Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

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bobcat2
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Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by bobcat2 » Sat Jul 07, 2018 9:34 am

Financial planner Dana Anspach rates nine free retirement income calculators. The two best rated free calculators were ESPlanner Basic and New Retirement. ESPlanner Basic scored a perfect 9 and New Retirement came close with 8 out of 9. The Vanguard calculator scored poorly coming in next to last ahead of only the Fidelity calculator.

Link to results - https://www.thebalance.com/web-s-best-r ... rs-2388842

BobK
In finance risk is defined as uncertainty that is consequential (nontrivial). | The two main methods of dealing with financial risk are the matching of assets to goals & diversifying.

TravelGeek
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by TravelGeek » Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:08 am

Am I missing something, or is there no detail on how the individual scores were derived? E.g., what specifically leads to a score of 1 for accuracy for Vanguard and Fidelity?

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bobcat2
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by bobcat2 » Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:26 pm

TravelGeek wrote:
Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:08 am
Am I missing something, or is there no detail on how the individual scores were derived? E.g., what specifically leads to a score of 1 for accuracy for Vanguard and Fidelity?
Here are the reviews in more depth - https://www.thebalance.com/retirement-c ... ws-4061796

And here is the report on the accuracy of the Vanguard retirement calculator.
Accuracy: Poor, scoring 1 out of 3. There are only 8 inputs, and assumptions cannot be edited. This creates unreliable results that are not versatile or customizable to a retiree’s specific plan. This program may be useful for someone 10 years or more from retirement, but not for anything more than a rough estimate of retirement income and spending. All results should be taken with a grain of salt.
Here is a quick overview of how in general accuracy of the calculators is derived.
The accuracy component of the retirement calculator scorecard refers to the reliability of the results being displayed.

The worst mistake a retiree can make is planning only for the best-case scenario. After researching several online tools, it is evident that some present only the best-case scenario, which can leave users at risk of falling short of their retirement goals. A calculator with a high score in accuracy will be versatile, meaning that it will offer a lot of various input options that allow you to customize the data in a way that matches your situation.

These options include, but are not limited to, inputs for Social Security, pensions, inflation, advanced expense scheduling, differing retirement dates between spouses, and more. The reason a versatile calculator is more accurate is because it is capturing more data points and minimizing the risk of a simplified output relying on inaccurate data.
BobK
In finance risk is defined as uncertainty that is consequential (nontrivial). | The two main methods of dealing with financial risk are the matching of assets to goals & diversifying.

TravelGeek
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by TravelGeek » Sat Jul 07, 2018 1:19 pm

bobcat2 wrote:
Sat Jul 07, 2018 12:26 pm
TravelGeek wrote:
Sat Jul 07, 2018 11:08 am
Am I missing something, or is there no detail on how the individual scores were derived? E.g., what specifically leads to a score of 1 for accuracy for Vanguard and Fidelity?
Here are the reviews in more depth - https://www.thebalance.com/retirement-c ... ws-4061796
Thank you, BobK. Added to my reading list for today! :sharebeer

jpdion
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by jpdion » Sat Jul 07, 2018 1:47 pm

Try https://www.caniretireyet.com/ Darrow Fitzpatrick has done quite an extensive review of retirement calculators

SGM
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by SGM » Sat Jul 07, 2018 2:44 pm

Thank you BobK for your posts. I have tried most of these online calculators 8 years ago when I was contemplating retirement. I also used I-orp and downloaded a spreadsheet supplied by another BH. I have been reasonably pleased with the calculators.

Now planning is mostly confined to a few spreadsheets showing current and expected future assets, income and expenses. We will be converting some more assets into income streams in the next several years. DW has always been included in the planning, but at least once a year my grown children are now involved.

hesson11
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by hesson11 » Sat Jul 07, 2018 3:42 pm

It's not, strictly speaking, an online retirement income calculator, but I've been wondering if anyone has used the AAII's downloadable Excel spreadsheet available at the link below. I've been playing around with it, and I'm hoping it's accurate, because so far I like what I see. You enter 4 or 5 simple variables in the yellow fields on tab 1 then see your safe withdrawable amount on tab 2 and a graph on tab 3. It's quite flexible. Anyone know how reliable it is? THANKS.
-Bob

http://www.aaii.com/computerized-invest ... calculator

Warning: You download it from the above page, which is a subscription site, and I've just been informed that you only get 2 free visits a month without subscribing.

2pedals
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by 2pedals » Sat Jul 07, 2018 4:46 pm

Thank you BobK

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Peter Foley
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Re: Ratings of free online retirement income calculators

Post by Peter Foley » Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:08 pm

Thanks for the link Bob. Darrow Kirkpatrick's list is much more complete. As Kirkpatrick points out there are calculators with different levels of "fidelity". The MN Bogleheads did a review of calculators at a meeting about a year ago. ESPlanner Basic made the cut. Firecalc was another better rated calculator.

Some of the calculators continue to evolve and improve so it is worth one's time to check them out periodically.

The Retiree Portfolio Model is very complex but it is the best in my humble opinion.

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