There’s a good chance you’ll rely on Social Security benefits during retirement. Hopefully the payments will be merely a nice added bonus on top of your savings. Or maybe Social Security will provide more than that as it does for many, many people. No matter how Social Security impacts your retirement, here are some things you should know before it’s time to claim your benefits.
You Want To Max It
According to a report from Nationwide, 92 percent of Americans could not identify factors that allow them to maximize their Social Security payments. That’s not good. You don’t want to leave money on the table. Here are a couple ways to maximize your benefits:
It Pays to Wait
You want to wait until at least your Full Retirement Age (FRA) to claim benefits. If you claim benefits prior to your FRA, you’ll pay a fee and your checks will be smaller. For most people, FRA is right around 66 years old. If you can wait even longer to take benefits, your payments will increase until you reach 70 years old.
Payments Don’t Go Up
If you file for benefits before your FRA, your checks will not increase once you reach that age. This is why FRA is so important. Waiting really does pay.