Do Your Best with Benefits

Do Your Best with Benefits

When it comes time to claim your Social Security checks, we want you to get the largest sum possible. If you want that too, do your best to avoid the following Social Security mistakes.

Ignoring Your Earnings Record

As USA Today reports, your Social Security earnings record provides a list of your taxable income for each working year. The higher your taxable income while you’re working, the higher your Social Security payments will be. Make sure your info is accurate at least once per year. You can check on your earnings record by creating an account on Social Security’s site. If the numbers aren’t accurate, you’ll need your tax returns to verify that. You’ll want to complete a Request for Correction of Earnings Record and then submit it, along with a tax return that displays the correct information.

Not Understanding Taxes

Unfortunately, you could owe taxes on your Social Security benefits during retirement. You don’t want that expense catching you off guard. How much you might owe depends on your combined income, your filing status and the state where you live. If your filing as an individual with a combined income of $25,000 or more, you could owe taxes on up to 50 percent of your benefits. Likewise if you’re filing as a married couple and have a combined income of $32,000 or more. To find out what you might owe in taxes, look into your state’s Social Security tax laws.

Taking Benefits Too Early

You can start taking Social Security payments as early as 62. However, it’s often wiser to wait as long as possible. That’s because the longer the wait, the bigger the check. If you wait until your full retirement age — 66 or 67, depending on when you were born — you’ll get the full benefit you’ve earned. However, if you start taking checks at 62, you’ll get just 70 percent of what you’ve earned. (And if you can wait until age 70, that’s often even better because your benefit will continue to rise.) In other words, it’s a big difference. If you really want to maximize those Social Security checks, wait past your full retirement age. Each month past your age, your checks will increase by two-thirds of one percent. Waiting isn’t easy, but it certainly does pay.

Articles
Summer Mindset
Summer Mindset

We know it’s hard to think about summer in the dead of winter, but if you want to take a vacation when the weather warms up, it b...

Read More

The Right Roth
The Right Roth

There are a variety of ways to save for retirement, but one plan that stands out is the Roth IRA. It’s an easy-to-understand reti...

Read More

February Fever
February Fever

February is the perfect time to get your finances in order. It’s a short month and you’re likely still reeling from the holiday s...

Read More

New Techniques to Automate Your Savings
New Techniques to Automate Your Savings

It’s no secret that 401(k)s and other work-based retirement accounts are magical when it comes to saving money successfully? Why ...

Read More

Better Late Than Never
Better Late Than Never

If you’re in your 40s and have no nest egg to speak of, don’t panic. There are things that can be done. No matter what led to thi...

Read More

A Better Year
A Better Year

It’s almost the end of the year, and that means financial New Year resolutions are probably on your mind. Here are Americans top ...

Read More

Don’t Overdo It
Don’t Overdo It

If you have a large amount of money in a savings account and your emergency fund is well stocked, that’s a good thing. Life is fu...

Read More

Close Out 2019 With These Money Tips
Close Out 2019 With These Money Tips

Take a reflective look at your financial life from the last 12 months. Maybe you didn’t accomplish every last item on your financ...

Read More

Avoid and Excel
Avoid and Excel

Saving for retirement can be quite daunting, so it’s important to make it as easy as possible for yourself. One way to do that? B...

Read More

Website Terms of Service

Please read these "Website Terms of Service" carefully before using SavvyMoney Checkup ("site", "website"). Accessing this site, or making this site available to any third party, indicates that you have read and accept these terms.

  1. Materials. Materials in this site are copyrighted and all rights are reserved. Text, graphics, databases, HTML code, and other intellectual property are protected by US and International Copyright Laws, and may not be copied, reprinted, published, reengineered, translated, hosted, or otherwise distributed by any means without explicit permission.
  2. Links to Third-Party Sites. Linked, third-party sites from website are not under the control of the Licensor. The Licensor is not responsible for the contents of any linked site or any link contained in a linked site, or any changes or updates to such sites.
  3. Confidentiality of Codes, Passwords and Information. Licensee agrees to treat as strictly private and confidential any username, password, user ID, and all information to which you have access through password-protected areas of website.
  4. Maintenance. Licensor shall provide Licensee any new, corrected or enhanced version of the site as it becomes available. Such enhancement shall include all modifications to the site which increase the speed, efficiency or ease of use of the site, or add additional capabilities or functionality to the site, but shall not include any substantially new or rewritten version of the site.
  5. Limitation of Liability. Licensor shall not be responsible for, and shall not pay, any amount of incidental, consequential, or other indirect damages, whether based on lost revenue or otherwise, regardless of whether Licensor was advised of the possibility of such losses in advance. In no event shall Licensor's liability exceed the amount of license fees paid by Licensee, regardless of whether Licensee's claim is based on contract, tort, strict liability, product liability or otherwise.