Getting Rid of Trailing Spaces in Footnotes and Endnotes

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated December 2, 2017)

If Jessica wants to remove extra spaces at the end of a paragraph, she knows she can search for a space followed by ^p and replace it with ^p by itself. This, however, doesn't work for footnotes and endnotes, probably because Word doesn't allow you to "replace" end-of-paragraph markers in such notes. Jessica wonders if there is a way around this limitation so she can easily get rid of trailing spaces in footnotes and endnotes.

It is interesting to note that Word allows you to use Find and Replace to get rid of a trailing space in a paragraph in the body of the document, but it doesn't extend the same capability to footnotes and endnotes—at least not in all versions of Word.

For instance, if you have trailing spaces in both footnotes and endnotes in Word 2007, then Find and Replace works as Jessica experienced—the trailing spaces are unchanged. In Word 2010, Find and Replace gets rid of trailing spaces only in footnotes; it leaves endnotes unchanged. In Word 2013, the behavior is just as it was in Word 2007—spaces remain unchanged in both footnotes and endnotes. If you have Word 2016, then the trailing spaces are removed from both footnotes and endnotes, as they should be. Quite inconsistent!

If you want to be sure to get rid of all the trailing spaces, there are two approaches you can use. The first is to follow these steps:

  1. Click once within the footnotes area. (It doesn't matter where; just somewhere in the area.)
  2. Press Ctrl+A. All the footnotes should now be selected.
  3. Press Ctrl+E. All of the footnotes are now centered, plus the trailing spaces are gone.
  4. Press Ctrl+L. All of the footnotes are now, once again, left justified.
  5. Repeat steps 1 through 4 for any endnotes in your document.

Of course, if your footnotes and endnotes are anything other than left justified, then the above steps will mess up that alignment. In such situations (and if you need to get rid of such spaces quite a bit), a macro presents a better approach. Here's a short little one that that will get rid of the trailing spaces in both footnotes and endnotes.

Sub FootEndnoteTrailingSpaces()
    Dim fn As Footnote
    Dim en As Endnote

    For Each fn In ActiveDocument.Footnotes
        fn.Range.Text = RTrim(fn.Range.Text)
    Next fn
    For Each en In ActiveDocument.Endnotes
        en.Range.Text = RTrim(en.Range.Text)
    Next en
End Sub

Note:

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

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (4833) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, and 2016.

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. ...

MORE FROM ALLEN

Disabled Macros

Do your macros seem to be disabled on your new machine? It could be because of the security settings in Excel. Here's ...

Discover More

Deleting Multiple AutoText Entries

AutoText is a great feature in Word; it helps you put together documents quickly. If you need to delete multiple AutoText ...

Discover More

Using Macros in Protected Workbooks

Having problems with using macros in a protected workbook? There could be any number of causes (and solutions) as ...

Discover More

Do More in Less Time! Are you ready to harness the full power of Word 2013 to create professional documents? In this comprehensive guide you'll learn the skills and techniques for efficiently building the documents you need for your professional and your personal life. Check out Word 2013 In Depth today!

More WordTips (ribbon)

Replacing the Space between the Last Two Words of Each Paragraph

Some replacement tasks can seem daunting, but Word provides some great tools for making just about any replacement you ...

Discover More

When Replace Doesn't Work

Find and Replace is a great tool, but what are you to do if your find or replace doesn't work as you expect? This tip ...

Discover More

Selectively Find and Replace Page Borders

Using Find and Replace you can both find and replace graphics in your document. Replacing graphics selectively is a bit ...

Discover More
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

View most recent newsletter.

Comments

If you would like to add an image to your comment (not an avatar, but an image to help in making the point of your comment), include the characters [{fig}] in your comment text. You’ll be prompted to upload your image when you submit the comment. Maximum image size is 6Mpixels. Images larger than 600px wide or 1000px tall will be reduced. Up to three images may be included in a comment. All images are subject to review. Commenting privileges may be curtailed if inappropriate images are posted.

What is five minus 0?

There are currently no comments for this tip. (Be the first to leave your comment—just use the simple form above!)


This Site

Got a version of Word that uses the ribbon interface (Word 2007 or later)? This site is for you! If you use an earlier version of Word, visit our WordTips site focusing on the menu interface.

Newest Tips
Subscribe

FREE SERVICE: Get tips like this every week in WordTips, a free productivity newsletter. Enter your address and click "Subscribe."

(Your e-mail address is not shared with anyone, ever.)

View the most recent newsletter.