I heard you today on WGN talking about the best age to claim Social Security. I didn’t get the whole conversation. My husband is 61 and I am 48. He believes that claiming at 62 is more beneficial then waiting until 66. Is there a formula or calculator to help us decide? Thanks!
Terry Says: It will NEVER be a good idea to claim Social Security benefits before full retirement age — unless you think you won’t live to see that age! (And there are a few unique strategies for spouses, which might make this an interesting choice.) But basically, claiming before full retirement age makes a huge dent in future benefits — and it dings your benefits if you have other earnings from work. In fact, taking benefits early costs you roughly 8% a year in your basic benefit as opposed to waiting.
There is a wonderful and easy to use calculator at T. Rowe Price that will walk you through not only figuring out when to take your own benefit — but how to coordinate with your spouse for various goals, which may range from getting maximum income while both are alive to maximum income for a surviving spouse if one should die well in advance of the other. You get to choose your goals, and compare strategies and overall likely benefits. Try it. Here’s the link: http://individual.troweprice.com/public/Retail/Retirement/Social-Security-Tool