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Old 06-30-2018, 11:49 AM
 
33,046 posts, read 20,714,185 times
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I'm listening to this Saturday morning financial radio show - retirement planning, investing, taxes - and they're discussing various options for maximizing retirement income.


Like when should joint filers start taking Social Security and/or start withdrawing from retirement plans? Should they convert to a Roth? Better to tap the 401(k) now in order to delay filing for SS, or to file now for SS and let the 401(k) grow until you reach 70 1/2, when RMDs are required? The scenarios are dizzying for couples, but even singles have uncertainty.

I don't have retirement savings, so my only question is when to file for Social Security. But then I would be forever second-guessing my decision.

That does not sound like fun. How do people actually make these decisions? Are they happy with their decisions, or do they come to regret them - is there a lot of second-guessing?.

Is there a path to a happy ending?
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Old 06-30-2018, 11:58 AM
 
5,417 posts, read 3,386,979 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freemkt View Post
I don't have retirement savings, so my only question is when to file for Social Security. But then I would be forever second-guessing my decision.

That does not sound like fun. How do people actually make these decisions?
Sometimes the decision is forced on them. As in you have to retire early, for example, because you can't work any more. So you take SS at 62 and have a lower benefit for the rest of your life.

Some people take it at 62 because of their family genetics.

There are a lot of reasons for early retirement. I'd guess most people wait until FRA, though, if they can. My FRA is 66 and I'll be there -- God willing and the creeks don't rise -- in 15 months.

Quote:
Are they happy with their decisions, or do they come to regret them - is there a lot of second-guessing?
Some second-guess. Others make peace with their decision. You have a lot of time to learn how to make peace with your decisions.

Quote:
Is there a path to a happy ending?
If you mean, "Is there a path to a guaranteed happy ending?", the answer is NO.

Welcome to the annoyingly long list of variables involved in retirement planning. It ain't easy.
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:02 PM
 
24,724 posts, read 26,794,844 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fluffythewondercat View Post
If you mean, "Is there a path to a guaranteed happy ending?", the answer is NO.
I'd add that there's not guaranteed happy ending with anything.
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:07 PM
 
Location: Bella Vista, Ark
69,278 posts, read 79,469,982 times
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unless you are forced to take SS before 65 or 67 DON"T. I made the mistake of taking it at 62. I am now in my early 80s and have kicked myself many times. First of all I did go back to work part time but made just enough a couple of years that I ended up 6 months (twice) without receiving SS. They hubby took it just 3 months prior to his 65th BD. We were moving to another state, we were not planning on working at anything again and didn't realize even a few month early would affect us so much. He drew several $$s a month less than he would have if he and waited and instead of my getting 1/2 of his retirement, they cut it back to 1/3. Needless to say I choose to continue drawing mine instead of part of his.
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:07 PM
 
64,577 posts, read 66,129,695 times
Reputation: 43003
Quote:
Originally Posted by freemkt View Post
I'm listening to this Saturday morning financial radio show - retirement planning, investing, taxes - and they're discussing various options for maximizing retirement income.


Like when should joint filers start taking Social Security and/or start withdrawing from retirement plans? Should they convert to a Roth? Better to tap the 401(k) now in order to delay filing for SS, or to file now for SS and let the 401(k) grow until you reach 70 1/2, when RMDs are required? The scenarios are dizzying for couples, but even singles have uncertainty.

I don't have retirement savings, so my only question is when to file for Social Security. But then I would be forever second-guessing my decision.

That does not sound like fun. How do people actually make these decisions? Are they happy with their decisions, or do they come to regret them - is there a lot of second-guessing?.

Is there a path to a happy ending?
it is all a complex individual problem with many roads . it is not easy to be able to take in all the things that really need to be considered . there is no simple answer across the board.

the simple answer is most americans don't have the choice to stop working and lay out the money while delaying ss properly . so it really is not a problem unless you have enough assets to delay or other sources of income while delaying .

this is where having money buys choices .
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:09 PM
 
33,046 posts, read 20,714,185 times
Reputation: 8928
Quote:
Originally Posted by fluffythewondercat View Post
Sometimes the decision is forced on them. As in you have to retire early, for example, because you can't work any more. So you take SS at 62 and have a lower benefit for the rest of your life.

Some people take it at 62 because of their family genetics.

There are a lot of reasons for early retirement. I'd guess most people wait until FRA, though, if they can. My FRA is 66 and I'll be there -- God willing and the creeks don't rise -- in 15 months.


Some second-guess. Others make peace with their decision. You have a lot of time to learn how to make peace with your decisions.


If you mean, "Is there a path to a guaranteed happy ending?", the answer is NO.

Welcome to the annoyingly long list of variables involved in retirement planning. It ain't easy.

Turns out most people actually file for SS at 62. It's not clear how many are forced into it by health issues and/or unemployment.
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:12 PM
 
64,577 posts, read 66,129,695 times
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most people don't have the assets or other income sources to layout and delay without working . they really have no choice as to when to take it. it is pretty much cut and dry because it is either work longer and delay , or stop working and file
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:16 PM
 
Location: San Diego / NWA
962 posts, read 556,981 times
Reputation: 1165
Quote:
Originally Posted by freemkt View Post
I'm listening to this Saturday morning financial radio show - retirement planning, investing, taxes - and they're discussing various options for maximizing retirement income.


Like when should joint filers start taking Social Security and/or start withdrawing from retirement plans? Should they convert to a Roth? Better to tap the 401(k) now in order to delay filing for SS, or to file now for SS and let the 401(k) grow until you reach 70 1/2, when RMDs are required? The scenarios are dizzying for couples, but even singles have uncertainty.

I don't have retirement savings, so my only question is when to file for Social Security. But then I would be forever second-guessing my decision.

That does not sound like fun. How do people actually make these decisions? Are they happy with their decisions, or do they come to regret them - is there a lot of second-guessing?.

Is there a path to a happy ending?
In your case if you are able to continue working, and you make enough to support yourself, then you should while delaying social security.
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Old 06-30-2018, 12:50 PM
 
Location: Proxima Centauri
3,754 posts, read 1,592,841 times
Reputation: 4147
I don't have enough info about the OP to give him/her a good answer.

I'll say this to the rest of you. Find jobs that guarantee pensions and don't be tempted to leave any earlier than the five years that it takes to vest. If a company offers a 401K grab it. If they offer matching contributions max it. If a company offers you the cash value of your pension, don't take it. Having that annuity for life is important. You just might live until ninety six. If you don't live until ninety six, you won't be there to care.
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Old 06-30-2018, 01:59 PM
 
24,724 posts, read 26,794,844 times
Reputation: 22714
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tonyafd View Post
I don't have enough info about the OP to give him/her a good answer.

I'll say this to the rest of you. Find jobs that guarantee pensions and don't be tempted to leave any earlier than the five years that it takes to vest. If a company offers a 401K grab it. If they offer matching contributions max it. If a company offers you the cash value of your pension, don't take it. Having that annuity for life is important. You just might live until ninety six. If you don't live until ninety six, you won't be there to care.
"Find jobs with pensions" sounds good, but it's not a realistic plan for the vast majority of people. The majority of jobs do not offer them and even in government jobs where they are still offered, benefits are being scaled back because current benefit levels aren't financially sustainable.
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