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Old 09-06-2011, 06:06 AM
 
16,437 posts, read 19,136,151 times
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Another consideration is if your spouse will need the highest possible survivor SS income. Your income is what she'll get if you precede her and her SS earnings are less than yours. You may want to delay drawing for her benefit. FWIW.

 
Old 09-06-2011, 08:10 AM
 
Location: Maryland
1,534 posts, read 3,781,464 times
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Regardless of high cotton's OPINION, there are perfectly rationale reasons for taking SS as early as possible other than the situations he/she presented. Castigating anyone who does so as ignorant is one of the more obvious examples of genuine ignorance I can recall of late on this forum. (And yes, hc, I can do numbers with the best of them.)

As Escort Rider and others have accurately noted, the determination is specific to each individual's situation. That, I suggest, is the factual information folks ought to direct their attention to in their planning/assessment calculations. The relevant factors can be far more complex than a simplistic financial return of now versus later.

Having showered you with my great wisdom of the moment, I'm now going to enjoy the espresso the nice young lady just brought me here in Chianciano, Italy. A parting word of advice for my fellow retirees - tis best to do it NOW (it being defined as whatever one prefers to do before the Grim Reaper calls) rather than roll the dice on later. Just my not terribly humble opinion. Ciao.
 
Old 09-06-2011, 09:40 AM
 
Location: High Cotton
6,131 posts, read 6,442,376 times
Reputation: 3657
Quote:
Originally Posted by highcotton View Post
If you don't plan on dying until age 78 or after, wait until age 70 to take Social Security...if you don't absolutely have to have the money.

The annual increase between age 66 (full retirement age for most) and age 70 is simply too great to pass up from a financial/investment standpoint. That said, if you are one of those people that don't understand good finances and investing practices, or simply want 'it' NOW because money burns a hole in your pocket, then no amount of discussion will talk you into waiting...and receiving 32% less at age 66 versus waiting just 4 years until age 70 and receiving 32% more. It doesn't take a financial wizard to realize it's best to wait and let it grow at 8% per year...unless you [absolutely] need the money or plan on dying before breaking-even at age 78.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pilgrim21784 View Post
Regardless of high cotton's OPINION, there are perfectly rationale reasons for taking SS as early as possible other than the situations he/she presented. Castigating anyone who does so as ignorant is one of the more obvious examples of genuine ignorance I can recall of late on this forum. (And yes, hc, I can do numbers with the best of them.)

As Escort Rider and others have accurately noted, the determination is specific to each individual's situation. That, I suggest, is the factual information folks ought to direct their attention to in their planning/assessment calculations. The relevant factors can be far more complex than a simplistic financial return of now versus later.

Having showered you with my great wisdom of the moment, I'm now going to enjoy the espresso the nice young lady just brought me here in Chianciano, Italy. A parting word of advice for my fellow retirees - tis best to do it NOW (it being defined as whatever one prefers to do before the Grim Reaper calls) rather than roll the dice on later. Just my not terribly humble opinion. Ciao.
Pilgrim - And just what are the "relevant factors" and the "factual information folks ought to direct their attention to", which are "perfectly rationale reasons for taking SS as early as possible other than the situations (I) presented"?
 
Old 09-06-2011, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Bar Harbor, ME
1,922 posts, read 3,779,224 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by highcotton View Post
I guess you're talking about that someone being me. Ignorance is one thing - reality and facts is another. Which is your pick?
Here's one, High Cotton:

While I expect to be able to live to 92, who knows? If I wait until 70 so that I get a greater amount, I will get about 600 bucks more a month.

But actually if I really don't need the income from SSA between now and 70(I'm 62), and Itake it now, and save 2/3 of it, which is what my wife projects, I will have quite a tidy sum at age 70.

This tidy sum may come in handy for any number of things, and having it will be way way better than a lousy 600 bucks more a month. if I have some difficult expense, or some other issue, this tidy save sum from SSA with be of way way way more benefit than having only $600 extra a month at age 70.

To me, that is a no-brainer.
 
Old 09-06-2011, 12:45 PM
 
Location: Maryland
1,534 posts, read 3,781,464 times
Reputation: 2307
Quote:
Originally Posted by highcotton View Post
Pilgrim - And just what are the "relevant factors" and the "factual information folks ought to direct their attention to", which are "perfectly rationale reasons for taking SS as early as possible other than the situations (I) presented"?

The relevant factors hc, are any of those established by the individual making the decision. Some examples:

- to fund an animal rescue operation that would not be otherwise feasible. The person has adequate financial resources for their retirement but wants to do something different and the SS funds provide that option.

- to pay for a grandchild(s) education.

- to do things (travel, start a new business, live abroad, etc., etc., etc.) NOW, rather than risk later disability or changed circumstances that preclude such current options, that an individual decides to do with full knowledge of the economic trade off. Many, (all that I know personally) are fully aware of the economic trade off in SS payment timelines.

Their decision to avail themselves of SS at the earliest possible time is not dumb, nor I suggest within your purview to label "ignorant". It is their decision and theirs alone.

