"Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

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ObliviousInvestor
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"Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:20 am

This thread is intended to serve as a place for Bogleheads to submit bug reports or make feature requests for the free/open-source "Open Social Security" calculator:
https://opensocialsecurity.com/ <- the calculator
https://github.com/MikePiper/open-social-security <- source code for anybody interested

As it stands right now, here's my "to do" list for the calculator, in (rough) order of priority: (Updated as of 11/29/18)
1) Functionality for child benefits for married couples (Functionality for child benefits for single people is already included.)
2) "Child in care" spousal benefits
3) Option to save table output as an Excel file.

This entire project has been quite a challenge to my beginner-level coding skills. And this is just a side-project for me -- I still have my "normal job" I have to keep doing. So please be patient.
Last edited by ObliviousInvestor on Thu Nov 29, 2018 10:00 am, edited 11 times in total.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am

You are right about slow in Safari. Still running (10 minutes later). Took only a couple of seconds in Chrome.

I'm getting different results then the calculator at http://www.bedrockcapital.com/ssanalyze/. FYI - I just checked. This calculator no longer exists; at least not at this website.

General advice is the same. File a restricted app for spousal benefits at 66. File for own benefits at 70. However it says:
SSAnalyze wrote:1. [Me] will file a "restrict his application" to his spousal benefit to start on 11/1/2019 when he is full retirement age and receive 36.08% of [spouse] full retirement age benefit.
Open Social Security wrote:You file for your spousal benefit to begin 10/2019, at age 66 and 0 months.
Is my begin date 10/2019 or 11/2019?

Also different -
SSAnalyze wrote:2. [Spouse] will file for her own benefit to start on 11/1/2019, the month after she turns 64 and receive 61.73% of her full retirement age benefit.
Open Social Security wrote:Your spouse files for his/her retirement benefit to begin 6/2018, at age 62 and 8 months.
Why have spouse file now instead of waiting until my FRA?

Thanks for your work. Much appreciated.
Last edited by Leif on Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:19 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:17 am

Thanks for the feedback, Leif.
Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am
Your right about slow in Safari. Still running (10 minutes later). Took only a couple of seconds in Chrome.
Hm... Even with an older computer, using IE or Edge (which are slower than Safari) it shouldn't take more than a couple of minutes. So something definitely went wrong here. If you are interested in providing the inputs I could look into it.

Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am
I'm getting different results then the calculator at http://www.bedrockcapital.com/ssanalyze/. FYI - I just checked. This calculator no longer exists; at least not at this website.
SSanalyze disappearing was my original motivation for creating this. I wanted to put another free/simple calculator out there.
Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am
General advice is the same. File a restricted app for spousal benefits at 66. File for own benefits at 70. However it says:
SSAnalyze wrote:1. [Me] will file a "restrict his application" to his spousal benefit to start on 11/1/2019 when he is full retirement age and receive 36.08% of [spouse] full retirement age benefit.
Open Social Security wrote:You file for your spousal benefit to begin 10/2019, at age 66 and 0 months.
Is my begin date 10/2019 or 11/2019?
What is your DoB? Is it perhaps 11/1/1953? If so, it appears that SSAnalyze didn't account for the rule that if your birthday is on the first of the month, you're basically considered to have been born in the prior month. (In Social Security's wording, you "attain" an age on the day before your birthday. So if your DoB is 11/1/1953, you attain full retirement age in October 2019 and can begin a spousal benefit then, via a restricted application.)
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:34 am

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:17 am
Thanks for the feedback, Leif.
Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am
Your right about slow in Safari. Still running (10 minutes later). Took only a couple of seconds in Chrome.
Hm... Even with an older computer, using IE or Edge (which are slower than Safari) it shouldn't take more than a couple of minutes. So something definitely went wrong here. If you are interested in providing the inputs I could look into it.
I'm using a MacBook Pro 2015 running OS 10.9.5 Safari 9.1.3. Processor 2.6 GHz Intel Core i5. Browser & OS are old. Other details provided via PM.
Last edited by Leif on Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:45 am, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:39 am

Just noticed this part.
Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am
Also different -
SSAnalyze wrote:2. [Spouse] will file for her own benefit to start on 11/1/2019, the month after she turns 64 and receive 61.73% of her full retirement age benefit.
Open Social Security wrote:Your spouse files for his/her retirement benefit to begin 6/2018, at age 62 and 8 months.
Why have spouse file now instead of waiting until my FRA?
SSAnalyze did a few things differently, which can lead to different results.

