3 Social Security Strategies for a Happy Retirement

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These actions could greatly increase your wealth.
You may have lofty retirement goals, such as pursuing a hobby such as golfing or sailing, traveling, or returning to school. Regardless of your goals for your golden years, the more money you have, the more likely you’ll be able to do the things you’ve always desired.

Therefore, it is crucial to obtain as much money as possible from Social Security. And the following strategies can assist you in doing so.

 

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1. Develop your career.

Social Security benefits are determined by earnings — specifically, the amount of money you earn during your 35 most profitable years of work. If you’re approaching the end of your career and have 35 years of experience, you’re in good shape. However, it may be worthwhile to extend your career by a few years if your earnings have increased substantially.

Imagine you are in your 60s and have recently been promoted to a lucrative vice president position within your company. If you continue working for a few more years, you can replace one or two years of lower earnings with higher ones, thereby increasing your monthly benefits.

2. Postpone your filing

If you want the maximum monthly Social Security benefit based on your earnings history, you must wait until your full retirement age (FRA) to apply. Depending on your birth year, your FRA could be 66, 67, or somewhere in between.

However, you are not required to file at your exact FRA. Delaying your claim will result in an increase in benefits. In fact, your benefits will increase by 8% per year until you reach age 70 if you delay taking them. Depending on your exact FRA, you could receive a 24 to 32 percent bonus if you can hold out that long.

3. Communicate with your partner

On the basis of your respective earnings records, it is possible that both you and your spouse qualify for Social Security benefits. If so, you can experiment with various filing scenarios to determine which makes the most sense.

A common strategy is for the lower-earning spouse to file for benefits at FRA while the higher-earning spouse delays filing. In this way, the household receives income. This allows the larger benefit to grow into an even greater amount.

Obviously, you have other options. If you want to receive more money up front, you may decide to have the higher-earning spouse apply for benefits first. The key is to plan carefully and file documents at a time that makes sense individually and collectively.

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Ensure you have a strategy

Social Security could be a substantial source of income for you after you retire, so it’s important to carefully consider how to maximize and claim your benefits. The more money you can extract from the program, the more likely you are to enjoy your retirement.

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