Fact vs. Fiction Archive

Once I hit age 62, I should immediately begin receiving social security benefits.

Fact: This may be true for some people, but everyone’s situation is different. If you want to spend your entire social security check every month and think that you may not need the funds past age 70, you may want to begin drawing on social security at the earliest possible date. Be aware, however, that cashing in early permanently diminishes your payout rate, and the longer you defer receiving social security payments—up to a certain point—the bigger your monthly check will be. Waiting to full retirement age, which ranges from 65 to 67 depending on the year of your birth, will result in a greater monthly benefit, while delaying until age 70 ensures that you will receive the maximum possible benefit. (There is no benefit to waiting past age 70.)

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