Regarding lifespan, it used a fixed "die at" assumption rather than year-by-year mortality rates. And that assumption was the SSA table's average age at death, plus some years (4 for men, 6 for women, I think). In contrast I'm using a default of the SSA's table, with the option to select other tables.

They may have also used different assumptions with regard to discount rate.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:46 am

Sorry, since we are in at the same time I should start a new message instead of editing the old.

Regarding my spouse retirement date question above I was comparing apples and oranges. We are subject to WEP/GPO. I entered that into SSAnalyze, but not Open Social Security. Once I discovered your Advanced Options checkbox, and entered the data, the dates matched.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Carl53 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:05 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:39 am
Just noticed this part.
Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:06 am
Also different -
SSAnalyze wrote:2. [Spouse] will file for her own benefit to start on 11/1/2019, the month after she turns 64 and receive 61.73% of her full retirement age benefit.
Open Social Security wrote:Your spouse files for his/her retirement benefit to begin 6/2018, at age 62 and 8 months.
Why have spouse file now instead of waiting until my FRA?
SSAnalyze did a few things differently, which can lead to different results.

Regarding lifespan, it used a fixed "die at" assumption rather than year-by-year mortality rates. And that assumption was the SSA table's average age at death, plus some years (4 for men, 6 for women, I think). In contrast I'm using a default of the SSA's table, with the option to select other tables.

They may have also used different assumptions with regard to discount rate.

Similar to Leif's issue but with the 2nd of month for spouse.
Carl53 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 5:36 am
Carl53 wrote:
Tue Jun 05, 2018 7:49 am
A few years ago I recall getting advice (could not find the reference) that for my spouse filing at 62 (birth date of 2nd of month) and me filing restricted spousal with birth date later in same month that I ought to wait until the following month (or perhaps the check was to come the following month). Mike's calculator says file for both in the birth month.
I tried the alternative claiming strategy with several scenarios. Given our base recommended scenario of spouse filing at 62 and me filing a restricted application for the same month, followed by me filing at 70 with spouse filing for spousal in same month, 6 months prior to her FRA.

Most returned a result that I would have expected. Error messages popped up when I tried to file prior to 62 or past 70 for either of us.

I did get an unexpected error message "Per deem filing rules, your spousal benefit date must be the later of your retirement benefit date, or your spouse's retirement benefit date.", under several scenarios that appeared next to the "Your spouse's month/year to claim spousal retirement benefit date.".

1. Message occurred when I changed my filing date to 69 years 11 months and attempted to leave her spousal at age 66. Apparently it is deeming that my spouse must switch from her own benefits filing at age 62 to 65 years 11 months. I did not understand deeming filing to automatically work this way.

2. Message also occurred when I left my restricted spousal at 66, mine at 70, spouse own at 62 and tried to raise spouses spousal benefit to her FRA (66 and 6 months, for maximum spousal benefit).

BTW, thank you for your excellent book.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:16 pm

Carl53 wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:05 pm
Similar to Leif's issue but with the 2nd of month for spouse.

A few years ago I recall getting advice (could not find the reference) that for my spouse filing at 62 (birth date of 2nd of month) and me filing restricted spousal with birth date later in same month that I ought to wait until the following month (or perhaps the check was to come the following month). Mike's calculator says file for both in the birth month.

