Social Security: 4 Things to Know and How YOU can Learn about It

posted 4/17/2013 in General

There are some "hidden" Social Security rules that can help OR harm you.

Social Security. Those two words don't mean a whole lot to someone still in their 20s or 30s and working a full-time job, But to those who have started looking towards retirement, the amount you expect to get monthly from Social Security plays a massive role in how you plan your other finances for retirement, i.e., IRAs, investments, 401(k)s, etc. The point is that if you want to be able to count on a solid number from Social Security, you need to know about a few special rules.

Here are five of them, along with a way that Lincoln Savings Bank can help you get prepared for your retirement:
  1. It's all about your age- you need to know your "full retirement age." It varies based on when you were born. You may begin receiving benefits at age 62 before full retirement, but this can result in a permanent reduction of up to 25 percent of your benefit!
  2. The benefits of being a spouse- the "spousal benefit" is another great feature of Social Security. It allows one spouse to receive 50 percent of what the other spouse's benefit is worth. Again, waiting until full retirement brings better advantages with this rule.
  3. It pays to delay- delaying getting your benefits can result in a big bonus. For example, if you delay receiving your benefits until age 70, your benefit can grow up to 8 percent per year (including COLAs as well)! You must be secure in your other finances to implement this strategy, however.
  4. Your benefits are taxed- yes, you pay taxes into Social Security, and you also pay taxes on the benefits you receive based on your income.
Lincoln Savings Bank offers seminars to help you better understand Social Security in order to receive the highest benefit. Stever Tscherter, President/CEO of Lincoln Savings Bank, had this to say about the seminars:
"If you are planning for retirement or you are just interested in knowing what level of Social Security benefits you are building for yourself, make a date with your spouse to attend one of the locally provided LSB seminars on Social Security.  My wife and I did and we were pleasantly surprised to learn our annual Social Security retirement benefits will be thousands more than we had anticipated.  You will be provided an invaluable take away brochure to help guide you through the Social Security and Medicare sign up process.  Most important, the LSB experts presenting the seminar are very knowledgeable in every respect and very warmly lead you through the retirement decision process."
You can view seminar times and RSVP for them here.We hope to see you and your spouse in these classes soon!
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