This January 2023, the 8.7% cost-of-living adjustment (COLA) kicks in with a $1,827 monthly benefit.
The $1,827 Social Security Benefit Is Enough?
Beating the $21,924 annually is hard for the reality if Social Security is your only source of income. The payment from Social Security is not intended to be your only source of income in retirement. However, about a quarter of retirement-age people rely on Social Security for at least 90% of their income.
Whether you’re counting primarily on Social Security to fund your golden years or have investments and other resources, your retirement will be much more relaxing if you can squeeze more out of those monthly checks.
Here Are Four No-brainers To Beat The $1,827 Social Security Check
- Wait Until Your 70
No one is ordering you to wait until you’re 70 but if you want to exceed the average payment then wait just a little bit longer than the average retiree before starting payments. If you wait until at least full retirement age, which is 67 if you were born in 1960 or later then that’s when you qualify for your full Social Security benefit. If you can delay even longer, you’ll earn 8% annual delayed retirement credits until your benefit maxes out at age 70.
- Increase Your Income
Social Security will base on your highest income within your 35 years of earnings. So if you want to get a boost with your monthly checks, then you should want to increase your income. Hence, you should pay more FICA taxes, which fund Social Security, negotiate for a raise, get a better job offer, or start a second part-time job or side hustle.
- Work Until You Reach At Least 35 Years
The benefits are based on your 35 years of earnings, so you have to work at least 35 years to maximize your benefit.
- Spousal And Survivor Benefits
If you’ve been married or divorced, you can be eligible for spousal benefits survivor of up to 50% of your current or former spouse’s benefit. If your current or former spouse has died, you could receive benefits of up to 100% of their primary insurance amount. However, if your retirement benefit is higher than your spousal benefit or survivor benefit, you’ll receive your benefit. Social Security doesn’t allow you to claim both.