• Insurance Agent Jennifer Lang

Three Key Questions to Answer Before Taking Social Security

Social Security is a critical component of the retirement financial strategy for many Americans, so before you begin taking it, you should consider three important questions. The answers may affect whether you make the most of this retirement income source.


  1. When to Start? You have the choice of 1) starting benefits at age 62, 2) claiming them at your full retirement age, or 3) delaying payments until age 70. If you claim early, you can expect to receive a monthly benefit that will be lower than what you would have earned at full retirement. If you wait until age 70, you can expect to receive an even higher monthly benefit than you would have received if you had begun taking payments at your full retirement age. The decision of when to begin taking benefits may hinge on whether you need the income now or can wait, and whether you think your lifespan will be shorter or longer than the average American.

  2. Should I Continue to Work? Work provides income, personal satisfaction, and may increase your Social Security benefits. However, if you begin taking benefits prior to your full retirement age and continue to work, your benefits will be reduced by $1 for every $2 in earnings above the prevailing annual limit ($17,040 in 2018).¹ If you work during the year in which you attain full retirement age, your benefits will be reduced by $1 for every $3 in earnings over a different annual limit ($45,360 in 2018) until the month you reach full retirement age. After you attain your full retirement age, earned income no longer reduces benefit payments.²

  3. How Can I Maximize My Benefit? The easiest way to maximize your monthly Social Security benefit is to simply wait until you turn age 70 before receiving payments.

The good news is you don't have to go it alone. Licensed financial professionals at JenniferLangFinancialServices.com are ready to help you.



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  1. Social Security Administration, 2018

  2. Social Security Administration, 2018

The content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information. The information in this material is not intended as tax or legal advice. It may not be used for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties.


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