Many seniors rely on Social Security as a major source of income. However well you save for retirement, you may still require these benefits to help supplement your savings in later life.
As a result, it’s critical that you file for benefits strategically. The monthly benefit you receive will be influenced by your earnings history, but your filing age will also play a role.
File at The Right Time
Full retirement age, or FRA, is the point at which you are eligible to receive your full monthly Social Security benefit. Depending on when you were born, your FRA is either 66 or 67.
However, you are not obligated to enroll in Social Security at the Federal Retirement Administration (FRA). You can apply for Social Security benefits as early as age 62, and you have the option to put off your application indefinitely if you wish.
However, if you claim benefits before your FRA, they will be reduced by one month per month. After age 70, there is no longer any financial incentive to put off filing for longer than one month past the FRA deadline.
When it comes to claiming Social Security, it’s critical that you understand how your benefits will change based on your age. The sooner you file, the greater the impact on your benefits will be, even if it seems like a minor inconvenience at the time.
Because of this, you may not be motivated to delay your filing for too long. However, you may be surprised at the difference that a few days of delaying action can make.
You’re still not persuaded? In this scenario, a $1,600 monthly benefit at the age of 67 would be available to you. Depending on your filing age, here is an example of what your monthly benefit might look like:
|Filing Age||Monthly Benefit|
If you wait until your full retirement age (FRA) of 67 to file for Social Security, there isn’t much of an impact. If that is the case, you will see a decrease of just over $100 in your monthly benefit. It’s fine if you file a year early if you have a good reason.
However, if you wait until you’re 62 to file, you’ll see what happens to your monthly benefit. You’ve suddenly lost hundreds of dollars a month in income. You may not be able to take that kind of a hit.
It is impossible not to notice the difference between applying for benefits at 62 and waiting until 70. You’re looking at a monthly gain or loss of $864 in this case. That’s a yearly income difference of over $10,000.
What’s the Right Filing Age for You?
Despite the fact that claiming Social Security at the age of 62 or 63 may reduce your benefits, it may be in your best interest to do so. Or, if you’re strapped for cash, you could wait until at least a year after FRA before filing to see if you can get a raise in your monthly benefit.
When to file for Social Security benefits is a personal decision that is highly dependent on your current financial situation and long-term objectives. Before signing up for Social Security, it is important to know what your monthly benefit will be and to make sure that it is enough to maintain the retirement lifestyle you desire.