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Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: tuqqer
Date: April 08, 2018 09:00AM
Can someone still start receiving their social security checks at 62 years, 3 months, regardless of their current income?

In other words, can someone still get ss benefits if they're earning $10k/year or $1Million a year?

I've been given conflicting information from their office and from their otherwise great ssa.gov site. I heard from them that if you're self employed and earning more than xx, you can't even start to get benefits until full benefit age (66 and some months). And yet I have a couple friends who earn north of $90k/year and started getting benefits immediately at 62 and 3 months.

Any help from the fellow old codgers, much appreciated. Please speak up though, I'm hard of hearing.



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: rgG
Date: April 08, 2018 09:43AM
AFAIK, you can start receiving SS benefits as early as age 62, but depending on your income, they may be taxed in part or in whole.

Remember, the earliest a person can start receiving Social Security retirement benefits will remain age 62. If you start receiving retirement benefits at: age 62, you will get 75 percent of the monthly benefit because you will be getting benefits for an additional 48 months.
Benefits Planner: Retirement | If you were born ... - Social Security
[www.ssa.gov]


But, there is also this:

For the year 2017, this limit on earned income is $16,920 ($1,410 per month). The amount goes up each year. If you are collecting Social Security retirement benefits before full retirement age, your benefits are reduced by $1 for every $2 you earn over the limit. Once you reach full retirement age, there is no limit on the amount of money you may earn and still receive your full Social Security retirement benefit.
Will I Get Penalized for Working While Collecting Social Security ...
[www.nolo.com]...


That last link explains it all pretty well





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 04/08/2018 09:47AM by rgG.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: space-time
Date: April 08, 2018 09:56AM
if you make 90+ per year, and if you do not need the SS immediately, or if you don't have any serious medical issues so that you expect to live a long retirement, it is better to wait until 66 or even 70 and get more SS each month. If you start taking it early, you are stuck with the lower payment for as long as you live.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: tuqqer
Date: April 08, 2018 09:56AM
hmm, then they were right: if you're earning around $60k/year or more, the penalties/subtractions because of the income are greater than ones monthly benefits.

I'll wait until I'm ancient and full benefits, at whatever age that will be in a few years.

Thanks, rgG.



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: April 08, 2018 09:58AM
.....yes, you can take it early but as mentioned if you are making a certain amount now, it will be taxed and the benefits lowered [ I believe ]....if you wait, the benefits will be more and since chances are you income will be less, you will pay less taxes......


.....if you don't need the money now.....most wait to receive benefits until later......



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Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/08/2018 10:00AM by NewtonMP2100.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: DP
Date: April 08, 2018 10:00AM
After 66 yo, tho, you can earn as much as you want while getting SS. It's from 62 to 66 that you are limited.





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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: dad@home
Date: April 08, 2018 10:54AM
Laurence Kotlikoff an economist at Boston College makes a strong case for waiting to start collecting Social Security.

He argues that taking benefits early (age 62), while popular, severely limits how much you will eventually get.

Retiring at "Full" retirement age (age 66 + and getting later) is much better but that waiting until 70 will maximizes what you get.

The problem is that we don't die off in our 60's anymore. Americans life expectancy is so long now that foregoing benefits from 62 to 70 is more than made up on the upper end.

He's written a number of books including:

[www.getwhatsyours.org]


John



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: fromish
Date: April 08, 2018 11:59AM
But...
All the 'wait until 70' advice is based on several, often unstated assumptions, listed below. You can adjust numbers, inflation, returns, etc to your perceived factors.
1.) You don't need more money until you reach 70, and there is no opportunity cost for the investment potential. If you sell investments or cash in Roth/IRA for health or living expenses, that lost return is part of the 'cost' of waiting until 70.
2.) Your health and family history indicates a longer lifespan than the crossover value for
total of social security at 62 through 80 (of your death estimate) including COLA and investment returns of the social security funds OR the monies freed up for investment because you have the ss income'
VERSUS
total of social security at 70 through 80 (or your estimated death) including COLA and investment returns of the social security funds OR the monies freed up for investment because you have the ss income'

3.) Tax laws and net worth exclusions or reductions of future social security benefits will remain unchanged for your lifetime
4.) That we are comparing like numbers, which is false. The eight years ss between 62 and 70 that an immediate ss beneficiary takes increases at 2-2.5% for inflation per year, or the delayed benefit amount decreases by that amount. So you are getting more dollars at 70, but those are inflated dollars.

