Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

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Rick Ferri
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Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Rick Ferri » Sun Feb 24, 2019 6:34 am

Mike Piper will be my guest next week on the Bogleheads on Investing podcast.

Mike runs the Oblivious Investor blog and is the author of several books including Social Security Made Simple. He is also the creator of the free Open Social Security calculator.

We'll be discussing Social Security in this episode. If you wish to ask Mike a general question about Social Security, please post it below. Not all questions may be answered in the one hour podcast.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Call_Me_Op » Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:11 am

Hi Rick,

I would be interested in hearing Mike's thoughts on when a single person should start taking Social Security. Is it always better to wait until age 70 if one can (given that we cannot generally predict lifespan)?
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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by DaufuskieNate » Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:12 am

Here's one: Looking at different age groups, how much should each of them count on Social Security in their retirement plans?

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Skiandswim » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:19 am

Small topic: How does a US citizen qualify or get credit for U.S. Social Security benefits if they were covered under a foreign Social Security system for a portion of their working career?

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by turnberry72 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:42 am

I would like Mike to confirm my understand of the following 2 SS realities:

1. The SS website provides us our monthly benefit -- identifying amounts if we take the benefit early, at full retirement, and at age 70. However, I believe the monthly benefit reflects the 1st year only...and, the benefit will be increase, annually, based upon a COLA. Correct? If so, my understanding is the COLA, historically, ranges between 1.5-3% However, I don't expect the COLA to have a real effect on my cash flow because it will be offset by similar increases in Medicare Part B.

2. My next question is more personal. I am divorced and retired. My companion is a retired public school teacher, therefore, her SS benefit is minimal. However, I am in a committed relationship and live a married lifestyle, but remain single, legally. Off-topic, but this approach enables me to qualify for an ACA subsidy. However, when I reach age 65 (Medicare-eligible) our plan is to get married, legally, enabling the love-of-my-life to receive my SS benefit should I "check-out" before her.

Appreciate your request & Mike's insights.
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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by AlohaJoe » Mon Feb 25, 2019 8:38 am

Call_Me_Op wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:11 am
Hi Rick,

I would be interested in hearing Mike's thoughts on when a single person should start taking Social Security. Is it always better to wait until age 70 if one can (given that we cannot generally predict lifespan)?
Can't you just use his Open Social Security calculator and see what his answer to this question is?

For a single male born on 4/15/1960 it tells me
The strategy that maximizes the total dollars you can be expected to spend over your lifetime is as follows:

You file for your retirement benefit to begin 8/2028, at age 68 and 4 months.
So the answer is clearly, no, he doesn't think it is always better to wait until 70.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by CollegePrudens » Mon Feb 25, 2019 8:56 am

I would love to get Mike's summary on how to think about "one spouse will have social security" and the other spouse will have "a pension (no social security)". He covers the topic in his books, but having no direct experience with pensions I find it hard to retain a mental model of how the two interact.
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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by rosemary11 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:23 pm

in one of Mr. Piper's articles "Ideal Retirement Spending Strategy", Mr piper discussed delaying social security to age of 70 and utilizing RMD as a spending strategy. Do you still consider that strategy as as " ideal spending startegy.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by bikechuck » Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:18 pm

I have used Mr. Piper's SS claiming calculator and I have purchased and read his SS book both of which which confirmed my inclination to have my wife take SS early (at age 64) and to have me apply for a restricted application for benefits on her earnings record when I turn 66 this June. I will then delay applying for benefits on my earnings record until the age of 70. Since I was born in 1953 I meet the requirements for filing a restricted application for benefits. My wife has already applied for and is receiving her benefits and I intend to apply online rather than in person and my question is ...

Is there some recommended wording that I should use when completing my online application for restricted benefits?

Also if I turn 66 on June 11 of this year, can I apply anytime after March 01?

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by catalina355 » Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:55 pm

Skiandswim wrote:
Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:19 am
Small topic: How does a US citizen qualify or get credit for U.S. Social Security benefits if they were covered under a foreign Social Security system for a portion of their working career?
I would be very interested to know the answer to this question.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Quaestner » Mon Feb 25, 2019 11:29 pm

Mike recently had a blog post on "Investing Blog Roundup: Why Delaying Social Security Doesn’t Provide an 8% Return". This might interest folks who often hear of that "guaranteed 8% return" from waiting.

