Financial Planner- When to Apply for Social Security Benefits


Some people may be wondering when the best time to apply for Social Security benefits may be. Financial Planner Tim Moomey shares a few factors that are important to consider when thinking about applying.

Some of those important factors are: health status, life expectancy, need for income, plans to continue working and survivor needs.

However, one of the most important and most complicated questions asked by those people thinking about applying is WHEN is the best time to apply for benefits.

Knowing when to apply can make a difference of receiving thousands of dollars over a lifetime, or not.

Using the example of a baby boomer born in 1946who had maximum earnings, he would receive $1,672 per month if he applied atage 62, but $2,944 if he waited until age 70.If cost-of-living adjustments average 2.8 percent over the next 8 years, (includinghis delayed benefit increases of 8 percent per year from age 66 to age 70), then hisage 70 benefit jumps to $3,672.

It mightbe hard to pass up Social Security checks when you can start receiving them asearly as age 62. But if you live a long time, you might be very glad youwaited. The longer you live, the more totalbenefits you could possibly receive by waiting until age 70 to apply. Thecrossover point, or break even age, is generally around 77 or 78, assuming thebenefits are spent and not invested.

The "when toapply" question impacts survivor benefits as well. High-earning spousesmight be wise to delay benefitsto age 70, because that will give the lower earning spouse the highestbenefit after the first death.

This is why it is important to look into all these aspects when deciding when to begin receiving Social Security benefits.