great. Thanks for this useful tool!

  3. The print button is not working.

  4. Do you have a PV calculator for someone trying to buy out their car lease?

  5. Thanks for the tool. It’s simple to use.

  6. How is the annual discount rate determined?

    • What "discount rate" to use is up to the user. That is, there is no absolute right or wrong.

      When determining the discount rate, you could use several approaches. If you invest in the stock market, and for you, you earn on average 8% per year, you can use 8% for the discount rate to compare the present value with the pv of the stock market return.

      If you want to compare PV to something safer, you might use the US Treasury 10 year rate, which currently is at about 3.07%.

      If you care to say how the PV is going to be used or why you are calculating it, perhaps I’ll have a few more thoughts about what rate to use.

  7. The PV of a 15 year commercial lease.

    • Thanks for the detail. That makes a difference. This is not the right calculator to use. Please use PV of an Annuity Calculator. This calculator is to be used when the user wants a PV of a single amount due sometime in the future. A lease, of course normally has monthly or at least periodic payments, which is what the recommended calculator will handle.

      Now, for the discount rate, assuming this lease is going to be purchased (or sold), the buyer and seller may want to use different discount rates.

      The buyer may feel that mutual funds and the lease have similar risks (mutual funds loss of value and the lessee not paying). In that case, the buyer would use their average mutual fund return rate, say 8%, to calculate the PV of the lease. After all, why would they pay more to purchase the lease if they can earn 8% in mutual funds? The buyer will always want to use the highest discount rate they can justify because the higher the discount rate, the lower the PV – or the lower the cost of the asset being purchased. In other words, the higher rate is conservative for the buyer.

      On the other hand, the seller may feel the tenants are reliable and the cash flow is safe. They’ll ask themselves why take a risk and put the money into the market where there is the risk of losing principal? In that case, the seller might just want to park the money in a 2% CD, so they’ll use 2% as their discount rate. Lower rates result in a higher PV. For the seller, the lower rate is more conservative. They’ll need to be paid a higher price so they can put the proceeds from the sale in a lower yielding CD to reduce the investment risk.

      Does this help?

    • Let me add one more thing since you might be saying to your self with these discount rates, no deal will ever happen. The seller will want too much and the buyer won’t be willing to pay.

      Of course, we know, deals do happen. The sell could just as easily think, I’m only making 8% on my initial investment, and now I have the opportunity to make 20% on my capital. So they’ll use 20% for the discount rate and any price the buyer is willing to pay above the PV using 20%, the seller will be happy.

      Or the buyer could think, I don’t invest in the market, and the best I can do is earn 2% in CDs. I need to make more. They decide they want to make at least 5%, so that’s the discount rate they use. Any amount the buyer pays that is less than the PV @ 5% is even a better deal than what the buyer was willing to pay.

      So an amount that is between the sellers 20% rate and the buyers 5% rate is a deal that makes both parties happy.

  8. can you show the solution please

  9. Can this calculator be used to determine the PDV for someone receiving weekly payments for life? I know my expected lifespan.

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