Factors to Consider Before Starting Social Security

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Oct 01, 2021

By Tory Meiborg, President and Partner at World Trend Financial

Tory MeiborgOne of the questions we are frequently asked is “Should I start collecting Social Security now?” A quick search of the internet will provide a nearly unlimited array of answers. But like most things financial, there is no universal “right” answer to this nuanced question. There are many factors that each individual needs to consider:

Need – While deferring will result in a higher monthly payment, some individuals cannot afford to wait.

Employment Status – There are income limitations for those who start collecting benefits before their “Full Retirement Age (FRA)”. Those who want to start drawing early, but are still earning wages, need to carefully consider these limits.

Health Issues – Social Security benefits are determined not only by earnings history, but also by actuarial assumptions. If a person has health issues that may skew their individual mortality, those need to be considered.

Forms of Benefit – When most think of Social Security, they think of the individual retirement benefit they earn during their working career. But in addition to the individual benefit, there are disability benefits, widow’s benefits, spousal benefits, survivor benefits and benefit rights for those who are divorced.

In addition to these factors noted above, differences in spouses’ ages or earnings history also play a role in the analysis.

“Should I start Social Security now?” seems like a simple question. However, the right answer for you depends on a nearly unlimited set of variables. The financial professionals at World Trend can help you sort through this sometimes-confusing topic. We welcome the opportunity to discuss all your options to arrive at the best answer for you. They can be reached in Cedar Rapids at 319-364-3041 or in Iowa City at 319-339-4884.