The factual information has already been presented to you. See above.
 
Old 09-06-2011, 12:56 PM
 
5,822 posts, read 13,315,622 times
Reputation: 9290
Quote:
Originally Posted by highcotton View Post
It doesn't take a financial wizard to realize it's best to wait and let it grow at 8% per year...unless you [absolutely] need the money or plan on dying before breaking-even at age 78.
True, but you never know when your number is called and may NEVER collect a dime of SS. OR when you are ready to start collecting and spending all that extra cash, you're medically unable to due to illness. One never knows.
 
Old 09-06-2011, 01:12 PM
 
Location: High Cotton
6,131 posts, read 6,442,376 times
Reputation: 3657
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pilgrim21784 View Post
The relevant factors hc, are any of those established by the individual making the decision. Some examples:

- to fund an animal rescue operation that would not be otherwise feasible. The person has adequate financial resources for their retirement but wants to do something different and the SS funds provide that option.

- to pay for a grandchild(s) education.

- to do things (travel, start a new business, live abroad, etc., etc., etc.) NOW, rather than risk later disability or changed circumstances that preclude such current options, that an individual decides to do with full knowledge of the economic trade off. Many, (all that I know personally) are fully aware of the economic trade off in SS payment timelines.

Their decision to avail themselves of SS at the earliest possible time is not dumb, nor I suggest within your purview to label "ignorant". It is their decision and theirs alone.

The factual information has already been presented to you. See above.
Pilgrim - all the things you mentioned are based on the person actually needing the SS money. In other words, if a person does not have enough money (without SS money) to do the 'things' you mention and thus they need the SS money then that's a different story... As I said, "If you don't plan on dying until age 78 or after, wait until age 70 to take Social Security...if you don't absolutely have to have the money. In your examples it's obvious the person would 'absolutely have to have the SS money to do those things...
 
Old 09-06-2011, 01:20 PM
 
Location: High Cotton
6,131 posts, read 6,442,376 times
Reputation: 3657
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zarathu View Post
Here's one, High Cotton:

While I expect to be able to live to 92, who knows? If I wait until 70 so that I get a greater amount, I will get about 600 bucks more a month.

But actually if I really don't need the income from SSA between now and 70(I'm 62), and Itake it now, and save 2/3 of it, which is what my wife projects, I will have quite a tidy sum at age 70.

This tidy sum may come in handy for any number of things, and having it will be way way better than a lousy 600 bucks more a month. if I have some difficult expense, or some other issue, this tidy save sum from SSA with be of way way way more benefit than having only $600 extra a month at age 70.

To me, that is a no-brainer.
Zarathu - Your tidy little sum will fall short of the much larger sum you would accumulate if you wait until age 70. It's simple math - 25% increase from 62 to 66 and 32% increase between 66 and 70. Why in the world would you want to collect early and save 2/3 of the money and earn interest at practically zero when you could earn 6%-8% annually by waiting? It's simple math...
 
Old 09-06-2011, 01:28 PM
 
Location: High Cotton
6,131 posts, read 6,442,376 times
Reputation: 3657
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ellwood View Post
True, but you never know when your number is called and may NEVER collect a dime of SS. OR when you are ready to start collecting and spending all that extra cash, you're medically unable to due to illness. One never knows.
That's a very poor excuse. You could also say something like - I don't know when my number will be up or if I might become ill therefore I'm going to spend all my savings now so I can be sure to enjoy spending it. Would that be smart? Of course not! All you are considering is whether you will be unable to spend the money. That's no way to be thinking and results in nothing more than a poor excuse.
 
Old 09-06-2011, 02:03 PM
 
Location: High Cotton
6,131 posts, read 6,442,376 times
Reputation: 3657
Factors to consider
Taking the money early might seem attractive, but it means settling for a lower monthly payment for the rest of your life.

Here are some factors to consider as you decide when to take the money.

1. Your cash needs. If you're contemplating early retirement and you have sufficient resources (adequate investments, a traditional pension, other sources of income, etc.), you can be flexible about when you take Social Security benefits. However, if you can't make ends meet without electing for an early, reduced benefit, you may want to consider postponing retirement for a few years until you reach your normal retirement age, or even longer.


2. Your life expectancy and break-even age. Taking Social Security early reduces your benefits, but it also means you'll receive monthly checks for a longer time. Taking Social Security later results in fewer checks during your lifetime, but the credit for waiting means each check will be larger.



At what age will you break even and begin to come out ahead if you delay Social Security? The break-even age depends on the amount of your benefits and the assumptions you use to account for taxes and the opportunity cost of waiting (investment return you could have made, inflation, etc.).



To wait or not to wait? That is the question:

Consider taking benefits earlier if ÖYou are no longer working and really canít make ends meet without your benefits. You are in poor health and donít expect to make it to average life expectancy.


Consider waiting to take benefits if ...You have sufficient resources or you are still working and make enough to impact the taxability of your benefits. (At least wait until your normal retirement age so benefits arenít further reduced due to earnings.) You are in good health and expect to exceed average life expectancy.


When Should You Take Social Security?
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