Social security is a major part of most retirees’ retirement income plan. For some it can be their entire retirement income plan. The Social Security Administration tells us that 90% of people over age 65 receive social security benefits, and that social security income represents about 38% of the average retiree’s income. The average check is about $1,294.
With such a large percentage of your retirement income coming from this one source, it’s important to know how much money we are talking about, and how much of a difference it can make if you begin receiving your benefits at various ages.
Estimate your benefits
The Retirement Estimator on the social security website provides an estimate of your benefits based on your specific work record. I use this estimator all the time when I am updating clients’ financial plans or trying to do a projection of what their benefits may be in the future.
It’s also a great tool when planning out the best strategy to maximize your benefits. Frequently, I find that after I analyze a client’s social security benefits on the Retirement Estimator, it makes sense for one or both spouses to delay benefits to a later age. Of course, to do that you need to know what your and your spouse’s benefits are at various ages. The Retirement Estimator will tell you.
Estimate your life expectancy
Knowing when to take benefits is just part of the equation. The other part is guessing how long you may live. None of us knows how much time we have left in this life, but most of the clients I work with seem to have a pretty strong opinion. If you want to base your estimate on facts, check out Social Security’s Life Expectancy Calculator.
The Life Expectancy calculator is based on data pulled together by the Social Security Administration. It provides an estimate of how long you may live based on your age and gender. Of course, it’s just an estimate. Other variables such as lifestyle, health history, family history and others will come into play as well.
Social Security Planning
Social security planning is a huge part of most people’s retirement income plan. Like most aspects of retirement planning, what is right for you, depends on a lot of variables.
To get an idea of what your social security benefits may be and how long you might expect to live give these resources a try.
To get a free analysis of your social security benefits and recommendations on how to maximize your social security income, just ASK MIKE and mention “Social Security Analysis” in the subject line.
I will be happy to provide a free analysis of your social security options, including a projection of what your total benefits may be under various scenarios. If you have ever wondered if you should delay receiving your benefits and what the impact might be on your retirement income, this is your chance to find out.
Of course, Social Security income planning is part of the comprehensive retirement income planning services I provide all my clients, especially those nearing age 60 or older.
However, if you are not a client, I would be happy to provide a Free Social Security Analysis for you as well – for a limited time. Please contact me before midnight, September 30th to take advantage of this free offer.
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