I tried the alternative claiming strategy with several scenarios. Given our base recommended scenario of spouse filing at 62 and me filing a restricted application for the same month, followed by me filing at 70 with spouse filing for spousal in same month, 6 months prior to her FRA.

Most returned a result that I would have expected. Error messages popped up when I tried to file prior to 62 or past 70 for either of us.

I did get an unexpected error message "Per deem filing rules, your spousal benefit date must be the later of your retirement benefit date, or your spouse's retirement benefit date.", under several scenarios that appeared next to the "Your spouse's month/year to claim spousal retirement benefit date.".

1. Message occurred when I changed my filing date to 69 years 11 months and attempted to leave her spousal at age 66. Apparently it is deeming that my spouse must switch from her own benefits filing at age 62 to 65 years 11 months. I did not understand deeming filing to automatically work this way.

2. Message also occurred when I left my restricted spousal at 66, mine at 70, spouse own at 62 and tried to raise spouses spousal benefit to her FRA (66 and 6 months, for maximum spousal benefit).

BTW, thank you for your excellent book.
Hi Carl.

I'm having a hard time assessing the situation without knowing the inputs.

With regard to the deemed filing message, it currently pops up in some cases that are unintuitive. The calculator is doing the math correctly, but it requires inputs in ways that likely don't make sense to a user. For example if a higher-earner in a married couple has the option to file a restricted application, in order to test a scenario in which they don't file a restricted application, they currently have to set their spousal date to the later of their own retirement claiming date or their spouse's retirement claiming date.

I plan to add a "not filing for spousal" option that should make it easier to use.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:38 pm

Leif wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 11:46 am
Sorry, since we are in at the same time I should start a new message instead of editing the old.

Regarding my spouse retirement date question above I was comparing apples and oranges. We are subject to WEP/GPO. I entered that into SSAnalyze, but not Open Social Security. Once I discovered your Advanced Options checkbox, and entered the data, the dates matched.
I now see that changing the discount rate updates the spouse retirement date. If I set the discount rate to 0 then it matches SSAnalyze. If I set it to 0.01 (the default) then the spouse retirement date is earlier.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by tfb » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:42 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:20 am
One thing that would help me to make this calculator as useful as possible: if you have input about how you want these features to be implemented, that would be helpful.
Copying my feature requests from the other thread:

I would suggest showing sensitivity to the output. For example suppose it shows the computed optimal time for spouse is at age 65 and 6 months. How important is exactly 65 and 6 months? If a sensitivity button/link next to the spouse timing shows a graph/table that shows anywhere between 62 and 68 changes the total NPV by no more than 0.5% (just saying), then I know I don't necessarily have to hit exactly 65 and 6 months but waiting much longer than 68 would make a larger difference.

And if the difference between the optimal and the alternative strategies can be expressed in both dollars and percentage that will also help. Even though it's just a simple calculation, a $10,000 difference looks big but 0.75% gives it a better context.

For the alternative strategy, I think more in terms of age as opposed to calendar month and year. So it will be helpful to me if I'm able to enter the proposed age for claiming (for example 63 and 8 months, not September 2025).
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ray.james » Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:59 pm

One question I have which I am not sure whether it will impact or something a calculator can compute.
If one spouse is in poor health/expected to live shorter than other how does the optimal math change. I think for this to compute we need to give a possible life span.
When in doubt, http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=79939

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Dottie57 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:06 pm

I would want to know how taxable income impacts SS taxability. This may be #1, but am not sure.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Dottie57 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 1:25 pm

I am using a Safari MacBook Air which is about 3 yrs old. It is running Nac OS X 10.13.1 . Safari preferences have not been modified. No extensions applied.

Open Social Security worked just fine.

On my iPad it worked well too.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:21 pm

Thanks for the continued feedback, everybody. :)
tfb wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 12:42 pm
For the alternative strategy, I think more in terms of age as opposed to calendar month and year. So it will be helpful to me if I'm able to enter the proposed age for claiming (for example 63 and 8 months, not September 2025).
I'm curious for people's opinions on the suggestion above.

