You can begin taking Social Security as early as age 62, but there is an incentive to wait if possible. If you do wait until “full retirement age” (which will be explained below), you’ll receive your entire benefit. So, depending on your birth year, your full retirement age will vary according to Social Security Administration, and the following graphic depicts this as of 2021:
|Year of Birth||Full Retirement Age|
|1937 and Before||65|
|1938 – 1942||65 + 2 months for each year past 1937|
|1943 – 1954||66|
|1955 – 1959||66 + 2 months for each year past 1954|
|1960 and Later||67|
There certainly are different implications for every person and their individual needs, but the later you take it, the greater the benefits. It should be noted you must take it at age 70, and you will receive more money in doing so. There is a benefit “phaseout” which basically means the earlier you take it, the higher percentage the benefit will be reduced by, but there is no incentive to delay claiming after age 70. The following depiction shows how much a $1,000 monthly check would net you depending different circumstances:
|Year of Birth||Full Retirement Age
(depends on current date)
|If you file at 62,
% benefits is reduced by
|A $1,000 check
|1955||66 and 2 months||25.83%||$741|
|1956||66 and 4 months||26.67%||$733|
|1957||66 and 6 months||27.5%||$725|
|1958||66 and 8 months||28.33%||$716|
|1959||66 and 10 months||29.17%||$708|
|1960 and later||67||30%||$700|
Now, let’s look at a chart that depicts how much you will receive if you do wait until your full retirement age to take Social Security Benefits (if possible given personal circumstances):
|Retirement Age||New Benefit||A $1,000 check turns into|
|66 + 6 months||104%||$1,040|
|67 + 6 months||112%||$1,120|
|68 + 6 months||120%||$1,200|
|69 + 6 months||128%||$1,280|
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