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  1. #1

    Do you know anyone: regrets taking SS @ 66 rather than waiting to 70?

    I am not sure, but I can think of a few who don't need the money.
    The question is; is it better to have a bird in the hand than two in the bush.
    How long do you expect to live, your tax rate, your income, your net worth should factor into your decision.
    Sometimes, I plan to defer, my parents died old. I do not need the money. I won't spend it. Other times, I want the money now.

  2. #2
    I suppose if you were 85 looking back, wishing you had deferred to 70. Your monthly payment would be higher. Though I have never heard a regret as you propose.
    But it depends.
    My dad took it at 62. He died at 67. Likewise I plan to take it early given my family history.
    Good luck with your decision.

  3. #3
    I was just thinking about this some more.
    Say you were 85. Hale and hearty. Why would you regret taking SS at the normal retirement age as opposed to waiting until 70?
    If you worked between 66 and 70, it might (probably would ) make sense to keep deferring. Taxes may have reduced the benefit considerably, and deferring those taxes was a good business decision.
    If you didn't work between 66 and 70 but had a lot of pension and/or investment income and didn't need the money, it might have made sense to defer. The increase in the benefit (is it around 6% per year?) makes your decision a good inverstment decision.
    But if you weren't working, and didn't have an excess of money coming in from pensions and investments, maybe you didn't really have the choice to defer 3 or 4 more years. You made the best decision you could at the time.

  4. #4
    According to most analysts, every year of deferral is worth about 8%. Looking at my own SS history, that's accurate for me.

  5. #5
    "According to most analysts, every year of deferral is worth about 8%"
    There's no need to do an analysis to understand the alternatives - this information is readily available from normal Social Security Admin info sources. When you sign on to your account, the monthly benefits to be received at the different age choices are shown. Subtraction and division will tell you how much the amount changes by year.
    In making the choice, everyone should understand that the alternatives - take less sooner or take more later - are actuarialy equal. Actuarial life expectancy shows what is the statistically expected remaining years before death for a person of a given age. If YOU live to the exact mean age that the data SSA uses shows, then the choice you make doesn't matter because all choices produce the same financial result. If you expect you (or your spouse) to live longer than average for persons your age, you should delay until the maximum benefit is obtained. If unmarried and or you expect to die sooner, you should start benefits sooner.
    Tax is not a consideration other than for people who expect a significant change in their personal tax brackets.
    Many choose to take the benefits early for the simple reason that they need the money. There's nothing wrong with that, that's why you get a choice.



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