About ESPlannerBASIC

Laurence Kotlikoff Professor of Economics Boston University and President of Economic Security Planning, Inc.

Welcome to ESPlannerBASIC -- a simplified, on-line version of my company's patented, personal financial planning software. ESPlannerBASIC generates life-cycle spending, saving, and life insurance suggestions, which can be used as educational input as you develop your complete financial plan.

You can use ESPlannerBASIC free of charge IF you don't sign in. Your data will be saved for a few hours. To save your data on an ongoing basis, please click Purchase to register and buy a $40 license. Then always login before running the program so the program will know to save your inputs.

We also have modules, costing $20 each, that permit you to run the program in Upside Investing mode and in Monte Carlo mode. And, if you purchase the Monte Carlo mode, you can add Dimensional Fund Advisor assets to our current set of assets for an extra $20.

After running ESPlannerBASIC, please visit www.esplanner.com consider purchasing our equally user-friendly, but much more advanced planning programs -- ESPlanner, ESPlannerPLUS, and ESPlannerPRO.

We've sold ESPlanner and ESPlannerPLUS to thousands of households from all walks of life. ESPlannerPLUS permits you to run Monte Carlo simulations showing how your investment and spending strategies will affect the variability of your future living standard over time.

ESPlannerPRO is our only product licensed for use by financial planners and other professionals. It includes several features beyond those included in ESPlannerPLUS. A growing number of financial planners across the country are using ESPlannerPRO with their clients.

You may also want to check out our Social Security maximization tool at www.MaximizeMySocialSecurity.com. This tool calculates the Social Security benefit collection dates for you and your spouse/partner that give you the highest present value of benefits, including retiree, spousal, survivor, child, parent, and divorcee benefits.

Our life-cycle planning software programs are the only financial planning tool developed by economists. I started the company after years of academic research on financial behavior. In the course of these studies, I realized two things. First, economics' approach to financial planning is very different from the conventional approach; it generates more sensible advice. Second, economists have an obligation to help people make proper life-cycle financial decisions.

To economists, all questions in personal finance boil down to your living standard. Will this job mean more spending power? Is this house affordable? Which mortgage should I take? When can I retire? When should I take Social Security? Should I use a regular or Roth IRA? Am I getting a fair divorce settlement? Should I pay down my mortgage? All of these are living standard questions. If your financial planning program can't calculate your living standard, it can't answer these questions.

Since our programs directly calculate your sustainable living standard, they can answer these questions in seconds. Living standard refers to discretionary spending per household member (adjusted for the fact that two live more cheaply than one and the relative costs of children). Discretionary spending is the amount you can spend after meeting all your "off-the-top" expenses on taxes, college, mortgage payments, 401(k) contributions, etc.

The big payback from using ESPlannerBASIC and our more advanced programs is being able to identify relatively safe ways to materially raise your living standard. Our case studies at ESPlanner show you many options in this regard.

I hope you enjoy using ESPlannerBASIC and will spread the word about our software to your friends, relatives, and colleagues. In particular, please let high school math and economics teachers know about the program. They should find it a very valuable teaching tool. Finally, please encourage your employers to license ESPlannerBASIC as a fringe benefit for employees. Such a license would permit you and your colleagues to login to ESPlannerBASIC and save your inputs on a permanent basis.