My original thought was that coordinating spousal benefits (restricted applications in particular) is easier using dates (i.e., so you can just pick the same date), rather than "OK, my spouse is 3 years and 4 months younger than me, which means that when I'm 66, she'll be..."

But if the consensus agrees with tfb, I'm certainly happy to change it.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by tfb » Wed Jun 06, 2018 9:31 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:21 pm
My original thought was that coordinating spousal benefits (restricted applications in particular) is easier using dates (i.e., so you can just pick the same date), rather than "OK, my spouse is 3 years and 4 months younger than me, which means that when I'm 66, she'll be..."
That's certainly true. Maybe it's just me because I was born after the cutoff date for the recent change. I'm OK with using dates.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by mdroz888 » Thu Jun 07, 2018 3:32 pm

Not sure if I missed this in any of the responses, but what about the effect that SS payments have on taxes when you factor in RMD's starting at 70 1/2?
My financial advisor recommended that I work down my traditional IRA balance and delay taking SS until max age of 70 to lessen the tax bite when I start taking RMD's.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 7:20 am

Unfortunately, it's unlikely that I'll be building in any tax-planning functions. The calculator is already pushing my limits as a programmer, just with the complexity of Social Security. The necessary coding to create anything like a true-to-life tax calculator (and incorporate it into an already-complex calculator) would be well beyond my capabilities. :?
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by David Jay » Fri Jun 08, 2018 7:33 am

mdroz888 wrote:
Thu Jun 07, 2018 3:32 pm
Not sure if I missed this in any of the responses, but what about the effect that SS payments have on taxes when you factor in RMD's starting at 70 1/2?
My financial advisor recommended that I work down my traditional IRA balance and delay taking SS until max age of 70 to lessen the tax bite when I start taking RMD's.
If you want to have this discussion (and it is a popular one here on BH), I recommend that you start a brand new thread on the topic. This thread is to discuss application functionality and bug reports for "opensocialsecurity"
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by dconrath » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:27 am

Thanks for all your work with this new tool.

I vote for the following being a high priority addition:
7) Option to select a fixed "I will die at" date.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by MP123 » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:55 am

Thanks for this calculator!

One thing that might be interesting (and easy) to show would be the worst case since presumably it's in your dataset already.

That would give us some idea of how much variance there is depending on what claiming dates are selected. For example, if there's only a $20 difference between the best/worst case it doesn't matter much.

You can sort of work around it by trying different dates and checking the results but that takes a while.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by kingomri » Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm

Phew, you need to componentize that sucker some more. Those are some big files. Single Responsibility Principle!

Do you have any guidelines on contributing to the project for those of us who are programmers? I doubt I'll have the time to do so, but it might be fun if I do find myself with some spare time.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by TravelforFun » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:02 pm

I got my results almost instantly and they match our strategy exactly. Thank you.

TravelforFun

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by FiveK » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:06 pm

dconrath wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:27 am
I vote for the following being a high priority addition:
7) Option to select a fixed "I will die at" date.
Along this line, could the program report the "life expectancy" (i.e., 50/50 chance) being used by the selected table?

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:13 pm

kingomri wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm
Phew, you need to componentize that sucker some more. Those are some big files. Single Responsibility Principle!
I emphatically agree that would make it easier to follow.

I have read that calling to other files or functions slows things down, when occurring in a loop that gets run many times. (And when a married couple is filling out the calculator, there's a loop that gets run several thousand times, which itself is running another loop ~60 times.) And it already takes nearly a couple minutes on some people's computers if they're using IE/Edge. So I was concerned about speed.

