One of the many challenges of both analyzing real estate development deals and managing development projects is understanding and tracking the numerous differing but intertwining work streams. The more a development team takes the time to understand and map out the processes, the better chance there is of the project being successful.

It is with that in mind that I have created this real estate development tracker, or what I jokingly refer to as the poor man’s MS Project. This tracker is a simple, easy to use excel model that allows anyone to create a clear and streamlined visual graphic to help map out and evaluate the development process for a project. It is a great tool to use both internally and to present to potential investors.

You can download the model and follow along with the short video at the bottom of this post.


Real Estate Development Tracker Overview

This model is built to handle all the basic functionality you may need when trying to understand the path towards a successful development project. It gives you the ability to link tasks together; clearly identify independent tasks, dependent tasks, and milestones; insert or delete rows as needed; and evaluate a timeline of up to 60 months.

How To Use This Tracker

Start by simply entering the first task into cell C11 and follow the headers in row 8. Upon filling in the last input in cell H11 you will see the start and finish dates show up to the right and the corresponding cells turn color in the tracker field (columns O to BV). A more detailed explanation of how to use this tracker and interpret the tracker field is in the video. There are also a few fail safes built in to the model that are explained in the video as well. Please watch it to get a full understanding.

Also, you will find a second sheet entitled ‘Print’ that has been preformatted for the user to simply print the results so that the sheet is clean and legible for the end user. The only thing you may want to do is select pages to print in the print options if you are not using the entire tracker.

A Couple Notes on How This Was Built

This tracker functions with a combination of using variations of two formulas – If and Index/Match, conditional formatting, and macros. I would encourage you to open the hidden columns between columns H and N to see the formulas and then look at the conditional formatting of any cell in the tracker field for a better understanding. Everything is open in the model for you to analyze.

Hope you enjoy and find it useful!

Download The Model

To make this model accessible to everyone, it is offered on a "Pay What You're Able" basis with no minimum (enter $0 if you'd like) or maximum (your support helps keep the content coming - typical real estate models sell for $100 - $300 each). Just enter a price together with an email address to send the download link to, and then click 'Continue'. If you have any questions about our "Pay What You're Able" program or why we offer our models on this basis, please reach out to either Mike or Spencer.

Note (especially for Gmail users): The model is sent via email and occasionally is blocked by spam filters. If you don't see the email arrive within five minutes, check your spam folder.

Real Estate Development Tracker

This development tracker allows you to:

  • Plot out the development process
  • Link tasks together
  • Clearly identify independent tasks, dependent tasks and milestones
  • Insert or delete rows as needed
  • Evaluate a timeline of up to 60 months.
I agree with the Terms & Conditions.
By providing your email address and clicking continue, you agree to the Adventures in CRE privacy policy and cookies policy . will not sell or distribute your email address to third parties, but you understand and/or its direct affiliates may email you from time to time including an initial email containing a link to download the aforementioned Excel file.

This Excel file (the "software") is distributed as is, completely without warranty or service support. and its authors are not liable for the condition or performance of the software. owns the copyright and grants users a perpetual, irrevocable, worldwide, non-exclusive, royalty-free license with respect to the software as set forth below. and its authors hereby disclaim all implied warranties. grants the users the right to modify, copy, and redistribute the software and documentation, both within the user's organization and externally, subject to the following restrictions:

1. The users agree not to charge others for use of the software, regardless of whether users have altered and/or improved the software in anyway.
2. In any use of the software, the users agree to acknowledge the authors that developed the software.
3. The users agree to obey all government restrictions governing redistribution or export of the software.
4. The users agree to reproduce any copyright notice which appears on the software and documentation on any copy or modification of such made available to others.
Video Tutorial

About the Author: Michael has spent a decade managing, consulting, and working in various capacities on more than $7BN worth of real estate opportunities. Most recently, he worked at Hines managing large-scale development projects in San Francisco. Michael is currently the Chief Operating Officer and member of the founding team at Stablewood Properties. Michael has both an MBA and Master in Real Estate with a concentration in Real Estate Finance from Cornell University.