1. Money

When is the best time to take Social Security?

By March 12, 2009

Follow me on:

I often tell people that the best time to take Social Security is "In the morning." That way, you have the whole day to spend it.

Seriously, electing to take your Social Security as early as age 62 or delaying to as late as age 70 has serious implications for the rest of your retirement. With all the recent poor news in the investing markets, it's no wonder some people are reconsidering their previous decisions. This obviously includes the possibility of returning to work, but also whether they made the best choice with respect to filing for Social Security.

When did you first take Social Security? Are you happy with your decision? What do you recommend to others?
March 18, 2009 at 2:21 pm
(1) David L says:

If you don’t really need Social Security at Age 62, I think it’s best to take it anyway. It takes a very long time to make up forgone payments with the incrementally higher payments you’d get later on. And if your work & income situation later makes you regret taking it “early”, you can always give back your payments (with no interest charges) and “reset” your starting date and amount.

March 18, 2009 at 4:41 pm
(2) Mick says:

I started SS at 62 for my wife and myself a year ago; haven’t regretted it once. It’s very reassuring to know those checks are coming every month no matter what … as we continue to observe employment chaos around us.

March 18, 2009 at 5:36 pm
(3) The Sarge says:

Having recently observed my 63rd, the best answer I can come up with is that there is no best answer…like most everything else in life, you can plan, research, plan, re…well, you get the idea, but in the end, it’s a crap shoot as to the best course of action. You don’t really know if the choice was/is the best until after the fact. In my situation, following 21 years in the militay, I was fortunate to find a well-paying job. I generally acquire the “ceiling”, the point at which SS benefits are reduced, somewhere before mid-year; not having applied for SS benefits thus far appears to have been the best choice, but I’m not really going to know until 15-to-20 years out. Assuming, at that point, I’m somewhat of clear mind, I can crunch the numbers and determine if the right choice was made. Meanwhile, don’t forget…WEDNESDAY IS “OLD MAN DAY” AT THE LOCAL GROCERY! Good Luck and God Speed…

Sarge, Senior 64′

March 19, 2009 at 4:25 am
(4) Barb says:

I am still working full time, but I took social security benefits at my full retirement age, and I am using that monthly amount to pay off my credit card debt-the car loan is next. Hopefully, I will be debt-free in a year, and the decision to “quit my day job” or “remain in the work force” won’t be dependent upon economic necessity.

March 19, 2009 at 2:31 pm
(5) Michael Rubin says:

Thanks for all the insightful comments, everyone. Please come back and visit often! Certainly, getting the big debts paid back prior to retiring would seem to make the act of doing so much easier.

Good luck to each of you!

Leave a Comment

Line and paragraph breaks are automatic. Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title="">, <b>, <i>, <strike>

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.