But, I'm new to all of this. Perhaps what I read was incorrect. Or perhaps I misunderstood it. Or perhaps (almost certainly, actually) there are other things that could be refactored to speed things up.
kingomri wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm
Do you have any guidelines on contributing to the project for those of us who are programmers? I doubt I'll have the time to do so, but it might be fun if I do find myself with some spare time.
Sorry if this is a dumb question, but, guidelines like what? I really am very new to coding and have never collaborated with anybody else on an app before.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:19 pm

FiveK wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:06 pm
could the program report the "life expectancy" (i.e., 50/50 chance) being used by the selected table?
Yes, some sort of better guidance seems in order with regard to the mortality tables.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:20 pm

MP123 wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:55 am
Thanks for this calculator!

One thing that might be interesting (and easy) to show would be the worst case since presumably it's in your dataset already.

That would give us some idea of how much variance there is depending on what claiming dates are selected. For example, if there's only a $20 difference between the best/worst case it doesn't matter much.

You can sort of work around it by trying different dates and checking the results but that takes a while.
Just checking that I understand your suggestion: You would like to know how much worse the worst strategy is, relative to the best strategy (as measured by present value)?
Mike Piper, author/blogger

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by kingomri » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:37 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:13 pm
kingomri wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm
Do you have any guidelines on contributing to the project for those of us who are programmers? I doubt I'll have the time to do so, but it might be fun if I do find myself with some spare time.
Sorry if this is a dumb question, but, guidelines like what? I really am very new to coding and have never collaborated with anybody else on an app before.
It's your project, so anything you care about in terms of the structure of the code, so if I were to submit a pull request (i.e. "here's some changes I want you to review and approve"), anything you'd want to see before you approve it. For example, some people might require unit tests on all new pieces of functionality, or follow a particular set of code style guidelines.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by MP123 » Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:54 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:20 pm
MP123 wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:55 am
Thanks for this calculator!

One thing that might be interesting (and easy) to show would be the worst case since presumably it's in your dataset already.

That would give us some idea of how much variance there is depending on what claiming dates are selected. For example, if there's only a $20 difference between the best/worst case it doesn't matter much.

You can sort of work around it by trying different dates and checking the results but that takes a while.
Just checking that I understand your suggestion: You would like to know how much worse the worst strategy is, relative to the best strategy (as measured by present value)?
Yes, exactly. You could show the worst dates to claim and the resulting amount (present value) which could easily be compared with the best.

Showing just the best date(s) as you do is great but it would also be helpful to know the worst claiming strategy especially with two people because that gives some indication of which direction to go (or not go) with each person's claiming date if they don't chose the exact best for whatever reason.

It would also very clearly show the value of your calculator, i.e. pick these dates and not these or you'll give up this much.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Name=Random » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:11 pm

My feature request is to handle the widow case. If one selects "widow(er)" the calculator refers one to a blog post, but the blog post doesn't address all widow situations. I just posted on the particular situation i'm considering for my mom viewtopic.php?f=2&t=251266.
Am i missing something and no calculator is needed in this situation?

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:13 pm

MP123 wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:54 pm
ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:20 pm
MP123 wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:55 am
Thanks for this calculator!

One thing that might be interesting (and easy) to show would be the worst case since presumably it's in your dataset already.

That would give us some idea of how much variance there is depending on what claiming dates are selected. For example, if there's only a $20 difference between the best/worst case it doesn't matter much.

You can sort of work around it by trying different dates and checking the results but that takes a while.
Just checking that I understand your suggestion: You would like to know how much worse the worst strategy is, relative to the best strategy (as measured by present value)?
Yes, exactly. You could show the worst dates to claim and the resulting amount (present value) which could easily be compared with the best.

Showing just the best date(s) as you do is great but it would also be helpful to know the worst claiming strategy especially with two people because that gives some indication of which direction to go (or not go) with each person's claiming date if they don't chose the exact best for whatever reason.

It would also very clearly show the value of your calculator, i.e. pick these dates and not these or you'll give up this much.
This is a really interesting idea. It's definitely something I'll be considering. (And you're right that it would be relatively easy to implement -- I think.)

