Social Security Analysis

 

Social Security—It's more than a monthly check.

As you approach retirement, you'll likely face a host of decisions that could significantly impact your financial future. One of the critical decisions you'll make is filing for Social Security, which plays an essential role in your broader retirement income plan. Social Security is designed to provide older Americans, and disabled persons with a portion of the financial support needed to cover essential retirement expenses. The program offers many benefits, such as  • Lifetime retirement income • Payments indexed for inflation • Certain spousal and survivor benefits • Preferential tax treatment With benefits like these; it's easy to see why Social Security is so vital to your financial plan for retirement. Making a sound decision about Social Security benefits is critical for ensuring your financial security in retirement. It also requires a greater understanding of how Social Security income fits into your overall retirement plan. 
Social Security opportunities
Your decision about when and how to file for Social Security benefits is one of the most important financial decisions you will ever make. That's why we call it the choice of a lifetime. Your Social Security decision will no doubt impact the amount of essential and discretionary income you have during retirement. Moreover, the decision you make is mainly permanent (although you have a 12-month window to change your choice). Regardless of your income level, Social Security is a significant component of your overall portfolio, and it provides an opportunity you don't want to overlook. As a portion of your lifetime retirement income — and one that is indexed for inflation — Social Security takes on added importance as pensions, and personal assets continue to be on the decline. Not only can Social Security help fill the gap by covering necessary retirement expenses, but you can also grow your baseline and increase your benefits through options like delayed filing and maximizing survivor benefits. While the importance of your Social Security decision cannot be understated, your advisor can assist you with the process. With insight into your filing options, you and our team can build a retirement income plan around your individual needs.

Understanding your benefits 
For many years, 65 was the default age for retirement, because that's when full Social Security benefits used to begin. Times have changed. Today, full Social Security benefits start between age 66 and 67 for most Americans. Plus, you now have the option to get reduced benefits as early as age 62 or delay your benefits up to age 70 to increase your monthly Social Security income. Many Americans file for Social Security at 62 — as soon as they are eligible. Filing at age 62 may make sense for some people, but it's essential to understand the limitations and the opportunity that you may miss to increase your Social Security income.

Toussaint Financial Associates can help you better understand Social Security and begin putting a plan together. 
We can: 
• Help explain the basics 
• Break down and simplify filing decisions
• Complete a personalized filing strategy for you.