How do I model accelerated IRA withdrawals prior to taking Social Security?


I'm retiring at 63 and won't take Social Security until 70. The Esplanner financial model withdraws an even amount of money from my IRA from 63 until death and that results in low incomes taxes from 63 until 70 and then much higher taxes after that when I start collecting SS. (85% of my SS income will be taxable).

Esplanner also draws down heavily from my *after-tax* assets between 63 and 70 to maintain my overall income which is reasonably balanced over our retirement lifetime.

A more tax-efficient strategy would draw more heavily from the IRA during those years from 63 to 70 when I am *not* collecting SS. Then, once I hit 70, there will be much less in the IRA that will be taxed by RMDs. I can use after-tax assets after 70 to even our income and living standard. More pre-tax income would be taxed at a lower marginal rate.

Is there a way to make esplanner employ this strategy? If not, then please add this to your feature suggestion box.


Dan Royer's picture

Yes, use the "special withdrawals" tab to create a stream of withdrawals from 63-70 that is higher than you see there now. So if it indicates, for example, that your smooth withdrawals are 20K each year, try using 25K or 30K or whatever. You'll need to try different amounts until you see the desired effect you are looking for. Note that the special withdraw amount is not "extra" above the smooth amount. The amount you indicate simple replaces the smooth amount.