One thing I am potentially concerned about is the volume of output. As noted above, my plan is to (eventually) have the calculator provide benefit amounts (e.g., total benefit by year or some such -- I haven't yet decided) under the suggested claiming strategy. At some point, I worry if the output becomes overwhelming and less useful. (Not that I think we're there yet. But it's something I have in mind to be cautious about as people request additional output.)
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:15 pm

Name=Random wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:11 pm
My feature request is to handle the widow case. If one selects "widow(er)" the calculator refers one to a blog post, but the blog post doesn't address all widow situations. I just posted on the particular situation i'm considering for my mom viewtopic.php?f=2&t=251266.
Am i missing something and no calculator is needed in this situation?
There's really not a need for a calculator, I don't think. If you don't mind, I'll reply in the other thread momentarily.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:22 pm

kingomri wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:37 pm
ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 1:13 pm
kingomri wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 12:52 pm
Do you have any guidelines on contributing to the project for those of us who are programmers? I doubt I'll have the time to do so, but it might be fun if I do find myself with some spare time.
Sorry if this is a dumb question, but, guidelines like what? I really am very new to coding and have never collaborated with anybody else on an app before.
It's your project, so anything you care about in terms of the structure of the code, so if I were to submit a pull request (i.e. "here's some changes I want you to review and approve"), anything you'd want to see before you approve it. For example, some people might require unit tests on all new pieces of functionality, or follow a particular set of code style guidelines.
Hmm. Well, at the moment, (as you can tell by reading the code) I'm really just bumbling through this process, figuring things out as I go. (Again, Social Security knowledge level: pretty good. Coding knowledge level: very rookie.)

Perhaps my one request (not a requirement) would be: try reaching out with what you're thinking about working on, before diving into it. That way if I can be helpful in any way in advance (e.g., explaining how a SS concept works) I have the chance to do so.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by kingomri » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:28 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:22 pm
...
Perhaps my one request (not a requirement) would be: try reaching out with what you're thinking about working on, before diving into it. That way if I can be helpful in any way in advance (e.g., explaining how a SS concept works) I have the chance to do so.
I'd probably just start by refactoring to simplify some stuff and split it up into separate modules. There shouldn't be much (if any) of a performance hit, especially when compared to the nested loop. All the JS is, I believe, compiled down to a single file for deployment (I could be wrong - I haven't used much Angular professionally and until recently I've been more backend focused), so that wouldn't have any runtime impact.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:36 pm

kingomri wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:28 pm
ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 3:22 pm
...
Perhaps my one request (not a requirement) would be: try reaching out with what you're thinking about working on, before diving into it. That way if I can be helpful in any way in advance (e.g., explaining how a SS concept works) I have the chance to do so.
I'd probably just start by refactoring to simplify some stuff and split it up into separate modules. There shouldn't be much (if any) of a performance hit, especially when compared to the nested loop. All the JS is, I believe, compiled down to a single file for deployment (I could be wrong - I haven't used much Angular professionally and until recently I've been more backend focused), so that wouldn't have any runtime impact.
Ah, well, help of that nature would definitely be appreciated.

I should warn you though that the earnings test functionality that I've been working on all week is about to make things even worse. It's a lot of code, and so far I just have it in presentvalue.service, because I was under the impression it was important to do so for performance's sake. :|
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Peter Foley » Fri Jun 08, 2018 4:47 pm

I did not see the following in your list of enhancements. If you think it would be easier to do than a "when I die" option I would be happy if you just had a
"CSO Nonsmoker Preferred Table"
option. Using that table would give the user insight as to how greater longevity would affect the when to start collecting decision.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 4:59 pm

Peter Foley wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 4:47 pm
I did not see the following in your list of enhancements. If you think it would be easier to do than a "when I die" option I would be happy if you just had a
"CSO Nonsmoker Preferred Table"
option. Using that table would give the user insight as to how greater longevity would affect the when to start collecting decision.
It's already available, if you click the "Advanced Options" box at the top. (Or are you requesting that I post the actual table itself?)
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by CurlyDave » Fri Jun 08, 2018 5:05 pm

Mike:

Many thanks for the calculator. These things are a lot of work.

