When planning for retirement, a common consideration is when to start drawing on Social Security benefits. While it’s tempting to start as early as possible, there are compelling reasons to wait. In this article, we delve into five essential reasons why you might want to delay taking your Social Security.
Life Expectancy Matters
For You: If you project a longer life expectancy, holding off ensures that your monthly Social Security payments are maximized. After all, if you’re going to get numerous payments over the years, isn’t it wise to have each as high as possible?
For Your Spouse: Another vital angle to consider is if your spouse might outlive you, especially if you’re the higher earner. Delaying the initiation of benefits means the surviving spouse will get a larger survivor benefit, further securing their financial future.
Insufficient Retirement Savings
Waiting to take Social Security can be a lifeline for those who haven’t saved enough for their golden years. The more extended your working years, the more you can contribute to your retirement nest. Simultaneously, each year you delay increases the amount you’ll get from Social Security.
You’re Still Working and are below Full Retirement Age
If you’re working and haven’t reached the full retirement age, certain restrictions might reduce the Social Security benefits you receive. But even if you’re above the retirement age and don’t necessarily need the additional income, consider this: your benefits can grow by roughly 8% annually if you delay until age 70. That’s an attractive growth rate, especially if the funds aren’t immediately necessary.
You have a Non-Working Spouse
If your spouse hasn’t worked or hasn’t accrued enough for significant Social Security benefits, their spousal and survivor benefits will depend on your earnings. By waiting longer to take your Social Security, not only does your benefit increase, but the potential survivor benefit for your spouse also gets a boost — again, growing by about 8% each year until you reach age 70.
An Irresistible Growth Rate
The magic number mentioned throughout this article is 8%. From the age of 62 to 70, your potential Social Security income grows by this percentage annually. In today’s volatile financial world, it’s hard to find a guaranteed 8% growth rate, be it in bank accounts or the stock market. By merely waiting to take Social Security, you’re effectively locking in this impressive rate of return — without paying commissions or fees to anyone.
When it comes to making decisions about Social Security, it’s crucial to understand the math. Study your options, consider the benefits of waiting, and then make an informed decision based on your circumstances.
For more insights into avoiding common retirement pitfalls check out our YouTube channel, YouTube.com/@RetirementRevealed.
Listen to Retirement Revealed on: