Maximizing Social Security Retirement Benefits for Married Baby Boomers – Part 2 of 4
As mentioned previously, the population as a whole is aging and individuals are living longer than ever before. Many factors affect how long individuals will live, but key factors are lifestyle, including diet, exercise, stress, sleep, exposure to dangerous conditions at work and at home, exposure to environmental health risks and unpredictable risks such as a car accident caused by someone else, and genetics. Some people now facing decisions about Social Security are already in terminal conditions or have substantial likelihood of not living many years. For these people, getting benefits earlier may be a better decision than waiting to receive more benefits later. But individuals whose health is good and exposure to predictable risks is low, and whose parents and ancestors have tended to live long lives, may choose to plan on a long lifetime.
Despite the fact that people are living longer, according to the SSA’s Annual Statistical Supplement for 2011, 74% of Social Security recipients have elected to start receiving benefits early. This can be a huge mistake for a very long time.
We will discuss the second “leg” of the stool, Election, in Part 3 of this series.