Friday, June 22, 2018

Monte Carlo Odds


I modified the LIF payment, I had accidentally added the excess payment twice. which brings the LIF payment down several thousand dollars.

I still have the massive contradictory outcome of a 44 probability (Monte Carlo) and a $223,813 in her LIF at death.


If you look at the second chart on the Income Forecast tab of the "View" page, you'll see that because LIF withdrawals are restricted by the maximum, the client cannot meet the retirement income goal from CPP, OAS and LIF.

Either you have to reduce the goal or find another source of income to make up the small shortfall each year.

The only cases where the Monte Carlo simulations succeed are those with very high returns and the high asset balances permit higher maximum  withdrawals that together with CPP and OAS meet the goal. That's why the probability is low.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

What happens in year of death


It would be helpful to understand in some detail what the Retireware processing and assumptions are for the year of death. This is particularly so in the case of death of one spouse years before the other in a joint plan. I haven't come across this documented anywhere, and am having some difficulty interpreting our plan results.

There seem to be a range of options in the real world, particularly for the registered funds, which can be transferred to the surviving spouse without taxation.

I guess one approach for the program, the most conservative case, is to handle the death of one individual as an independent event - the remaining balance of registered funds are liquidated and the full value taxed, and the non-registered investments are liquidated and the realized capital gains taxed. The total resulting after tax value can then be handled in a variety of ways.

Then if by will and/or legal requirement some or all of that remainder is left to the surviving spouse, then that amount can be explicitly added by the user (ie me) back into the estate of surviving spouse as special case income.

In any event once I better understand what the program is assuming then I can do whatever is necessary to handle the numbers as per the will and estate plan.


It's as you describe, on the first death, registered and locked-in funds flow tax-free to the surviving spouse. For non-registered funds and property other than the personal residence, the after-tax value goes to the surviving spouse. So it's assuming that the spouse leaves everything to his/her surviving spouse. There is no option in the program to allocate a portion of the estate currently.

Tuesday, June 12, 2018

DIY Version


Looking for retirement planning software for personal use, but with a level of sophistication. Does your software:

  • Perform detailed tax calculations based on the Canadian Income Tax Act?
  • Support income by type (earned income, investment income – dividend [Cdn and foreign], CG, CPP, OAS, etc)
  • Track assets over multiple investment accounts – registered, non-registered etc.
  • Allow for multiple family members (husband/wife) and track them separately (especially for tax purposes)


Yes, the tax calculations are accurate. The type of investment income calculated depends on your asset allocation. Based on this, the program allocates investment income among interest, dividends and realized and unrealized capital gains.

Your assets are divided according to type: registered, locked-in, TFSA and non-registered. You cannot enter each account separately (for example, if you have two RRSPs).

The program calculates other types of income such as pensions, CPP, OAS. However, it does not show separately the various types of investment income year by year, only as a whole.
You can do a combined plan for you and your spouse.

If you subscribe, you will get a refund within the first 30 days if it does not meet your needs. In order to get your refund, simply email

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Locked-in Funds in New Brunswick


I have a plan with locked-in funds under the New Brunswick pension legislation. It shows that LIF income will be over $12,000 in her first year of retirement, but the max allowable is around $8500 in for a NB legislated plan.  Can you explain how the program appears to allow for more than the max allowable amount?


The maximum is higher in 2017 because the program uses in this case the one-time maximum special withdrawal rule in New Brunswick pension legislation of the lesser of 3 times the maximum or 25% of the account value to meet the retirement income goal.

Saturday, June 2, 2018

Defined Benefit Pensions


For the section that asks this question:

"Savings in Addition to Employer Plans - Annual Amount Saved in Registered and Non-Registered Assets"

Should I be calculating this as including the amount that goes into the Defined Benefit plan since that reduces the RRSP amount that I can contribute? i.e. the amount here = Defined Benefit + my RRSP contributions + TFSA contributions


You should enter the defined benefit contributions on the Pensions page on the Current Employer Plan tab. The program figures out a pension adjustment that reduces the RRSP room based on the estimated annual accrual calculated for the defined benefit pension.

The amount for this field is any savings for retirement purposes  other than through an employer pension, including Group RRSP, defined benefit, defined contribution.

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Start RRIF Withdrawals at Age 62


I changed my plan to retire later when I'll be 62 years old. Now it's showing a RRIF withdrawal from age 62. I thought this was illegal - I don't even have a RRIF. Please can you tell me how to sort this out? Previously it was showing withdrawals first from non-reg funds.

I've already set the option under Source of Income under Registered to start withdrawals as late as possible to save on taxes.


You can open a RRIF at any age. Check on the Options page to ensure that you selected to start RRIF withdrawals as late as possible. It's on the first tab.

On the Financial Information page on the Registered tab, you have selected purchasing an annuity from a life insurance company under RRSP Options. Is this your intent? If so, the RRSP balance is used to purchase a lifetime income. So it will not work to defer the RRSP. You'd have to change it back to RRIF and it should then only be accessed when you're 71.

Friday, May 25, 2018

How to Determine Required Savings


I purchased RetireWare to derive an accurate number for annual savings for my wife and I given a set of retirement goals and lifestyle requirements.

I have an account set up under the email above but feel that something isn't quite right with the calculations after playing around with the numbers.

Here are my questions:

1. My wife is currently not working as our kids are young. She plans on starting to earn income again next fall. That income will likely increase again once our 2yr old son goes to school full time in 3 more years. I can't seem to figure out a way to incorporate that graduated income for my wife into the calculations. Can I do that in RetireWare?

2. Our plan was to have an "active" retirement until I hit 75 and my wife hits 65 (ie. 15yrs into our retirement as currently planned in RetireWare) and then switch to a less active retirement. How do I account for a graduated level of retirement expense in RetireWare?

3. It seems that the "Principal Residence" under Financial Information is being double counted for my wife and I. I entered the "Current Market Value" of our house under my wife's profile *and* my profile. Should I be entering it once to avoid double counting it?


1. You could add the income under 'Other Income' and can enter up to four periods, but this type is for after retirement and does not allow for saving for retirement. Instead you can enter the average income she'll earn between now and retirement, considering $0 for a coupe of years, a part-time wage after and full-time when the kids are in school full-time.

2. On the Forecast page under 'Retirement income target', there is a section called 'Advanced'. There you can apply reductions or increases to your retirement icnome goal for up to three periods during retirement.

3. Yes you should enter under one spouse or enter 50% of the value under both.

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RetireWare is a Web-based risk management and retirement planning software for individuals and financial advisors that's easy-to-use, full of rich visuals and comprehensive analysis. Try today and take advantage of our unconditional money-back guarantee. Know how much retirement income you can have. Build a plan and know where you stand.

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Founded in 1994, Equisoft offers advanced digital business solutions to its clients in the insurance and wealth management industries to support their growth. The firm develops and markets innovative front-end applications (InsuranceElements and WealthElements) featuring industry-leading user interfaces and state-of-the-art technology.

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