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Thinking About Collecting Social Security at 62? Here Are 3 Good Reasons

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For decades, financial experts have sounded the alarm that big trouble lies ahead if one decides to collect Social Security benefits at sixty-two, the earliest age to do so.

But what if an individual wants to take a contrarian position and has a desire to file for the benefits right now? Will their financial world in the decades ahead really come crashing down?

Do take note that it is difficult to deny the benefits of waiting till age seventy to collect—as doing so would make one eligible for the absolute maximum payout of $3,895 per month, according to the Social Security Administration (SSA). At sixty-two, it stands at $2,324, while at full retirement age—currently sixty-six and two months—the maximum benefit is $3,113.

“Workers planning for their retirement should be aware that retirement benefits depend on age at retirement. If a worker begins receiving benefits before his/her normal (or full) retirement age, the worker will receive a reduced benefit. A worker can choose to retire as early as age sixty-two, but doing so may result in a reduction of as much as 30 percent,” the SSA notes.

“Starting to receive benefits after normal retirement age may result in larger benefits. With delayed retirement credits, a person can receive his or her largest benefit by retiring at age seventy,” it adds.

However, according to the Motley Fool, a private financial and investing advice company, despite the lower benefits, it could be wise to go ahead and file at sixty-two.

Travel Plans

With millions of Americans stuck at home for much of the past year due to the coronavirus pandemic, it could be the perfect time to stretch those legs and make travel plans. For those aged sixty-two, filing now will help fund those travel adventures.

“Right now, a lot of countries that were previously closed off to U.S. travelers are opening their borders,” the finance site writes. “Plus, there aren’t restrictions or quarantine requirements for domestic travel. That means you may have an easier time visiting the places you want to go. And if you’ve worked hard all your life and need money from Social Security to fund those trips, filing early may be something you’ve more than earned.”

Quit Stressful Job

During the course of the ongoing pandemic, there’s no question that more Americans are now giving extra attention to their physical and mental health.

“But if your job is stressful or strenuous, to the point where it’s negatively impacting your health, then claiming Social Security benefits at sixty-two could be your ticket to leaving it behind and pursuing a healthier endeavor,” the site writes. “This isn’t to say that you need to file for benefits at sixty-two and retire. But having that money could buy you the freedom to explore different job opportunities and find one that’s a better fit.”

Not a Risk-Taker

Waiting till age seventy to file does come with its own risks—as one could die earlier than expected and end up with less money from the Social Security program.

“If you have any doubts about your health or a family history of dying young, then you may want to sign up for benefits as early as possible rather than take the risk of waiting and ultimately getting less money all in,” the site contends.

Ethen Kim Lieser is a Minneapolis-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn.

Written By

Ethen Kim Lieser is a Washington state-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV.

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