The Baby Boomer population is either already in retirement or will get there in a few years. A majority of Boomers expect Social Security benefits to be a major source of income, and knowing how to navigate this field is crucial to ensure an aging population can live comfortably for years to come.
Planning for retirement can be stressful. However, it becomes even more difficult with there being so many persistent myths related to Social Security. It is critical to dispel all myths as you start looking at your finances after retirement, so you can make the right decisions for you and your needs.
Myth #1: Any decisions are final
When people think about retiring, they need to decide whether they want to claim their benefits early or if they want to delay. A lot of people put immense weight on this decision because they believe they cannot reverse it. However, you have up to one year to alter a claiming decision. After a year, it becomes much more difficult to change a course of action.
Myth #2: It is more advantageous to claim early
People can claim Social Security benefits as soon as they turn 62. In the event that you do this, you can expect to receive checks in lower amounts than if you had waited. Claiming early only works if the person lives for a shorter period of time, but for people who plan on living into their 80s and 90s, they would do well to wait.
Myth #3: Marital status plays no role
For married couples, delaying benefits may be the way to go. One spouse will receive survivor benefits in the event that his or her partner passes away early in life. As a result, delaying benefits until the person is 70 could result in an increase in benefits by as much as 40 or 50 percent. Even spouses who have divorced may be able to claim benefits under a former spouse’s work record.