I would love to see a "breakeven date" calculation for the discount rate I choose and various claiming dates.

I think that feature might be of general interest here since many look at delaying SS as a kind of longevity insurance. Essentially delay death indefinitely.

It ran pretty quickly on Safari when I tried it yesterday.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by LadyGeek » Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:00 pm

FYI - With OblivousInvestor's concurrence, the "other" thread: New SS claiming calculator ["Open Social Security" - ObliviousInvestor] has been locked so we can have a single discussion here.

====================
With regards to angular, I can't help with the source. However, I do have software experience.

kingomri - I found this: AngularJS Unit Testing
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Peter Foley » Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:02 pm

I had not looked at the advanced options. You have it covered. What would be interesting to note relates to the longevity tables, not your calculator.

I think you stated that nonsmoker preferred added about 3 years. I could look it up and find out how many years super preferred added. This info could be included as a note on the advanced options page, that's all.

My current plan is 1.8% less than the ideal plan. I'm okay with that.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by rnitz » Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:03 pm

I'm embarrassed to post this, but our circumstance seem to break the calculator. I'm 60 and trying to determine when to collect SS. My wife is much older (74) and claimed 12 years ago because we had young children and they would collect. The age limitation wouldn't allow her age. If we accepted the oldest age the calculator hung and wouldn't calculate. I kept moving the age of my spouse until it worked, but I though I'd mention it to you. Love your posts and your blog (and books).

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:04 pm

Peter Foley wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 8:02 pm
I think you stated that nonsmoker preferred added about 3 years. I could look it up and find out how many years super preferred added. This info could be included as a note on the advanced options page, that's all.
Yes, I agree that better guidance would be helpful regarding selection of a mortality table.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Fri Jun 08, 2018 10:05 pm

rnitz wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:03 pm
I'm embarrassed to post this, but our circumstance seem to break the calculator. I'm 60 and trying to determine when to collect SS. My wife is much older (74) and claimed 12 years ago because we had young children and they would collect. The age limitation wouldn't allow her age. If we accepted the oldest age the calculator hung and wouldn't calculate. I kept moving the age of my spouse until it worked, but I though I'd mention it to you.
If you’re 70 or over, unfortunately the calculator doesn’t (yet) know what to do with you. I designed it so that it won’t suggest a claiming date that’s in the past. (I was thinking that, for example, somebody age 64 doesn’t want to be told that they should file at age 62.) But for somebody age 70 or over, there are no possible filing dates in the future. So the calculator runs and finishes instantaneously -- with absolutely no output. :oops:

A high priority on my to-do list is giving users the option to input a date on which they already filed for benefits. (For example, “Spouse A already filed 6 years ago at age 67. Given that, when should Spouse B file?”)
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:08 pm

A "Save Settings" button would be useful to return later and tweak the values. I did notice on the number fields when I typed the first digit it recalled the previous value. But that does not happen for the drop down date entry.
Last edited by Leif on Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:19 pm

I entered a spousal benefit. I wanted to see what would happen if I don't apply for a spousal benefit as an alternative strategy. However, when I left the spousal benefit date blank I got a message that I must enter a date. Is that #9 on your to do list?
Last edited by Leif on Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by bayview » Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:21 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 7:20 am
This thread is intended to serve as a place for Bogleheads to submit bug reports or make feature requests for the free/open-source "Open Social Security" calculator:
https://opensocialsecurity.com/ <- the calculator
https://github.com/MikePiper/open-social-security <- source code for anybody interested

As it stands right now, here's my "to do" list for the calculator, in (very rough) order of priority:
1) Earnings test functionality
2) Option for one spouse to select an "already filed on" date. (e.g., given that Spouse A already filed two years ago at 62, what should Spouse B do? And should Spouse A suspend benefits at or after FRA?)
2a) Voluntary suspension functionality
3) Birth-years prior to 1947
4) Functionality where one or both parties are already on disability benefits
5) Functionality for child benefits
6) Output that includes monthly benefit amounts as well as total NPV.
7) Option to select a fixed "I will die at" date.
8) Option to include an assumption with regard to "trust fund will be depleted as of [date] and benefits will be cut by [percentage]."
9) Better guidance (and/or input interface) for people who have the option to file for a spousal benefit (e.g., as restricted app) but who want to see what happens when they choose not to do so.