Build a simple spreadsheet model of the two scenarios and graph the results. They are very useful for budgeting discussions and meetings with the accountant.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: April 08, 2018 01:15PM
In general, you add 8% to your check for every year you wait. If you're working, try to make it to 66 so you don't pay a penalty. After 66, the longer you can wait, the more your check will be (8% more per year) until age 70. If you have good genes, good health, and plenty of money, wait as long as you can. I had a good experience going to an office and talking to them in person.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: tuqqer
Date: April 08, 2018 01:25PM
I've looked at all the graphs on wait-vs-take, and I definitely decided to grab it starting at the first opportunity, which is around 62 and 2 months.

This income question was a wrench in that, though. From what I can see, after calculating the income part, I'd make zero if I asked for benefits now. So the only option is to wait until 66.

I would've loved the extra $15k/year to basically do fun bucket stuff and make my wife happy. All good. I'll wait another 4 years as as other noted, get a higher monthly, plus it won't matter how much I'm making.



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: JoeH
Date: April 08, 2018 01:34PM
Persons who collect and still have income may have it coming to them in a form not considered "earned income". It is one of the exceptions that reduces the effect of the $1 less in SS for every $2 earned.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: billb
Date: April 08, 2018 01:43PM
My dad waited until 70 for the max. He dropped dead from a stroke at 72.
He kept putting off traveling and taking some time off. I'm not doing that in case I have the same genes and life expectancy.
We're spending more money than I thought we would be so my plans of waiting until 70 may change.



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: rz
Date: April 08, 2018 02:08PM
Assuming you don't "earn" anything else between ages 62 and 66, realize that even though you're getting less money than if you wait until 66, you're getting SS for 4 years. The break even is about age 78. In other words, at age 78, you will have earned the same amount of money no matter which option you took. After that, it obviously skews better for those who waited.

Another question to ask... do you think SS, in its current form, will still be around when you turn 78?

Unless for some reason I'm still working past 62 (which I have no intention of doing), I will be taking SS as soon as I am able.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: $tevie
Date: April 08, 2018 02:48PM
Quote
DP
After 66 yo, tho, you can earn as much as you want while getting SS. It's from 62 to 66 that you are limited.
This^^^



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: April 08, 2018 03:33PM
....as mentioned your life expectancy plays a part....if you don't think you will last until 66 or 70, then take it now (and if you need money now).....if you expect to live a long life then waiting to take it later is beneficial.....



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I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: Forrest
Date: April 08, 2018 04:06PM
If you have at least 35 years of paying into Social Security and have considerable retirement savings, consider retiring today and waiting 4 years to collect Social Security. Everyone's work history is different - but I guess the difference between stopping work at 62 and collecting SS at 66 is about $100 less per month than working until 66 and then collecting SS.

The calculator on SS's website can perform these calculations - but you'll need to type in your yearly pay. A quicker method is to copy your work history from SS's web site and paste the data into https://socialsecurity.tools/app.html to run these what-if scenarios.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: space-time
Date: April 08, 2018 05:16PM
but we all expect to live forever, right? No one wants to die.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: bfd
Date: April 08, 2018 06:22PM
What's always going to be hard to determine is that "best if enjoyed by" date…
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: Yoyodyne ArtWorks
Date: April 08, 2018 06:26PM
Quote
space-time
but we all expect to live forever, right? No one wants to die.

No. The thought of immortality is repugnant, not to mention extremely selfish.



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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: Speedy
Date: April 08, 2018 06:53PM
Quote
Yoyodyne ArtWorks
Quote
space-time
but we all expect to live forever, right? No one wants to die.

No. The thought of immortality is repugnant, not to mention extremely selfish.

So heaven can wait?



Saint Cloud, Minnesota, where the weather is wonderful even when it isn't.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: Dennis S
Date: April 08, 2018 07:04PM
How is the surviving spouse affected? What if the husband dies before he draws? What if the wife lives 20 years longer than the husband?
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: freeradical
Date: April 08, 2018 07:13PM
Quote
Dennis S
How is the surviving spouse affected? What if the husband dies before he draws? What if the wife lives 20 years longer than the husband?

Yeah, the calculus is quite different for those with a spouse.

The "bird in the hand" approach is a good idea here. Even if you don't need the money, you take it and stash it away.
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: NewtonMP2100
Date: April 09, 2018 07:50AM
....woman tend to live longer than men.....



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I reject your reality and substitute my own!
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: TLB
Date: April 09, 2018 10:16AM
What's the math if you paid SS for about 20 year but have been out of the system for another 20 years? Is it worth it to get a side job that pays SS taxes for a few years prior to retirement, even if the contribution is minimal?
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Re: Old Codger MacResourcers: question on social security
Posted by: Forrest
Date: April 09, 2018 11:37AM
SS is calculated from your highest 35 years of SS wages, adjusted for inflation. If you've contributed less than 35 years, zero's are added in. It's helpful if you can work even-part time, to increase your average pay.
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