Deciding when to claim Social Security benefits can be a difficult decision – but there are tools to help you.
Laurence J. Kotlikoff, a professor and economist, launched the Maximize My Social Security tool in 2012.
The software helps you decide when to claim and tells you how to maximize your benefits if you have asked.
Mr Kotlikoff told The Sun: “I find the advice that the publications … are issued to be incorrect, and I want to help people improve their financial situation.”
Maximize my social security will help you avoid some of the most common mistakes people make when claiming Social Security benefits.
One of them is that people think they will die at an average age, but some may live to be 100, Mr. Kotlikoff noted.
Therefore, you may want delay your claimas it increases your monthly benefit up to 32%.
The tool will also help you uncover “tens of thousands” of additional retirement benefits by finding a strategy that will maximize your lifetime Social Security benefits.
The tool costs $40 per household and annual use, but it could be worth it if you’re unsure about when to ask.
Mr. Kotlikoff, who received his PhD in Economics from Harvard University in 1977, currently works at Boston University as a professor.
He’s also authored or co-authored about 20 books and created three financial instruments, one of which is Maximize My Social Security.
Here’s Mr. Kotlikoff’s advice for current and future retirees.
Pause Social Security
If you’re still not retired, Mr. Kotlikoff recommends suspending Social Security claims until you reach full retirement age (FRA).
When, however, depends on your circumstances.
Your full retirement age depends on your year of birth.
Under current law, if you were born in 1955 or later, your full retirement age is usually 66 years and a certain number of months.
Whereas if you were born in 1960 or later, your full retirement age is 67.
If you were born before 1955, you are already 66 years old and full retirement age.
Protect yourself from inflation
Mr. Kotlikoff said: “Many people don’t see inflation in their retirement, but it’s something that you need to protect yourself from.
Data released today by the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that inflation rate for January reached 7.5% from a year earlier.
Mr. Kotlikoff recommends putting some money into an I-bond because its interest rate is adjusted for inflation every six months.
Here’s something you can do if you’re not retired or retired.
Just keep in mind that you’ve been with the I-bond for at least a year.
If you buy back five years in advance, then you put in the last three months of interest. After five years, you can redeem the bond without penalty.
Mr Kotlikoff also said that “another option for people over 70 is to refinance their home”.
There are several reasons why you should read about Social Security benefits.
“There are 13 benefits,” said Mr. Kotlikoff. There are 2,728 ground rules on those interests and hundreds of thousands of subcommittees on general rules.”
In other words, it is easy to get confused.
If you’re confused about your Social Security benefits, Kotlikoff recommends finding a financial advisor instead of relying on the Social Security Administration (SSA).
If you can’t afford a financial advisor, look for free or low-cost resources.
For example, Mr. Koflikoff’s book Money Magic shows 10 basic tips for navigating the rules and it costs $26.10 in a hardcover edition.
The sun also revealed Four things to know about Social Security taxes and five things you need to do before claiming Social Security.
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https://www.the-sun.com/money/4652429/tool-when-claim-social-security-benefits/ My Social Security Tool helps you decide when to claim benefits