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Social Security Benefits - You Need a Strategy

Can you imagine retiring without social security payments?  Sure, some of you with net worth in multi-million dollars range can manage a good retirement living without it, but it still is a decent chunk of money even for wealthy individuals.

There used be a time when 55-year-old is the standard retirement age which in today's world is considered early retirement.  And that change has been reflected in social security program over the years.

As it stand now, the standard retirement age for most folks is 67. However, here is the real kicker.  The time when you can start collecting social security benefit is no longer defined into to just several categories such as 62, 65, 67 and 72.

Applying for social security benefit became just as complex as our tax code, and you will have to use the calculator like the one provided by the Social Security Administration to find out all the options available to you.

For example, the benefit table looks like this for people born after 1960

I have cut out a large section of the table here, because it's getting really long. Continued below.

Most experts are now in consensus on social security benefits not running out of funds abruptly.  It is very likely that we may received reduced amount of money in the future, but out government will not suddenly end social security benefits.

When you do a brief research on the Internet regarding the optimal timing of applying for social security benefits, you will encounter all kinds of conflicting information and advice.

The way I see it, I can related this to buying points on your mortgage.  The similarity is that you will gain more benefit in the long term with one option once you reach the break-even point.
It can take a decade or longer for the larger delayed payments to catch up with the smaller payments you get by taking Social Security early at age 62. So it really comes down to your financial situation and personal preference.

Hopefully, we all make enough money as IT professionals so that we do not have to be dependent on the social security checks too much.

You may also want to check out a recently published book titled, "Get What's Yours: The Secrets to Maxing Out Your Social Security".  It contains a lot tips and resource you won't find easily on the Internet.  It can help you maximize you benefit by learning ins and outs of the system.
Social Security Benefits - You Need a Strategy Reviewed by Brandon on Sunday, February 22, 2015 Rating: 5

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