No. of Recommendations: 1
At age 58, I haven't focused too much on Social Security strategy yet. I try to follow SS benefit developments a little and have a current placeholder plan.

Since they took away the "do over at any time" option, here is my plan of record: 1 - SGSpouse, who has slightly lower SS benefits coming to her would begin collecting at or near age 62 (I would be 63). We could include a 12 month "do over" option to her benefits. 2 - I would postpone collecting until we either begin to experience health issues or attitude changes slowing us down - possibly until age 70. Taking SGSpouses benefit early would provide us with guarantee of at least some payout regardless of short longevity or failing health. Also, if only one of us has a long, active retirement, the larger COLA'd benefits would still be available.

There are still plenty of things that could change this plan between now and five years from now when SGSpouse turns 62. We don't really need the benefit to support the lifestyle we are enjoying right now and we are both still pretty healthy and active. If things haven't changed much in 5 years, we might feel like the probability of us living beyond the longevity tables is high and choose to hold off on collecting her benefits too so she can get a larger COLA'd benefit when we need it age 100. Conversely, if we are experiencing medical problems and fear that we will end up reducing the averages published in the longevity tables, we might choose to collect earlier.

If you just look at the financial part of things and assume average longevity, waiting to age 70 is the best deal, but I think this overlooks some important considerations. I've seen many people I know slow down and reduce their lifestyle dramatically prior to age 70 - often for health reasons. For these people, the age 62 benefit dollar would have been worth a lot more than the age 70 benefit dollar. And, of course, many don't live a lot of years past age 62.
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