3 Great Reasons To Take Social Security Benefits At 62 personal Finance

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You’ve probably heard that delaying Social Security is the ticket to the biggest check — but that’s not telling the whole story. Stopping for a larger monthly benefit can actually reduce your lifetime benefit in some cases or cause you other financial problems. So if any of these three situations apply to you, then signing up at 62 is better for you.

1. You don’t expect to live long

Your social security benefits Your earnings are based on your working years and your age at the time you signed up. you have to wait till you Full Retirement Age (FRA) — 66 or 67, depending on your year of birth — to claim the full benefits you’re entitled to based on your work history.

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If you start earlier, you’ll receive more years of benefits, but your checks will be smaller. If you claim 62 with an FRA of 67, you only get 70% of your full profit per check. Those with an FRA of 66 get 75% of their full profit per check by claiming it immediately.

Delayed benefits increase your checks until you reach 70. Then, you qualify for a maximum benefit of 124% of your full benefit per check if your FRA is 67, or 132% if your FRA is 66. This could delay Social Security. Smart choice, but it all depends on your life expectancy.

People who expect to live into their 80s or older usually benefit from delayed Social Security, but those with a shorter life expectancy do not. If you try to avoid your biggest possible check at 70 and you die at 68, you will receive nothing from the program. Even those who expect to live to their mid-70s will probably get a sizable lifetime benefit by signing up immediately at 62 rather than delaying.

2. You really need the money

delay in social security It doesn’t make sense if you need to pay your bills. Yes, delaying may result in major investigations in the future. But if you do, you can also collect late fees on your obligations and debt. It’s just going to create a financial nightmare for you, and the big Social Security check in the future may not be enough to get you out of it.

If you want to delay benefits, you can first explore other options to cover your bills, such as taking a part-time job or getting a loan for a big purchase. But if that doesn’t work, apply for Social Security. Signing up early can mean a small profit for a lifetime, but at least you won’t have to worry about debt collectors.

3. You are a low-income spouse

Married couples should plan their Social Security-claims strategy together to maximize their benefits. The right approach depends on each individual’s life expectancy and the couple’s finances. If they are struggling with their bills or a person doesn’t expect to live long, it makes more sense to claim early, as discussed earlier. But there’s another scenario when it’s smart to sign up at 62.

When one partner has earned significantly more than the other over their years of work, the lesser earner may want to sign up early. Their Social Security benefit can help the couple cover some of their expenses while the higher earner delays raising their checks. Then, when the higher earner is ready to claim, the Social Security Administration automatically assigns the lower earner a . will switch to Spouse’s Benefit If it’s worth more than what you already get.

But this method is not ideal for every couple. If both people have earned the same amount over their lifetime, it is usually better for both people to delay the benefit as long as possible. A spouse’s benefit — which is up to half your spouse’s benefit on their FRA — probably won’t be much larger than what you qualify for yourself in this scenario, so claiming early locks in a smaller benefit for you. Will be done.

When you sign up for Social Security, it’s your call, but the later is probably better than the earlier in these situations. If you don’t like the idea of ​​shortening your check, you can delay benefits for a few months before signing up. Hopefully this won’t put too much strain on your wallet, and it will boost your checks permanently.

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