retirement

How to Increase Your Social Security Benefits

Waiting until after your full retirement age to claim benefits will boost your payouts.

How much extra money can I get each year if I delay taking my Social Security benefits?

Delaying your Social Security benefits beyond your full retirement age is a great way to boost your annual payouts for life.

 

You can start receiving payouts as early as age 62, but your annual benefits will be about 25% less than if you wait until full retirement age to start receiving payouts (if you were born from 1943 to 1954, your full retirement age is 66; the age gradually increases to 67, for people born in 1960 or later).

Every year after your full retirement age that you wait to claim benefits will boost your annual payouts by another 8%, until you reach age 70.

Waiting to take benefits at age 70 will give you 32% more in benefits than if you took them at age 66, and 76% more than taking them at age 62. You need to consider your life expectancy when deciding when to take benefits, but if you can afford to delay benefits until age 70 and live past age 82 or so, you’ll receive more in lifetime income from Social Security than if you wait until full retirement age (and your spouse can benefit, too, if you wait to take benefits).

For more information about making the most of your Social Security decisions, see our Maximizing Social Security Special Report and Strategies to Boost Your Social Security, which includes special ways to coordinate your benefits with your spouse. To get a personalized recommendation, go to Kiplinger’s Social Security Solutions.

Most Popular

Your Guide to Roth Conversions
Special Report
Tax Breaks

Your Guide to Roth Conversions

A Kiplinger Special Report
February 25, 2021
The 12 Best Tech Stocks to Buy for 2022
tech stocks

The 12 Best Tech Stocks to Buy for 2022

The best tech-sector picks for the year to come include plays on some of the most exciting emergent technologies, as well as several old-guard mega-ca…
January 3, 2022
How to Know When You Can Retire
retirement

How to Know When You Can Retire

You’ve scrimped and saved, but are you really ready to retire? Here are some helpful calculations that could help you decide whether you can actually …
January 5, 2022

Recommended

Why Your New Social Security Check May Be Less Than You Thought
social security

Why Your New Social Security Check May Be Less Than You Thought

Watch out, because these three supposed “rules” about Social Security benefits may not actually apply to you.
January 13, 2022
Taxes in Retirement: How All 50 States Tax Retirees
Tax Breaks

Taxes in Retirement: How All 50 States Tax Retirees

We rated every state, plus the District of Columbia, on how retirees are taxed. Some of the results might surprise you.
January 11, 2022
How to Know When You Can Retire
retirement

How to Know When You Can Retire

You’ve scrimped and saved, but are you really ready to retire? Here are some helpful calculations that could help you decide whether you can actually …
January 5, 2022
Santa's End-of-the-Year Finance Tips 2021
Brandon Copeland

Santa's End-of-the-Year Finance Tips 2021

Atlanta Falcons linebacker and Kiplinger contributing editor Brandon Copeland shares a few ways you can improve your finances before 2022 gets here.
December 23, 2021