When to start collecting Social Security will be one of the most important questions to answer for your retirement. Trying to determine the best time is a difficult undertaking that will depend on your personal circumstances and desires. You can collect any time between 62 and 70 but you’ll want to consider several factors.
- Can you live well without Social Security
- Are you going to work?
- Are you going to earn more than $17,640 a year?
These are critical questions you need to answer before making a decision.
How long will you live? Consider your family and personal medical history. How long do you have to provide for yourself?
What do you want? Do you want to stop working and spend time with the grandchildren, go fishing, or just enjoy the things you love to do? Many people feel these years may be the best they have left and they want to spend them enjoying themselves. I might take benefits early and not work for four years and travel. When I reach my Full Retirement Age, I can work without losing any income and feel OK about not having missed out on anything.
- How long will you continue to work?
- Do you have a source of health insurance until you are 65 and Medicare starts?
- Can you pay your bills? Do you need the income from Social Security now?
- What is your personal and family medical history? How long do you have to provide for yourself?
- Do you want to enjoy these years as they may be the best you have left?
- What about family? If your spouse and dependent children can only collect when you are collecting, you may have to consider what is best for all of you.
Deciding when to apply and collect Social Security benefits can be a complicated decision. There are many factors and a lot at stake. Your financial situation, employment choices, assets, tax brackets, health, and expected Social Security payment amounts must all be considered in order to make the best choice.
There’s no blanket right or wrong time to begin collecting Social Security. There is only the right time for you.