Frankly, I suspect many/most of these things will be challenging to my beginner-level coding skills. (And this is just a side-project for me. I still have my "normal job" I have to keep doing.) So please be patient.

One thing that would help me to make this calculator as useful as possible: if you have input about how you want these features to be implemented, that would be helpful.

For instance, with regard to any of the above features, what would you like the user interface to look like?
A bump and a vote for quick implementation of:
2) Option to enter that one spouse has already filed (before FRA in our case.)

I also hit the bad birthday whammy for the recent changes in filing spousal (October 1954.) Boooo.

And thanks again for taking this whole project on. Much needed, much appreciated, and remarkable for a self-confessed relative newbie at coding.
The continuous execution of a sound strategy gives you the benefit of the strategy. That's what it's all about. --Rick Ferri

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:33 pm

bayview wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:21 pm
A bump and a vote for quick implementation of:
2) Option to enter that one spouse has already filed (before FRA in our case.)
It's definitely next on my to-do list. Having the calculator completely fail to run for a significant group of people is obviously less than ideal. :oops:

I can't say how long it'll be before it's fixed though. The first item on that to-do list (applying the earnings test when necessary) has already taken me a week of full-time work, and it's still probably going to be another couple of days.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by bayview » Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:35 pm

ObliviousInvestor wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 6:33 pm
bayview wrote:
Mon Jun 11, 2018 5:21 pm
A bump and a vote for quick implementation of:
2) Option to enter that one spouse has already filed (before FRA in our case.)
It's definitely next on my to-do list. Having the calculator completely fail to run for a significant group of people is obviously less than ideal. :oops:

I can't say how long it'll be before it's fixed though. The first item on that to-do list (applying the earnings test when necessary) has already taken me a week of full-time work, and it's still probably going to be another couple of days.
I can imagine! :D I’m glad to know it’s near the top of your list though. Meanwhile, I’ve got time. :beer
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by Leif » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:11 am

Leif wrote:
Fri Jun 08, 2018 11:19 pm
I entered a spousal benefit. I wanted to see what would happen if I don't apply for a spousal benefit as an alternative strategy. However, when I left the spousal benefit date blank I got a message that I must enter a date. Is that #9 on your to do list?
?

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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by ObliviousInvestor » Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:14 am

Leif wrote:
Tue Jun 12, 2018 11:11 am
I entered a spousal benefit. I wanted to see what would happen if I don't apply for a spousal benefit as an alternative strategy. However, when I left the spousal benefit date blank I got a message that I must enter a date. Is that #9 on your to do list?
Yes.

For now, you can calculate the desired result by entering the later of your retirement-filing date or your spouse's retirement-filing as your own spousal filing date. If you do that, it will calculate your spousal benefit as zero (assuming your PIA is at least 50% of your spouse's PIA). I understand that this isn't intuitive, which is why it's on the to-do list.
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Re: "Open Social Security" calculator: feature requests, bug reports, etc

Post by MrTimewise » Tue Jun 12, 2018 4:02 pm

Mike,

Just out of curiosity, did you factor into the total benefit computations the initial benefit year's lower monthly payments that can result when claiming between FRA and 70 years. That is, when claiming after FRA but before 70 years, the SSA's uses only the accumulated DRCs as of January of the year of filing. Then, the following January, any DRCs that had accumulated within the year of filing are additionally used to determine total benefits.

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