Retirement planning is a process that helps you take a look at the money you’ve saved for retirement and create a way to distribute it and/or invest it so that year-by-year, you have the most money to live on, pay the lowest taxes possible, and never run out of money no matter how long you live. Additionally, in retirement you have to plan for the risks you face, such as losing a spouse, when the lower of your two Social Security checks will go away.
Social Security Benefits
There is no hard and fast rule about when you should file for Social Security benefits—it depends on your personal situation. Yes, you do get a lower benefit amount if you file at age 62. But if you have been downsized out of a job or are unhealthy, it may make more sense than waiting until your full retirement age (approximately 66, depending on your month and year of birth. If you wait past your full retirement age, your benefit will increase by 8% every year up until age 70.
Married, divorced and widowed spouses have even more options. Attend one of our Social Security workshops.
WATCH: Don’t Miss Your Bucket
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When it comes to retirement planning, we encourage retirees to start writing down what you want to do for the rest of your life. From age 65-80, what are the most important things—what do you want to do first? You’ve saved up the money, now you have the chance to create irreplaceable experiences and memories. We believe in front-loading your retirement through effective income planning so that you have the money to do your biggest bucket list items first, while you are still active and able.
WATCH: Brian Gray Discusses Social Security Benefits on Retirement
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Most people never consider that a big chunk of Social Security income is lost when one of them dies (the smallest check will go away). We want to help ensure that people have a plan in place to fill the gap in lost income before they are dealing with emotional loss. Usually your expenses will not go down. You can’t get life insurance if you’re not healthy and it is quite costly for older people anyway. That’s why we sometimes look at an annuity with an income rider if it makes sense.