Mike's written several books and made his open social security calculator freely available (at least it was for a while - couldn't access it today). What's this guy's process and motivation? Seems like people might enjoy some of his back story. How painful has that social security calculator been to put together?

His "Oblivious Investor" newsletter has been an appreciated by me. He's very generous with helping others share their ideas without undue self promotion. Maybe ask him about that too?

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Namashkar » Mon Feb 25, 2019 11:53 pm

My wife wil be claiming spousal benefits on my earnings at her FRA in Dec 2019. Is there a specific application form she will use to apply for this compared to what would she use if she was claiming benefits on her earnings? She plan to go to a SS office to do that.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by SemperFi79 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:12 am

When does the podcast become available? Great topic choice.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by cowdoc » Tue Feb 26, 2019 5:17 am

Third vote for questions regarding foreign employment and social security

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by packer16 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 8:30 am

I would like to know if he factors in any changes in Social Security for participants in the future (i.e. only _% of social security due to future financial issues with SS) in the LT planning he provides to clients. I think Larry S. does this & wanted to get Mike's take on this. Thanks.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Silk McCue » Tue Feb 26, 2019 9:46 am

packer16 wrote:
Tue Feb 26, 2019 8:30 am
I would like to know if he factors in any changes in Social Security for participants in the future (i.e. only _% of social security due to future financial issues with SS) in the LT planning he provides to clients. I think Larry S. does this & wanted to get Mike's take on this. Thanks.

Packer
His https://opensocialsecurity.com/ calculator allows you to optionally calculate with the future projected decline in benefits in 2034 of 23% or choose a different percentage for that year. Select "Advanced Options" at the top of the screen to access this and other features such as which life expectancy table to use.

Cheers

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by packer16 » Tue Feb 26, 2019 10:32 am

Thanks for the reference. It would be nice to hear Mike's & Rich's view on this & the factors that have led them to their conclusions as it is a "judgement" call either way.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Oddball » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:03 pm

DaufuskieNate wrote:
Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:12 am
Here's one: Looking at different age groups, how much should each of them count on Social Security in their retirement plans?
Being 40, this topic interests me.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Didymograptus » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:29 pm

WEP question for Mike Piper

I worked for 20 years in the UK and made mandatory National Insurance contributions (NICs) that fed by UK State Pension. Then in 2001 moved to the USA and have made voluntary NICs to the UK State Pension - with my US salary net of tax, social security payments etc. So, if I understand things correctly, when I start to receive my UK State Pension part of my US Social Security will be subject to the Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and part will not. How do I inform the SSA of these two methods that contributed to my UK State Pension and can I calculate the appropriate WEP reduction to my Social Security?

Looking forward to hearing everything he has to say.
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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by book lover » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:43 pm

I would be interested in hearing at what age Mr Piper is planning on taking Social Security and his rationale. Thank you.
Last edited by book lover on Tue Feb 26, 2019 2:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Rudedog » Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:56 pm

I was born in 1956, I retired December 31, 2018, my benefit will be close to the max as I exceeded the SS wage limit for many years,planning on taking SS at age 70. My wife was born in 1959, she earns about $ 15,000 per year at a part-time job. What is the best age for my wife to take SS? Should she take SS at 62, then take spousal benefit when I take SS at 70? Do I need to file anything if she takes SS at 62 ?

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Silk McCue » Tue Feb 26, 2019 5:12 pm

Rudedog wrote:
Tue Feb 26, 2019 1:56 pm
I was born in 1956, I retired December 31, 2018, my benefit will be close to the max as I exceeded the SS wage limit for many years,planning on taking SS at age 70. My wife was born in 1959, she earns about $ 15,000 per year at a part-time job. What is the best age for my wife to take SS? Should she take SS at 62, then take spousal benefit when I take SS at 70? Do I need to file anything if she takes SS at 62 ?
If you haven't tried out his https://opensocialsecurity.com/ tool you should do so. It is well done and will perform a thorough analysis. After running it in default mode first, click on Advanced options and investigate the impacts of other factors.

Cheers

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Re: Questions for Mike Piper - Next "Bogleheads on Investing" guest

Post by Rick Ferri » Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:41 am

Thank you for your questions. We will try to answer as many general questions as time permits. The podcast will be posted by Wednesday evening.

The topic is now closed.

Rick Ferri
The Education of an Index Investor: born in darkness, finds indexing enlightenment, overcomplicates everything, embraces simplicity.

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