Retirement Planning/COLA and ss

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Question
I am 62 years old and I am trying to decide if I want to start collecting Social Security right away or waiting until I am 66.  Among all the factors that I am considering is the amount that I will be receiving at 66.
  
My question is:  Is the amount that appears in my social Security Statement this year in today’s dollars and is going to be increasing during the next 4 years in relationship with the COLA?....Or should I consider that the amount that shows today is close to the amount that I will be receiving in 4 years from now?

Thank you very much for considering my question.  Dolfy Freinquel

Answer
Richard E. Reyes, CFP
Richard E. Reyes, CFP  
Thanks for your question. I would recommend that you contact a Certified Financial Planner who is well versed in Social Security and retirement to go over your specific needs and objectives. I would also caution you not to go by any recommendation provided to you by Social Security since they are not in the business of providing any recommendations or planning as it pertains to your benefits. The only thing Social Security is allowed to inform you about is what your numbers will be. They do not have the knowledge of all the different claiming strategies and how it pertains to you.

When you reach your Full Retirement Age (66 or 67 depending on your birth year) your Social Security benefits will earn delayed interest credits of 8% per year until age 70 or you begin to take your benefits. Once you begin receiving your benefits, there are possible yearly increases for COLA which have averages a little over 2% a year. However, that does not automatically mean you will get that. There have been some years that COLA was ZERO. Also there are Medicare increases so that is also deducted from your Social Security.

There is a number of different claiming strategies when it comes to receiving Social Security which can often but over $100,000 in your pocket depending on which methods you use. There are over 80+ different ways to claim for a married couple. There are also a variety of methods for single, divorced, or widowed individuals.

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Richard E. Reyes, CFP

Expertise

I can provide answers to questions relating to retirement especially relating to; income distribution, tax efficiency, long-term care insurance, life insurance, estate planning, asset protection, variable and fixed annuities, alternative investments and prudent portfolio design.

Experience

Through the years Richard has built a reputation as one of Central Florida's expert on retirement income distribution by providing sound, unbiased wealth coaching. We believe that Financial Planning is the problem and Wealth Coaching is the solution. The Wealth Coaching process gives you Peace of Mind, so you can stop worrying about your future. It helps you find happiness as it guides you in the TRUTH of investing, by teaching you how to make wise choices as you journey through your life’s stages. It is all about your relationships and what you value, not your net worth.

Publications
Seminole Success Magazine “Retirement Planning” Seminole Success Magazine “Small Business Snapshot” The Orlando Sentinel – Ask the Expert Financial Section (Various) Greater Orlando Broker Agent Magazine “The New It” Senior Market Advisor “Random Reader, Random Questions”

Education/Credentials
B.S. University of Florida, Gainesville, FL
CFP Certificate, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL

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