When it comes to signing up for Social Security, you have a lot of options. Although you can petition for benefits as early as age 62, if you do so before attaining full retirement age (FRA), your payments will be permanently reduced.
Depending on the year you were born, FRA begins at 66, 67, or somewhere in between. Furthermore, filing at 62 will result in a monthly payout that is 25% to 30% smaller than it would have been if you had waited until FRA.
Despite the potential for a significant financial hit, claiming Social Security at the age of 62 can make a lot of sense depending on the circumstances. Here are three circumstances in which filing early pays well, even if it implies a reduced monthly income in retirement.
1. You despise your job, and it’s causing you health problems.
Some people are unconcerned with their jobs and can get by just fine. Others are lucky enough to like their work.
However, if you’re in the opposite situation and can’t stand your job, it could be time to quit — especially if it’s affecting your mental or physical health. And filing for Social Security benefits early may be the key to achieving that goal.
Consider how your job has been linked to elevated blood pressure and a slew of other illnesses that could cut your life expectancy in half over the last few years. Is it worth jeopardizing your health in exchange for a few extra years of pay?
If you’re way behind on your retirement funds, the answer might be “yes.” However, if you’ve built up a sizable savings account, it might be time to apply for Social Security to lock in some replacement income, and then present your resignation once those payments arrive.
2. You’d like to go on a new job path.
Even if your current job isn’t affecting your health, it could still be a flop. You may also aspire to work in a new field, one that is more gratifying and fun.
But what if the second job pays significantly less? You might not be able to make ends meet on that much lower salary unless you file for Social Security and can supplement your income with your benefits.
If that’s the case, filing early to make the change sooner rather than later may be worthwhile. After all, we spend so much time at work that we need to make the most of it. And, let’s face it, if you’re 62, you probably don’t have much time left in the workforce. So, if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like to work as a private chef rather than an accountant, filing for Social Security early could be a great way to find out.
3. You may buy the flexibility to file whenever you choose with your savings.
If you’re behind on retirement savings by the time you turn 62, you might want to put off filing for Social Security since you’ll need a larger monthly payout to make up for a dwindling nest egg. However, if you’ve saved a significant amount of money to the point where your Social Security benefits will only make up a small fraction of your total retirement income, you should file early.
By the time you’re 62, you’ve collected a $3 million nest egg, but you don’t want to touch it just yet. At the same time, you can be ready to end your career or reduce your hours to part-time. It may be possible to do so if you file for benefits early. It may also give you greater freedom to travel and explore various hobbies and pastimes while you’re still young, allowing you to make the most of your opportunities.
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The obvious disadvantage of filing for Social Security at age 62 is that you’ll be stuck with a lower monthly benefit for the rest of your life. However, in some cases, the risk is well worth it. If you find yourself in one of these situations, it may be time to apply for benefits and better your life in some way.
Most retirees overlook the $18,984 Social Security bonus.
If you’re like most Americans, you’re behind on your retirement savings by a few years (or more). However, a few little-known “Social Security secrets” may be able to help you increase your retirement income. For instance, one simple method may get you an extra $18,984 every year! We believe that once you understand how to optimize your Social Security benefits, you will be able to retire with confidence and the peace of mind that we all seek. To understand more about these tactics, simply go to this link.